Beyond your sparkling personality, dulcet vocal tones, and unlimited imagination—your voice over demo is the most important tool you have to secure work in this business. It’s the vehicle you’ll benefit from most to drive your career… provided it’s done right!
So how do you know when you need a new one?
Initially, you might think your voiceover demos are meant to define your ability to parrot famous stars, create cartoony characters, and authentically mimic any accent under the sun. And while these skills are certainly useful to us as actors and might be asked of us from time to time, it may surprise you to learn that they’re not the primary skills necessary to keep you steadily employed as a voice talent. Instead, the aim of every take is to convey the ability to be your self. Its the most desirable thing you can be, coupled with your ability to assume a believable point-of-view that may be a dramatic departure from your own.
If you have professionally produced, competitive demos but have yet to land a proper agent or steady work, then consider the following before completely throwing the baby out with the bath water:
- Does your old demo run longer than a minute (1:00), a minute ten (1:10)?
- Do the spots sound like you can carry (or have carried) national campaigns and brands?
- Does each spot on your demo sound like a current, national TV campaign?
- Do your reads on your demo sound like forced, over-the-top (bad) radio commercials?
- Do the segments on your demo sound like you’re trying to be someone you’re not?
- Do you have spots that try too hard to sound humorous but completely miss the boat?
- Has it been four years or more since you last updated your tracks? Depending on your age range and the changes in the market, you may need to simply tweak an otherwise effective demo.
- Have you landed a few good national television spots that you could add to your current demos?
- Do your demos consist of projects you’ve actually booked, but few are of the caliber that would honestly elevate your career to the next level?
- Are you better than your demos depict?
Take a listen to some of the demos featured on our demos page. Do your current demos compare to the level of professional production heard there? If not, it may be time to update your voiceover demos, because if you’re not in the ballpark, you can’t play ball.
Copyright © 2019 by Kate McClanaghan, All Rights Reserved.
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