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Old November 18th, 2013, 10:30 AM   #1
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Online Voiceover Services - What are your thoughts?

I do video production in a small market and sometimes it's hard to find the right voice for a project in the local talent pool. I'm looking into some of the online voiceover services (such as Voices.com, Voice123, VoiceBunny, etc.) and I'm curious to hear what everyone else's experience has been with those kinds of websites.

My two main needs are:
1) The ability to interact with the talent and give direction.
2) Relatively inexpensive; ideally sub-$100 for a 30-second spot. (Like I said, small market.)

Have any of you used online voice talent services? Do you have any recommendations? Were you able to interact with the talent to fine-tune the VO, or was it more like, "you get what you get and you don't through a fit"?
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Old November 18th, 2013, 11:30 AM   #2
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Re: Online Voiceover Services - What are your thoughts?

I've used a site called SpeedySpots.com quite a few times over the years. They have been very easy to work with and cheap. My experience with directing talent was that it just mattered how well you scripted things. They sometimes got it on the first try and sometimes the second. All in all it was a good experience and I'll use them again. Pretty cheap as well and very quick.
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Old November 18th, 2013, 06:05 PM   #3
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Re: Online Voiceover Services - What are your thoughts?

I hadn't come across SpeedSpots.com before; I'll have to check them out. Thanks for the info.
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Old November 18th, 2013, 10:59 PM   #4
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Re: Online Voiceover Services - What are your thoughts?

I have used Speedy Spots | Voice Talent | Voice Actors | Voice Over on several occasions and been satisfied. They have a wide variety of talent. I send them the text I want them to use and sometimes will give them a sample narration file with the pacing and difficult word pronunciation.
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Old November 19th, 2013, 07:39 PM   #5
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Re: Online Voiceover Services - What are your thoughts?

Well that's two votes for Speedy Spots. They must be doing something right.

Thanks for chiming in.
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Old November 20th, 2013, 02:56 PM   #6
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Re: Online Voiceover Services - What are your thoughts?

I've been doing VO work for more than 30 years - and I relatively recently registered as a voice talent with Voice 123.

So here's my perspective from the talent side..

It's a "mass" process. You'll post your job. Based on the criteria you set, you'll get auditions. As many as you like. I see gigs every day from them where they're looking for 200 auditions. They get them.

The quality you get will be related to two things. First, the budget you offer. As a long experienced talent with credentials, I set a threshold fee. So I don't respond to your request if it's lower than that. I'm not trying to be discriminatory - just efficient.

I find I get better projects and MUCH better copy to work with. Some of the scripts I've seen are honestly extremely painful to read. Only a small fraction of writers are trained to write for the ear, rather than the eye. And that fact shows up in scripts all the time.

Finally, don't be surprised or offended if you deal with a few talent that are a bit rigid about the payment process. Typically we do that via PayPal - but early on I made the mistake of not demanding PayPal prior to the file delivery ($500 plus gig) and I'm still waiting for that payment.

It's a decent system for connecting people with gigs - just like any other "system" it takes some getting used to.

Just a few things to consider.
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Old November 20th, 2013, 06:19 PM   #7
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Re: Online Voiceover Services - What are your thoughts?

Bill, thanks for the feedback from talent's perspective. You raised some good points, especially about the script writing. I've seen so many cringe-worthy scripts that I now have to assume that any script coming from another source will need some editing before I can start rolling. (Don't these people read their stuff out loud?)

The payment stuff makes sense, too. Quality should correspond to budget, and I know I'm at the low end of the budget range. I also don't mind an up-front payment policy. I've been in the same position, so I know how that goes.
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