About voice over and voice over talent




From American Male Voice Actor, Dan Wachs


Let's start by taking a look at the many voice over categories, the kinds of voice over jobs that are available to every voice over talent.  There are so many voice over jobs that it's no wonder that around the world hundreds of jobs, maybe even thousands, are recorded every day.  If you're a voice over talent, you're bound to be good at several categories but really great in others. That would be the sweet spot. If I were a client looking to hire a voice over talent for announcements at a Fortune 500 company annual event, I'd certainly look for someone who has that "sweet spot" in his or her arsenal.  How do you, the client, determine this?  Two ways.  Have the voice artist audition for the job and also listen to other examples of the candidate's actual work.  Your ears will tell you if this voice over talent has a feel for your product, service, or event.

Corporate Image and Business Voice Over:  This is an enormous category as it contains so many sub-categories, i.e. radio and television voiceovers that tout a company's mission or highlight its image, live corporate events in which the voice over talent records messages to play at the event, live corporate events such as a sales conference in which the voice artist performs live, promotional videos on Websites or email in which the company advertises its products or services, and more. 

Website voice over:  Voice over narration designed to put forward a company or organization image or message out on the World Wide Web.  Usually a voice over that accompanies a video.

Radio commercial voice over:  Straight voiceovers or fully-produced voice over including music bed and sound effects (SFX).

Television commercial and promo voice over:  Work with professional video production company.  Provide straight voice over track only.

Sports voice over:  Traditional sports announcer, color commentator, promo and game wrap work for professional sport teams.

Political and Issue voice over:  Voice talent records political ads for candidates or issue oriented ad for special interest group.

eLearning and educational voice over: How-to voice over for training purposes.  "Insert peg A into slot B" and the like!

Instructional or how-to voice over: Same as above.

Medical animation and medical narration voice over: Highly-specialized voice over for narrow audience.  Includes technical words in which correct pronunciation is critical.

Documentary voice over: Television and film documentary voice over is a long-form project. Voice over style dictated by content.  Coordinated by a professional video production studio

Movie Trailer voice over: Big, deep and dramatic "Voice of God" for films and television films. And, of course the legend, Mr. Don Lafontaine "the Movie Guy" has to be mentioned here.

Live Event voice over:  Pre-recorded or live announcements to be played during a live event such as a sporting event, sales conference or awards ceremony.

Audio Book voice over:  Long-form voice over project often 100,000 words or more.

Narration voice over:  Voiceover project usually at least two minutes in length. Can be any topic or style.

Animation voice over:  Think Disney-Pixar, EA Sports, X-Box and all the others.  Besides this mammoth entertainment company, there are hundreds of smaller production companies who produce animations and video games that may not be household names, but still have a market share.  All of those games have characters and voice actors or international celebrities play the roles.

IVR phone systems:  "Thank you for calling.  For sales, press one."  Every company has one because no one wants to lose a prospective customer.

Hardware voice over:  When your GPS system tells you to make a right turn in 100 feet, that's someone's voice over work.  Same with Siri on the iPhone and so many other voices you hear in today's personal gear.

Voice Over Talent Basics: Custom voice over projects delivered in 24 hours or less.  Radio and TV commercials, corporate presentations, narration,  movie trailers, corporate presentations, audio books, animation, video games, message on hold, or any kind of audio or voice project.


The home voice over studio: 99% or more of the voice over projects today are recorded from the home studios of voice actors around the world.   These home studios range from a simple microphone plugged into a computer via USB cable, a pair of headphones, and maybe some Auralex sound-absorption material scattered around a few walls - OR - maybe that home studio has the world's most exotic equipment, comparable to what you'd find in a highly sought-after professional recording studio in NY or Los Angeles.  No matter how elaborate the setup, you can be assured that if you're looking to hire a voice talent for your project, that person will be recording from his or her home studio,   And think about how convenient this is for both parties!  You, the client, don't have to hire an expensive recording studio.  The voice talent doesn't have to travel anywhere to get to a job.  Unless, the talent considers walking a few feet to a room converted into a studio a long trip!  Everybody saves time and money!  Another benefit is that by cutting down on travel time, you are also cutting down on the time it takes to record a voice over job, so you gain speed!  This is great for all the wonderful clients who want to "get it done yesterday."  And for those of you who fall into that category - PLEASE CONTACT ME.  I'll get it done in no time!


