Starting to believe doing voice reels might have been a waste of time & cost.

  • Tony Coughlan

    Voice Over:Scottish

    This has been on my mind for a while,

    Before I start this isn't a post to create tension or to poke the bear it's to consider whether If we as artists are creating more work for ourselves.

    The reason I say this is because 80% of jobs through Mandy voices has asked for an audio self tape which is fine but then I think well if there looking for something specific why bother creating a voice reel? they won't listen to it & just listen to the candidates who have stuck to the audition brief.

    It's like an interview for a job where us the employee says oh he's my CV 'Oh we don't care about that can you do what we ask you? Yes this industry isn't the same as others I get that but surely you think well I may as well have shown them a beer mat instead.

    & ones who don't ask for a self tape, surely we can or could just send them a 20 second sample of something similar what they're asking.

    I've seen quite a few people who have various voice reels & I'm thinking this is great works guys but will they be listened too?

    I don't expect everyone to agree with me on this & again this is just to get everyone's friendly thoughts & opinions on this.

    Thanks for reading

    T.

    • 24th Aug 2020
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  • User Deleted

    This profile has been archived

    I think a sign of these times is that there are so many people in VO, it’s a buyers market and they can sit back and say “It has to be like this, with this approach and has to sound like this and I’ll move on to the next if I don’t hear it in those first few seconds”

    I do think it’s important for us as VO artists to be as innovative and eclectic in our product as possible.

    I have a (to be brutally honest) a voice that is cold, officious and authoritative so I never audition for roles which ask for Warm, Northern, and Reassuring.

    Listen to my voice samples you’ll see.

    What I’m trying to say is that there will be roles that no one but YOU can do because you are unique.

    • 10th Aug 2020
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  • Carla de Wansey

    Voice Over:English

    I do have voice reels for different genres of work. They do get listened too but maybe I’m just lucky....I always record the client snippet of script they ask for and write a jolly little accompanying note.... voice reels are always going to be useful sooner or later.....useful to have in your repertoire and something you can update when you get good recordings....Obs this is just my personal view...

    • 11th Aug 2020
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  • Ruth Urquhart

    Voice Over:Scottish

    I know what you mean but it is kind of essential really. You could probably get away with it if your only avenue of work

    was withMandy but generally it’s useful to have demos covering the spectrum of what you do as they DO get asked for. I use Voice Zam so I can have buttons at the bottom of emails I send out with all my different demos that potential employers can click on.

    • 12th Aug 2020
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  • Tony Coughlan

    Voice Over:Scottish

    Hi Ruth,

    Interesting, I’ve tried Fiverr and People Per Hour, I didn’t like those so deleted my accounts, Voice Zam any good?

    Thanks

    Tony.

    • 12th Aug 2020
    • 4
  • Tracey Binnie

    Voice Over:Scottish

    I feel you. On one hand it can feel utterly pointless to put so much time and effort into demo reels only to be given a sample piece of copy to record, which is often so badly written it's difficult to do it justice. However, I keep all my auditions and if a casting call comes along asking for a sample, I can often just send them something I've already done instead of recording a new piece of audio.

    • 12th Aug 2020
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  • Ruth Urquhart

    Voice Over:Scottish

    Voice Zam isn’t an audition site. It’s a marketing service for VOs so that voice actors can display and send demos easily . I wouldn’t use fiverr or any site that isn’t specific to VO if I were you as they are usually a rip off. Voice123 are pretty good.

    • 12th Aug 2020
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  • Tony Coughlan

    Voice Over:Scottish

    Hi Tracey,

    Yeah that’s interesting to keep them, I’ve got a few but I tend to discard them. Hi Ruth even though it’s not an audition site, it’s good to look at all doors is it worth it? The Voice Zam platform I mean?

    Thanks

    Tony.

    • 14th Aug 2020
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  • Ruth Urquhart

    Voice Over:Scottish

    It’s good for ease and for looking professional but it is pricey per month. The jury is out for me whether it is worth it

    • 14th Aug 2020
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  • Tony Coughlan

    Voice Over:Scottish

    Thank you Ruth,

    I'll check out that Voices123 see what that's about.

    Thanks so much.

    T :)

    • 17th Aug 2020
    • 9
  • User Deleted

    This profile has been archived

    The £250 up front thing put me off V123. I find Mandy much more manageable and I’m enjoying the experience of subscribing. Mind you I’m yet to get any paid work on here. I’ll trying, and never giving up.

    • 17th Aug 2020
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  • Teresa-may Whittaker

    Voice Over:English

    I sit quite firmly in both camps - I cast for voices and I'm a VO myself (I never put myself forward for jobs clients ask me to cast tho).

    So, as a voice caster, we always encourage clients to provide a section of the script for a custom demo as we are looking for two things; firstly, being able to deliver on the specific brief we have set (bearing in mind there are hundreds of adjectives used to describe voices and therefore thousands of variations if a client is looking for even a small variety of emotions), and secondly, we are interested in the quality of the home recording set up, which isn't guaranteed with a generic demo as this is usually recorded in a pro studio with engineers etc.

    Having said that, we will consider generic voice demo's that fit our specific vocal brief and isn't over-compressed/have music running in the background as (whilst sounding professional), it masks the true essence of a voice and makes our job harder to cast as we have to try to listen to the voice without the distractions.

    As a VO I have been cast on my generic reel alone due to a script not being ready/NDA's not being ready etc so it really is good to have multiple voice reels (separated into genres of work) on your profile alongside responding to custom auditions.

    In essence, it's a buyer's market unfortunately and having the ability to supply both a generic reel alongside your custom demo's means you are accessible to all that are hiring. Hope that makes some sense!

    • 17th Aug 2020
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  • Tony Coughlan

    Voice Over:Scottish

    Hi Teresa,

    That's interesting, I may potentially look at a commercial voiceover reel along with my current character voiceover reel.

    Thank you.

    • 21st Aug 2020
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  • Teresa-may Whittaker

    Voice Over:English

    Hi Tony,

    I'd also recommend having dry corporate samples at your fingertips too - my company always requests clients to produce a sample of the script along with the vocal brief and we would always consider generic demo's that matched our vocal brief as we can make a direct comparison between the two.

    As a working VO (depending on any copywrite regs written into some auditions), I always submit specific auditions and then re-write the name of the audio files with the main vocal qualities of that particular brief, so when new auditions come up that match that brief and I'm time-strapped or away from my studio then I upload those files. For example - A company asks for a 'warm, smooth, luxurious' voice - I upload their custom demo, then check if any usage restrictions are in place for the audition script - if not, then I rename the file 'warm, smooth, luxurious example' and save to my computer. If any of those vocal descriptions come up in future auditions that don't have a script or I'm away from my studio then I use that audio file for the new audition.

    I've been booked using this method so it does work and with my casting director hat on I don't mind receiving auditions that haven't uploaded an example of the script as I've got an example of a home studio recording that matches the brief my client is after.

    Hope that makes sense! Demo reels are useful if they actually demo your home studio space and the first thing a client listens to matches the description of their vocal brief.

    • 21st Aug 2020
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  • User Deleted

    This profile has been archived

    Thats really interesting and useful Teresa, its a pleasure to hear the information from an informed source.

    • 21st Aug 2020
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  • Hayley Clapham

    Voice Over:English

    Super helpful tips Teresa, thank you for sharing. I didn't consider doing that, but will in the future.

    • 24th Aug 2020
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