When you are focused on developing your talent and skill, sometimes you tend to forget managing the business side of your career. But as we have laid out on the first part of our series, you don’t have to roll out an elaborate marketing plan to bring the “sales” in.
How to sell your business better?
To start, you would need to:
Love your work – as your passion and love for voice over acting will translate to how you present and “sell” yourself to casting directors, producers and agents; and is reflected in every content you publish, whether on your website, your online voice over marketplace profile, or your social media accounts.
Be focused – focus on a niche that you know you can excel in rather than spread yourself thinly by doing various type of voice over work that may not stand out against competition – as they say, jack/jane of all trades, and master of none. By focusing on a niche also means focusing your efforts to deal with your ideal clients.
Be selective – don’t just be everywhere just because you can be. Choose the best agent to represent you; be discerning before joining a voice over platform. Even at your caliber, clients might not see you as the real deal when you align yourself with amateurs. And your ideal clients won’t definitely seek professional talents like yourself in a pool of amateurs.
Is my passion reflected in my words and work?
What is my niche?
Am I looking for work in the right marketplace?
Having reflected on these questions, let’s move on to how fostering relationships can continue the momentum in building your client base.
Listen. This is not about listening and following directions or coaching, it is about keeping an ear to the ground.
Listen to what the people in the industry are talking about. Hear where people are at. Find out what are they looking for.
By keeping your eyes and ears peeled to what is the latest in the industry, you are always ready to INTEGRATE, IMPLEMENT and INNOVATE.
And when you are always on top of everything, you are no longer just listening in, you are now part of the conversation, or better yet, the centre of the conversation.
As a “solopreneur” it is a must to have full control of the ins and outs of your voice over career and business. But being in control also means knowing when to let go of the reins once in a while or when necessary. No one wants to work with a control freak (and a know-it-all). To build better relationships with your agents and clients, be prepared to hand over the control. Surrender to the whole audition and hiring process and not push for the “hard sell”. Let your voice speak for itself.
Also, always be open to feedback, criticism, changes. Don’t let ego hold your career back. Feedback – whether good or bad, is still feedback, so take what you can learn from it and move forward.
More than having a golden voice, people would want to work with a voice over talent who is easy to deal with – who is ready to listen and open to learning. 10 out 10 successful voice over talents will testify to this. It is like an added value to a customer that gives them a reason to come back for more and tell their friends about.
Make genuine connections
The people you come across with, whether you meet them online or offline are not just your network or the middle men to your target connections. Make genuine connections along the way. They may not be the person who hands you the cheque, but they are the ones who can open doors (and windows) for you so you can get that ideal project.
And when you do get to meet your ideal client, cherish that relationship by honouring them with the best client experience. Again, it is not just your voice that will keep them coming back to you, it is also how you treat them.
Fostering relationships is essential to building a stronger voiceover business and career. When you listen, are open, and genuine, you build TRUST. And when people trust you, you turn on their listening ears towards you. When they listen to you, they become interested. And when they become interested, the conversation begins…
Trust should be established before anyone can do anything for you or give anything to you… and yes that’s how you create a solid “sale” and grow your client base.
Let us add to our mantra:
I am open…
I make genuine relationships…
In the last part of our series, it will be all about your CLIENT, your PEERS and YOU.