As a professional voice over artist the tendency can be to crank out the product and move on – that’s how you get paid after all. To quote a famous sidekick (if he were to reference voice overs) “You no speak into mic and you no get paid”.
I firmly believe if you don’t listen to the client’s needs and have a full understanding of the content, the delivery style and know who your target audience is – then you are doing your customers and the voice over industry a disservice.
I actually learn something new from each and every project I work on because I employ this strategy.
I always take the time (when the deadline allows) to read through the copy and to ask questions about pronunciations and share concerns when I see a typo or grammatical speed bump that can hurt the message flow. 100% of the time the grateful clients say that this preproduction step is the exception and not the rule when it comes to other talent they have worked with.
I say “be exceptional”. You may not crank out as much product but the clients who respect that you took the extra time with their message will be both loyal and in many cases long term relationships that make it worth the extra time.
When I take the time to study the material, learn the industry acronyms and offer feedback and helpful suggestions the clients have a partner and not just a vendor. Try being exceptional!
I know from personal experience producing thousands of hours of eLearning material over the last 8 years for a lot of clients around the world, this good business practice is for some reason not considered mainstream. When you don’t engage this simple method of “being quick to listen and slow to voiceover” it results in multiple revisions, which ends up costing the client valuable time in the production workflow. It effects video post sessions, eLearning workflows come to a screeching halt and animators sit idly waiting for the VO guy to get it right. I don’t know about you but I don’t like being the one people are waiting on.
Troy W. Hudson is known as the “Voice Over with Personality”! In over 30 years, he has produced thousands of commercials, narrations, character voices and messages of all kinds for clients worldwide. Energetic commercial reads, the guy next door vibe, making complex elearning conversational and bringing to life a children’s story or audiobook with voice acting and characters. He delivers.