The Compassionate Voice
by Leesha on December 5th, 2018

As another year draws to a close, many voice actors are busier than ever. Holiday messages, closeout projects, and the like are bringing a great December to many voice talents. If your December is a little slow, examine how your year has been going.  It’s not the time to become disheartened. Make time this month to honestly question your voiceover business practices and determine your best course of action for the coming year.

What Activities Worked

Start your year’s review with the positive.  Celebrate the fact you are still in business (at least I hope so) and what you have learned about voiceovers during the year.  Note the new social media sites you post to, any new materials, or even your new voiceover website.  Count the jobs completed and the wonderful clients you’ve helped during the year.  If an action worked, it’s time to remember your prosperous activity.  

Areas for Improvement

Did you meet your marketing goals on a regular basis? Did you meet your budget?  If you found yourself more times than you care to admit putting off your marking efforts, what held you back?  We all procrastinate from time, but is procrastination keeping you from actively pursuing your business goals? To answers these questions, a good start may be to examine your voiceover business plans.  Be realistic about your commitment to the business.  Be realistic concerning your feelings about cold calling or anything else that you may have delayed for fear of rejection or negative programming that may be keeping you from reaching your goals.  Dr. Bruce Lipton on Inspire discusses how to change undesirable long-term thinking that can defeat success.  

Voice talent have a life too, so look at your health and human relationships.  Without good personal habits and interactions, you cannot support business success for an extended period.  Make time to visit your doctor to see how your body is doing. Likewise, take in a holiday party or volunteer to help the less fortunate.  Giving to others in time and resources are great ways to help refresh your spirit so you can make clear reasoning of your own life.

Time for Cleanup

Some consider the springtime as the best season for clearing out old or unused bits and pieces.  But I feel December is the best time to clean or recycle your unwanted items.  For example, you can use this time to go through your voiceover business hardware and personal things to see what may be donated to charity.  Such items can provide a tax benefit and free up room for new needed things.  

Now that you’ve done your cleaning, what items have you been waiting to purchase?  Almost everything goes on sale in December, so take advantage of the deep discounts and get the items you need to help make your business a success in the following year.

Whether you’re behind the mic voicing for eight hours a day or eight minutes a day, making time in December to honestly review your voiceover business (and life) is your best preparation for a prosperous New Year!

Yea break a lip!

by Leesha on November 21st, 2018

This week, we approach the traditional time for the United States’ Thanksgiving Holiday.  You may wonder what Thanksgiving has to do with voiceovers?  Thankfulness is a heart emotion.  A successful, compassionate voice talent with a thankful heart applies the passion to scripts and performances to touch his and her listeners.  Take time this week to consider the importance of being grateful and let the feeling radiate through your voiceover performance.  
 
Why being thankful is Important 
 
Today, thankfulness is considered old-fashioned.  We demand our rights, to be seen, and for justice. While we have the right to seek what we feel we need, that constant aggressive assertiveness can drain our spirit. When we take time to be thankful, it allows us to examine our here and now. While no one has a perfect life and there is more than enough real suffering, we all can find at least one thing to give thanks.  This brief appreciation helps to calm our spirit.

What's more, we usually can easily find someone who does not have what we have or any possibility of a better existence.  If we take the time to count what we have, we can always find something to appreciate in our lives.  Perhaps we landed an excellent voice-over job, made a new friend online, or are still among the small pool of working voiceover talent in a very competitive field.  Being thankful helps you see your life in a better light. 
 
Thanksgiving is Infectious
 
When you appreciate others, not just your clients, it spreads.  For example, if you say thank you to someone who holds open a door for you, bags your groceries, etc., you usually receive a smile from that person.  With so few expressing appreciations for the smallest gestures of kindness, your recognition is almost unexpected and even more appreciated.  
 
Likewise, sending voiceover clients’ thank you cards, emailing your voiceover coach a note of appreciation, and letting others in and out of your business circles know of your gratefulness helps others develop a good opinion of you as a person.  Thankful people are usually “nice” people.  People like doing business with nice people.  Sincere niceness is a real fruit of gratitude.
 
