Wednesday, August 27, 2008

New Voice123 Feature! Activity Information!

Voice123 has released a new feature that will assist voice-seekers when posting voice-over jobs... Talent Activity Information!

This feature was created to let voice seekers know when the last time a Voice123 talent was active before sending a direct invite, eliminating wasted time in waiting for answers and responses.

This was done for the following reasons:
  • Putting an end to bad experiences of you directly inviting talents, only to have the request go unanswered, not knowing if the talent was either on vacation, unavailable, or ignoring the request.
  • Increase comprehensive business communication through the Voice123 interface, to give you a faster and easier experience.
Here are some questions Voice123 has received regarding this feature...

Where is this info displayed?
Right at the top of the Voice123 profile! ex: Caryn Clark

You will see the following information:

How accurate is this information?
  • Very accurate! The info displayed represents the last time the voice over talent was logged on and actively using his/her Voice123 profile and audition inbox. If you directly invite them, they will see it.
  • In addition, talents also have a 'Going on Vacation' feature, which is indicated on their profiles, two reasons to trust that the information you are seeing is accurate, and that a person will be easier to contact!

Voice123 hopes this feature assists you in the future, especially when a project is time-sensitive, where you find you need to look for voice-over talents and to directly invite talents using our voice talent search feature!

We hope this helps you with your next project!

Voice123 - The Voice Marketplace
Juan Salcedo
General Manager

Sunday, August 24, 2008

'The Olympic Voiceover Connection' by Bettye Zoller

How do you compare a voiceover performer to an Olympic athlete?
That’s easy.

What can voiceover performers, beginners to advanced, learn from Olympic (or any good, for that matter,) athletes?
We both win gold medals. Yes, it’s true. Athletes win medals and rings and trophies. They can be honored in a Hall of Fame. We voiceover talents win respect from our peers and agents and producers and earn good money . And we can win awards too (I am so proud of my ADDY, CLIO, Golden Radio, Audie Awards in my thirty-four years ‘before the mic.’).

Do you have what it takes to win? Do you believe in yourself enough to jump into the pool at the Olympics or walk the balance beam or win a foot race?
Guess what! We voice talents walk the balance beam in life every single day! Every day is a new game.

Do you have producers or advertising agencies who use you time and again because they admire your professionalism and ability? Where did those qualities come from?
I’ll bet you EARNED THEM! Watching TV last night, writing this brief essay for Voice 123 suddenly occurred to me. I heard athletes talking . They said things such as:

“I will never give up.”
“Yes I can do it and I will.”
“I won’t accept second place.”
“This is hard but I get up every morning to practice at 4 a.m. before school.”
"I have been dedicated to being a success at this since I was six years old.”
"I love what I do and it means everything to me.”

The great broadcaster Ron Chapman (KVIL DALLAS, now retired, and a giant in his field) once told me, “sometimes people say, ‘I am thinking about becoming a radio broadcaster or a voiceover talent.’ And I always say, ‘if you’re just THINKING about it, give it up. You have to be dedicated, you have to want it with a burning passion. You have to starve and want food and turn down jobs to be an intern at a radio station and learn your skills. You have to find the money for workshops and voice demos. You have to work part time on a day job so that you have time to audition for voice jobs. You have to be a great voiceover talent and a pro. That takes time.” Michael Phelps, the amazing gold medal swimmer at the 2008 Olympics, said, “when so many people say that it’s‘not possible, it just makes me want to do it more. I never give up. I’m dedicated to success.”

Are you dedicated?
Or do you, like so many students I’ve taught through the years, say, “Oh do you think I really can do this? I’m so unsure about this.” I always reply, “Well, if you have that much self-doubt, maybe you shouldn’t be doing this. All performers and achievers must have self-confidence and dedication. Find yours.” Others say, “I just don’t know if I should spend money on this CD voiceover demo or not. I know I should spend more money and time on my voiceover career but I just am so doubtful it will ever pay me back.” This is extreme self-doubt. This is extreme insecurity and makes me wonder if this person SHOULD do the demo or the workshop. Over the past week watching the Olympics, we’ve seen performer athletes overcome obstacles, illness, doubt, shyness, and they have achieved historical victory.

