Finding Your Niche’ In Voiceovers

“I’m NEW to Voice Overs, What Do I DO!?”


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Brad Dassey Voice Overs

The BEST Voice For Promos and Commercials

June 28, 2012

Hey, it’s Brad Dassey again from Best Promo Voice and I’m here to help you recognize your, Brand or Niche’.  Everyone has some kind of Niche’ in voiceover and you certainly can’t be the BEST at EVERYTHING!  So finding your niche’ is a good way to help organize your voice over career.

First off, I like to start my day off with a good ol’ cup of Folgers coffee.  I believe the hotness of the coffee stimulates and warms up my throat.  I find it to clear out a lot of what I call, “morning junk” from the night before.  I feel that the caffeine also helps me stay more alert and ready for my day.  It jolts my nervous system and keeps me motivated.  I also do my regular vocal warm ups as well, but we’ll cover that another time.  And there are so many controversies about coffee, so, just do whatever you feel works BEST for you!

Alright, enough about the controversies on coffee, lets get down to business.  So you’re probably saying, “I’m new to voice overs, where do I start?”  Well, first off, congratulations for wanting to even get INTO the voiceover business!  You’re on your way to a great career!  Not only a GREAT career, an EXCITING one at that!  Although it takes a lot of TIME, PRACTICE, PATIENCE and SKILL.  I believe its so great because it sure beats a regular 9 to 5 job any day!


First off, we should probably recognize the MANY different types of voice over projects out there and if you want to get into voice over, you might as well have great voice over demos to WOW your potential clients and listeners.  Your voice over demos showcase your work and they have GOT to be good.  Buying a cheap Wal-Mart computer microphone isn’t going to cut it.

For those of you that have been following my voice over podcast for some time now, you know that I like to break things down and make things SIMPLE.  So, I’m going to break it down for you.  I sound like a broken record, I know.  I like simple, it keeps things, well, SIMPLE!

I COULD try and list all of the different audio/video voice projects, but that would take all day.  I know you haven’t gotten all day and either do I.  So for now, I’m going to just give you a handful of different types of voice jobs out there today.  I like the number Five, so we’ll just go with Five for now.

Five different types of voice over projects out in the business today:

Short and Long Form Narration: Other than radio commercials and promos, anything over a minute to Three minutes is considered short form narration.  Long form narration consists of anything Three minutes and over.  Your typical TV documentaries would be considered long form narration.  Also another long form narrative would be your audio books.  Audio books are a big hit these days because nobody wants to sit and READ a book when they can LISTEN to it on their work out, in their car or maybe even just lying in bed.

There are plenty of jobs out there that involve narration.  Your CD Roms, Audio Books, maybe some Android or iPhone apps, free or for sale are just some of the many jobs available. The possibilities are ENDLESS!

Radio Commercials, TV Commercials & Promos: Radio promos can be anywhere in length from :10 to :15 seconds, or :30 seconds, :45 seconds and also :60 seconds.  Typical radio and TV commercials last about :30 to :60 seconds in duration.  Sometimes even a quick plug in between programming would be a quick promo.

Voice-Mail greetings, IVR, On Hold Messaging and Promotion: “Hi!  Thank you for calling so and so company.  For English, please press 1.  For Spanish, please press 2.  You press two and the lady on the other side finally says, “Nobody’s ever pressed 2 before!  I don’t know how to speak Spanish!”  Just kidding.  Sometimes companies will hire outsiders to cover the Spanish parts if you do not know how to speak Spanish or any other type of language.

Your typical on hold messaging and promotional messages will have music in the background underneath your voice explaining about the business and appreciating the customer for waiting on hold.  “Thank you for calling so and so company.  We realize your time is valuable!  Assistance is just a moment away.”  Or, “So and so company has been providing such and such product for umpteen years.  We take great pride in our work to deliver the best possible quality for you.  Please continue to hold.”

Movie Trailers: This is pretty self explanatory, but as you can remember the famous, Don LaFontaine voice, “In a world of un-imaginary blah blah blah and some other blah, this and that happens.”  RIP Don, your voice will live on FOREVER man!  Sometimes a voice is needed to promote an upcoming product that will hit shelves in stores in an upcoming date, so this way, if a movie promo guy sells a product on a DVD for an upcoming release, people can expect and be ready for it and by which certain date.

Radio Imaging: Last but not least, your typical radio stations you listen to have, “You’re listening to such and such radio station!”  In a deep, grumbly voice, or maybe upbeat voice, or warm and calm voice.  All stations are different, but in between songs and at the top of the hour is called the Radio Station Identification or Legal ID.  All stations are required by the FCC to notify everyone as to which station they are listening to, their call letters, their City license as to which the city they are licensed with to broadcast from and so forth.  The first city name listed in their, “Top Of The Hour” Call Letters, usually states what city they are licensed out of.  “You’re listening to WXYZ!”  Green Bay, Appleton, Oshkosh.  Now, back to more of your favorite hits, right here on WXYZ!”

There are SO many projects you could do!  I mean, you could voice a new app for a game, a documentary, a TV show, movie trailer, on hold message, voice greeting, audio book, podcast, announcement at an event, the possibilities are ENDLESS with voice overs!  This is one of the reasons getting into the voice over business is so AMAZING!  You’re never doing the same project again and again.  Also, you can take YOUR creative mind and put it to work for YOUR clients, not only HELPING them, but creating a NAME for yourself!

Take care.


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