You Get What You Give
 
Have you ever dined in a restaurant with a group of people and noticed the way customers treat the wait staff?  Most waiters try hard to provide excellent service, but sometimes he or she may be having a difficult time or day that may be evident in their service.  Instead of lashing out at the waiter, look for ways to express kindness and patience.  In most cases, you will receive appreciation from the wait staff for your understanding.  This, in turn, will give you a good feeling, especially if you take the time to notice if the person is doing their best to correct or improve the service.   
 
One day, you may be having a bad day with a live voiceover audition or in a directed session.  This may also be the day when someone shows you understanding and patience like you’ve demonstrated to another.  While it may not make sense, look for ways to express appreciation and thankfulness.  It will surely come back to you. 
 
From the Heart, the Mouth Speaks
 
Your thankful attitude has a way of calming your spirit and relaxing your whole body — thankfulness effects all your joints, mussels, and even your thinking.  Voice acting takes the entire person.  The foundation of a thankful spirit will help you reach your best potential.  The heart does speak through the mouth.  With a grateful heart, your mind can connect with others for a dynamic vocal performance.

Happy Thanksgiving! 



by Leesha on November 7th, 2018

No matter the business genre, verbal communication needs to flow smoothly.  As a voiceover artist, clear communication is a must.  Slurred words and incomprehensible sentences will not only lose auditions but severely stunt the growth of his or her voiceover business.  Voice talents must be aware of articulation to make sure words are impactful and transforming.  With a little practice and preparation, one’s verbal articulation can be a no-brainer.  

Why Articulate

Dictionary.com defines articulation as, “an act or the process of articulating: the articulation of a new thought. While the adjective is defined as “uttered clearly in distinct syllables, capable of speech; not speechless, using language easily and fluently… .”

Proper pronunciation starts with having a good grasp of one’s message. In "Readers Digest, How to Be More Articulate: 8 Must-Follow Secrets to Improve Your Speech,” Tatiana Ayazo writes, “Know what you’re talking about. Having a clear idea of what you want to say will allow you to organize your thoughts into a coherent structure. It’s that simple.”   

Prepare your Chops

The next step is to prepare your vocal instrument. Just like a musician tunes up his or her instrument before a performance, a voice talent must warm up the voice. Warming up the voice makes it possible to perform well in one’s range and vocal tone.  Voiceovers can prepare the chops with "tongue twisters."  Tongue twisters and vocal warmups are words or groupings of words designed to improve pronunciation and to gain fluency in performing voiceovers or in daily communication.  

Rodney Saulsberry, a major voice-over artist, based in the United States has authored "Rodney Saulsberry’s Tongue Twisters and Vocal Warm-Ups." His book includes a wide assortment of handy tongue twisters to help get your voiceover work day off to the right start.  There are also other tongue twisters available on the Internet and can be easily found via a Web search.  

Prepare your Body

Of course, voice actors rely heavily on their voice, so time for vocal and body rest are essential.  Moreover, tension and stress from life often hide within the human body.  Since voice acting is a full body experience, exercise and stretch can help reduce anxiety in the mouth and body and allow for needed rest. The well-rested and limber voice talent will find it easy to articulate with a more natural flow without having to overstress the mouth muscles.   

Time Out at the Start

Taking a moment of awareness before voicing a project will also help with articulation.  Focusing on the meaning of the script, one’s body placement, and position will help center one’s whole being on performance.  The brief meditation allows the mind and mouth to prepare for speaking.  Focusing the mind on what is about to be said and its overall meaning gives clarity to the mouth; articulation is almost automatic.  This time out can be moments or minutes depending upon how long it will take to ponder the script and how the words will flow from the body.  The short timeout is a crucial step and should not be missed.  

Applying these tips will not only make for better articulation during voiceover performances, but better overall connection by the voice actor to effectively convey passion and purpose.

Break a lip.



by Leesha on October 23rd, 2018

As changing temperatures make their way across the North American landscape, many residents are experiencing fluctuating personal lives.  Voice actors can be sensitive to environmental changes as well, mainly since heath and surroundings can affect an actor’s performance.  Make sure you’re anchored in good habits to keep your voiceover business adaptive in all seasons.
 
