I’ve talked about my Three Legged Milking Stool voice over marketing strategy. One leg of that strategy is using Online Casting to begin marketing your talents. The two biggies in this “pay to play” universe are Voices.com and Voice123.com. You’ll hear pros and cons of these sites but they’ve both been around for over ten years so they must be doing something right.
I consider both to be the “minor leagues” of voice over but in a good way. They are a non-critical arena to learn to hit the various curve balls you may encounter in the voice over business. You can practice self-direction, auditioning, recording, editing, taking direction, formatting finished files, uploading files and… getting paid.
And if you complete a job for a company in Goose Creek SC and it’s not the most brilliant work you’ve ever done but the client is happy, nobody else knows and you learn from the experience.
The two Online Casting sites are very similar in the type of jobs you audition for.
So what’s the sets them apart? The big difference is how the individual transactions are handled once you get the job.
Voices.com has evolved into a system where everything–auditioning, job acceptance, direction, file uploading and payment all are handled through the site. Very convenient.
On Voice123.com, however, once a client hears your audition and chooses you for the job, all communication is handled directly between you and the client. The client emails you directly to offer you the job and send you the script. Any questions about the script or direction are asked and answered directly with the client. You may record the job on your own or be directed by phone patch.
You master the files and then you need to upload these (often very large) files in a way that the client can download them. And then the fun part. You bill the client and they pay you directly.
So all the steps in the process that are handled so elegantly by Voices.com are your responsibility with Voice123.com.
So why would you willingly take on these additional headaches? Here’s my one-word answer: Clients. I have written before that to succeed in voice over you don’t just want jobs, you want to build a clientele.
Voices.com’s system, by its uber-convenient nature, actually buffers you from interacting with the clients you are performing for. All communication is handled through voices.com messaging so they learn your name but have no need for your further contact information–your phone number, your email, your website, your demos, etc.
The distance from the client is further amplified by any job whose title begins with “voices” or “voices.com”. In these job postings you interact with a voices.com account exec who in turn then interacts with the client. Your auditions are first reviewed by the account exec and notes from the client on your job are filtered through the account exec.
And if the client likes your performance and wants to hire you again? They have to post a new job on voices.com. Even if they post a private audition just for you, they don’t contact you, they contact voices.com.
So why do I like Voice123.com? Direct communication!
Auditioning on Voices.com and Voice123.com is very similar. You read a portion of the audition script, make an MP3, and upload it to the site and cross your fingers.
But the the scenario changes. If the client chooses you for the job they contact you directly through your email or phone number. They email you the final script and discuss the specifications for the job directly with you. You record the job, often with direction over the phone, and then send the files directly to the client (.wav files can be very large, so you will need a cloud service like Dropbox or Google Drive).
Then you bill the client and they pay you. (get a Paypal account–it allows the client to pay with Paypal or with a credit card).
And– here’s the kicker– if the client likes your work and wants to use you again, they simply call you or email directly. They’ll send a script and ask for a quote. You quote a fair price and you’ve booked another job… and gained a direct client.
And the clients like this too
There are many voice over clients that prefer to work with the talent directly. So if the need a pick-up in a hurry on Monday morning they know they can reach you. Also they like the flexibility of payment. You and the client agree on those terms. So if the clients needs to pay Net 30 or send a corporate check, then that’s the deal.
My honest opinion of Voice123.com
So what’s the bottom line? If you are new and clueless to the whole process of voice over production Voices.com is a good place to start. It is a friction free system where every angle of the process is handled for you.
But once you’ve learned the ropes, Voice123.com is superior becomes you have a direct connection with your client and you can build a lasting relationship. This far outweighs the complexities involved in direct client contact.
And since there is little overlap between the jobs posted on both sites, you can increase your revenue.
Have you tried online casting? I’m interested in your thoughts. Let me know in the comments.