Introduction to the Voice Over industry from a voice America recognizes | Mike ElmoreSpeaks | Skillshare

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Introduction to the Voice Over industry from a voice America recognizes

teacher avatar Mike ElmoreSpeaks

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

20 Lessons (2h 3m)
    • 1. Meet the Instructor

    • 2. Session2

    • 3. Session3

    • 4. Session4

    • 5. Session5

    • 6. Session6

    • 7. Session7

    • 8. Session8

    • 9. Session9

    • 10. Session10

    • 11. Session11

    • 12. Session12

    • 13. Session13

    • 14. Session14

    • 15. Session15

    • 16. Session16

    • 17. Session17-18

    • 18. Session19

    • 19. Session20

    • 20. Session21

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About This Class


Learn from a National level voice talent and coach about this work from home industry that has a lot of people excited

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1. Meet the Instructor: Hi, everyone. Mike Elmore here. And I'm so glad you decided to click and delve a little bit deeper into your desire to learn about voiceovers. Maybe you're in a long term relationship with the desire to learn about voiceovers. Or maybe this is a newfound interest that you have. Whatever the case may be, I can promise you you're going to get a ton out of the lessons when you decide to tap in and listen to each one. I've been doing voiceovers personally since 1985 and I started in a small town in Oklahoma called Miami, Oklahoma, Northeast Oklahoma, right up in the Northeast corner. 15 minutes. One way. You're in Missouri 15 minutes the other way. You're in Kansas. So right up in the right hand corner. And I worked at a radio station when I was in high school a m 9 10 kg Elsie, a little small radio station in a small town out in the country, and I was still a junior in high school, and I was doing voice overs before I even knew what a voiceover waas I would do my four hour shift on the weekend and then I would go into the production room. And if there were scripts in my inbox, my little wire basket, I would retrieve those sit down at the mic, turn on the reel to reel tape. This was back before digital recording and editing, and I would record the scripts and leave those for the production manager to put music underneath them things like the Elk Lodge Elks Lodge being feed the Shriner Circus. So these were voiceovers, but I really didn't think of him that way. I just thought, Well, I'm cutting some commercials for some extra money after my shift, So I've been doing voiceovers in earnest since 1985. I've been in radio most of my life, and some of my professional clients past and present include proactive Fox Sports, H G, T V. Food Network, Red Lobster and many, many more. I've lined with hundreds, literally hundreds off people, showing them the ropes in the voiceover industry, showing them where to find the work. You can have a great voice, but that's not enough. You have to know where to find the work. You have to know how to deliver the message. So maybe people have told you. You should do something with your voice. Wow, What a great voice. You should be on the radio or you should be on television. That's great. That's a positive. That's definitely a plus, but I believe in today's voiceover industry that it's about 10% about what you sound like. A 90% the way you deliver the message. Are you creating the intended impact on the listener just by simply using your voice, Our jobs? Voice actors is toe lift the words up off of the page and breathe some life into them. We have to know how to talk to elderly people about a retirement village where they can spend their golden years with people of like minds. And we have to know how to get teenagers excited about the 99 cent menu. A Taco Bell, maybe not just teenagers, but anyway, we have to know how to take that message and bring it to life. Tell the story so there is more to it. There's voiceover technique, and then there's vocal control. And of course, there's knowing where to find the jobs. Where are these websites online, where you can find voiceover work there tons of them. There are lots of free websites and jobs that you right now could tap into that are looking for a voiceover for this or a voiceover for that and all you need's a little bit of professional equipment. Set up some voiceover technique, practice and Notre all things that we cover in these modules. I'm so glad you clicked into these, and I hope you'll join me for this journey. I look forward to seeing you in the modules. 2. Session2: Hi, everyone. And welcome to session number two. We're going to talk about now the equipment that is required to be able to get a professional sounding recording right out of your home. And we're gonna talk about how you need to come up with a special area in your home to record in a little corner. You don't need a big space to do it in, but it does need to be treated properly so that we don't have a lot of echo. The room that I'm in right now isn't technically isn't the greatest place to record because you can hear a lot of echo in the room. It's not properly treated. Saw what I have just behind the camera. Here is an area that's dedicated to recording. My microphone is over there, my mike stand and I'll be showing you that area. Um ah, little bit later on in the in the session here and it's padded. Okay, so it's very important that you pat an area with absorptive material that will break up sound waves before they have a chance to bounce. And a way to think about sound waves are really they're kind of like rubber balls. If you have two or more hard surfaces, flat surface is a rubber ball will bounce off of one and on to the other and so forth and so on. And that's how we get echo if you think of a parking garage, if you've ever been in a parking garage where you close your door, you can hear the sound waves bouncing off of all of the hard services or a gymnasium. But think about if you were to go into your clothes closet. If you have a walk in closet or even just a step in closet and you part the clothes and close the door, then you clap your hands more than likely all you're going to hear. It's just the sound of the hands hitting together when the sound waves dispersed. There's absorptive material around their uneven surfaces around to break the bounce up, so it's dead vs live. A dead room is one where there are no surfaces for the sound waves to bounce off of. Ah, live room would be similar to a bathroom or house without any furniture in it, where you get that that echoey sound. So if you plan on moving in the direction of doing voiceovers. You really, really, really want to have the ability to be able to record at home. It's really a necessity these days. Clients voice seekers, I call them and will refer to them Maura's. We go through these thes sessions together. Voice seekers really look for people these days that have that ability to record at home. It means you can offer quick turnaround times if you do a recording for someone and then they need ah fix or they need a phone number added or changed. Or maybe there was a typo. Or maybe you said it wrong. They want to know that you have, ah, place in your home, that you can go do that in a relatively short amount of time and get it back to them rather than have you say, Well, I can do that, but I'm gonna have to schedule with the local recording studio somewhere here. And who knows? You may not be able to get in until Saturday morning, something like that. So it is very, very important to have the ability to ah, record yourself at home. So again you need a quiet space that some. That's kind of that's kind of out of the way. And, um, I have found the smaller the area, the better. I've worked with people who have tried to sit in the middle of a big room like this like that. I'm in right now and they try to pad. They put some padding on the walls and try to get away with that. And it always just takes all kinds of, Ah time and mawr padding. And then finally, you get to a point where it's almost ridiculous. You've got so much padding around you, it's no longer comfortable, you know, it's maybe it's it's a claustrophobic situation, and certainly most times it ends up being an eyesore. So the smaller the area that you try to work in, the better I found. A corner works well. If you can set your microphone standard, microphone up in a corner and just pad the walls almost like you're in time out. And if you can kind of pad the corners with comforters or moving pads or something like that, and then maybe hang something from the ceiling behind you, Um ah, what I'm gonna do right now, is I'm going to show you exactly what I've got going on here. And I just used a couple of ikey of bookshelves to put this together. Okay? So, as you can see, not a lot of money put into ah, putting the boot together, basically. Ah, some noise control foam, acoustic foam, Um, and a couple of moving blankets, as you saw there, little computer desk in there. I sit down when I record many people stand up. There are reasons. Ah, two schools of thought on that, uh, and then, you know, the bookshelves for my Kia. Now, in terms of equipment, we have what's called the audio chain. The audio chain, the knee bone connected to the shin bone. It's this type of thing, and basically, the audio chain, when it comes to voiceovers, is you've got a computer. You've got a Excuse me. Microphone interface. Um, this is old. I'm going to give you that. Just in case. There any people watching on here that maybe already have the home studio set up? Perhaps this is kind of a dinosaur box. My other ones are connected over here, But you have the computer. You have the interface microphone interface. You have the microphone plug into the back of this. So then you've got your microphone. That's the chain. So let's go the other way. Microphone connected to the box connected to the computer. That's how you get the sound from the microphone into the computer, and there's a place on here to plug in your headphones. And so you can also monitor your voice through here and control the volume of the mike and the volume of the headphones and on so forth and so on. So this is called a microphone interface. So you need a microphone. You need a microphone cable. Of course, to plug into that box, you need a microphone stand with a shock mount. You need a computer, of course, and I mentioned earlier, if you have a computer, your well over 3/4 of the way there in terms of costs, I believe, uh, with today's rates and quality of equipment out there, computer arguably could be the best PR, the the most expensive, rather piece of equipment in this hole in this whole set up. I need to set a headphones and you need some software, so you do have to have some software on the computer that will allow you to record your voice, allow you to edit your voice and, of course, then save the file and send it out. Software is not hard to use. There are many, many, many, many programs out there that range all over the place in price. But they all basically have the same function in the same goal in mind in terms of what we're buying and using them for. And that is to capture our voice in this professional environment or this padded absorptive environment. Capture our voice. Let us do a little editing to take out the sneezes, the breasts, the mistakes, the ups man knocking on the door, the dog barking JJ, the wonder dog assistant of mine over here when he hears a UPS truck, um, you have to be able to cut those things out so that you can have a nice, polished, professional sounding recording that you can then file and save and name and send it off to the client. So it's very inexpensive to get very powerful and very good sounding equipment thes days and be able to record yourself right at home. And again it is something that I recommend 100% of anyone thinking about getting into doing voice overs. It's something you definitely want to think about, and I think the biggest challenge is not buying the equipment or procuring the equipment, getting it set up. It can be finding that space in your home that you can a lot and set aside and treat and set up for the recording. So something to start thinking about, I'll see you in session three. 3. Session3: Welcome back, Session number three, and we're gonna talk about preparing a script for performance or preparing yourself for performance. We're not really doing a whole lot with the script. It's Mawr preparing ourselves, understanding certain things about the script and about the message that we're going to deliver asking ourselves questions, making determinations about the copy. We might be doing something to the script. We might be marking it up a little bit. I always recommend that in the beginning stages make some of these decisions and determinations and make some notes on the script. But it's important to try to get into the copywriters head. You want to break the script and the message down and try to understand What was this copywriters intent? What were they trying to bestow up on the, um, listener? What is the advertisers intent? Are they trying to get the listener toe by something? Are they trying to get the listener to attend an event? Are they trying to get them to donate money or volunteer time? Um or are they just simply informing them of something? What is the intent behind the voiceover in the copywriter? And once we get into the, um, copywriters head and we understand the message. Then we have to be able to take that information and bring it to life audibly open our mouths and create audible reality with this through voiceover technique and and vocal control. And these were things we're gonna be talking about, um, a Z. We move forward as well. So, first of all, let's talk a little bit about the process of understanding a script. I have a process. There is no blueprint for this. You know, this is something that different people will do different, differently, different ways. What I like to do, though, is I like to read the script out loud. The first time I get that script in front of me, I'm going to read it out loud if I'm in a grocery store or I'm in public somewhere in a restaurant, and I get an email on my phone with a script, and it's a big script for big campaign. I want to read it. I'm interested in seeing what what I what I have in store for me with the script, but I don't do that unless I can read it out loud. The first time my eyes go across those sentences. I want to be reading it out loud. I don't exactly know why it is that I like to do that it may have something to do with. I don't want to create any any ideas in my mind of how the line should be delivered without actually doing it. So I kind of morph and I change my delivery as I'm reading through the script and I start to see what the message is as it unfolds as I see keywords like, Welcome to the wonderful world of Disney. If I see welcome and wonderful, I'm going to sit up straight. My eyebrows are probably going to raise, and I'm going to kind of go up here in my vocal range. Or, if it says something about you know, something devastating, like a town of 50,000 people wiped off the map by a series of tornadoes. If it's something talking about the word devastating is in there or disaster, my tempo is going to slow. This is voiceover technique. My tempo is going to slow. My pitch is going to drop. There's a phrase we use in voice overs when the message