During the fall, many voice actors must take extra precautions to maintain good health. A seemingly small cough can lead to a sore throat or even loss of one’s voice. No voice means no voiceover revenue.  Moreover, an unexpected financial challenge can drastically interrupt the flow for a working talent or eat away at efforts to end the current year in the black.  A prudent voice talent must accept the fact that life will have its challenges.  No one is living a problem-free life.  The best way to address inevitable changes are to prepare for them.
 
Wear a Hat
 
Sometimes, the most obvious things can slip right by us. I once met a singer/songwriter who believed that a serious artist should always wear a hat when outside temperatures fall below 55 degrees Fahrenheit (or about 12 Celsius).  His thought was that we must cover and protect the entrance ways into the body.  Go ahead and treat yourself to that Fedora, Deerstalker, Gatsby, or Sunbonnet; it’s your first line to defend against the outside elements.
 
Maintain Your Health
 
Practicing good health is not a guarantee of staying healthy.  However, good health will help make a recovery from sicknesses a lot faster and better overall.  Practicing habits like getting yearly checkups, staying current with health shots, eating balanced meals, and exercising regularly can help keep you at your best.  My suggestions are not new information, but over the long run, the tips could mean the difference between being ready or not for that long voiceover project requiring your best stamina and health.
 
Be Voiceover Business Current
 
Make sure your billing and communication are updated each week.  If you’re unable to communicate with potential and current voice clients for a week or two, you will wish you were up to date before the unexpected happened.  If you remain current in your regular business practices, your voiceover business should be there or not far away when you’re able to return where you left off.
 
Be Ready for Change
 
With the seasons of life, some changes are permanent.  Maintain associated voiceover and other skills that can help fill the gap if you cannot perform vocally for some period.  Many good seasoned voice talents become coaches, marketing advisors, or perform business-related services that help fill-in revenue during times when the voice is healing for whatever reason.
 
Consider swapping services with other talents to keep afloat during challenging times.  As a successful business owner, a little forward thinking and preparation for keeping your voiceover business running during changes times can lead to longevity and keep you in the minds of your current and potential clients. 
 
The time is always right to plan for your seasons as a voiceover pro.  You’re the best, so break that lip. 
 
 
 


by Leesha on October 10th, 2018

As a small business owner, I share a lot of the same concerns of those in and outside of the voiceover industry.  For that reason, I’m passing along business tips I believe can be useful in almost any business with an Online presence.  Look for my Business Practice Friday tips for information that may be just what you need for your business. 
 
While being in business is not the same for all, those using the Web for all things commerce related have similar essential needs. From voice producers to those listening to final audio, we all need to know how to balance our social media campaigns, web presence plus the tone and timber of our communication. To me, the Web is like a vast ocean, so navigating cyber water is not for those who are prone to seasickness. 
 
The information I’ll share will include social media campaign strategies, statistics on effective social media platforms, trends in voiceover and other industries.  Also, I’ll share some “softs skills” tips like online etiquette, interpersonal exchanges, making clients into friends (or keeping clients as clients), etc. 
 
If you come across some useful business information you’d like to share, feel free to send me a note or comment on my webpage.  There is an African proverb that says, "If you want to go quickly, go alone. If you want to go far, go together."
 
Break a lip.


by Leesha on October 3rd, 2018

Selling and voiceovers?  Of course!  There’s no way around it. As a voice talent, you must sell yourself.  To the point, no matter your profession, unless you’re living off a pile of tax-free money, you must sell yourself to receive compensation for what you’re worth.  But as a voice talent, poor selling or no selling skills can put your voiceover career permanently in the hobby category with you footing all the bills!  Rekindle your marketing efforts to keeping your voiceover (VO) business in business.

Get Over Rejection (and Procrastination)

Rejection is one of the top fears most people face and those who sell are no different.  As a voiceover talent, you cannot only focus on performance, script interpretation, and saving up for that state-of-the-art whisper room and microphone.  Jawing to your colleagues about what you haven’t done or conversely about all the great equipment you’ve purchased (using your own money) doesn’t impress anyone or lead you to fulfill your voiceover career success.   

