In the world of voice acting, your demo reel is your calling card. It’s the tool that introduces you to potential clients and casting directors, showcasing your talent and versatility as a voice actor. However, creating a compelling and professional voice over demo reel requires the expertise of a skilled producer. Choosing the right voice over demo producer is a crucial step in your voice acting career. In this article, we’ll explore the essential factors to consider when selecting the perfect voice over demo producer.
One of the first things to consider when choosing a voice over demo producer is their industry experience. You’ll want to work with someone who understands the nuances of the voice acting industry and has a proven track record of producing successful demos. Look for producers who have current experience working with a variety of voice actors and genres, as this demonstrates their ability to adapt to different styles and preferences. Demo producers should be working with talent and aware of what’s booking at the moment.
Be wary of Weekend Workshops that include a demo for a special rate! It is common for some low-level producers to offer Voice Over weekend workshops where they teach you the A-Z’s of voice over in three days then offer a special rate on a voice over demo at the end of the weekend. This is not a good idea. Voice over coaching takes time and is not something that can be learned over night. If you end up spending $600-$700 on a demo at the end of a voice over learning weekend, within three months your skills would have already improved and now you will stuck with a beginner demo.
Take your time to coach first, and once your reputable coach approves you to cut your demo then begin to do your research on who you’d like to work with. Sometimes the coach works in tandem with producers and can make good recommendations or you are free to choose your own.
Portfolio and Samples
Review the producer’s portfolio and listen to samples of their previous work. A reputable voice over demo producer should have a diverse portfolio that showcases a range of voice actors and genres. Pay attention to the quality of the recordings, the clarity of the voice actors’ performances, and the overall production value. A producer’s portfolio and samples will give you a good sense of their style and the quality of work they can deliver.
Note: If you are bilingual, keep one language at a time on each demo. As well, if you speak in various accents consider adding these accents to a separate demo. Diversity is incredible in voice over and you’ll want to ensure to highlight these skills in the proper way.
Voice over demo production is a collaborative process, so it’s important to find a producer with whom you have good personal compatibility. You should feel comfortable communicating with them, sharing your ideas, and receiving feedback. A producer who can create a supportive and creative working environment will help you bring out your best performances. When deciding on a demo producer, I do extensive amount of research and like to have phone/zoom conversations with them in advance in order to see if we would work well together and have similar ideas.
Ask about the producer’s production process. How do they approach script selection, coaching, recording, and editing? A well-structured process is essential for creating a polished and effective demo reel. Ensure that the producer’s workflow aligns with your preferences and timeline. I have four professional demos. One demo was recorded in 23 min and one in 2 hours. One producer wrote my copy for me with little analysis on which brands I wanted to highlight and one producer asked for me feedback multiple times and had multiple conversations about what companies fit with my brand strategy and what my ethics and beliefs are.
Every voice actor is unique, with different strengths and specialties. A good voice over demo producer should be able to tailor the demo to highlight your specific skills and range. They should take the time to understand your goals and create a demo that showcases your abilities in the best possible way. For my animation demo, I first had to work for weeks with a animation coach in order to create over 20 different characters. Once we had the characters set, the demo production was much easier to complete.
References and Reviews
Join VO groups on Facebook and other social media platforms in order to seek out references or read online reviews from other voice actors who have worked with producers. Conferences are another great way to speak to voice actors. Feedback from past clients can provide valuable insights into their professionalism, communication skills, and the overall quality of their work. Don’t hesitate to reach out to previous clients to ask about their experiences.
Voice over demo production costs can vary widely depending on the producer’s experience and the level of service provided. While it’s essential to stay within your budget, prioritize quality over cost. Remember that your demo reel is an investment in your career, and a well-produced demo can open doors to more opportunities. My first demo was much more than I wanted to spend but once I posted my new demo online to my website and casting sites, I made back that initial investment within weeks. It was completely worth it and still is to this day.
Location and Accessibility
Consider the producer’s location and whether they offer remote recording options. With the rise of technology, many producers can work with voice actors from around the world. However, if you prefer in-person sessions, choose a producer who is accessible to you. Each demo I have was recorded remotely using Source Connect. One coach was located in my city and did offer the opportunity for me to travel into the city and record in her studio, yet, I was confident with my voice over booth and the recording came out with beautiful broadcast quality.
Choosing the right voice over demo producer is a crucial step in your voice acting journey. Take your time to research and consider the factors mentioned above to find a producer who can bring out the best in your voice and help you create a compelling demo reel. With the right producer by your side, you’ll be well-prepared to make a strong impression in the competitive world of voice acting.