is negative, or even if it's just a negative word. Slow and low, slow and low will win the race when it's time to deliver a negative message. We don't want to rush through anything negative, so slow and low. That's just one of many phrases on Benny Little tips and tricks and things that we do with voiceover technique that can really help you deliver an effective read that will book. So we want to break down the script and ask ourselves some questions and make some determinations as to how the lines should be read. So I like to read it out loud. And then I like to think about in my head. Who is the audience? Who's the intended audience? Are we speaking to elderly people? Are we speaking to young people? Are we speaking to Generation X millennials? What? What is it? ISAT a mixture? Is it mainly a male audience or a female audience? Or do we feel like that's also perhaps ah, mixture? And that will determine a lot of times as well? The tempo and the pitch, the pitch that we use for that as well the the audience that we're that we're speaking with . So we want to make those determinations and we want to think about those things in our head and then we want to read it again. It's very important, Teoh to read it again. And, um, I've got some notes here. Ah, and I have here. Ah, star next to this to mention read it again and again and again and again. I like to read a script. Unless it's a super long script. I like to read a script many times over. If it's a 32nd or 62nd read or fit or less, I'll read it maybe six or seven times before I actually hit record or before I go in until the producer. If I'm in an outside studio, I'm ready to track this thing. I want to read it several times and at least get half of an idea. I may change it, I may read. It's seven more times while I'm recording and kind of changed the delivery each time until I feel like I've kind of tuned in to, ah, to the delivery in the style that I think the client is looking for. I always think of it as like, you know, back when back when I was a kid. I'm 47 now, but back when I was a kid on, some of you will be able to relate to this the radios in the car and even in the homes to, uh, had the dial's, you know, you turned the dial and it wasn't a click, click, click, click, click. It was just a smooth moving things. So if there was a station, you hear a song on a station. But it's staticky and far away. You had to do that little fine tuning just to try to get it in just the right position where there was the least amount of static. It's kind of the same thing with zeroing in on a voiceover delivery, understanding the intended impact on the listener and getting inside the copy writers had and then being able to use our voice to lift the words up off of the page and breathe some life into them and create that intended impact on the listener. And again, that has to do with voiceover technique and vocal control. And those are things that you that you want to look into and you definitely want to learn about those things is very simple stuff, but it's stuff. If you don't know if you don't have someone telling you, try this exercise. Do this exercise when you're doing a voice over. Do this, drop your shoulders and talk about how every year hundreds of thousands of animals are mistreated and left homeless. Put air over the top of your voice. Raise your eyebrows, raise your eyebrows and clench your fists and talk about you know the two for one admission at Disneyland this weekend. So there are lots of physical things you can do as well as mental things. To get you in position, I have what I call door number one, door number two and door number three in terms of vocal range and delivery styles. In my voice up here is the higher pitch stuff. It's the 20 something year Oh, cool guy next door that can appeal to teen two teens, teenagers, young people and maybe even young adults. And then I have door number three door number two rather, which is more my voice, which I use a lot for narration. The inner workings of a steam turbine start at the base with a copper kettle. You know so or or e learning things like that, you'll see a section survey at the end of each chapter, click the X in the upper right hand corner to exit at any time. So I have just this kind of middle of the road and then down here. Rated T for teen rated M for Mature. If I'm doing some kind of promo or concert work that I may go down to Door number three and it's important to be able to enter in through any of those doors comfortably at almost the drop of a hat that will help you get did where you want to be in terms of delivery styles, firm or different types of voiceovers. That session number three I'll see a in session number four coming up. 4. Session4: hi and welcome to session, for we're gonna talk about vocal control and using your voice to create that intended impact that we talked about back in session number three. So we've broken down the script. We figured out what we think the advertiser and the copywriter are trying to get through to the listener. So now we have determined what we need to do vocally to get this point across to the listener. Um, now, let's talk first about warming up. I think it's very important. Teoh do warmups before you record. I don't care if it's first thing in the morning. Well, especially then, but I don't care if it's not first thing in the morning. If it's in the middle of the afternoon or even the evening and you've been talking all day , it's still a good idea before you sit down with a new script with a new piece to do some vocal warm ups. Uh, and not just vocal warm ups, but articulator warmups. I think that's very, very important, particularly the articulator warmups, particularly the articulator warm ups. In case you have a script where you have to say something like that because I've found with scripts over the years that there are sometimes groups of words that when you read them, when you look at the script and you're reading it to yourself and not performing, they look very simple. They're very simple words, and they're easy to say. But when you get in the heat of performance, sometimes you find that there are words that are hard to say. That normally wouldn't be hard to say. Or maybe groups of words, one that I always have difficulty with. And I do a lot of telephone recordings, telephone system recordings, but one that I always seem to have trouble with. And I get these. You know, these air seems like these are always at the ends of scripts. It is Ah, uh, What the heck is it? I've got a couple of oh, when we return to the line when we return to the line. When we returned to the line, where were we? That's what I normally do when ask your TX you electric representative, how you can save money when we return to the line when we return to the line. I'm not doing bad tonight. Normally I have a little bit of a difficult time with that. So I will go into an articulator warm up and the articulator warm up that I use is one that I remember from junior high Band. We learned this in junior high band, and, um, we would start off every rehearsal with ah bah Degas Bob Decca body a body, a body kabbadi, kabbadi, kabbadi, kabbadi, kabbadi. And the idea is to do it as fast as you can without crashing and burning. So it's not a speed test. Ah, but you want to do it at a speed that you can keep it consistent body kabbadi, kabbadi, kabbadi, kabbadi, kabbadi and then switch back and forth between baa de Goya baht *** and Tiki Tiki Hut like a tiki hut or a tiki torch ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket , ticket ticket ticket and then work that up. Work the speed on that up. So body nobody Nobody, nobody. Nobody, nobody get ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket ticket Didn't try to keep it consistent. Body kabbadi, kabbadi, kabbadi, kabbadi, kabbadi. Goodbye to get to get ticket ticket, ticket, ticket, ticket, ticket, ticket And the more you do it, of course, the faster you'll get. And that helps me if I do that and then go right into the word body. Kabbadi, kabbadi, kabbadi, kabbadi, kabbadi ticket to continue to continue to get ticket ticket, ticket, ticket when we return to the line when we return to the line. So that's an articulator warm up that I do. Ah, lot of people will do tongue twisters. Um, you know, one of the toughest tongue twisters, um, to be so short, I believe, is Toy Boat. I don't know if you've ever tried to say that, but if you haven't tried to say Toy boat five times real fast Toy boat, Toy Boat, Toy Boat, Toy Boat, Toy Boat, I bet you mess up, but we'll take a pause here. Give it a try. Did you say Toy boy at all? Some people can't even do it once, and it took me a while to be able to do that. But I think that's a good exercise. I think you should practice saying Toy boat, Toy boat, Toy boat, Toy boat, Toy Boat toy boat Toy Boat The way I do it, as I picture the words in my mind Toy boat, Toy boat, Toy boat, toy boat and I'm reading them. And it's really an exercise in getting your brain and your mouth in sync with each other. Toy boat, toy boat, Toy boat, Toy boat, toy boat. Um, and that's never a bad thing to have your brain in your mouth and sink when you can have when you can have those two things going at the same time when you're doing a voice over, that's a big help. Um, so articulator warmups, I believe, are very, very important. Before you sit down to do a voice over, Ah, vocal warm up in the morning, time might be or if you need to bring the range way up. Maybe you're a guy, and you've got a deep voice normally, and you've you've got to get up here and do something that's that's a little bit higher in pitch, maybe something a little more exciting. Then you might want to do Ah, a couple of vocal warm ups and, you know, one that I use a lot is started. My lowest comfortable point. Ah, and there's something that didn't happen there that you might have noticed or not noticed. But normally, unless you think about it, when you go from your ah, highest comfortable register into a falsetto, you have a break. Ah ah, and then you have that break coming back down. You want to try to make that it's seamless as possible. So Ah, there was a little bit of a break there, but not much. That's again, an exercise in connecting your mind with your voice and getting them to work to work together. So that's a good vocal exercise that will kind of get you warmed up. And I think that's a really good one to do in the morning time, particularly. But the articulator warmups, I think, are very, very important throughout the day. So we mentioned a phrase back in session number three, which is slow and low when you're delivering a message that is negative, slow and low. Did you hear what happened to Nancy? She lost her job after 32 years with the company. You would never say that. Did you know what happen? The Nancy she lost her job after 32 years with the company would say it slower and lower. And that gets the intended, uh, emotion across properly to the to the listener. So we think about things like that. Maybe it's just a negative word. Maybe it's just she was very happy and excited and sad, happy and excited and said, City Harvest, um helps people that have so much and those who have too little people that have so much and those who have too little, Um, you may fall asleep. I'm trying to think, What is the What is the sleep? A. Ambien, Ambien CR? You may fall asleep right away, but a few hours later you're wide awake. Ask your prescriber about Ambien CR so you may fall asleep right away. That's positive, but a few hours later, negative. You're wide awake, slow and low. A little more voiceover technique for you there. So again it's important to read the script and understand. What are we trying to get the end listener to do? What kind of response are we trying to get out of them? Is it? We were trying to get them down to a big red tag sale. We trying to get them to donate money. Are we trying to get them to just sit back and relax and listen as we narrate a book on audiobook or an e learning module, or training a safety training film? Or give them a virtual real estate tour of this beautiful, relaxing home of on the golf course overlooking the scenic river? You know, what is it that we're trying to do? And then how do we do that with our voice? How do we get that message across to the listener again? Voiceover technique and vocal control There are a lot of very simple, very easy little exercises, tricks and techniques that you can learn that will get you onto the path off delivering an effective voice over see in the next session. 5. Session5: Welcome back Section number three Session number five. Finding voiceover Work online There many different ways to find voiceover work online. I was reading an article in a magazine, its now defunct. This is a couple of years ago, but it was a magazine called Radio and Records magazine, and they were saying in this article that on any given day, at any given time, there are millions voice over jobs and opportunities available across the land out there. And I say across the land, across the lands across the sea, across the pond, if you will. A lot of the voiceover work that's done by North American voice over Artists is done for Indian companies in India. Indian companies, Pakistan, um, some of the types of, ah, voiceovers that are produced over there and videos that are produced over there. Ah, one is called an explainer video and an explainer video. You might have seen these. These are very popular. Typically they're used online and one form is called a whiteboard video. And that's where you might see a ah hand with a magic marker. And it's drawing as the voiceover is talking about how John is tired of spending his entire paycheck on gasoline. But now that he's found new gas Buddy, he knows where the best gas prices are, no matter where he is. So the hand is drawing John pumping gas into his car and dollar bills flying out of it nozzle or something like that. That's one type of explainer video. Typically, explainer videos are animated. There are no actual humans and them sometimes there are. But a lot of these, um, are produced in India s O. Many times you're working, if you're doing this kind of work, and many of you will in the beginning stages be doing that kind of work. I have a lot of students that I work with that do these explainer videos? Ah, lot of times you'll be dealing with someone that's, you know that's asleep when you're awake and awake when you're asleep. There are a few overlap hours there, but you're dealing with them. You know. 99% of every client you deal with is just simply email. It's all electronic Elektronik communication, so you rarely ever have to ah, speak to a client on the phone or, you know, really even leave your house to do this stuff, which again is like I said, is a big selling point for A for a lot of people. So there are many, many different websites online, Um, that are free. There are websites online that are paid sites you pay a yearly or a monthly subscription, and they send you voiceover auditions that match your gender, of course. And your tone in your voice age and things like that. Um, and, um, there are some that were kind of his online agencies where you don't pay a yearly fee. But if you get work through them, they take, you know, 10%. Usually that that can vary but usually 10%. So third party websites that require a fee a monthly or yearly fierce our sites like voices dot com. I would recommend that you, uh, go a couple of least of these sites and just kind of look around and get a feel for what's out there. These are paid sites. Voices dot com Voice 123 The voice realm is another one, and these air sites were. You either pay a yearly or a monthly subscription and, um, voices dot com. I believe is the only one that offers the monthly subscription. Scuse me, um, and they will send you voiceover auditions. I like the idea of doing a month to month type thing, which again, I know for sure voices dot com offers that I like the idea of doing that in the beginning stages at least just to kind of test the waters and make sure it's something Ah, that you enjoy doing. You like the layout of the sites you like, the way they're your You get bombarded, My goodness, side of student. The other day that was counted, he got a monthly membership every day. He got almost 50 auditions from voices dot com. There's no contract with that monthly. With that monthly subscription, you can come and go askew, please. Any any time s so those are some of the paid wins. There are also free websites out there Where voiceover, where can be found Freelance type websites. Um, and there Ah, there the voice over jobs you find on their art as good paying jobs that the jobs don't pay as well on there as they do on the paid sites because they are freelance level jobs and that's where a lot of these jobs in India and Pakistan come from. But I had a student tell me the other day, she said, You know, I get she has a 9 to 5 job and she goes on these sites And she said, I get about three of those a week she said, which pays my water bill and my electric bill, at least, and sometimes more so you know, it's it's it's a place to start for sure it's It's a good place to to cut your teeth and polish your polisher skills in the early stages. And as they say, go for the low hanging fruit first and then you can kind of work your way up from there. 