Friday, June 29, 2007

The Wait Is Over: The New Voice123 Will Be Released July 9th!

We are very happy to announce that the release date for the New Voice123 has been set: Monday, July 9th!

Development on this new version started more than one year ago after receiving feedback from talents, voice producers, and voice seekers; analyzing our various options; and choosing the best possible solutions to address the new features. In March of this year we reached alpha, where all the major features and improvements of the new Voice123 have been coded. By mid-June, the system was stable enough to invite talents and seekers to do beta testing of the platform. This was a very important milestone in the development process, and we received extremely valuable feedback from many of you, for which we are thankful, as you are helping to build the most advanced voice casting system ever built.

This version is the biggest release we have ever published, and we expect it will bring major benefits to all our talents, including a superior interface, improved audio quality, enhanced project workflow, and better audition-to-booking ratio. To read more details about SmartCast® and the new features here.

IMPORTANT: Since this is a major system upgrade, please note that Voice123’s website will not be available from Friday, July 6th at 10:00 pm ET until Monday, July 9th at 5:00 am ET. During this upgrade, the site will not be accessible; you will not be able to answer leads or access your profile. Therefore, please plan ahead if you need to use the system around those dates.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Google Audio Ads and Bid4Spots: The Radio Ads Marketplace War

A few months ago, Google announced a new tool for advertisers; it is called Google Audio Ads. It is an extension of AdWords, and connects radio stations to advertisers.

Earlier this month eBay said it had closed a partnership deal with Voice123’s fellow company, Bid4Spots, to start selling radio advertising as a marketplace on the Internet, eBay Media Marketplace.

In similar ways, both marketplaces allow advertisers to place budgets on radio spots through an automated system. Advertisers can choose from hundreds of stations in different regions and cities country-wide. Stations are classified by the kind of programs they broadcast and advertisers can target their campaigns to specific geographic areas, type of listeners, date and time of the day. On the other side are the stations who do the actual bidding like a reverse auction, and the lowest CPM wins the auction.

This makes it so easy for small and medium sized businesses to start advertising on radio, and for advertisers to reach new markets in such an easy way that you can find a voice talent and producer via Voice123, have your radio spot ready in a matter of hours, and then use any of these services to broadcast your radio spot to the desired audience, and all this without stepping away from your desk!

Both say they are currently testing their systems, and although Google started in December, Bid4Spots’ platform is more mature, since they were the pioneers as the first online radio ads marketplace. They just now partnered with eBay.

The war is just starting, and both systems are gearing up to compete for advertisers’ money. Time will tell who will come out victorious, or if there is space for both, as the differences between them attract different customers.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

The New Voice123 Will Open to Beta Testers June 15th!

What does this mean to you? This means that you will get to experience the new Voice123, including all of its new features and improvements, in a few weeks. We will notify you via email when the release date is defined.

What is "beta testing"? Beta testing is the last stage of testing for a software product like Voice123. It was preceded by "alpha testing". During alpha testing, members of the Voice123 Team performed thousands of quality assurance tests in the new Voice123. We did it in such a rigorous way, that we expect the beta testing phase to be over quickly.

We will encourage beta testers to publicly share their experiences with the new Voice123 in the VoiceOverSavvy Forums. Check it out after June 15th, so that you can learn more about the New Voice123, even if you are not a beta tester. By the way, you can still apply to become a beta tester. Instructions on how to apply can be found here:

We are very happy about making this announcement, as this means that we are one step closer to offering you a better experience! Some of us are also closer to taking a long-expected vacation break!