Brian Tracy.com’s blog Time Management-How to Stop Procrastinating…, says, “The best way for you to learn (how not to procrastinate) is to plan each day in advance, set priorities on your activities, and then make your first sales call as early as you possibly can. Get up, get going, and get started.”

Realize rejection is not the worst thing that can happen to your business. Putting off your marketing effort is the worst thing. You will hear “no” and “yes” from potential clients.  You will also listen to clients change their mind after giving a verbal commitment that you counted on for your VO business.  The world is FULL of potential clients; get over feeling sorry for yourself and get out there and start selling your excellent voiceover skills.

Learn How to Sell

Selling tools are universal across almost all lines of business.  The competitive field of voice acting does not mean we market less, but perhaps, we market more.  Before you send an email or pick up the phone, get to know who you are selling your business to and how you fit into that company’s return on investments.  

The Business Insider’s online article, How To Be Great At Selling Even If You Hate It, notes the following:

       Successful people learn how to sell one way or the other. If they do not learn a
       formal process as outlined in this post, they may make costly mistakes and develop
       bad habits. If you want to increase your chances of success in business and in life,
       it will significantly help you to learn the sales process and practice it so it becomes
       part of your marketing DNA.  

Research Your Potential Clients

Do you know who needs a voiceover talent, today, tomorrow, or next year? What new venues are opening for voice talent and which ones are closing?  There is no substitute for doing homework before legwork.

Inc.com’s How to Sell Anything to Anybody, says, “Know your customer, stakeholder, audience, whoever you're selling to. Know their roles, responsibilities, and objectives. Understand as much as you can about what's in it for them. Know your competition and all the possible objections and hurdles you might face.”

Qualify Your Potentials

The next part of the research is to qualify your candidates.  Your potential voice clients' categories are primary, secondary, or tertiary. Make sure you place your voice casters in the right category.  Ranking clients help prioritize your marking.  Based on their potential, prioritize contacting voice casters by related projects, budget, timeline, and long-term mission.

Quicksprout.com’s Common Sales Mistakes and How to Avoid Them, instructs “Every opportunity isn’t equal. Through qualifying, you’ll get a better understanding of what each customer wants, when he or she wants it by and what his or her budget is. Most importantly, you’ll be able to figure out if you are talking to the person who can actually make the decision."

Start or restart today using the above tips for your voiceover business to find and meet those needing your voiceover services.  Find those who need what you have to offer (or at least leave a trail of cybernetic breadcrumbs for them to find you). For the sake of your customers, get marketing and…

break a lip! 




by Leesha on September 18th, 2018

Today’s voiceover business professional knows the importance of a strong Web and Social Media presence.  Since success our goal, we want to post our demos and information on as many sites as necessary to reach voice casters. In the same way, there can be an increased need for voiceover professionals to practice proper online safety.  Practicing smart online safety is vital for your business and personal information’s security.
 
Whether posting, surfing, or viewing, online safety is an individual responsibility. The Star On-line’s article, Identity Theft Poses A Threat to Every Internet User, notes the most common forms of internet theft occur when a fraudster uses someone’s date of birth and username for online purchases.  But for social media networks, it’s "nicknapping." Using a portion of the words “nickname” and “kidnapping,” nicknapping is the “...classic identity theft, especially since Facebook access is often the master key for other portals connected to the social network," says Michael Littger, an Internet safety campaigner.
 
Here are a few suggestions on how to stay safe online (The following section are suggestions and NOT guaranteed or legal advice):
 
Make online purchases as a “guest.” When shopping, make your purchases as a guest and don’t use your social media logins for buying online.  Less is more.
 
Beware of Phishing. As an online business, be careful of Phishers, those methods that try to obtain financial or confidential information from you through emails or messages that look as if it’s from a legitimate source. 
 
Research unrecognized voice casters or contact sites. Confirm the identity and authenticity of unknown voiceover sources.  Type the name in several search engines and on LinkedIn to make sure the site and person are legitimate.  Also, review the social media profiles and websites of new contacts. Notice how much information is posted.  If a company or person claims to be a significant voice-acting site or manager, there should be some available information or a good summary.  If not, you may want to steer clear.
 