6. Session6: and we're back. Session number six. I wanted to spend a little bit more time talking about some of these free websites. Better out there where you can find voiceover work. Um, these sites are freelance work websites, and there's not just voiceover work on them. These air websites where if you're a graphic artist, if you're a writer, if your photographer, if you're any basically any kind of creative artist, you can go there to any of these sites to find work. If you're looking for someone to do something in the creative arts, maybe you're looking for someone to create a new artistic banner to put at the top of your email with a logo for your company or something. You confined graphic artists on there, so the these websites are are twofold. Basically, you have 1/2 where you have people that do voiceovers that have created their profiles and posted their demos, and you have the other. It's kind of like a dating site, and then you have the other half of the site. That is for people that are looking the voice seekers. They're looking for a voice over, and they will put in there their job What they're looking for, how much it pays the male or female. Uh, what the reed is the length the budget, all of that will be listed. And then you come into this side as the voiceover talent and you peruse through the jobs kind of like a garage sale until you find ones. And there are search filters that help in these instances where you can type in the word voice over things like that and you go through and you find the ones that you look attractive to you that you feel like are paying well enough for you to actually for you to actually mess with. And then if there is a script involved, they might want you to read a portion of the script as an audition. You would then sit down at your ah at your microphone and record yourself and ah, send that off to the client along with a little, uh, a little cover letter, just a few sentences and, um then, ah, cross your fingers and hope you get the job. There's another way to get jobs through these Ah, these free freelance Web sites And that is they may put on there what they're looking for. We're looking for a male or a female. To do this or to do that. Here's the pay. Please send your demos to our please reply with your demos. Please reply with a sample of your voice. So you mean you can get a job that way? And that's even better because truth be known. And it's something you should think about when you audition and you do a lot of auditioning . You're not getting paid for that and getting paid to audition, and you may or may not book the job. And I'll tell you this. Let's be truthful here. Most of the time you won't. It does become a bit of a numbers game. There's a lot of positioning, you know, being getting a submission in at the right time, getting the right read to them, just having the tone of voice that is appealing to them. You know, beauty is in the ear of the beholder. One person may say I like her the best, the next person may say, but I liked her the best. So you have different people listening to these things and ah, and you do a lot of auditioning. However, when you're auditioning, you're getting better. The more you audition them or different kinds of scripts you read, the better that you're going to get so you can look at it that way. And it's kind of like fishing. I like to compare it to that. When I was a kid, I used to go fishing. I still go fishing, but in the beginning stages I was dry. I went fishing, um, on my own. Ah, accord or I agreed to go and I didn't catch a fish. I lost interests real quickly. If I don't see results with something even still today, I lose interest very quickly. So I didn't catch a fish. Second time I went fishing, I was forced to go fishing. I didn't want to. And from what I understand, it wasn't a pleasant. I didn't make it very pleasant for people, but I caught a fish. A catfish is a matter of fact in a pond, and it was a big fish and I remember that. But from that day on have been a fisherman, you know, and this is kind of the same thing. You cast the lion out there several times. Ah, and you get nothing. You may get some bites here and there. Some. Hey, we got your demo or we got your audition. Sounded great. We went a different direction, but will keep you in mind. We'll keep you. Will keep your demo on hand here. Um so, uh, just catching that one fish, though, is enough to kind of fill your tank right back up to the top and and keep you coming back for more. So it's very important again to diversify so you can get a lot of hooks in the water, a lot of bait in the water out there and get your name in front of people. Get your demos in front of people, and that's when things can can start to happen for you. So that's the end of this session. Moving right along 7. Session7: voice over rates Session number seven. When it comes to quoting a raid for a job, you might be surprised to know that the most often a potential client will actually tell you what their budget is. When I say tell you, I mean, they will list that in their casting. Let's say you're looking at one of these casting sites and you see the voice over job listed there. They will mention most of the most of the time, not every time, but most of the time they'll mention what their budget is. You know, they know how much money they have to work with, and it can save them. And the voiceover people, Ah, lot of time if they just put in their what their budget is. So let's say maybe they have $150 to work with, so they'll put that in there. So if you're Mr I don't turn on my mind for less than $500 a minute, um, then you're not going to even want to submit for that, because if you book it, they're going to expect you to be willing to do it. For the $150 so it could just save them and the potential voice over person. Um, a lot of time if they just put that compensation out there. Some of these freelance sites you'll find it's a bidding situation. I don't care for that. Ah, lot of people in the voiceover industry don't care for that kind of thing, But you know it exists. It is what it is, Um, but the thing is, they will list the details on the particulars of the job that they're looking to hire a voice over artist for um, And then they will say the bar budget is less than $250. That could be $10. It could be $249. So, um, then it turns into a bit of a bidding war. But the thing to remember about that, I don't think, don't don't think you have to be the low bidder. I don't think that that could be the case in some instances, but more times than not, I know this to be effect more times than not, the client is not going to go with the absolute lowest bidder if they hear someone that's charging more money than that. That sounds better than they do for that particular project. These people are working on a project really hardly ever for their health or for the fun of it. They're working on a project. Maybe they have a client and they're doing a safety training video Siris for them, and they need a voiceover for it. So it's their job to create the video and have the voiceover on there and then go to the clients say, Here's the project So they wanted to sound good. It needs to sound good. Yes, they only have a certain amount of money allotted for the project. But just because you're the lowest bidder does not mean you're going to get the job. They 95% of the time I would say they need the voiceover to fit the project toe work, T get the right message across with the video, and if they have to pay $100 Maurin, it's still within their budget range. But this is the guy, or this is the girl that sounds the best. Then they're going to do that now. There are people they're like, Yeah, we're on a shoestring budget and we don't really care, just as long as it sounds decent. We'll go with that. Yeah, there are those people, but you don't want those jobs. You don't want to work with those people. And I shouldn't say those people. You don't want to work for those conditions. You know you don't want Teoh. Get into a job where you're knee deep and you're working on something for an hour, two hours or more, and you're making, you know, 50 bucks or something like that. It's just not worth it. That's time you could be spending finding a better, paying a better paying job. So quoting and rates more often than not, they will list the budget that they have to work with right there, Um, and you'll want to create, at least in your mind, run a piece of paper on your computer. A rate sheet. You'll want to try to figure out kind of what your basic rates that you want to charge for different types of voiceovers. Are you confined some rate cards online. If you decide to pursue training with with someone with me or anyone, you can get some information from them and asked them What do you think? Good rates are to charge, and it's just basically a price list. So that way, you kind of have an idea. A gauge of what you're willing to do. For what price? That doesn't mean you're always going to get that rate. If someone comes up to you Says, Hey, Stacey, I hear you're doing some recordings with your voice doing some voiceovers. We use voiceovers from time to time. We need a 32nd recording for a telephone system. How much do you charge? Maybe you say. Well, I was thinking I was going to charge $150 for 30 seconds. That might be out of their range. So there are ways to negotiate that. And the idea is ah, negotiating 101 You want them to throw the first pitch? Basically, eso you could say something like, Well, since this is a non union voice over job that allows me the flexibility to work within any reasonable budget, Really, what do you have in mind for this? So there are some techniques that are Ah, that worked really well, um, for, um, trying to get a potential client to throw the first number out there and then you can work from that doesn't always work, But there are some techniques that can be learned and that all comes into learning about quoting and rates and some more advanced techniques with that. So that's the end of this session. Let's move to the next one. 8. Session8: all right, here we are with session number eight in The question is, why do you need a professional identity? For crying out loud, why do you need a professional identity? What is a professional identity? Ah, professional identity, basically is something that you create to make sure that when people seek you out, you appear professional to make sure that when you seek people out and you send them marketing emails and then they go back and go to your website or look you up that all the way around you appear professional. Now it's not hard to do. There's just a few little things you can do that can give you, Ah, professional identity or the appearance of being professional. Which, of course, hopefully you are. Um Now, why do you want a professional identity? I'm gonna give you an example right now. Real life example that happened recently to me. I got an email from a producer, small time producer, just, you know, part time hobby producer, video producer from Orange County. And we'll say his name is Fred Smith, and he let me know that he was working on a new hire orientation video for fossil company fossil. They make leather good wallets and belts, watches things like that. This is not a fossil that I have a couple and asked me if I would be interested in the job of narrating it. I said, Sure, we talked Rates. Everything sounded good. Um, this is all through email. I never spoke to this guy, remember, 99% of all the communication is through email, so everything sounded good. But I Googled him and I do this. I call this the two g meth. The Google search in the gut feeling. Why did I Google Fred Smith video? Why did I Google that? Because I want to see a Fred Smith has very much of a presence on Google if he has a strong presence on Google. The word escaped me for a minute there. I want to see a Fred Smith has a strong presence on Google. Now. Why do I want to see if he does? Because I want to determine if I need to ask him for half of the money up front before I do the job of narrating the the modules. Or do I trust him because I don't like asking for half the money up front. That's just May. Personal thing. Uh, I like working with me to be easy, quick, fun. Perhaps if the person is open to a little bit of joking around and having fun with it. Um, but I don't like throwing in that what I feel. It's kind of a stiff jab of asking for half the money up front. Unless my Google search and gut feeling leave me with the gut feeling that I need to do that. How do I determine that? Well, when I Googled Fred Smith video, I didn't find anything right off the bat that had anything to do with Fred Smith and video in Orange County. I had to go back to pages and Google, and finally I found something where it was someone thinking Fred Smith for taking such beautiful pictures and making such a nice video of their wedding, which is nothing wrong with that. But that's the only thing I found. What I was hoping to find was a picture of Fred Smith on his website standing on a mountain , holding a video camera on a show on his shoulder with some client testimonials and things like that so that I felt confident about just doing the job and knowing I was going to get paid. But I didn't find that. So I asked Fred for half of the money up front and Fred said, Sure, absolutely no problem. And I said, You know, it's common in this industry to get half of the money up front and since we're dealing with an electronic file, he had absolutely no problem