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Should I join a paid VO listing site?

 
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Bruce
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Joined: 06 Jun 2005
Posts: 6865
Location: Portland, OR

PostPosted: Fri Sep 29, 2006 11:39 am    Post subject: Should I join a paid VO listing site? Reply with quote

If you'd like some kind of guide to which site you'd like to put your money into, here are a couple of pointers to help you make that decision.

First, find out what those paid listing sites are doing with their money. Are they using the Internet effectively? Pretend you're a producer looking for a voice....

Google:
female voice talent
female voice talent uk
female voiceover
female voice over
female voice commercial

OR the Male versions of those searches or search without the sex notation.

See who's on the first page under free or paid listings. Those that are on that page are putting some of your fee to good use. The rest...not as good.

I typed in "voice talent" and couldn't find one of the most mentioned sites in this bulletin board in the first SIX PAGES of searching.

NOW, that being said, Google ranking isn't EVERYTHING, but it is quite meaningful. Maybe the paid site you're interested in is doing other things to market their represented talent. Ask. Get details. You deserve them.

Second tip: Most of these paid sites encourage you to exchange links with them. As you go through the Internet viewing other VO talents' websites and listening to their demos (you do that a lot don't you? Hint hint to newbies), see if the talents you like or respect have a link to a paid site. If you start to see a particular site, or sites, pop up again and again, they may be effective for you. Hey, email a couple of talents and ask if a particular site has been a good investment for them. Many will respond.

B
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bobsouer
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Joined: 15 Jul 2006
Posts: 9857
Location: Pittsburgh, PA

PostPosted: Fri Sep 29, 2006 3:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree with all that Bruce has posted. Here are some other thoughts, many of which are culled from the various posts in the archives here, a few of which are based on my experiences:

1. You have to be able to afford the money involved. If it's a stretch for you, don't join. The risk/reward ratio is way too far out of balance for you to be likely to recover your investment. You'd be far better off to make some phone calls or send emails to businesses or agencies that use voiceover services. (And you can make a lot of phone calls and send a lot of emails for $200.00.)

2. Whether you look at spending this money as advertising, (my own view) buying access to auditions, or just a way to "get yourself out there"; you have to be willing to risk getting no return at all. In other words, think of it as taking five crisp new $20 bills and flushing them down the toilet.

3. You have to set standards for yourself and then stick to them. Standards involving how quickly you're able to respond, whether you'll respond once auditions have reached a certainly quantity, the minimum budget to whcih you'll respond, etc.

4. Take the time to go through the site and listen to the demos. Listen critically. How do you stack up compared to the other folks who are already premium members there? (Don't bother listening to the free listings. They won't be responding to the audition leads.) Everyone has a voice that's right for something, but you're trying to get mulitple jobs. Are you truly someone likely to be cast?

5. As with any audition, you have to send a performance that demonstrates you can deliver the goods in the studio. Can you do this now? If not, spend your money on training, not on one of these sites. And, as with any audition, having given a good to great performance, you have to walk away from it and forget it. Don't keep track of how long it's been since you responded. Forget about it and move on.

6. No doubt there are some folks making a living by just responding to the audition leads from these sites; but they are an extremely tiny fragment of the total number of premium members. So, what else are you going to do to find work? Will spending the $200 make a difference in your ability to find other work?

7. I've received and responded to several emails or other communications asking about my experiences with one of those sites. That's probably because mine is one of the testimonials that appears on their site. So, write to a few of thoes folks, and write to a few of the other premium members (some have even gone so far as to send me a "private lead" that was just a request for information) and ask for some other thoughts. (This is just my experience based on Bruce's second tip above.)
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Bob Souer (just think of lemons)
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