Why would I hire a professional voice actor?
In essence…because you care. You care about your business and your brand. Think about it like this, you take the time to develop your logo, marketing materials, website, and tagline, so hiring a professional voice actor who can bring your carefully crafted written word to life with the proper emphasis, tone, timbre, pace, and emotion makes a lot of sense. As a voice actor, I cooperate and partner with you to create the “audio” part of your brand for your business, product, and/or service.
Who are some of your clients?
For commercials and promos, voiceovers for corporate narrations, and websites, I work a lot with ad agencies, marketing companies, and video production companies. I’ve had the opportunity to work on voiceovers for a wide range of industries including hospitals, real estate, museums, restaurants, retail, and renewable energy. Some companies and organizations you might be familiar with are Tremfya, Express Employment Professionals, Glassdoor, the Denver Art Museum, North Dakota State University, and Wyoming PBS.
When it comes to eLearning projects I partner with content development companies and in other cases with the business itself where they produce their learning and training modules in house. Some of the companies I’ve helped with their eLearning projects include: Gucci, Johnson and Johnson, VMWare, Swarovski, and Wienerschnitzel Hotdogs. The subject matters I’ve provided voices for in this genre include medical, legal, compliance, technology, fashion, fast food, and janitorial.
For message on hold and IVR (interactive voice response) projects for businesses’ phone systems I generally work directly with the business.
Do you offer other services?
I do offer some copy writing, specifically for message-on-hold projects. In addition, I can add music (royalty free music) to your message-on-hold project if you would like. We’ll discuss what type of music and/or instrumentation you would like, I’ll then look for a few suitable music samples that would work, send them to you, and you can decide on your favorite.
Another service I offer is the chance for you to listen in and direct during the recording session. My recording studio is set up with Source Connect and ipDTL, or I can easily set up a session over Zoom or the phone if you would like.
What are your rates?
Rates for the voiceovers are dependent upon many variables including but not limited to the type of project, length, how long the audio will be used for, and usage. As each project is so unique, I like to provide custom, written quotes for each project. Simply send me an email to email@example.com with the details of your project, we’ll start a conversation about your needs, and I’ll send you a written quote via email once I know the details.
What if retakes are needed and what about script changes?
Scripts change from time to time. Should you make changes to the script within 30 days after I’ve recorded and have sent you the final audio file(s), I do have a minimum re-recording fee. If the change is only a few words or minimal, I may lesson that fee. On the other hand, if the script changes a great deal and/or if they constitute recording most of the project over again, the re-recording fee will increase.
If you have changes to the script 30 days or more after I’ve sent you the audio file, it will be considered a new project and a full, new fee will be charged.
I do my very best to quality check the audio before I send it, but sometimes things fall through the cracks. If I’ve accidentally made a mistake, I’ll re-record it for FREE.
What formats can you save in and will you send me “edited” or “raw” audio files?
With a simple click of a few buttons, I can easily save your audio in whatever format you need. Wav, aif, and mp3 are the most popular, but just let me know what you need and I’ll save and send your audio as needed.
I always QC or quality check the audio to make sure I’ve got all of the words and pronunciations correct.
As far as “edited” or “raw” audio, it’s entirely up to you. If you’d like “raw” audio, I’ll just send you the audio with all of my breaths included (they will not be mitigated or silenced). You’ll receive your audio file in the format needed, but my breaths will still be there and no processing will be added. For “edited” audio, I’ll mitigate or silence my breaths and will add a minor amount of processing. Don’t worry…the processing is minimal and just provides you with a “cleaner” audio file.
Also rest assured that all of my recording sessions are recorded in my broadcast-quality studio to give your project’s voiceover the clearest and highest quality possible.
How do I work with you?
Once we’ve decided that we’re going to work together, I’ll first need the final/approved script for your project. It’s very helpful if you can make note of any challenging names and how they should be pronounced. Other items I may have questions on regarding your script are how you would like me to handle numbers, years, and acronyms. For example, for the year 2010, would you like me to say “twenty ten” or “two thousand and ten”.
Before I begin recording I’ll review the script to see if I have any questions. Some other questions I may have for you are about the “performance” and if you have any specific directions for me on how you would like your project read or performed. “With a smile”, professional, like I’m talking to a friend, with some authority, an expert, dramatic, “over the top”, really anything. The more specific you can be with your directions, the better idea I’ll have as to how you want your project to sound.
I’ll also need to know about the “techy” side of your project about what format and what audio specs you would like me to save your audio in. For example, would you like me to save it as an mp3, wav, or aif file, or something else? 44.1 or 48 kHz? 16-, 24-, or 32-bit? 128-, 160-, or 192 kbps? It’s also important for me to know then length of time that I have to get the voiceover in at (ie – does it have to be exactly two minutes, or can it be between two and two-and-a-half minutes)?
And…that’s about it. I like to keep thing simple and honest. Once I have this information, you can just sit back and relax and I’ll start the recording process.
If it’s the first time we’ve worked together I’ll send you a sample audio piece using a portion of your script to see if I have the correct tone, pace, and performance you are looking for.
I’ll then proceed with the recording session and will edit the audio per your specifications, save it, and send it to you likely via WeTransfer, Dropbox, or Google Drive. If the audio file is small enough, I may simply send it as an email attachment.
And that’s a wrap! Really it’s a simple process. The next step is for me to send you an electronic invoice.
Remember that anytime during the process you can reach out to me via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or give me a call to discuss any questions you might have.
What types of “characters” do you play/voice (expert/authority, professional, kids voices, teacher/educator, etc.)?
The voiceover projects I help with and the “voices” I provide are nuances of me – differences of Judy. For example, my natural speaking voice has been described as bright, intelligent, trustworthy, professional, “knows what she’s talking about”, friendly, warm, and with authority. So when working with you I always ask for specific directions as to how you would like your project to be performed/read. Does your project need an “expert”, like someone talking peer to peer? Or perhaps it’s more of a “motherly” role you need? Or maybe you need a “friend” to talk to another friend? It depends on the project, but having descriptive words as to what you’re looking for helps me provide the right real-life character for your project.
What is your studio set up and what type of recording equipment do you use?
I work from my broadcast-quality recording studio, which is sound managed with acoustic panels, bass traps, thick walls, and differently angled soft surfaces to absorb (rather than reflect) sound. This provides a quiet recording space to provide you with clear, high-quality audio. My electronic/recording gear includes a TLM 103 (Neumann) microphone, MacBook Pro, M-Audio speakers, Apogee Duet microphone interface, Mogami cables, and Twistedwave recording software.
What kind of training/education do you have as a voice actor?
My background is in radio as a DJ and as a radio news reporter and anchor, and also in science working as a broadcast meteorologist for nearly 12 years. Working with audio and my voice has been something I’ve done for awhile now. My voice acting training has come from and continues with reputable voice acting coaches from across the United States. Coaches and schools I’ve taken classes with include Mary Lynn Wissner of Voices Voiceacting; Bruce Kronenberg of Abacus Entertainment; Marc Cashman; Marla Kirban of Marla Kirban Voiceover; James Alburger and Penny Abshire of the VoiceActing Academy; and various classes at the Denver Center for Performing Arts. It is like any other craft or profession in that you need to keep up with trends and continue to improve and update you skills. So for me, education and coaching are ongoing.