with it. Said Where do you want me to send the money and how now why was he so willing to send me money before getting the product? Because I have a professional identity, very important to have a professional identity, and you can, too. It can start with an email address. I purchased Mike Elmore talks dot com, and I also purchased for $2.99 for the first year and $14 every year after that. In addition to that, I purchased an email at MIC Elmore talks dot com, So my email address is Mike at Mike Elmore talks dot com. I also have info at Michael Moore talks dot com. Same price. $2.99 for the first year, $14 every year after that, that looks professional when you've got your own website and you've got your own website address at the top of my marketing emails that I communicate with, I have a banner up there as well a graphic art banner that I had made. Um, if any of you would like to see that, you can email me mike at Michael Moore talks dot com, and I'll be happy to reply and you'll see the banner there. You can get one of those made inexpensively. Ah, and whenever I work with people on a more in depth basis in voice overs, we get deeply into marketing, and I talk about these techniques and ways to find people that will make these banners for you for pennies on the dollar. Basically, that's another way that you could look for professional business cards. Vista print a great place to get some cards printed up, and I have some great tips and, uh, and, uh, and ideas about putting together and effective card and how you should use common design element. Make sure the card and the and the website or the banner on your email kind of have you know some similar traits about them so that they all kind of linked together in the person's mind. But that's professional identity. It's all stuff that can be done sitting in your fuzzy bunny slippers and your big, thick cotton robe. Oh, God, that sounds hot right now. I'm in South Florida. Um, but you could do all of this right from the comfort of your own home, using nothing but your computer and your Internet. Hey, you're sitting there scrolling around, spending around on that thing all the time anyway, right? Why not be doing something productive and getting yourself in position to be able to participate in the world of voiceovers in a professional manner with a professional identity? 9. Session9: All right, everyone. We're back with session number nine and we're gonna talk about something here That's very, very important. The voiceover demo. Very important. A voiceover demo is like an audio version off a regular work resume, you know, and like a resume, your demo is really your primary tool for promoting yourself and getting voice over jobs. Without that, you're not going anywhere unless you do a voice over job for your employer, a friend or a friend of a friend or something like that, something right within your right within your your normal circle. That's a possibility. Could get a voice over job like that. But if you plan on getting voiceover work from complete strangers from all of these people that are out there looking for voiceover work, you have to have a voice over demo. Just like if you were a hand model, of course they would want Teoh want to see your hands. So and just like a resume with, uh, for regular work, 9 to 5. Work just like that evolves and changes over time. A Z gain experience. Voiceover demos should evolve and be updated from time to time. Um, as well because as you do auditions as you do jobs, you're going to evolve. You're going to grow, you're going to get better. You're gonna find certain areas of voiceover that your that you consider your wheelhouse on bats called Finding your voice. And the way you find your voice is through the regular reading of scripts. Excuse me, whether it be for auditions or or actual jobs and the way I found my voice when I just started doing a lot of stuff, I looked at all of these different auditions, and I started doing all kinds of different things that some things that I really wasn't suited for, and I got to a point after a while where I started realizing that maybe this script is not exactly the style that I'm good at, but I'm going to read it anyway, but not submitted. In the beginning, I was submitting everything, so my audition to booking ratio is nuts. I was doing a whole lot more. Now we always doom or auditioning than we do booking. That's just the That's just the nature of the game. But I was doing a heck of a lot more auditioning than I was booking, and that's because I was doing things I wasn't really suited to. Dio excuse me. So over time I started kind of seeing what things were easier for me. And then I started seeing what things I was booking, and I noticed a trend, as most people do. And that trend trend seems to be that your booking voice over jobs that are kind of in your wheelhouse, you know, kind of in that in that range. And that's typically how we find our voice. And then we can shift our energies on just auditioning for things in that type of range, uh, voice over. So the demos will need to be updated from time to time. How often you update a voiceover demo you know, is determined by each individual. Different depends on how much you've improved over time and how much new material you've accumulated As you perform auditions. I like the idea of keeping copies of everything you record on. Also, when you do voice over jobs, you should get and keep copies of everything you do, especially the finished fully produced tracks if you can get your hands on them. Um, so when I do a voice over job not so much anymore. But in days gone by when I would do a voice over job, I would say, Is there any way I can get a copy off the final produced product? And most producers have no problem with that. In fact, most stuff these days is going to be posted online somewhere on a YouTube channel or video channel or something like that. And they don't mind you taking that and putting it on your website, perhaps, or putting it on social media sites because it's just more exposure for them. Sometimes there's a problem with that. So you just have to ask. You know, each individual situation will be a little bit different, but it's from the auditions in the work that you do from those two sources of material that you could update or create a new demo. Perhaps you know, the two most basic types of demos that you should always have our commercial and narration . Now that's when you're first starting out. We're gonna talk about that in the next session. What are the different types of demos and what are the two main demos that you want to have , which I mentioned commercial in narration, one of the two main types of demos. What do they entail and why do we need those in the beginning? And then is our skill set expands, of course, that we could start looking at the idea of getting ourselves another professionally produced demo in another genre of voice over again. We're gonna talk about that in the different types of voiceover demos coming up in the next session. So the best way to go about getting a professional demo done is on. There are many different ways to do it. I believe this is the most expedient and the most efficient way and the most sure Wade to make sure you get from Point A to point B without any problems or any snags. I believe the best way to get a professional voiceover demo done is to find someone that knows what they're doing in terms off demo production, someone that produces demos that get results. So not just someone that does demos on the side or just started doing it. It's important to find someone that has a track record of producing demos that air getting results for clients, someone that produces demos to get results. And how do we know if they produced demos to get results? Well, they should have testimonials that you can either request. Maybe they have a website for their demo production, and they have testimonials on the website. Verifiable. Not Timothy B. Or Janet L, but verifiable sources with the person's name, the demo and a link to the persons website whose demo you're listening to so that everything is traceable and ah, verifiable. Their own demos should be impressive. I like the idea of finding someone that actually does voiceovers themselves, not just produces demos, but someone that does voiceovers themselves. So their own demos should be impressive. Asked to hear their demos or perhaps their demos would be listed on their website. And I always say, you know, clear your mind, Sit down, listen to the demo, and when the demo is finished, assess how you feel. Do you feel Wow, that was impressive. Do you feel impressed by the demo, or do you think that was okay? I guess I don't really know what I'm looking for. If there's any doubt in your mind, I don't care what your experience level is, if there's any doubt in your mind whether it was a smash up, bang up demo, then it probably wasn't that impressive of a demo. It should knock your socks off. You should think, Wow, that I want to sell like that. That sounds really good. That is a professionally produced demo or those sound like professional television commercials. Those sound like clips from radio commercials. Everything should sound riel and authentic, because if they're not, wants to make you think that they can create a demo for you, that's more impressive than theirs. You know, there are people that produced demos that could be found online, myself included, that have been producing demos with great results for years. You just want to make sure that whoever you work with, or whoever you may plan on working with does meet the criteria that I mentioned before. So demos are very, very important people when they're looking for someone to do a voice over, of course, want to hear what the voice sounds like to see if it's going to, um, match the style of what they're looking for for their project to make sure that it's going to deliver the intended impact on the listener. And many times you get voice over jobs based on your demo alone. There are two different ways you can get voice over jobs. There are more than that, but the two we're gonna talk about here just briefly are one they may have. The voice seeker may have a need for a job, someone to do a voice over, and they just want you to send them a copy of your demo. If that's the case, you can book the job right off your demo. They may have a little portion of their script, or maybe even the whole script, but you only want to read. A small portion of it is That's all that's necessary for an audition. But they will provide some text from their copy, and they may ask you to sit down in front of your microphone and record it and send it over to them so that they can actually hear you in a non produced environment. In other words, it won't be music and sound effects and everything underneath it will be just your voice and their message. And oftentimes that's what voice seekers advertisers and marketers like two that's around. They like to go so that they can get a Mork clear picture of. If we hire this person, this is exactly what they're going to sound like. Um, reading our copy now. Demos are typically kept in MP three format, so when you get a demo produced, it will be sent to you via email through an MP three could be a downloadable file, or it could just be an attachment to an email. If you go into a professional studio to record your demo, they may give it to you on a disk or a thumb drive. Or they may just email it to you as well. But you want to keep the MP three on your computer. The MP three stays on your computer that MP three can then be uploaded to your website. It could be uploaded, attached to an email and sent to a client if perhaps they're asking for for an MP three. But there is one thing to consider when we're doing cold marketing. In other words, we're creating a marketing email. We're sending it out that basically says Hi, my name is Mike Elmore. I do voice overs. I know you all use voiceovers from time to time. Maybe we're sending this to an advertising agency or just some small local mom and pop recording studios around the country. I know you all use voiceovers from time to time. I just wanted to make myself known to you Please click below. To hear a sample of some of my work below would be your demos. Now, do we want to attach an MP three to those types of email? Those cold marketing emails? The answer to that is no, I believe now you can. You can do whatever you want, but I believe that the best thing to do in this day and age is to create a link for each demo. It's very, very simple to do. So let's say you've got your demo. Let's say you've got a commercial demo here. It's an MP three. It's on your computer. I use a service called box dot com. It's free. It's like a big box in the skied. Toss all your junk into it. Pictures, audio files, any type of file you can throw into that box, and it stores it for you in the cloud or in the box in the sky, so it's called box dot com. Now what you dio is, you take your MP three. After you've created your box dot com account, you hit upload. You select your MP three off your computer and uploaded into the box. Once it's there, it will give you an option to share it. There's a little button. This is share. It's very easy to navigate. You click share. When you hit that button share, it's gonna create a link. It will say, Give this link to any of your friends or peers and you copy that link and put it right in your marketing email. So you say Click below to hear a sample of some of my work, and you can have the word commercial demo and then paste that link right underneath that. So all they have to do is click on that link and your commercial demo will start playing right there in their computer, so there's no need for them to download anything and, quite frankly, strangers. When you're cold marketing to people, people that don't know you many times will be reluctant to download something from someone that they don't know in the first place. So people are much more likely, I found to click on a link and that will start your demo playing right there, right there on your A on your computer. So again we want to create a marketing email. Once we have our demos, you want to learn to voiceover technique. Then you want to get your demos. Then you want to start marketing yourself and you can do all of this, right? I do it right here. You could do all of this right From the comfort of your own home. I always say you can wear your fuzzy bunny slippers and your robe if you want to a sip your tea. Listen to your music on iTunes or Spotify, Pandora or whatever it is that you use. All of this could be done right from home. And this is not an industry. I say this all the time. This is not an industry where Hey, guess what? You can do this from home. This is an industry, really these days that you must do from home 99% of all working voiceover actors that might be a high number 95% of all working voiceover actors have the ability to work from home, which means the door has opened up for more people in more places. It doesn't matter where you live. There are no geographic hindrances anymore. It doesn't matter where you live. You can sit right in your home and you can participate in the voiceover industry again. I am living proof of that as I live in a suburb of Fort Lauderdale called Sunrise, Florida. And there's really nothing going on here, but a bunch of freeways and the Everglades, right over across the way, here and