We’ve also mentioned this before, but allow us to reiterate: not all voiceovers are the same, and not every voice-actor is able to do all types of voiceover work. Out of the thousands of available online voiceover talents, it’s safe to say that between 10% – 13% get work in all categories, but there are those who specialize in only one or two types of voiceover work.
As such, these talents may need multiple channels to find consistent work. We’ll list some here – with the understanding that they might be called different names more suited to the person who is marketing a specific type of work. Generally speaking, however, these are:
- Audiobooks – reading fiction, non-fiction, motivational self-help books, etc.
- Movie Trailers – like Don LaFontaine (see Section 1).
- Phone Messages – most companies have after-hours answering services these days.
- Video games – narrator and character voices.
- Commercials for radio or TV
- Promos – often played instore to promote products. Also called infomercials.
- Training Courses – from how to learn a language, use complex equipment, to explanations on procedures or security that form part of a new employee’s onboarding process at a company.
- Podcasts – usually short narrations or discussions on a topical subject that are downloadable from a platform like iTunes.
- Documentaries – like one might watch on the Discovery Channel.
- Animation – again, narrator or character voices; think Disney.
And the list is hardly exhaustive. It’s worth keeping in mind that cyberspace is a very big place, and given the proliferation of mobile app and game developers of all shapes and sizes in the world, there is much voiceover work to be had. Even if you’re not someone who considers themselves capable of doing run-of-the-mill voiceover work, you may be great at mimicking voices, and bringing cartoon characters to life. Still be careful; there’s a difference between doing voices for the fun of it and voice-acting as a convincing and engaging character. Remember that listeners may find your demo amazing just as easily as they may find it obnoxious. Choose your samples wisely.
There’s another type of lucrative voiceover work known as looping that’s worth investigating. It resorts under the heading ‘Additional Dialogue Recording’ and can be loosely defined as extras-voice acting in film or on TV, where a group of voice actors get together to record scenes – especially party scenes – where there’s a lot of indistinct chatter going on in the background of the scene while the camera is actually focusing on the lead actors in the foreground.
By all means, investigate!