Wednesday, July 28, 2010

‘E-Go Your Way And I'll Go My Way’

Have you ever found yourself saying, ‘I have many years of experience, but I cannot get voice over work online?’. This topic is rarely discussed in a business that prefers ‘to know evil means speak no evil’. Yet, not too long ago when online casting began to gain a foot-hold, this very question came up quite often. So, why is it that people who have decades of experience can have difficulty in working online? The answer starts with a voice talent's 'mindset' more than the level of a talent’s experience.

Getting Inside The Mind:
In an Internet world where, 'No one believes what they see at first glance', and for good reasons, it is a wise thing to do. For example, I noticed that Alyssa Milano and Serena Williams were my friends on Facebook. As much as I would love to say, 'Woo hoo!', more than likely it is either a 3rd-party intern, hired to do public relations for online marketing. I say this only because I have never spoken to, nor had contact with any of them.

How does this apply to the experienced voice talent? Well, someone boasting 40 years of amazing experience in their communications may actually lead buyers to retreat into a mindset of, 'How will I know this is not spam? I do not know him/her'. The mindset switches to, 'Ok, you show me.', and the second a communication online becomes high maintenance, the buyer thinks, 'I thought so. Only trouble.'

Did You Just Say ‘Experience Means Nothing?’:
No, not at all. Those who do well online understand, ‘Behind the keyboard, we are all equals’, and this is so because the environment allows for it. Without face-to-face reassurance, it is easy to ‘take offense’ at something, if given the time to think about it. Opinions and trends drive online behavior, so never take anything personal. It will set you back.

What to do?
  • Focus on ways to save people time because 'time is money'. People pay more when you save them frustration, and I have seen here how Voice123 does not drive the market down.
  • Avoid sarcasm in emails. Only your friends get the joke.
  • Avoid iron-fist writing styles i.e. 'Give me this or else!'
  • Remain down-to-earth. You don't know them. They don't know you.
  • Leave the buyer out of your personal problems to get the work done.
  • Do NOT let the technology intimidate you out of being what got you work for years! The technology changed. The need for talent has never changed!
Working online is a community better suited for building business relationships of equal understanding. If you find that you never hear back from anyone, understand 'silence' online means they are either not interested, do not want to bother, or do not want to spend the time to deal with you.

It deserves stating again: 'Remain down-to-earth'. If they don’t know you, and you don’t know them, equal respect is in order no matter where you are from or what you have done.

It just helps. For more info, read this article. Care to discuss? Please post about it here!

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Steven Lowell
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