Voice Over Talent Basics: Custom voice over projects delivered in 24 hours or less.  Radio and TV commercials, corporate presentations, narration,  movie trailers, corporate presentations, audio books, animation, video games, message on hold, or any kind of audio or voice project.


Prepping your talent the right way:  The better your voice over talent understands the job, the better the audition quality will be.  So give them everything they need to truly understand what they're doing when they open up that microphone.  Describe the product or service, giving just enough details to cue the VO talent into what you're all about.  What is the general demographic of the voice talent?  What is the demo range of customers or clients who will use this product of service.  Who is the Voice Artist portraying?  A father?  Mother?  Next door neighbor?  Executive?  Cop?  And if there's an emotional tone or an on-line video including someone whose VO work you, that could prove extremely helpful, too!  Since all of us human beings absorb information differently, try to be as specific as possible in terms of explaining what you want.  This is essential towards creating a successful campaign!


OK, you're ready to launch your project.  Now how do you choose the talent?  In a perfect world, I'd like to make this easy.  Choose me!  But if you'd like a different male voice, then I can help you.  As a private voice over coach and a fellow who networks a lot in the business, I have close contacts with all sizes, shapes, and flavors of male voice over talent. Contact me and I'll help you find the right voice.  If you're looking for a female voice, the same thing applies.  I have close affiliations with female actors and voice actors all over the USA and the world.  So if you're planning a voice over project for either a male or female voice, contact me today!


If it's a matter of style then it's perfectly reasonable to ask for an adjustment, especially if not too much time has gone by since the read was delivered.  There should be no charge for style changes as its the voice artist's job to satisfy the client.  However, after a couple of weeks, that request becomes more difficult as it could have been made earlier.  Changes due to copy changes are considered a new job, although many voice talents will only charge a percentage of the job based upon the amount of changes, difficulty, etc.  It's always good to iron out the details ahead of time, if at all possible.

Voice Over Talent Philosophy: What makes an excellent voice over?  Your voice over talent puts the client first and understands that job #1 is the make the client succeed.  For your voice over project to ring, it's a combination of great voice over talent, excellent communication between the voice over talent and client, and it's all supported by top notch professional recording gear.


"For our Television Special, we chose Daniel Wachs for his friendly conversational style narration. His voice quality exudes a warmth and neighbor-next-door quality and we were very pleased with his professionalism and turn-around time for the work. Daniel will be at the top of the list for our next Television and DVD Project."

            - Robert Cording, Cast Theater Production Company

"If you're looking for a hassle free professional, look no further. Daniel Wachs is the real deal. A true pro. I went into this arrangement thinking I would certainly need to provide direction for Daniel with the reading. I was wrong. He nailed it the first take. Made the whole process painless, easy and fun. I can't recommend him enough."

            - Patrick Alexander, PGA Films

"Dan was quite frankly, excellent. First time we used him, but the marketing department has already decided to use him for the follow-up campaigns. He was professional, easy to work with, and delivered the finished product two days earlier than the deadline. We highly recommend him."

            - Robert Dodenhoff, American Drug Testing

"Excellent quality! Superb professionalism!

            - Tom Patterson, USI Insurance

"Thanks Daniel. Great to work with you.  Super fast response and great communication.  We'll be sure to work with you again."

            - Benjamin McElroy, McElroy Films

"Consummate professional. Rapid turnaround even considering a holiday weekend. Would definitely recommend Dan Wachs to others."

             - Michael Feigel, Award winning audio book author

"Daniel did a great job. He was very responsive and made all of the changes we'd asked for. We would definitely look to use him again."

             - Kolby Kappes, Video Game Producer

What makes a great voice over?  YOUR SATISFACTION.  I always believed in the saying, "If you want to succeed, make your boss succeed."  This served me well my entire 32-year radio career, and it still works today.

As your voice, my only goal is to make you succeed.  With a complete professional home recording studio and the ability to deliver results fast, I think that will happen every time. 

What can I do for you? 


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