on occasional alligator crossing the road, Lots of iguanas. Not a whole lot going on here in terms of entertainment. I could drive into Miami and sometimes due to work in studios there. But for the most part, I am right here in this room, doing everything that I do. I go see my mother in Jersey Ville. She lives in Jersey villain Oy, a tiny little town. I go there, I take a laptop, my microphone set up in her walk in closet, and I'm able to work on make money while I'm visiting my mother or traveling anywhere else because the equipments very compact. So what we're gonna talk about in the next session is are we going to talk more about demos ? We're gonna talk about the different types of demos, the niche areas in voiceover and what kind of types of demos you might want for each one of those. And then we're going to start talking about auditioning. Where can you find these types of jobs? And how do you handle the auditioning process whenever you're in position to actually start doing that? 10. Session10: all right, and here we are with session number 10 continuing to talk about demos. And now I just want to focus on some of the different types of demos that are out there and the two main types of demos that you wanna have when you're first starting out. It's always recommended when you're first starting out in voice overs, that you have two different types of demos one commercial and one narration. Now that's a recommendation. It's not a deal breaker if you only want to get one, Um, but here's the reason why when you get out there and you start looking around on some of these job sites and there are many, many, many job sites out there, some of them are paid sites, and some of them are free sites where voiceover work is listed. When you get out there and you start looking around on all of these sites, you're gonna see, it's just a big mash up off commercial and narration stuff. Okay, so there's not just a separate place for commercial jobs and a separate place for narration jobs. They're all thrown together, and I have worked with people over the years that have said, I only want to do narration or I only want to do commercial. I'm not interested in doing any narration, so I say Okay, really consider that. But if that's really the way you want to go, then just get a commercial demo. Just get a narration demo. And I've had many people, not everyone, but I've had many people come back and say, You know what? I'm gonna get the other demo because once they get out there and and witness the reality of just how many jobs there are in each area, they realize, Hey, you know I want to submit for this job. But I only have a commercial demo and you don't want to submit to a narrative job a job that's looking for someone to narrate something. Maybe they're looking for someone to narrate, Um uh, a virtual real estate tour for a real estate website or ah, maybe they're looking for someone to do a power point presentation or something like that. You don't want to send them a commercial demo because the material on a commercial demo is a lot different than what would be on a narrative demo and they don't necessarily. I'm not going to say they don't want to hear that, but it's not gonna be beneficial to them. And they'll probably realize that when they start hearing. You know, it's the Big 50 60 up to 70% off sale. When they start hearing that kind of thing, I think they're probably gonna say to themselves, This isn't really what we're looking for and probably turn it off. So it's a good idea to have a commercial in the narrative demo that allows you to submit for MAWR jobs out there than just, you know, just the ones that are commercial or the ones that are narration. And remember, there are a lot of sub categories. Um, there a lot of sub categories under commercial and narration. So those are the main categories selling and telling commercialise selling again narration is telling, so audio books, air narration, power point presentations are narration, GPS voices, narration, airport announcements, grocery store announcements, mall's retail stores, all of these different types of narrations All the different types of voice over jobs are are narrations, so it's a good idea to have one of each of those types off demos now there are other types of demos that you might want to consider as well, depending on the type of work that you might decide that you want to do. Maybe you want to get into audiobook work. Well, yes, audiobook is a type of narration, but when audiobook publishers and producers and authors are looking for someone to narrate a book, they want to hear an audiobook demo specific. They don't want you to send them a narration demo that has doesn't have you reading from a book and a lot of producers out there. I'm completely against this, but a lot of depth demo producers that I know of out there will say, Hey, we're gonna do a narration demo If you want to do audio books, we need to put an audiobook clip on this demo so they'll have an audiobook clip them reading from a story coupled with other types of narration. And I know for a fact from speaking to many, many, many different authors, producers and publishers that they don't want to hear anything other than audiobooks. And there are specific demos. Toe audiobook, a new audio book demo, would consist of nothing but you reading from, you know, three or four different types. Fiction, nonfiction, first person, carrot one with character dialogue There is a definite formulas that have been proven time and time again to be effective for audiobook demos. So that's another kind of niche area demo. And a lot of people say, Hey, I want to do audio books. You know what I say to them? Do other stuff first. And here's why. If you're just getting started in the industry and you don't have any experience with audio editing, it's very important that you get experience with audio editing because getting into an audiobook if you don't know editing or if you're just brand new to editing your audio editing, your voice, cutting up this coughs and sneezes and the breaths, the distracted breast and are distracting breaths and the mistakes, of course, which with an audiobook with 12 hours of audio, there's gonna be lots and lots of mistakes. Um, you need to be proficient with that because it takes a lot of time. The deadlines are relatively short, and you may end up ripping your hair out if you're not proficient and quick with editing. If you're trying to figure that out in the middle of an audiobook job. I've seen it happen before and trust me, it's not a pretty sight. So I say, Why don't you just do some small go for the low hanging fruit? First go for the commercial jobs, the Internet, commercial jobs, the local radio commercials, the narrative jobs that thousands and thousands and thousands of narrative jobs that I see online every single week and every day. If I spend enough time, I could scroll through tens of thousands of jobs and opportunities online for voice over. So I always recommend to get that audio books is one area. Maybe you decide that you're interested in doing promo promo television network television promo. It's an all new Mike and Molly, right? After 2.5 men on CBS Monday. You know something like that, that's that's promo. But there's also promo work for video games and audio books. Maybe you want to do trailers, movie trailers or video game trailers. Audiobook trailers? I always say, Listen, movie trailers. It's a very difficult area to get into and voice overs the highest paying. It's the hardest to break into, but There are video game trailers, and there are audiobook trailers and pro most. Those are the two hardest areas to break into when you're talking about network television and major motion pictures, trailers and promo, but again, low hanging fruit. Let's go for the video games. Let's go for the APS. There are pros and trailers for APS and games and things like that. So those are some other specific areas. Maybe you want to do car dealerships. Maybe you want to do hard sell car dealership ads, and that's something you feel like you're good at. You could get a specific demo that it's nothing but hard sell on. Maybe some soft sell mixed in with it car dealership ads. So there are a lot of different types of specific genre specific demos that could be recommended. But again, it's called Finding Your Voice, finding your niche, finding your area that your dwelling in that your booking voice over jobs and you want to go through the process of just kind of feeling out some things and waiting through all of the stuff that's out there and it's all it's a lot of fun. I mean, it's never a dull moment. You never know what kind of job you're gonna get in front of you. What kind of directions they may be calling for. You never know what you're gonna have in front of you. So it's always something new. It's ah, lot of fun. And once you do find your voice and once you start booking consistently with that, then you'll be happy you did that and you'll be glad you went through all of these steps. Now let me just say something here. Now, I'm not saying just anyone could do this. I'm not saying that. I think that you do have to have a little bit. I don't think I know. It's a big help coming into this. If you have a least a little bit of natural ability, at least a little bit of natural ability, meaning you've got a little bit of storyteller in you to ah lot. The more you have, the better the more natural you feel. The more natural you sound, the better the easier it's going to be to learn the technique. So if you've ever read to a small child and they set there listening to you intently and wanting you to read MAWR and reacting to the different shifts in the story and the different. Maybe the different character voices you do on. You've kept them tuned in and they've been interested in it. Then you probably have at least a little bit of natural ability, so that's one way to gauge it. But again, and I mentioned in an earlier session, it's a good idea to get an evaluation and you are gonna have the opportunity to get a professional evaluation of your ability, your current ability to read scripts. And we'll talk more about that in the very in the very last session. So again, it's a very fun field. There is some leg work that has to be done as you're learning right now, but it's all fun along the way. I've never found or heard found for myself or heard anyone say This is arduous. There's so much to do. It's a fun, creative process from point A to point B all the way through to Point Z. If there is a point Z, I'm not even sure if that exists. I'm still looking for it and still loving every minute of it. So that's the end of this session. See in the next one 11. Session11: and welcome back session number 11. We're gonna talk about auditioning. This is the first of several sessions talking about the process of auditioning. I love auditioning. I love it. That's when you get better. That's how you get better. You audition for a lot of different types of voice over work, and that's again a process called Finding Your Voice. When you're brand new to this, you're going to see all different kinds of scripts, different styles, different types of directions. And it's a good idea to read through these things and try a bunch of different things and just, you know, kind of seat kind of see what sticks. But I want to talk about in this session the pros and cons from auditioning at home versus in person. There may be times when you find a voice over job where they want you to come down to your local television station. May be it's your local PBS station or your local CBS affiliate or something like that, and they may want you to come down and audition in person, in a studio or maybe right there in the television studio or in a commercial studio. So there are some pros and cons from auditioning at home versus going out and doing this in a commercial studio. Let's talk about auditioning from home. First of all, here are some of the pros and their big ones. You can audition at your convenience because you can fit the audition into your own schedule. So what I dio because I teach voice over classes. I do voiceover work every single day. I've got regular clients. I get new clients all the time, and I do auditions so you can do it on your own schedule. So when I get auditions in the email, I wake up in the morning and their auditions from the night before the afternoon or night before. Um, and then throughout the day, they start coming in slowly, sometimes not slowly, sometimes quickly, through email. So I just kind of put those aside. I look and see if there any rushes every once in a while, I may get something it says, you know, Can you get this back to us within an hour? On those are some of the bigger jobs. You won't necessarily see those types of things when you're first starting out, but most of them just say, you know, hey, the due date or the deadline for this is next Thursday or this coming Monday. Usually you have time. You have two or three days to do the audition. So I just put those in a folder in my email, and I may do them that day. I'll do as many as I can as I can work in the schedule, but, you know, may end up doing them, pushing them over, sandbagging them into the next day. But you can do them at your at your leisure and leisure leisure. Anyway, I think they're both acceptable. I had that word in a script once, and I looked that up, and I think I remember that. They said either leisure or leisure. Either one. So we'll go with leisure. Um, you can do them any time. In fact, I'm sitting here right now. It's evening time. It's probably about 9 30 10 o'clock. And as soon as I finish with a few more of these sessions, I'm going Teoh, jump over here behind the microphone and I'm going to do a couple of auditions on. Then tomorrow morning I may get up 6 37 Do a couple more auditions so you can do him on your own schedule and on your own time. You can also practice as long as you want before recording the script. So when you get a script you've got like I said, usually you have days toe. Look at it, look it over, glance added here and there. Then come back to it and kind of get your bearings with it and go through some voiceover technique, making some decisions and considerations and asking some questions to yourself about the script like, Who is the audience? Who is the major demographic? Are we talking to women or men? Are we talking or both? Are we talking to teenagers or elderly people, or both or kids or all everybody, So understanding your audience can certainly help you determine the tempo you speak with the at the pitch that you use. That's all voiceover technique. There is, like I said, a couple of good size handfuls of technique and tools that need to be learned and executed and put into play when you're doing a voiceover read. So when you're doing this at home, you've got plenty of time to go through all of that. When you go down to the studio. Ah, local studio. You may not have so much time. As a matter of fact, I do recordings at HBO, Um, actually not far from here, and they will I don't even look at them anymore. They will email me scripts in advance, and I look at them not so much anymore. But I used to look at them and almost memorized them. Which I have learned now is not not the thing to do. But I would read them so many times. I almost wake up in the middle of the night, you know, with the words in my head. And then you get down there to the