I have been approached numerous times over the last month for consultation on how best to include voice application and professional quality audio to Social Media projects. As many clients in this area are inexperienced in what they should be looking for, I thought it time to blast out some helpful tips on how to save time and money. It takes lots of talent and skill to be a professional voice over artist; honed from years of practice. A quality voice over artist will be able to emote many different moods to fit the script. They also need disciplined voice control and excellent enunciation. Trying to find the “perfect” voice and audio combination can be a difficult and time consuming task at best.
How do I choose the perfect voice and why this is critical?
As with any social media strategy, goals identification is paramount. What is the end game to adding voice over and/or audio to your social media? Synchronization of your voice talent to the skewed demographic for your product or service is vital. For example, if it’s a car commercial for the latest model Corvette you’re going to want a voice that conveys energy, enthusiasm and sportiness. if it’s an online demonstration for the latest legal services, you’ll need a clear, helpful, friendly but informative voice. Can you imagine anyone other than James Earl Jones as the voice of Darth Vader? Perfect casting! Audio accounts for 38% of the total impact (55% visual), and ONLY 7% in the words you use, so it’s imperative to get the right tone! If you can get both the visual and the auditory factors at the sweet point, 93% percent of your finished, is in place.
What to expect from a pro?
So, you have chosen your “voice talent”. What should you expect? First and foremost: Excellent pre-production communication. A pro, opens the lines to ensure that; proper tonality, style, technical delivery and any other ideas or requirements the client may have are discussed and met. Better still, I try to make helpful suggestions where I see fit. These are usually greatly appreciated, in that they are things generally not thought of. Spec or demo reads that have final client approval are a must, but I also offer to make changes if necessary, even once a final version has been given the “green light”. A pro, will “under promise and over deliver.”
Should I get approval from stakeholders?
If you work with outside clients, it’s often a good idea to get their approval of the talent you’ve selected. Clients usually appreciate this gesture and this way you know they’ll be happy with the results.
Why include Voice Over and Audio?
Including voice over/audio will drive more traffic to your website and focus more attention on your social Media projects. Today, clients are hyper-tuned to the newest of innovations in online media, such as G+ Hangouts, Skypecasting, webinars, podcasts and live event streaming. Branding online presence with audio through these channels is sure to bring results.
A clear part of your initial strategy should include maximizing your marketing dollar. Production costs can be restrictive when it comes to creating traditional media marketing. Investing in a professional voice actor or actress can be a cost-effective way to increase the impact of your on-line and Social Media marketing efforts.
If you have any questions about audio architecture or sound design, reach out. You can find me all over the place.