Beware of sites that ask for personally identifiable information. Reputable sources will never ask for your SSN, birthday, or other personal information via email for a voice-acting site or job. For tax purposes, sometimes you must provide some information. Obtain a Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) to represent you and your voiceover business.  For more information, see the U.S. Internal Revenue Service website.  
 
Read the Privacy Policy (anyway). We all have an aversion to long-form yadda yadda, but it's a good idea to read the privacy policy of each site before you create an account. The policy will outline what you're giving up in return for your membership. Your membership could include giving up a lot more than you expect. 
 
The Small Business Administration’s Top Ten Cybersecurity Tips will help secure your small business:
  1. Protect against viruses, spyware, and other malicious code.
    Make sure each of your business computers is equipped with antivirus software and antispyware and update regularly. Such software is readily available online from a variety of vendors. All software vendors regularly provide patches and updates to their products to correct security problems and improve functionality. Configure all software to install updates automatically.

  2. Secure your network.
    Safeguard your Internet connection by using a firewall and encrypting information.  If you have a Wi-Fi network, make sure it is secure and hidden. To hide your Wi-Fi network, set up your wireless access point or router so it does not broadcast the network name, known as the Service Set Identifier (SSID). Password protect access to the router.

  3. Establish security practices and policies to protect sensitive information.
    Establish policies on how employees should handle and protect personally identifiable information and other sensitive data.  Clearly outline the consequences of violating your business’s cybersecurity policies.

  4. Educate employees about cyberthreats and hold them accountable
    Educate your employees about online threats and how to protect your business’s data, including safe use of social networking sites.  Depending on the nature of your business, employees might be introducing competitors to sensitive details about your firm’s internal business. Employees should be informed about how to post online in a way that does not reveal any trade secrets to the public or competing businesses.  Hold employees accountable to the business’s Internet security policies and procedures.

  5. Require employees to use strong passwords and to change them often.
    Consider implementing multifactor authentication that requires additional information beyond a password to gain entry. Check with your vendors that handle sensitive data, especially financial institutions, to see if they offer multifactor authentication for your account.

  6. Employ best practices on payment cards.
    Work with your banks or card processors to ensure the most trusted and validated tools and anti-fraud services are being used. You may also have additional security obligations related to agreements with your bank or processor. Isolate payment systems from other, less secure programs and do not use the same computer to process payments and surf the Internet. 

  7. Make backup copies of important business data and information.
    Regularly backup the data on all computers. Critical data includes word processing documents, electronic spreadsheets, databases, financial files, human resources files, and accounts receivable/payable files. Backup data automatically if possible, or at least weekly, and store the copies either offsite or on the cloud.

  8. Control physical access to computers and network components.
    Prevent access or use of business computers by unauthorized individuals. Laptops can be particularly easy targets for theft or can be lost, so lock them up when unattended. Make sure a separate user account is created for each employee and require strong passwords. Administrative privileges should only be given to trusted IT staff and key personnel.

  9. Create a mobile device action plan.
    Mobile devices can create significant security and management challenges, especially if they hold confidential information or can access the corporate network. Require users to password protect their devices, encrypt their data, and install security apps to prevent criminals from stealing information while the phone is on public networks. Be sure to set reporting procedures for lost or stolen equipment.

  10. Protect all pages on your public-facing websites, not just the checkout and sign-up pages.
Make your voiceover business as profitable, safe, and secure as possible by making your cyber presence a better place.

After you change those passwords… go ahead and break a lip! 😊


by Leesha on September 4th, 2018

Social media is a great way to communicate what you want the World to see and know about you.  We have the luxury of being whoever we want and as perfect as we want others to believe. But we all know no one is perfect, so don’t let human failure be the end of your strive and desire for success.  Learn to keep moving after a failure; it’s just a sign that you’re human.

As a member of several professional communities on the Web, I love to read about my colleagues' new jobs, big clients, and other great voiceover successes.  However, I rarely see postings about the lost jobs, voiceover communication that didn't go well, or the missed goals. Life happens, and it’s nothing to be ashamed of, but we need to keep failure in the proper perspective. I don’t recommend you note every loss on your voiceover website, but you can appropriately share how you dealt with your loss and how you keep moving toward your success.