studio and they can to your script and everything's been changed. So, um and you've got 10 minutes to look it over. If even that or they may want you just to get in there and cold read it so you don't have nearly as much time when you're working outside of your own home studio to go over a script unless they have emailed it to you in advance. And they don't change anything when you get there. You can also do as many takes as you want to do when you are doing this in your own in your own home studio. Um, when you go over to PBS or ah, local recording studio, they're not gonna want you to spend 30 minutes in the booth doing 30 different takes. They're gonna want you to be able to step in there, have having looked at the script a little bit, perhaps, and just be able to fire away. You don't have to be flawless. You could make mistakes and things like that, but they don't want you to take When I go outside studios, they give me 23 takes and then that's it on. If that's for an audition. Hopefully you did a good job. Fits for ah ah, job. Usually you get more takes than that. If you're the one actually doing the job, you're gonna do multiple takes until they feel like they've got everything they need to piece together a professional professional piece. But for auditions, there may be someone waiting to get in there right after you. So you got to go in and give it your all. So the nerves become a factor, especially when your brand new when you're going into these outside studios and and working . So, um, one of the benefits of working in a studio while we're on that is that there is someone there to direct you. They can give you directions. Usually the client is there, or representative of the client or the could be a producer, or even the studio engineer may have some directions. But generally there's someone there representing the client, and they're there to make sure that everybody gets the the same directions. And that way, hopefully the results from everyone will be along the lines of of what they're looking for . Um, so that's a pro of working in a studio. Um Con, of course, of working at home is you have to self direct. Now you will have usually some type of directions from the client on the script, but there's no one to listen to you to see if you're hitting the mark in terms of what they're looking for, and sometimes they're not all very good. We keep it PC here. Sometimes they're not that good at expressing what it is that they're looking for putting that into words, so sometimes the directions are a little bit. It's kind of a Chen scratcher head scratcher, and you may think, What What is it exactly that they're looking for? They want me to be harsh and abrasive and commanding with a smile. You know, you may see things like that. So that's one of the upsides of recording in the studio is you generally will have somebody there to direct you at home. You have to do self directing a con. Another con of working at home Downside is that there's no networking opportunity. When you work outside of the studio, you can take business cards. You can meet other voiceover talent. You could meet the engineer, The producers, perhaps, and there is that networking opportunity. But there's really no face to face opportunity when you're auditioning at home. When you're auditioning at home, you have to do all the recording, and you have to do all of the editing, and you have to send the file off to the client. When you're recording in a studio, of course, you go in, they give you the script, you stand behind the mic, your record. You thank them kindly shake their hand and you're out the door. They will clean it up and edited and get it all presentable for the, uh for for the client, um, you also have to do all of the script evaluation on your own, taking the time to figure out the script. You know, what's it about some of those things that we talked about before some of these questions that you want to ask yourself about the script to help you determine what the intended impact on the listener is and how you create that intended impact on the listener. So if we're reading something for a retirement village, where you can spend your golden years with like minded people, lots of activities. So I know the intended impact on the listener is to sound relaxing and call it like a relaxing place, a calming place with lots of fun and activities, but mainly relaxed and calm and maybe even a hint of quiet. So at Stone Briar Retirement Village, you and your loved ones can spend your golden years, so that might help me determine how I want to talk. As opposed to this Friday and Saturday. It's 1 99 down, drive away in a brand new Alondra at Dan Stanley Chevrolet. You know, if it's if it's more of a hard sell and the words on there, like for just 1 99 down there in capital letters with Bold, then I know perhaps that's a hard sell. So there are some things that we want to consider. We we need to understand. What is the intended final impact on the listener, and how do we use our voice to achieve that? And that is voiceover technique and vocal control two things that are very important to learn, very fun to learn on. There's not that much to it if you've got that natural ability, once you have the seeds planted and you know that the tools that you need to the seed you need to cultivate the teal, the tools that you need to work on, it's a fun process, and it's something that again, if you have a little bit of natural ability, comes very, very quickly and you'll see the improvement coming coming, and that'll keep you coming back for more. So that's the end of this session. I'll see in the next one 12. Session12: Welcome back. We're on session number 12 continuing to talk about auditioning. I want to just talk a little bit about audition lingo. So when you see some of these auditions, you're going to see some different terms on there, and you may not know what they all meet. Many of them are self explanatory, but you may see things like an ABC take asking you to give them an ABC take of the final line. And this doesn't just apply to auditions. This could apply to an actual job, where they ask you to give them an ABC take of the last line. Now, many times, the last line in a commercial script will be what's called the tagline, and the tagline is just that. The tag at the end or the last line that the listener hears many times. It's a company slogan, a company motto at Delta, We love to fly, and it shows Burger King, Amateur Way or something like that. Many times, that's the tagline. So why would they want an ABC take or three slightly different versions of the same line? Well, the surface thinking would say, while they want three different ones to choose from. They want to pick the best of three, you know. After all, it is the $1,000,000 tagline in many cases with $1000 tagline if we're dealing with smaller jobs. But that's the surface thinking, and that is partially true. Yes, it does give them three different options, but it goes a little deeper than that With digital editing today, people can take three different takes, and they could take a little bit from this one a little bit from that one a little bit from this one. Another from this. And they can piece these together to build the perfect beast to comp together the perfect take. So by giving them three slightly different reads we give them. I don't really know the number, but I'm guessing somewhere around maybe a dozen different options in terms of how that final line sounds. So an example of an ABC take. Let's says, let's say, eclipse your breath. Never had it so good. That's a big one that we all know eclipse your breath. Never had it so good. So how do we do in ABC? Take. I have a couple of different methods that I use one of them has to do with emphasis or stress onwards, shifting emphasis from one word to another. Here's a slowed down example. Eclipse your breath. Never had it so good. Eclipse your breath. Never had it so good. Eclipse your breath. Never had it so good. Eclipse your breath. Never had it So So there were four takes there. It's just a matter of shifting words Now Not all taglines have that many words in there. Uh, G Well, I'm trying to think of a shorter one. I can't think of one right now, but anyway, you can't just rely on just that alone. Just shifting emphasis from one world to another with eclipse Your breath Never had it so good you can. So there's one other technique. If the, um product name is mentioned in the tagline which often times it is what I like to do. We're doing three takes. Remember? I like to do the 1st 1 where I just say the product name Normally eclipse your breath. Never had it so good. Second, when I go up in pitch eclipse your breath Never had it so good. That's called Bill boarding voiceover technique. Another piece of that for you. The 3rd 1 Back to normal. Eclipse your breath. Never had it so good. So we have eclipse Eclipse, Eclipse Notice. I raised the eyebrows. Eclipse, eclipse, More voiceover technique. Um, I'm telling you, voiceover technique is fun. Um, so if we put those two together, we might have eclipse your breath. Never had it so good. Eclipse your breath. Never had it so good. Eclipse your breath. Never had it so good. So that could be three takes. Now, with that, they can pick and pluck and pull and piece together and build a perfect Frankenstein out of that or build the perfect take. Hopefully, we can't get crazy with an ABC take. We can't say eclipse your breath Never had it so good. Eclipse your breath. Never had it so good eclipse here but had never had it So they can't be drastically different They have to be in line or in the same vein, if you will, As the commercial that we were reading And that that tag is is a part of So that's what an ABC take is Some people may not know that term. They may just say Can you give us a couple of different takes of that last line so they may just water it down and ask. It's very simply like that. If that's the case, say that's fine. I always say, Try to give him three. If they say give us a couple could be that there, you know, small mom and pop production company or something like that. But I always say, you know, try to give him at least three. I've never had anyone complain when I gave him for fast for an ABC taking a game on ABC Be take. I've never had anyone say, Wait a minute, we only wanted three. We only asked for three. Never had anyone say that. So if you've got four in your I say go for it. All right. Also, when you're doing auditions, you from from time to time, you will see listed on there the deadline. The audition is due via email via MP three in an email back in our office by this date this time. So you see that all the time. I mean, that's standard You may also see from time to time Session recording date will be July 21st or whatever. July 21st or 22nd. When you see that, that generally means that they want you. They want to be present when you're recording. Now, what if they're in Kansas City and you're in Atlanta? Well, Skype, perhaps you've heard of it. Free program on the computer allows you to see the person that you're speaking with. And if you've got a couple of decent, even Internet connections on both ends, it's like sitting in the same room with the person. Maybe they will be willing to just call you up on your cell phone and you put him on speaker. I've done that many, many, many times. But if you see that session date, that generally means that they want to be present when you're recording so that they can kind of hear what you're doing. And they can give you some direction. You don't see a lot of that, especially when you're first starting out. But it is possible that you could see that s so if you see a session date in there, then that means that they want to be present. They want to give you a little bit of direction. Now a lot of auditions will list on there. Whether there it's a union or a nonunion job, we're not gonna get deeply into the topic of union versus non union. But I will scratch the surface. And I will say, um, that when you remember the voiceover of the of the Union sag after, which is the main union that governs voice over the voiceover industry, people in the voiceover industry, you make more money per job. If you're booking jobs that ISS, you make more money. You get paid multiple times. You get paid residuals as opposed to non union, where it's a buyout. You get paid one time, and that's it. So you do the voice over. They give you the money, you give them the voice over, and that's it. Hopefully, you keep in contact with them and they become a regular client. But you don't get paid multiple times. They own that recording, and they can do anything they want with it. They can play it as long as they want eyes. You know, as many times as they want. So that's union versus non union, and that's, uh, nd. I always say that's an Indy 500 topic. That's something you can look up information on. Or if you decide to go further and learn some voiceover technique on how exactly how to market yourself, then certainly that's something that would be that would be addressed. I could go a little deeper into it. If you join. The union is a full fledged union member. You're not supposed to do non union work, and I feel like that that shooting yourself right in the foot when your brand new because what you're going to have access to by and large when you're looking online. At these websites where voiceover work is listed by and large, it's gonna be nonunion voiceover work. So you want to be able to cut your teeth, find your voice and do all of those things you want it you need to do in the beginning, um, with the non union work. So I always say, When people ask me when, when will I know if I should join the Union and I steal is from James Earl Jones at a conference? I was speaking at once where he was the keynote speaker. Someone asked him that, and he said, You'll know and I like that answer. I understand why you'll know, but we'll leave it at that because I think that answer works. You'll know if it's time for you to join the union or if you need to join the union, you'll know when that time comes. And many people never join the union and live a fruitful life in the voiceover industry. Live comfortably doing complete non union nonunion voiceover work. That's the end of this session. See you around in the next one. 13. Session13: Welcome to session number 13. We're talking about the process of auditioning and some of the different things you might run into when you're auditioning. Let's talk a little bit now about two schools of thought that run in the voiceover industry . There are two schools of thought. There is one that says When you get an audition and the client provides specific directions as to what they're looking for, you should follow those directions. Makes sense, right? There's another school of thought that says, If you look at those directions and you say I don't think that's the best way this script could be read. I think it should be read this way, Looking at the words looking at the message. I think I know as a as a voice over artist. As an experience voiceover artist, which eventually you will be. I believe that for me, my delivery, it's gonna sound better to read it my way rather than their way. Should you do that, should you ignore their directions? Well, there's two schools of thought on that, and I kind of tend to a waiver back and forth and just take it on a script by Scripter or case by case basis to