How to Hire the Right Voice Over, by Paul Strikwerda

How to Hire the Right Voice Over

Mike’s corporate video looked like a million bucks.

The camerawork was first-rate. The captions were loud and clear. The whole package was a winner.

As long as the sound remained muted.

Why?

Because the voice-over brought everything down.

“Where did you find this guy?” I asked. “He sounds like he has no idea what he is saying. There are certain words I cannot understand, and there’s a weird echo that is very distracting.”

“That’s our Dave,” said Mike with a proud smile. “Dave works in Delivery, and everybody kept on telling me that he has a nice voice. I thought I’d give him a break. Why search for outside talent when the answer is under our own roof?”

“Because this is a professional production,” I answered. “Whoever is going to see this, doesn’t care that Dave is your delivery guy. His voice is now associated with your company. If people are perceiving him as unprofessional (and they will), what will they think of your business?”

“But I saved a ton of money,” tried Mike. “I gave Dave fifty bucks, and he was happy with that.”

“No Mike,” I said. “You just lost a ton of money by working with an amateur. Think of a voice as your auditory logo. What does it tell potential customers about the kind of company you are? Dave’s delivery is undermining your message. He just doesn’t sound trustworthy, and that is damaging your corporate image.”

There was an awkward silence as I heard a few pennies drop.

“So, if Dave’s not doing it for you, how do I find the right voice?” asked Mike. “There are thousands of people online who all pretend to be voice-over pros. How do I separate the wheat from the chaff, and how long is that going to take?”

”It all starts with you, Mike,” I said. “You have to…

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Twitter Truths, by Dave Courvoisier

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Still don’t get Twitter?  Lotsa people don’t.  You’re not alone.

Sometimes days go by and I don’t post or even read posts…and that’s probably bad policy. Twitter should not be ignored, so don’t be frustrated by this social network.  Next to Facebook, it is the most influential social network to see and be seen.

Don’t take my word for it…search Gary Vaynerchuk in YouTube, and listen to ANY of his motivational talks about social media (just be ready for plenty of profanity).  He’ll make you a believer. Not only does it help raise your profile on the internet, but Twitter is actually a great prospecting tool.

That’s right.  With Twitter, you can find new clients. The formula is not hard, you just have to bend Twitter to YOUR rules.

The key is smart searching with the right keywords, then engaging prospects with your usual charming self.

Here’s the generally-accepted 3-fold formula:

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9 Insider Tips for Creating a Killer Explainer Video, by Andrew Follett

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Are you considering investing in an explainer video this year? You know; the videos that explain your product or service in 60-90 seconds?

Explainer videos are a great way to engage potential customers and familiarize them with your business. The hard part is to get them right.

Since an explainer video may be smack dab on your homepage, and the first thing your visitors experience, it’s essential to nail it the first time. Here are 9 insider tips for creating a killer explainer video that clearly describes your business and drives more sales.

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Top 10 eLearning Content Development Companies For 2015, by Christopher Pappas

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As “top” can mean many things, we created this year’s list by following the same process that we used for the top 10 eLearning content development companies for 2014 list. Taking a closer look at the companies that are leading the line when it comes to eLearning, we selected the top 10 based on the following 7 criteria:

  1. eLearning Content Development Quality. 
  2. eLearning Expertise. 
  3. eLearning Industry Innovation. 
  4. eLearning Company’s Economical Growth Potential. 
  5. Customer Retention. 
  6. Employee Turnover. 
  7. Company’s Social Responsibility. 

As you can guess, the companies on the following list are the eLearning content development crème de la crème. Don’t hesitate to review their official websites and contact them to know more about how they can help you align your organization’s learning and performance goals with its business objectives. If you are looking for the best eLearning content development companies that create high impact and super engaging and immersive eLearning courses, here you are:

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Why PLAY Matters To Your Performance, by Kate McClanaghan

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As an artist you need to give yourself plenty of room to play. You need room to create and discover, often under time constraints and the pressure to deliver your very best on the fly. At SOUND ADVICE, we refer to this technique as ‘stretching the canvas’.

We call it that simply because far too many talent attempt to ‘ramp up into their performance’ anticipating a longer runway than we are typically given, especially at an audition, where we‘re often given only a single take or two (if we’re given the luxury as voice talent of auditioning in front of those most likely to hire us). By giving yourself a broader playing field right off the bat you’ll more than likely deliver a far more impactful, desirable performance rather than revving up into it and, ultimately, offering only a mere passable take.

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The ‘Conversational’ Voice Over Read: Five Ways To Please Your Clients, by Pam Turow, Voice Actor

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I mean, really, come on.

Can we all just decide what constitutes a conversational v.o. read already, for once and for all?

I’m determined to define this type of read so there are no mistakes, no questions, so it’s 100% clear.

But alas, I fear that it’s not just implausible but completely, thoroughly impossible. Impossible like asking Charlie Sheen to be thoughtful, magnanimous and reflective. Impossible like seeing Lady GaGa on TLN. Because it’s just way too subjective.

Are You Suffering From Mic Fright? by Paul Strikwerda ©nethervoice

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While listening to one of my favorite podcasts, Radiolab, I discovered an interesting fact.

Before legendary producer Allen Funt created Candid Camera, he experimented with a different show based on the same premise.

It was called The Candid Microphone, and it first aired on June 28th, 1947 on ABC Radio. Funt came up with the idea while producing radio shows for the armed forces at Camp Gruber.

One of the shows he worked on was called “The Gripe Booth.” Funt asked soldiers to come into his studio and talk about things that bothered them. Here’s what he found out.

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My Approach to Creating a Website, by Kristine Oller

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Let me start with some full disclosure…

…although I built this entire website (using a theme) and created most of the graphics, I would not call myself a web designer. (Aesthetics, in general, are not my strong suit, so I did solicit the help of my stylistically gifted consigliere during the final phase of this project.)

My particular skillset is probably most accurately described as a “web organizer.”

I am able to elevate a website that is cluttered and unfocused into one that reflects the owner’s true level of expertise, and I am able to simplify the multitude of decisions that this type of project requires. Then, when my clients have the means and inclination to do so, they can find individual experts (designers, writers, copywriters, branding/marketing consultants) who can make their site super fancy.

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