Pick up from Failures

No matter how hard we try, mistakes, missteps, and failures will happen.  Voiceover has its own unique set of challenges. The business is very competitive and can feel like jumping off a diving board into 12 feet of water after only a hand full of swimming classes.  When we are on the other side of what we know was a failed voiceover audition or the loss of a big job, we may feel the loss personally. Moreover, if the event is the result of our mistake or wrong business decision, there’s no way to feel right about it.  After a debacle, new talent often question the purpose of their business efforts. A seasoned talent may also think that years of experience can insulate him or her from flops. A major loss may cause them to question their ability as a voiceover performer.

Failure is not usually fatal.  The best thing to do is to remind yourself that you are doing your best and sometimes you will miss the mark. Examine your efforts and see what you can learn from the experience.  Be a little nice to yourself and keep the loss in perspective. In life, we make many mistakes from the time we first learn to walk through our Social Security years. It’s a part of life not a determiner of life.

Reboot Failure – Success Groundwork

Okay, now that I’ve covered the low point, let’s look at the power of your comeback. A voice actor is like a traveling salesman. We spend time and effort training and getting to know the craft (our voice product), but we can still experience many closed doors (lost auditions or opportunities). Many letdowns may lead to procrastination. We may not fully focus our marketing and auditioning efforts.

But you must continue. Reboot failure by examining the failure and learning lessons from it.  Moreover, by sharing your failures and lessons learned with others, you make the failure a part of your success journey.  Once again, I don’t believe posting all your faults on social media is wise, but you can tactfully phrase your learned lessons to others as you share your experiences in the voiceover business.

Make your voiceover business fiascos into stepping stone and not brick walls. Remember your most admired voiceover talent and other mentors have made many, many mistakes. Failure can help with the climb to eventual success.  Keep moving toward your voiceover goals, especially after unexpected glitches. It’s a good sign that you’re learning, growing, and moving toward your personal development and potential long-term success.

You know...break a lip!


by Leesha on August 28th, 2018

A few weeks ago, I blogged my thoughts related to age and voiceovers. We know that you are as young or as old as you sound.  You can use marketing to locate the clients that need your voiceover tone and skills. But what about if you’ve retired from a career and want a voice acting career with time for other activities? What if you want time to travel, write a book, volunteer, or other activities?  I don’t believe you have to hang up your microphone and dream of becoming a voice talent. It’s all in the time and commitment. Practically plan your voiceover business for enjoying your retirement life.  

Time Well Spent.   As a retiree, you may have a regular income and not need your voiceover business to pay for all your basic needs. But that doesn’t mean that your business should be regarded as a hobby.  Your company should provide a valuable service in exchange for fitting compensation.

To keep the big picture in mind, develop a list of goals for your voiceover income. For example, do you want to travel to a faraway country, or would you like a professional booth for your home studio? What about saving to purchasing the car of your dreams or a camper to see the sights? Develop a list of voiceover profit goals to help you remain focused on your activities.  If possible, note your time frame to recall as you work toward your goals daily.

In an article from Forbes.com on the 5 Pitfalls of Starting A Business in Retirement, retires are cautioned of “Misaligning your goals with your lifestyle.”  Forbes continues, “Often, retirement entrepreneurs decide to start a business out of boredom and only later realize there are other things they’d rather do with their time.” Make sure you are ready to commit for the long haul.

Days of Our Lives.  Let’s say you prefer not to work a 40-hour week as a retiree.  I can understand that. So, decide your work days.  For example, you may want work 3 to 4 days during the week and leave 1 to 2 days for enjoying other activities.  Plan to work your voiceover business 5-6 hours on your work days exclusively performing your voiceover business and no other actions.  Also, give yourself the flexibility to move your off-day or days to accommodate any short-notice voiceover projects.  The point to make sure you’re actively working your business no less than on a part-time basis.  