understand the different schools of thought. We have to kind of delve into why and I've spoke. I know many people on both sides. Why does each side feel that way? Well, let's talk about the ones that say yes, you should follow the directions because the client probably knows what they're looking for , right? They thought about it. They've planned it out. They've got video perhaps being produced. They know the message. They know the direction. So by all means you should follow the directions, even if the directions are a little bit off. If you feel like those directions aren't exactly what they should be, you should do that anyway, because that's what the client wants. Well, we don't have to go too deeply into that, that just those air people that follow rules, you know, and they figure let's not try something that's left of center because that may cost us the job, making us from getting the job. Now let's go to the renegade side that say, You know, if you look at these directions and you don't feel like they're appropriate for the subject matter of the copy or your delivery, then it's fine to put your own spin on it now. Why would they say that? Well, here's a couple of reasons. One. It's a well known fact that a lot of people that put out voiceover castings and we mentioned this in the previous session don't know how to verbalize or put into words exactly what it is they're hearing in their head or what they're looking for. And the more experience you get with doing auditions and doing jobs, the more you'll start to UN and booking jobs. You'll start to understand what clients are looking for based on the directions, and sometimes, you know, they may end up hiring you. They may give you one set of directions on the audition, and then they may hire you and give you a different set of directions. So hey, it sounded. This happened to me just the other day. Just the other day, they said, Hey, we want you to do this. This was for Amblin Entertainment on, and they wanted me to do this. Jurassic Park Jurassic World parody movie trailer, The Movie of the year, Jurassic Park Box set Own it on DVD and Blue Ray. So it was that type of thing. But it was a parody about the high heels that the woman was wearing throughout the movie. Every time she's being chased by dinosaurs seemed like she was in high heels. Anyway, it started out. They said, We want you to do this like your Lilo and Stitch trailer on your on your demo and that is more of a kind of It's a comedy, basically. So I recorded it like that. They said, We love that your demo, Lilo and Stitch do it like that. I didn't like that and they said we couldn't make it more dark By the time we finished, I had done it four times. By the time we finished, it was nothing like the really low and stitch read. So, you know, sometimes they think they know what they want. But then things start to change as they hear it as they think about it. You know, things may change. So that's one school of thought. They say, Look, if you look at it, you think, Well, I I think I know what they're trying to say, but they're not really saying it effectively here. I'm gonna do it this way. So you may want to do that. Um, other situations, maybe the feed directions are contradictory. Like I said before, we want you to be commanding and powerful and intimidating, but chuckle from time to time something like that, which may be a little contradictory. So they say, Look, just do it the way you've got 1/6 sense. The Mawr you do auditions. The more you do jobs, you kind of develop 1/6 sense. And if you feel like you can think of a different way to do it, then um then go ahead and do it that way. And they also have another caveat. Another a reason why they think that that's a good idea, which could make some sense. They say, if the directions wants someone that has a mature the mature voice of reason. It's for a financial institution that here's another one that happened. I got an audition. It was for a financial institution, and they wanted the voice to be the mature voice of reason. Um, it was for people 55 up, and so I auditioned for it. I got shortlisted was in the top five but they ended up going with someone else. And I do this from time to time and you can do it, too. Once I auditioned for something. Yeah, keep a copy of it right over here on this shelf, right below here, and I'll go back from time to time and I'll go into YouTube or Google, and I see if I'm going to see if I can find the actual produced piece to see who did book it. Many times you find it right online. And for this particular one I was reading it, helping people fly further, go further and fly higher. ABC Financial Company and I was reading it like like the specs said. I found this one and they picked someone, had a youthful voice. He almost sounded like he was maybe 20 you know, in his early twenties, completely different from what the specs said. So you never know. Sometimes things change like that. So their school, this school of thought over here, the renegades, they say, Look, if everyone follows the directions, if everyone is the mature voice of reason and then and they're listening to, you know, 10 or 15 people that are mature voice of reason. But all of a sudden they get to a guy that kind of bucked the system a little bit and is a younger guy, and he's putting more smile into the reed and so forth. You know, they say lots of times. Maybe that's what's gonna book you the job. Maybe it's like a breath of fresh air. Maybe they think that's a little different. We've been hearing all of these, you know, mature financial institution types reads. And now we've got this guy. Maybe this will appeal even to some of the younger people as well as the older people. So that's another one of their reasons for saying, Look, if you look at it and you got a different idea about how the lines should be read, go with your gut and again I kind of tend to kind of waiver back and forth between the two . I take it on a on a case by case basis, so that is the end of this session. We've got another one coming up, and we're gonna talk about cuts. How Maney cuts in an audition. Should you give them? Should you read it once? Should you read it twice. Should you read it three or four times to find out the answer to that and more. I'll see you in the next session. 14. Session14: Hi, everyone again. Here we are in session number 14. One take or two when you get an audition, Should you give the client one read or two reads? Well, this goes back to what we were talking about in the last session. What if you have a different way to read the script? A different idea than what they have in the directions. What if you have a different idea? Well, do you do it? Like we said in the last section? Do you do it your way or their way? Well, what if they allow you to do two takes, then should you do two takes that are in the same vein of what they're looking for? Or should you do two takes of what you think should be done? Here's where I kind of waiver. I say. Do one get It is close to how you think they want it to sound and then do it your way. And many times, clients are very specific in saying, Ah, we wanted only one take per person. Onley two takes per person. Generally, you I hardly ever see them saying, You know, three takes. If you want reason being the people listening to these don't have time to sit and listen to the same person. Do three different reads on it. You know they may get 30 or 40 submissions, orm or you know, so they just want generally one or two reads, so they're generally specific about that in the audition, but not always. Sometimes it doesn't even mention that doesn't say only one reader only to then you make the call. If you like their directions and you see their vision and you understand the message they're trying to deliver and you think the directions fit it, just give him one take. You know, let's not push the envelope if they ask for if, if they say you can give us too if you want, then you make that decision. If you like their directions and you see it and you feel it, then give him two reads that are very similar. But maybe, but but slightly different maybe slightly different tempo or slightly different amount of smile, but try to keep it in lines with their directions if you agree with their directions, so just keep your eye on the specs specifications in the audition. If they mention how Maney takes they will listen to. Then you can work with that. If they don't mention it at all, then you just have to make an executive decision. I personally will always only go with one read If they don't mention anything. I don't want to push the envelope and, um, you know and, you know, elbow my way into their audition. If everyone else is just doing one take, I don't want to sound like the guy that's kind of over doing it, so that's all for this session. 15. Session15: all right. Here we are all the way up in session number 15 and we're talking about auditioning. Let's talk about the slate. The slate. When you're auditioning, you may be asked to slate your name before the audition. You may be asked to slate your name after the audition. You may be asked not to slate your name at all. The audition may not say anything about slating. So what do you do? Well, a first of all, we follow directions. If the directions say slate your name before the read, then you would say, Mike, Elmore, Mary had a little lamb or this is Mike Elmore. Mary had a little lamb. If it says slate your name after the audition, then you would say everywhere that Mary went the lamb was short ago. This is Michael Moore. Something like that. Um, sometimes they'll tell you specifically what to say. They may have you slate at the end. They may have you say the lamb was short ago. This is my Gilmore for the, um, burger agency. If it's an audition coming to you through an agency, online agency or something like that, so just follow directions. First of all. Um, now if it says no slating, then of course you don't don't do anything. What do you do if it doesn't say anything about it? And I get a lot of auditions that don't say anything about slating at all? What do you do then? Well, my preference is to Slate at the beginning. I like to slate at the beginning, so I'll say Mike, Elmore Twinkle, twinkle little star How I wonder what you are. So I like to put it in the beginning because I know there's a good chance, very good chance that they're not even going to make it all the way to the end of the audition, whether they like it or not. I have been on the casting side of things and not myself personally, but I've watched people casting and listening to auditions on demos and generally the one that they book. They don't even listen to the full audition. They'll listen to maybe seven seconds, 3 to 7 seconds of each demo when they get to the one that they like that they think, OK, this is kind of matches what we're looking for. They may listen a little longer they may listen to the whole thing, but I've seen it happen many times where they listen. You know, 7 to 10 seconds of a 32nd audition, and then they say, All right, that's the girl. That's the guy. That's the woman. Get them. So that's it. So for that reason, I don't like throwing my name at the end if I don't have to, I wanted to be upfront because I wanted to hear my name. I wanted to see my name Aziz many times as possible. So when I audition, it's coming from an email address, which is Mike at Mike Elmore talks dot com. It's a little bit about marketing here, Mike it. Mike Elmore talks dot com. $2.99 for the first year, $14 a year after that, roughly prices fluctuate. That's how much I pay to have Mike at Michael Moore talks dot com. Three bucks for the first year, 14 bucks a year after that. So they see my name there. When they open the email, they're going to see my name there. I've got a little logo, a little banner says Mike Elmore talks dot com, which is my website. They see. Hi. My name is Mike. Elmore. Blabbermouth. Barbara. Thanks for the audition. Thanks for the script. At the end, I sign it. Mike Elmore. They hear the audition. It says Michael Moore, the more times they hear my name or hear or see my name, the better. In my opinion, um, so should you Slate or not again, it depends on what the client is allowing for. And if they're not saying anything about slating, you make the call. But again, my preference is to slate right at the beginning. That is the end of session 15 16 just around the corner. See you there. 16. Session16: All right, Here we are. Session number 16. Still talking about auditioning. Read everything in the listing of the audition in the rules. What they're looking for once. No, wait, let's read it twice. Maybe three times. The point is read it very closely because there may be things in there, like slating as we were talking about in the last session. There may be things in there that the client does not want you to do. There may be things in there that the client does want you to do. And I have seen agents. I've spoken to agents. I know agents and I have heard clients complaining in a very rabid manner about people that don't follow the directions that they put into the auditions. And a lot of times, that's a deal breaker. They'll say, You know, this person can't follow directions here. What's to make me think they're gonna follow directions if we hire them and decide? Decide to work with him? So it's very important to read everything closely, and you want to read it very closely for other reasons. There may be information in there that could help you in terms of understanding the directions that they're giving you. There may be a link to, ah, video, they may say, Here's the video the rough cut of the video that the voiceover is going to be used for. That's a huge help when they provide that. When you can go and see the visuals and and get Thea, just get the overall feel. Maybe the music is already in there, too. If you could just kind of get the overall feel, I always say That's the dance partner and they're the lead. Let the video shape your delivery. If it's a video of a sailboat sailing across the horizon at sunset or sunrise and it's sailing slowly in the waters, moving slowly, then I'm just automatically going to start talking like this. You know, maybe it's a cologne or perfume commercial. Adults Evita White sails blue diamonds. Nothing is better than Bloomingdale's. Bloomingdale's so nice and calm. Sometimes you have a link that is just, um, audio. They'll say. Here's the music that we're going to use with the voiceover. Just listening to that can be your dance partner lead, and you just kind of follow you get into that groove you get into that feel, so following the directions is very important and looking on there, making sure that you cover everything that you see everything, and some of them are very simple. I get auditions from a few agents, agencies and so forth that are just very simple. Here's the script. Here's the directions it's due by this date. Have fun. I get other ones from other agencies that are You have to struggle to find the script in all of the rules and regulations. Do not do this. Do not send, uh, an MP three. Unless it is this size. Do not just little things like that. Do not send ah an MP three. Or do not send the audition after the deadline. Do not do two takes if you do or do not do two takes in one recording. If you're going to do two takes, you have to do one. Taken one recording, save it, do another recording, save it and then attached to recordings to the email. So just a lot of rules like that, and again they get very, very, very, very irritated. Many of them if you don't follow the simple direction so sometimes you will get auditions that will have a lot of stuff to look through. You just want to make sure that you that you cover all the bases that's the end of 16 17 coming up in just a minute. 