Charities, Non-profits, and VO, oh my....

Kasper Michaels
Voice Over: Canadian

Hello everyone. Hope their weekend is going well. Just a shout out that there are stories everywhere that need to be told. Charities and non-profits are a great way to get some experience. They may not pay well, or pay at all, but you will be helping others get their stories out there, helping get the message out and practising your VO skills.

These things can also lead to better things. Not always, but more than you think. Think of it as a demo reel which is reaching a different audience. You never know who is listening.

If you have the time, why not volunteer your services. For myself, I volunteer for SPORK!! , a non-profit that celebrates people that are facing challenges, both mentally and physically. ( www.sporkability.org ) I am one of the narrators that is helping bring their articles to audio. There are many organizations that might be able to use your voice to help them spread their message.

Something to think about.


  • 1 month ago
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Alix Perry
Voice Over: English

Good shout Kasper! Really good way of gaining experience and doing something positive for charities too!


  • 1 month ago
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David Smith
Voice Over: English

Hi Kasper, that is what led me to here. I narrate audio books for charity and have done so for 12 years. I also find it rewarding. So yes, worth following up.
Have a great day everyone.
David


  • 1 month ago
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Kasper Michaels
Voice Over: Canadian

Thanks for the comments Alix and David. It is something to think about. This is a perfect time in VO history to offer your home studio services. Keep throwing out the auditions, but volunteering can keep you sharp, and just make you feel better. win win.


  • 1 month ago
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Richard Williams
Voice Over: English

Very wise words as always Kasper and David - it's clear that you have terrific experience and Mandy is such a great platform with which people are so willing to share their thoughts, aspirations and helpful ideas. Thank you so much for adding value constantly.

Best wishes

Richard


  • 1 month ago
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Devron Cariba
Voice Over: English

Great post Kasper and encouraging for those like me stepping into the craft.


  • 1 month ago
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Kasper Michaels
Voice Over: Canadian

Thanks Devron. Feel free to reach out if you have any questions. I've been doing this for about 15 yrs, I might be able to help, or at least point you to someone who can.


  • 1 month ago
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Edward Hughes
Voice Over: English

I wholeheartedly agree with this view. It also provides necessary exposure to paid work. In my case, I volunteered for YouTube audio videos to broaden my name.

To land a role for charities builds voicing networks, and potential for future work in the industry.


  • 1 month ago
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Ricky Zalman
Voice Over: English

Fantastic idea Kasper - and thanks for posting. I've contacted a small number of charities I have a personal connection to, and found contact details by researching an appropriate contact on LinkedIn and either messaging/sending an email c/o the contact.

Do you have any tips for best practice when offering services to charity or non-profit organisations?

Many thanks in advance :)


  • 3 weeks ago
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Kasper Michaels
Voice Over: Canadian

Good job in following up your research. Linked In is a great way to search the company and find out who to send your file to. Try to avoid the "contact us" area of the company website. You usually cannot attach files. And you are going to want to.
A lot charities, non-profits, or even businesses might be put off with "Hi, voice artist here, I've attached my demo, look forward to hearing from you!". A lot of these type of agencies don't really think in terms of what a VO could bring them, so will dismiss your query entirely.
A very wise person taught me to approach each email or contact letter, first, as an apology for intruding into their day, and secondly, surprise. (you've been a member for while... you are interested in the topic, were researching, etc and you realized you have something to offer). This is where a small bio and the offer to provide VO comes in. Word it in such a way that you can offer help and support without something specific. Depending on the organization, you could offer to record meditations as an example. Maybe you speak another language. You could offer to translate some literature or procedures. Again, these are just examples. Look at the organization you are offering your services to, and really see what they might need.

If you are offering your service, state up front it's pro bono. Make that clear.

Finally, it is usually best to include a voice sample that they can keep on file. Make sure you leave instructions to say it is ok to keep your demo on file for future reference. If you just point to a website with a link, 9 times out of 10 the person will not click the link.

These have been my experinences. You might have different ones. In the end, you won't know until you try.


  • 3 weeks ago
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Declan McHugh
Voice Over: English

The last thing you wrote, Kasper, about the best ways to research and contact people was well worth reading, as usual....

Declan


  • 3 weeks ago
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Denis Michallet
Voice Over: French

I agree with Declan. Thank you for sharing some useful tips here about how to contact someone and how to offer services. Always really useful to read your comments and advices. You rock, Kasper!


  • 3 weeks ago
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Kasper Michaels
Voice Over: Canadian

Thanks gang. As long as I'm not stepping on toes, I don't mind sharing experience. (some people I know teach and train VO. I would rather point you to them then give away the game for free)

Feel free to use these contact tips to find clients as well. Please be aware though, you have to put in the work. A very talented VO I know has worked very hard to get where she is, and as a result, she is in her booth almost all day. You hear her on TV, IVR messages for big companies, and the tannoys of supermarkets. You might think, wow, I am jealous, I hope I get there soon, but she also sends out over 200 email A WEEK, responding to, following up and searching for clients. and that's a slow week. I believe I remember her citing that when she was getting her game on, she was sending out up to 1000 emails a week.

So, even though this is a post about charities and non-profits, as I mentioned, some of these tips can be used for getting paying clients. If you want to turn this into a money making business, you are going to have to put in the time. This is not to scare you away. Like all things, decide if this is a hobby, vocation or a job. Then put in the appropriate amount of effort so everyone is satisfied.

Just let me get my soap box out of the way. There we go. Cow Bella.


  • 3 weeks ago
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Declan McHugh
Voice Over: English

As the man said (there are arguments about which man): "The harder the work, the luckier I get"

Declan


  • 3 weeks ago
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Sandra Spencer
Voice Over: English

Nice post Kasper and it is always great to pay it forward with your talent :)


  • 2 weeks ago
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