Many voice actors want to get into the business for various reasons. For some, it’s the idea of having a sustainable business where you only answer to yourself and make your own schedule. While all actors love that benefit, many also have a dream voice over job they would love to snag.
Many voice actors were introduced to the field by various Saturday morning cartoons. They were mesmerized by incredibly dynamic characters who perfected their voices each year and couldn’t imagine their lives without these crazy personalities. This was the case for accomplished Canadian voice actor Eric Bauza. His obsession with all things Loony Toons led him to perfect the voicing of each character which eventually got him hired by top-tier Toronto and Los Angeles agents. He became the official voice of Bugs Bunny and later scored himself an Emmy award! What a career!
Goals Lead to Success
Not every voice actor had Eric’s luck, but we work year after year to achieve the slightest amount of success. Regardless of our trajectory in the voice over world, we can all agree it’s vital to have goals! Setting annual goals allows us to achieve success and have fun in the process (see the last blog about how to goal set). Now that we understand what we want to achieve, we must have specific projects we want to accomplish in our business.
If you’re a casting director, perhaps one dream job would be to cast on a project nominated for an Emmy or Oscar. If you’re a Film Director, maybe a goal would be to work on a project with top-tier actors or in an exotic destination.
Be Transparent About Your Aspirations
Many voice-over coaches and mentors have advised us to consider which dream projects we would love to work on. Visualization and manifestation are significant factors in accomplishing your goals. It took me quite a while to identify my dream voice over roles or projects. Let’s outline them in detail and see if any of them come true in years to come.
Dream Job #1 Commercial Voiceover
My first dream job is to book a national television commercial! Any voice actor knows that the bread and butter of the industry are television commercials. Typically, they pay the most for the least amount of work. Any voice actor getting started gets coached in the commercial genre before any others. The commercial demo is the equivalent of earning your MBA. With that demo in hand, you can perform auditions for big commercial projects. This demo is usually required to book a top-tier agent in New York or Los Angeles.
Dream Job #2 is Brand Voiceover
My second dream job would be cast as the official voice of a brand. Companies like Allstate, Geico, Kia, and Tangerine all choose brand voices that are unique, recognizable, and consistent. The voice of a brand doesn’t necessarily mean guaranteed work indefinitely, but it can last for six months to three years on average.
Having one voice for your brand establishes a recognizable identity, creates consistency, and helps you to stand out. There is a ton of information and statistics about why a brand voice is valuable to a business, and it’s a worthy goal for a professional. Performing as the band voice of a non-profit would be ideal, or anywhere my voice can help to make a difference.
Documentary Narration is Voice Over Dream Job #3
My third dream job would be to narrate a documentary on a major station. I have always been a fan of documentaries. I’m not an avid reader, but when I do, I reach for a non-fiction book over a fiction one. I have always enjoyed learning about a topic or a period in history; a documentary is a great way to do that.
Media like the History Channel, PBS, Netflix, and Amazon are all good options for channels that contain hundreds of documentary topics. Next time you watch a documentary listen to the voice and notice how it never takes over the message but perfectly balances it with the intrigue of storytelling.
Reality TV is Voice Over Dream Job #4
My fourth choice is similar to number three; to narrate a reality TV show. HGTV and the Discovery Channel are great examples of TV narration. I have been a fan of shows like Caribbean Life and Beachfront Bargain Hunters for many years, and the voice over style helps add intrigue and excitement to the show. Other reality tv shows, such as American Idol, The Voice, or Love Island, also use an actor to help narrate the story.
Voice Over Dream Job #5 is Character & Animation
I would love to work on more character projects. Some of my favorite projects were animation or character jobs, with other voice actors joining in the session. Playing characters is so much fun, and the creativity level is through the roof. If the other actors are there with you, the energy is unmatched. Listening to other voices is a dose of inspiration that can last for weeks.
Experiencing Big-City Collaboration is Dream Job #6
Lastly, I would like to travel to a big city like New York or Los Angeles and be in-studio for a great voice over project. From 2020 and beyond, working from home is practical, yet getting out of my space and into a studio is an exciting idea. This business can be very technical, and most of my communication is digital. But good old-fashioned meeting in person, human-to-human contact is vitally important for creating genuine connections. Making real connections with other voice actors and clients is vital to a happy and sustainable business for me.
What’s Your Ideal Voice Over Gig?
Reflecting and reviewing what you want is an excellent way to stay motivated and engaged and keep you on track to achieve your goals. So, this week, sit down, think about what you want to work on, and let me know. We’re more likely to achieve our goals when we share them, so let me know!