Wise Learning. The fast pace of technology has not left the voiceover industry on the sidelines.  Keep up with the changes in the sectors, trends, styles, and marketing techniques. Make sure you have a good grasp of social media and a strong web presence to remain viable as a business. You want to make sure that although you're making time for family and perhaps a fishing date, you are still a working voice talent with office hours, products, web postings, and a business plan.  

Likewise, use any free or downtime to learn more about the business. Take a couple of voiceover books, podcasts, or videos with you when you travel. You may have downtime at an airport, or while waiting for dinner, etc., to catch up on voiceover tips and skills that you can utilize the next time you’re in your office (so to speak).  

As a side note, another essential item to address is mouth clicks.  As we age, eliminating mouth clicks can be an uphill battle. Learn how to deal with those pesky clicks and breaths by applying software plugins. The iZotope RX 6 is an excellent tool to address these vocal issues and can significantly reduce your editing time, which saves you time overall.  

The Road to Sundown.   Remember your business’s timeline. There’s no shame in working your business for just a few years.  But remember, it can take five years or more to build up your business and reputation to achieve the voiceover success you desire.  So, decide how long is long enough for your voiceover career.  See my blog on the Endgame for tips on how to tactfully and professionally close your voiceover career.  It’s better to have worked consistently for a few years than to run your voiceover career more as a hobby haphazardly.  

Be about your business and make it as fun and rewarding as you've imaged.  You’ve worked hard to reach your retirement time, so you deserve the recognition.  Moreover, make sure you’re operating your new voiceover business like a business. Don’t let your voiceover career fall into your retirement hobbies.  

Use proper time management skills and goals for a prosperous voiceover career and favorable time in retirement.  

Break a lip!



by Leesha on August 22nd, 2018

We’ve all started on pursuits that looked fun and assumed that’s for us. But as a voice talent involved in managing and operating a business, it’s important to know what works and what doesn’t. Voice acting is a competitive and exciting business, so talents need to be aware as to what works and respond correctly to the signs of required career changes. Be mindful of what is working and what is not working in your voiceover business through learning, leaving, and growing
 
I first learned to ski in my 30’s.  The sport seems fun, and although for years I saw the commercial clip of the skier falling down a ski run, I was determined that was not going to be me.  After years of hit or miss skiing, today, I spend my ski resort time more on the small slops or the tubing runs.  While I took many lessons over the years, I did not take time to hone my craft through regular practice.  Over time, I realized that skiing might look fun, but it was not fun falling or poorly navigating the slopes.  Skiing is a hazardous sport and not a casual activity. So, when I realized that I was not going to put in the time and effort to be proficient, I learned from my experience and hung up my skis. 
 
Learning - As a voiceover talent, it's important to know what is working and what is not.  Voiceover learning means asking yourself essential business questions truthfully and honestly.  Have you been working toward a particular skill set for years and it's just not working?  Are you putting in the hours needed to make your voiceover business successful?  Are you effectively marketing to reach those in need of your services?  Your response to these questions helps you learn from your efforts and determine what is and is not working. 
 
Leaving – Leave behind the areas of your business that are not working for you.  Major manufactures sometimes discontinue specific products that are not selling to concentrate on the products that are making money.  In your voiceover business, do you have any areas that are not working well?  Is it because the area you are pursuing is not your skill set or because you are not putting enough effort into that area?  If it’s effort, you know what to do next. Likewise, if a voiceover genre is not working for you, perhaps it’s time to discontinue in that business area.
 
Growing – We as humans evolve in our life’s journey. As such, you may have had the "killer instinct" in some area of sport, but as you aged, you may have found that the same inclination for that goal waned over time.  As a voice talent, note if it’s time to refocus your business attempts.  Look for ways to incorporate sharing your voiceover expertise through your business. 
 
Volunteering your voice talent is an excellent way to grow or help others learn from your experiences.  You don’t need to be a seasoned talent to share with others what you have learned in your voiceover journey.  It’s amazing how when you open your life and time to giving to others, your mind is opened to new ideas and creativity for growing your business. 
 
Learning, leaving, and growing in your voiceover business helps your stay with what works, set aside what doesn't, and grow into your future.  Keep fine-tuning your voiceover career, and you’ll find yourself heading toward your harbor of success.  

Break that lip!