A Challenge To Voice Talents Everywhere
I’ve always been a huge proponent of voice talents becoming their own greatest marketing agent. Ever since VDC and VB decided to crap on us, and on our agents, I’m convinced that there is a huge opportunity for voice talents right now to build the best foundation for a long term business that we’ve ever had.
The bottom line is that no one else, and no company can do a better job of marketing you than you. The contacts you make and the relationships you build over the next few months may well determine your success or failure as a voice talent.
I’ve been talking to my agents and coaches (they’re here to help and serve you – not to do your work for you). I’ve been researching various lead sources (more about some of those later in this post). I’ve been looking at various P2P sites (Almost every one – including the ones that VO talents have been touting, are about 10 to 15 years behind the times and/or are just piggy-backing off of voice talents). I’ve been watching what WOVO and SAG-AFTRA have been doing and saying (not seeing any breakthrough leadership from the union, and WOVO is not yet in a position to do more than they have).
The bottom line is that you need to start developing your own personal marketing plan for the next 6 months. Do that and you’ll be eons ahead of all the other voice talents that sat back and waited for someone to do it for them.
So what should you be doing?
I’ve got 3 suggestions. I hope you’ll share yours and add to this.
1. Get serious about a CRM program (Customer Relationship Management) to build more connections and relationships with clients. You’ll find a great read to help you understand CRM and how to choose the best plan for you here.
2. Build a strategy for mining decision makers about your services at ad agencies, production houses, and individual companies. There are a number of resources to use for these besides phone books and Google searches. LinkedIn is a great place to start (some valuable contacts and information there). The Elearning List is also a great resource (according to Research And Markets the e-learning industry is on track to be worth $325 Billion a year by 2025). RealTimeCasting.com is about to launch a relationship with Redbooks (Probably the most incredible opportunity for voice talents in the last decade or more. For more info check it out here).
3. Specialize. Specialize. Specialize. Become known for your specialty. Create a standard for your specialty. Market your specialty. That doesn’t mean that you can’t or won’t do other genres of VO work. Nor does it mean that you can’t specialize in more than one area. But become the VO talent that a bunch of people in a particular industry think of when they have a VO project.
Don’t get discouraged doing these things. Remember that most companies consider a 3-5% increase in business a good marketing strategy. It takes time. It takes persistence. It takes creativity. And above all, it takes passion.