Avoid bad surprises… Get a sample of your script voiced!
Here’s the thing: the voice over talent you selected has a great demo, so your voice over will sound great, right?
Keep in mind talents either use voice overs they have done in the past for other clients on their demos, OR, they get them produced professionally. They don’t even necessarily get the demo produced from their own studio, so you may not be hearing their equipment! This is especially true for commercial and animation demos.
Your script! If you are producing a how-to-video but you are listening to commercial demos to decide on talent, resist thinking your voice over will sound anything like what you are hearing on the demo, it likely won’t! Different script genres (copy, as we VO talents call them) use different types of expressions, punctuation, and styles. So be sure to listen to demos that are in the same genre you are producing your voice over.
The best solution?
Get a sample of your script recorded by the voiceover talent you are considering working with. It’s usually free! This way, you’ll get to hear their voice, their interpretation of your script, their natural pace, their studio environment, and anything else you need to hear before making your decision. Don’t get me wrong: it’s important for you to hear their other demos as it gives you a sense of what they’re capable of, but keep it real by getting the real script voiced so you can make an educated decision you won’t regret.