The Business of VONovember 6, 2014 by: Jessica
Business…it is exactly that! You want and need to be paid what you are worth.
The goal is to have a lucrative business but if you are booking jobs that take a lot of your time, for very little pay, how will you ever be able to not only make a living, but have the means to invest in what you need to help your career grow?
There is a lot of “advice” about where to find VO breakdowns or jobs out there, but by the time you audition and then (hopefully) get chosen, what might you be up against next, if the job was under a tiny budget?
They will expect you to record the session, possibly also have ISDN or phone patch capabilities (that is an additional cost for you to provide), edit the recording and maybe even add the sweetening (music,SFX).
Why am I pointing this out? Know what you are worth and be sure the additional services are just that and billed accordingly.
Etiquette…Let me use the Workout for a moment. We ask that the participants don’t badger the guest by inundating them with emails, phone calls, etc. But you know what? Everyone likes to be thanked and know that their efforts are appreciated. As long as you don’t come off “sales-y” between social media, Google etc., there are less intrusive ways to communicate and help keep you in the forefront of that person’s mind.
Branding is key… Which do you think is easier and more professional in the eyes of an agent or potential buyer? Example email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org …. better yet Jane@janejonesvoiceover.com. If a producer or agent has to try to remember who had the “hellokitty” email address you could lose the booking. In this fast-paced world, it is much easier for them to just say, “NEXT”!
Marketing…Website, content in your website, videos, press releases and being connected with companies that Google recognizes. For example, when you create your voiceregistry personalized page, the url is linked with Voicebank.net. When you use that instead of only emailing your demo to an agent, they see that Voicebank.net is part of the equation and there is a heightened sense of interest. Google also now takes interest. Actors who know how to utilize the power of social media, SEO and keyword search are reaping the benefits of organic clients.
Now let’s take a step back and assess …Much of what has been covered sounds like a lot of time and work right?
Depending on where you are in your VO journey, this is where you need to decide what you want to focus your time, energy and budget on. You can pay people to get a lot of the marketing tools in place then maintaining and changing your email is simple.
Representation… Once you are represented, a lot of the networking and marketing is done for you through your agent. They work at staying connected to the movers & shakers in the VO industry and are invited to the breakdowns and auditions. The best part is that they see the better jobs and help protect what you are worth. They know the contracts and what fair rates are. The industry will move downward if actors constantly accept working for peanuts. The agent is doing what they can to ward that off. Maintaining good communication with your agent is important too so they know your range and what specs they feel you should be auditioning for.
Already on Voicebank.net? Going back to an easier way to market to the producers and casting directors is to take advantage of the Premium link and Featured Artist Ad. There are project creators who solely use our demo & client section all day long for their voiceover casting needs. The Premium Link /Red Star feature gives you the chance to have a captive audience when the producer clicks on your name and is sent straight to your website. There they will see all the bells & whistles of what you have to offer.
The Featured Artist Ad puts you on the top of the Voicebank.net Demo & Client section. There is a special offer which includes the Featured Artist Ad when you select to get the Premium link for the year.
Not represented? This may seem biased but it is working and needs to be mentioned.
The Voiceregistry Weekly Workouts…Where else can you pay only $10 a month to get your voice and name right in front of an agent or casting director every week. Not only will they give you feedback to help you improve your craft but also you have completely “warmed” what would have been a “cold call” market. Many times the agents tell me the participants were really good and choose to represent who they could use on their roster.