Getting Your Voice Over Right the First Time

Here’s the deal: You want the voice over narration that will represent your business to be perfect! 


But there’s a problem….

Back in the old days, talents didn’t have home studios, so getting the voice over narration right the first time was crucial. When clients didn’t get it right, they had to pay for a studio and a talent fee again, plus, they had to coordinate all the staff to come back to the studio again, -which was no easy feat. This whole process was burdensome and time consuming. Of course we live in different times; most serious voice over talents have their home studios and are flexible (and pretty quick on the mic!), but there is still something to be said for taking more time before reaching out to the voice over talent to make sure nothing falls through the cracks.

Most of the issues I see arise have to do with the script not being quite ready for a final voice over on the recording date. Sometimes the legal deportment hasn’t weighed in, other times (most times) clients have simply never heard the script out loud and when they do finally hear it, they notice clunky terms, sentences or words, and they also notice that some concepts are unclear, redundant, or even that the script misses the mark.

What can you do?

To remedy this situation I highly recommend reading your own script out loud, recording it into your smart phone and listening to it. The problem areas will stand out immediately and you’ll have an opportunity to fix them on the spot. Taking this step really speeds up the whole process in the end, because the client will have approved what they heard and are more likely to be satisfied, half knowing what to expect.

That’s not all…

Reading a script out loud will also give you a clear indication of the length of a voice over narration. If your narration is meant to be one minute in length, but you come in at 1:15 minutes when you read it, you know that you have some editing to do, -or that you have to plow through the script at a very fast pace. Again, you are avoiding the surprise of being shocked when you receive the final voice over files, which might trigger you to re-record the entire script which can be costly or alternately, sound patchy.

There’s more…

If you read your script out loud, you will also notice whether you need to find out some pronunciations for unusual words or names. If you do, ask the concerned parties for them to be recorded into a smartphone, so you can email them to the voice over actor prior to the recording. Getting names wrong can backfire, and getting them right the first time is a time saver. There are only advantages here!

The bottom line…

Essentially, the more time you spend on trying to get it right before hiring the voice over talent, the better your experience with the talent will be and the better the actual voice over narration will be as well, because it won’t sound patchy from those re-records you had to do (more about that here). You’ll also have less emails in your inbox, because most questions will already be answered!