Can you achieve victory in voiceovers?
Any career takes persistence and self-confidence. It takes growing and developing and always achieving more than you thought you could. Voiceovers are no exception. Being a voice talent takes courage when the cash flow is meager and you could leave the field altogether and concentrate on a day job.

But you don’t leave the field because you love doing it, yes?
Why do voice talents wear themselves out doubting if they are any good at all? Why do they often keep asking people (qualified or not) if their demo “is good or not?” Do the people they ask know ‘good’ or ‘bad’? Are they professionals in the field? And what does it matter in the final analysis if someone ‘likes’ your demo or not unless they can hire you? The purpose of a demo is to win jobs, not to ‘please people as entertainment.’ Your insecurity in your own talent is showing. Did Mark Spitz ask people if he could swim? Did Michael Phelps wonder if he should compete in the Olympics?

While they studied and trained with experts (and so should you!) they were self-confident, and surrounded themselves with people who were enthusiastic about their prowess. Beginner to advanced voice talent, keep up your education. The Olympic athletes would not have kept progressing had they not continued to grow and practice and study and improve and to believe they could improve! When I first entertained thoughts of entering the voiceover field (and studio singing field), some told me it was not a good idea and that I should keep up my successful career as a singer and actor in live venues (I was a headliner including opening act for Tony Bennett and vocalist with the jazz great Lionel Hampton). I had been on the road for over eight years at that time and I wanted so to get off the road, settle down, have a family. The recording studios offered me a chance to get off that road! I did not listen to the naysayers. I persevered. Soon, I went ‘on staff’ at three recording studios as a jingle singer and later, became a voiceover talent too.

It took almost two years to make the transition and make a really great living wage in the recording studios. I had union benefit s too…health coverage, dental, drug coverage, building a retirement pension fund. I had been making a very good salary as a live performer. I also taught college courses. I was doing fine before the “studio bug” bit me. But this was better. I saw the future. Some with whom I worked at the start of my career in the recording studios had been active for many years when I was a newcomer. They already were wealthy. They owned a house. They drove a nice car. On the sessions, they discussed their vacation homes, their stocks and bonds, their real estate investments. Their children were in private schools.

I was renting. My four month old baby son was without a father. I had to succeed. I had no choice. The recording studios made my life what it is today and I am grateful. Some studio professionals viewed me as extreme competition and did not welcome my presence. It was difficult finding friends in my new home town, Dallas. The competition was vicious. I was lonely and felt as an outsider. It took several years for people to realize (I guess) that I wasn’t going to go away and that I was, in fact, a girl with talent whom they could accept into their professional circle.

Are you dedicated to becoming a voice pro or are you a novice who is simply ‘playing around’ with voiceovers?
Dedication...That’s the most important word. Stick with it. Be positive and assured in your talent. Keep growing. Respect your competition and admire your competitors as you try to achieve greatness. Get rid of self-doubt. It only hurts you.

by Bettye Zoller

Voice123 thanks Bettye Zoller for her contribution to this blog, as well as, a Voice123 Coach.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Hot Topics! Voice123 Premium Forums!


This is just a quick email to alert you to hot topics that are being left on the new Voice123 Premium Forums!

The discussions this past week have even included posts by experienced voice talents and even a voice seeker in an interesting topic on opinions of how to set up being paid once a job is booked!

"I'm interested in saving time. Time, time, time is my biggest factor when working with Voice 123." - Voice123 Voice Seeker

Come see the hottest topic of the past week, or if you have any suggestions on things you would like to see on the new Voice123 Premium Forums, post a thread and tell me about it!