17. Session17-18: welcome back its session number 17. And we're talking about auditioning specifically in this session naming the files. So you get the audition, you read it, you edit it, you save it as you're saving it, you're going to have to name it. They're going to ask you the recording software is going to ask you to name the file. So this goes back to what we were talking about in the last session about reading the directions carefully because there may be very specific directions as to how the files should be named or what the file should be named. They may want it to be Arby's underscore announcer underscore your name. And if that's in there like that, you want to name it exactly like that. It could be for many reasons. It could be that they've got a filtering system or filing system or something. Once they get it, they want them to all be in alphabetical order by first name or something like that. But it's very important. And again, I have heard agents go nuts election in lectures and conventions and things like that. Um, and online podcasts go nuts over how many people just don't follow directions. They go to the trouble of listening to your demos, putting you on their roster, sending you out an audition, and then you don't follow the directions. I'm not saying you, obviously, you know, people don't follow directions, and agents don't like that. Advertising agencies, marketing agencies, many, many clients don't like that. If it says Arby's underscore announcer underscore your name, What I like to do is I'll copy that in the email. I'll copy it. And then it says, When I'm saving the file and it's asking me to name it, I'll just paste it right in there. Then you just hit the back space a few times and, of course, put Mike Elmore in there instead of your name. I have been known to leave your name in there from time to time, but anyway, it's very important that you follow those file naming conventions. And again, that's something that could be a deal breaker. If that makes them think, perhaps you're someone Were you someone in school that couldn't follow directions that might make them think you're one of these people that can't follow directions, and you certainly don't want them to think that now, if it happens, you know, once in a while, probably not gonna Probably not gonna tarnish your reputation. But there will be times when you'll get auditions where it won't tell you what to name the file. It won't mention anything about that. So what I do in that case is I'll put Target or Bob's Auto in Capital Letters Vo in small case and then Mike Elmore after that in capital letters. So we've got Bob's auto, the name of the of the client and Mike Elmore, both in capital letters, bookings and in the middle Vo, you can put whatever you want. If they don't tell you what to put, it's completely up to you to make that decision. 18. Session19: about the topic of auditioning. And what should you say in the body of the email when you send it to the client we were talking about before going backward with the email, attaching the file, then typing the body of the email? What do we say in the body of the email? Well, plain and simple it needs to be. Keep it simple, Keep it short and simple. I think there are some different acronyms we could use for that, but keep it simple and short. Um, just something like, Hi, Mary Mike here. Thanks a lot for the script. I really appreciate the the audition opportunity. Hope we work together soon. Whom that's it. And then your name, of course, your contact information at the bottom. I like the idea of having a phone number there. I think it looks personal. I like it better than Justin email address. So they may. Chances are, no one's going to call you. It may happen from time to time, but 99% of the time I would say no one's going to call you. People prefer electronic email. It's just easier. It keeps a track, keeps a record of everything that all the communication and everything that you've gone through. But you want to keep it short and simple. And if you want to put your cell phone number in there, I always have my cell phone number in all of my auditioning and marketing communications. And I've never had anyone prank Call me. You know, you were dealing with producers and marketing agencies and all the way from the small ones to the big ones. And nobody's out to prank call. You know we're not Children here, so I always say the worst thing that could happen is your phone won't ring. That's the end of this session. See around in the next one. 19. Session20: and here we are in session number 20. This is the last session where we're going to be touching on the topic of auditioning, and I want to talk just a little bit about not getting the job, because that's a very common thing. We do a lot of auditioning. We do a little bit of working. It's kind of like fishing. I like to compare it to that. I say, you know, if you go fishing and I'm basing this on personal experience when I was young, If you go fishing and you cast out into the water and you sit there and stare at it or you're reeling it in, you do that enough times without catching a fish, your interest in it could wane. But what happens when you get that first bite or that bobber goes down a little bit or you catch the first fish? The energy bars, the the power bar, not one of my tribe, the gas tank. The fuel tank starts to go up again. You start to get energy. You start to build that desire back to do whatever it is that you're doing. It's the same thing with voiceover, so you do a lot of auditioning, and then when you get a bite or even just someone saying, Hey, it sounded really good One of the other producers went with someone else. But we really liked your read. We're going to keep you on file. Those types of things are what keep. You'll keep you coming back for more, so you shouldn't take it personally. When you don't book a voice over job, you have to be able to take rejection and rejection. It sounds like such a negative word. It doesn't have to be a negative word, because rejection can come in and voice over and really, in anything in life, rejection can come for many different reasons. Let's talk about voiceover That seems appropriate. Why might we not book a voice over job when I do a voice over? Why might I not book a voice over job? Well, here are some of the reasons to consider. They may be listening to auditions as they're coming in, and I made see the audition today and think I'm gonna do it tonight and they'll have in the morning. But, you know, they may just hit someone. They don't. They don't really want to sit and listen to a bunch of people. They just want to find someone. So maybe I submitted it and they had picked someone on our before I submitted it. That could be a reason. And maybe they didn't even hear my audition. They may not have even listened. If they've chosen someone, why even listen to it Could be that they were listening to the auditions, and all of a sudden someone said, You know what? We know we put this out here for males, but I think we might want a female for this. So they may throw out all the male demos, and now they're going with a female. You won't know this molten really? Never will you ever know, maybe in some extenuating circumstances, you may know, but most of the time you're not going to know why you don't get the job. So maybe they decided that they wanted a female, just like with the financial institution. When that I was talking about in a previous session where they wanted to avoid a mature voice of wisdom, someone that sounds seasoned and sensible. And then they decided all of a sudden they want to go with a youthful, amore, youthful sounding voice. See, may not get the job for that reason. Many times you'll see auditions that will say We're open to men to male or female males and females are welcome to audition for this. Those are ones that I personally, I'm not saying you should do this. This is up to you, but those are ones that I personally don't audition for. To me, that's just too many cooks in the kitchen. And I like the client to B'more decisive. I want them to know they want a male voice. Not yeah, they may be thinking male, but when they hear a few females, they may think, Well, let's go this way. So you know, I'm not saying what you should do. That's a personal thing with me. I just Onley audition for things where I know they for sure want one of male. So don't take it personally. The stars have to be aligned. The timing has to be right. The reed has to be good. You know, these things have to happen in order for you to get a voice over job, so don't take it personally. because, like I said, most of the time, you'll never ever know why you didn't get the voice over job. Many times you might know if you're short listed, you might get an email saying You've been short listed. Just wanted to let you know and give you a heads up, and then you may never hear anything else back. Or you may hear you got the job and I'm telling you, you do enough auditions when you get that first job or second or third or fourth. That's enough to keep you coming back for more. That's the end of this session. We're gonna wrap it up in the next session. I'll see you there. 20. Session21: it's wrap up time session number 21 the final session. I'm going to tell you at the end of this session how you can have the opportunity to be evaluated reading a script if you're interested in that. And I want to talk just a little bit about the voiceover industry as a whole. There have been some game changers that have taken place over the last few decades, and these were the two chief reasons. I believe that it's now an easier time than ever before, better time than ever before. For more people in mawr areas to participate in the field of voiceovers. Two things one has been again. We mentioned this in an earlier session. The move away from the voice of God, the announcer voices of the 19 forties, what used to be a male dominated industry. And that's why I call it the announcer voice. The the 19 forties radio announcer tight delivery, where we say new super strength Oxydol to get those tough grass stains out of your kids jeans. You know, they used to kind of have that type of delivery. And then, of course, it evolved over the years, but it stayed mainly male dominated. That has changed as advertisers and marketers have started looking for what they call the rial person voice the real person type of delivery. This has opened up the door for more females and more people of more voice types to participate in the voiceover industry. So that's a big thing. The equipment to record yourself at home more inexpensive than ever before, more powerful and better sounding. And with Internet connections being super fast these days and very, very, very accessible to people that has created more home based recording studios than ever before. So it doesn't matter where you live. You can participate in the voiceover industry these days, and I mentioned before, it's an industry where if you're gonna participate in voice overs, you really do need to have the ability to record yourself at home. It's not one of these things where you know you can do it in a studio or you can do it at home. It's a work from home. You can dio, you know, medical transcription from home. This really is a profession and a career, or even a hobby, if that's what you choose to have it as that You, you you do it from home. It is something that you do from home on, and that's that's a big selling point point for a lot of people. So it is an incredibly rewarding industry. I've had many people tell me what agree are say to me What a great creative outlet my current job doesn't really allow me to use any creativity is just kind of this and this and that same thing over again. I have retired people tell me I'm looking for something creative to do. I've got you know, some experience in theater, in college or in community theater. Or, you know, I've done some voiceover work for the company I work for, and I enjoyed it so much because it's such a great creative outlet and I agree it really is , and people that are creative need to be able to output some of that. Some of that creativity and being able to make a difference with it and voiceover does make a difference, makes a difference in many different areas. You can impact people's lives. You can inform them of something they may not have known about a seminar that's taking place and they go to the seminar and it changes their lives, Ah, product that they didn't know about, that they purchase. And it changes the way they live their everyday life, the way they shower, the way they drive their car, whatever it may be. So it's a very, very rewarding industry, and as I said before, I think it's important to have a little bit of natural ability going into it. If you've got a little bit of natural ability, it can snowball. You can build on that. You can learn voiceover technique, practice the right and and um, and best techniques with with scripts, and you'll notice the improvement coming very, very quickly when you're doing all the right things. On that note, I've mentioned a couple of times you do have the opportunity to be evaluated. I'm more than happy to do that. Here's how you can work that if you would like to be evaluated reading a script, just email me Mike at Mike Elmore talks dot com. That's Mike at Mike Elmore talks dot com and let me know that you would like a few scripts to choose, and I'll send those to you and give you the opportunity to look those over. And I'll give you instructions in that email of how you can record those and get the recording back to me. And I'll be more than happy to give you an honest evaluation. There's one thing you could say about me is I'm a very honest person. You can google my name, You can look around online. Put in Mike Elmore, voiceover Michael Moore voice, and you won't find anything negative about me. And I've worked with hundreds of students. The only things that lean towards negative. There's a couple of things where a couple of people said that I was maybe a little too honest. Not sure how you get to honest, but you might find something like that online where they felt like that. I should I could have sugar coated my evaluation a little bit more. Um, I agree with him, to be honest with you, that that was the years ago. You're eight or nine years ago, so but I am very honest because the last thing I want to do is mislead somebody that I feel like needs to go see a speech pathologist or speech therapists before they start trying to learn to do voiceover. If I feel like there are other steps that should be taken and that I can hear this in your reads, I will definitely mention that. So email me at Mike at Mike Elmore talks dot com, and I'll reply to you with an email that will give you all of that information. If that's something that you're interested in. Thanks so much for spending this time with me. If you have any questions about the voiceover industry, use that same email. I'd love to hear from you and I wish you the best of luck. I'll keep my ears out for you.