Voice Over Clients Are Not Voice Over Coaches

When you hire a professional to carry out any job, you expect that they are going to be trained and complete the task to your satisfaction. After all, you are paying them. They are remunerating a professional to do something specific as directed in a professional manner.

It is no different when a voice over client employs the services of a voice over talent.

They would expect the job do be done, and done correctly. Of course there is the direction that is given, and then maybe a retake or two.

What would be unprofessional for any voice talent is to expect the client to then give you a rating on a star system on a casting website. Do you know of any traditional voice over agency that does this? No, because it is viewed as amateurish. It is unprofessional to expect a client is going to pay for professional services and then leave feedback and ratings like they’ve just received something in the mail from Old Navy.

Just as in a professional voice over casting situation in any large city. The actor comes into the studio, records the script and leaves. The client is then not expected to act as a voice over coach giving feedback on how the voice can improve for future auditions.

The client expects you to be able to take direction. If the client is not experienced in hiring a voice or giving direction, you should be professional enough to be able to self-direct.

If a client provides a script and no direction, that should be the first sign that they are leaving it up to you to give them a recording of broadcast standards. Yes, you can ask them for direction before commencing recording, but if they give you a vague answer, there’s no point arguing with them that you need direction. If anything this shows that you are unprofessional and inexperienced.

Next time you receive a script with no direction, think, ‘I’m the professional here and I’ll give them a professional recording.’

Lauren Maree

Lauren Maree has been working in advertising, media and marketing for over 15 years. Her experience as a casting director allows her to provide inside information of the voice over industry.