The Voice123 Premium Forums are specifically used so premium subscribers of Voice123, and Voice123 voice seekers, can post their thoughts, questions, and also find coaching and advice on demos and auditions!

By popular demand, we also added a new category: The Copy Writing and Reading Clinic.

Write and/or read copy, and then discuss with others! Try it out! See what others have to say!

Hope to see you there!

Thank you always!

Voice123 - The Voice Marketplace
Steven Lowell
Quality Assurance Manager

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Leaving Town? Try Voice123 'Away' Status!

If you are leaving town today, Voice123 is happy to introduce the new Voice123 'Away' status for your profiles, perfect for those who fear they may be contacted while on business or vacation, and cannot get back to the voice seeker or direct invitation in time. Setting your status is quick and easy. Simply go to your My Home section of your account, and click on the link 'Going on Vacation?'. From there, you will be able to type in how long you will be away, and your profile will appear as 'Away' status during that time.

We certainly hope that many of you have the opportunity to try this new feature before leaving town for your next business trip or vacation!

Have any questions you would like to ask Voice123 talents and staff, or maybe thoughts on the best way to use this? Try asking a coach or peer in Coach's Corner by posting in our new Voice123 Premium Forums! (e.g. Check this topic: Speech and voice-over).

Thank you for using Voice123!

Voice123 - The Voice Marketplace
Juan Salcedo
General Manager
12 Desbrosses St. New York, NY 10013

Monday, August 11, 2008

"Making Money With VoiceOvers" Conference in Dallas, Sept.6th & 7th

There may never be a better student/teacher ratio at a voice-over conference than this:

More than a dozen top voice-over teachers and celebrities will train and network with just 20 fortunate voice actors at the Making Money With Voiceovers conference, slated for the weekend of Sept. 6-7 in Dallas.
"You will hear top professionals, mix and mingle with people who have attained careers in the voice-over business, and learn so much in a small group setting," says conference producer Bettye Zoller - the national voice-over talent and coach.
She is owner of the educational firm and VoicesVoices recording studio in Dallas.
Attendees will "learn from real-world professionals in the voice-over business what the business is really like, and how they can find success faster and sustain it over a career," adds Zoller.
Held annually, the conference is also a fundraiser for Reading Radio Resource of Dallas, a non-profit organization that creates audio products and radio shows for sight- and learning-impaired people. Also featuring breakfast buffets and catered lunches on both Saturday and Sunday - plus a Saturday night mixer - the event will be held at the Reading Radio Resource Building near downtown Dallas. Hours are: Saturday, 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

For more information, please visit

Thank you!

The Voice123 Team

Thursday, August 07, 2008

New Voice123 Resource Center!

One of the most recent updates to Voice123 has included a new Resource Center, easier to navigate, including the opportunity to make suggestions on new articles while rating...I mean ranking...wait I mean rating just how helpful the article is.

The most popular article in the Resource Center was actually written by a Voice123 talent, Caryn Clark, titled 'So You Want to be Paid Huh?'.

There are also plenty of articles, webinars, and information that can give one a step in the right direction. If you do not see what you want or would like to add something yourself, make a suggestion and we will find a way to add it for you!

Also, another tool to learn about Voice123, the voice over industry and contribute to the community is to participate in the new Voice123 Forums.

This week's current hot topic is How Do Voice Seekers Rank Audition Proposals?
"I noticed that I received a couple of "Likely hiring" ratings, but never got hired. Is there an explanation? Or could it have just been down to me and someone else...and I just missed being chosen?" - J.C. Haze

This week's hottest category... DEMO ADVICE
"If you find that you are doing the same kind of project (pace, approach, scripts) over and over again, it will be hard to find enough variety to really make your demo stand out." - Connie Terwilliger

We hope you will take advantage of these great tools:

Thank you always!

Voice123 - The Voice Marketplace
Steven Lowell
Quality Assurance Manager