Voiceover acting is a big part of our world these days. You hear voiceover actors in commercials, video games, animated movies and TV shows, online videos, and more.
So how can you get in on this in-demand industry? Here’s an overview of how you can get started on your path to becoming a voiceover actor.
1. Acting Skills
The number one trait you need as a voiceover actor is acting skills. After all, voiceover work is really just another form of acting. However, unlike TV and movie actors who are not only heard, but also seen, you’ll be acting only for all to hear.
This is actually one of the things that make voiceover work so difficult. You need to be able to portray emotions with your voice alone. If you need to rely on your facial expressions to show your emotions when you act, then voiceover work might not be the best route for you unless you’re willing to work hard to put all your emotions in your voice when the script calls for it.
If you’re not confident about your acting skills, you should enroll in a few acting classes. You can also hire an acting coach, or even a voice acting coach in particular if there are any in your area.
Even if you’ve been called a great actor, you can always improve. You can do this by either taking classes or simply practicing every chance you get. Reading scripts out loud in a variety of voices can help, but even reading a book or magazine out loud in different accents and tones can help you hone your skills as a voiceover actor.
2. Technical Knowledge
In order to practice voice acting and get the interest of casting directors, you should have some technical knowledge. This means you know how to use the tools that are necessary in this field.
A computer or mobile device is usually the minimum type of equipment you’ll need, since this is how many voiceover actors record their voice. Regardless of the device you use, make sure it has a good microphone that allows you to record your voice clearly.
You should also have the latest voiceover acting tools, such as apps and software. These change every few years, so make sure you keep up with the most recent technology. This way, you can record yourself professionally and edit your recordings before you send them to agents and casting directors.
3. Business Savvy
As a professional voiceover actor, you need to know how to market yourself to get work. Unlike most other jobs, you can’t just do the work – i.e. record a voiceover – and expect that to be enough to get a paycheck. You have to seek out the work consistently.
Of course, if you get an agent early on, he or she will do a lot of the footwork for you when it comes to finding voiceover acting work. But you first need to find the best agent for you, which will take a lot of time and research on your part.
Even if you get an agent, you will need to know how to manage your business. This requires great communication with your agent and your clients, as well as budgeting and bookkeeping knowledge.
Once you have these skills, you can work on either finding an agent who will help you get work as a voiceover actor, or finding clients on your own as a freelancer. One great way to do this is by registering with online voiceover rosters. These allow you to upload demos and reach thousands of potential clients.
No matter which path you choose, remember to keep working on your acting skills while staying up-to-date on the latest technical requirements in this field.