A friend of mine recently told me she doesn’t know how to source a professional Voiceover artist. Her comment reminded me that a lot of people don’t know how to find us when they need us. So, I thought I’d take the time to write about how to source a professional Voiceover artist for your project. Different methods suit different people for different reasons. Here are all the methods that I am aware of
Source a Professional Voiceover Artist Via Their Website
A great way to source a professional Voiceover artist is via their own websites! A professional voiceover artist will invest in their own website. So, if you have the time, typing key words into a search engine is a great way to source a professional Voiceover artist that might specialise in your area (such as eLearning). Typing in ‘Australian eLearning narrator’ should yield plenty of results. You’ll be able to look at individual artists and listen to their demos, before deciding who to contact for quotes. Unlike some other methods I’m going to mention, working directly with a voiceover artist means there’ll be no third-party slowing things down! A lot of my clients love the fact that they can get to me directly and they don’t have to deal with a gatekeeper. Most voiceover artists who have their own websites and studios are happy to record a short custom audition for potential buyers. Additionally, working from our studios at home means we can offer you flexibility! I can turn a quick revision around in just a few minutes.
Keep an Eye on your Inbox!
Many Voiceover artists email market so keep an eye on your inbox! As freelancers, it’s up to us to find clients. So, a lot of us will send direct emails as a part of our marketing strategy. Next time you get marketing email from a VoiceOver artist, perhaps add it to a folder? If we’ve sent you a demo, have a quick listen to assess our audio quality and ability as a voiceover talent. If we meet your expectations, you may want to download the demo and save it. You may not need our services on the day we email but having a list to refer to will save you time when the time comes. I’ve had plenty of bookings that have come from marketing emails I sent out months or sometimes even years ago!
Professional Voiceover Artists Network on Social Media
A lot of professional Voiceover artists network on Social Media. LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Club House, TikTok, SnapChat etc. I don’t use all of these because I enjoy my sanity. However, it’s safe to say that whatever your social media platform of choice, there you will find a good cross section of voiceover artists. Most will use hashtags when posting to make content more discoverable. Here are some popular hashtags you can use to find Australian voiceover artists on social media:
Source Voiceover Artists on ‘Pay to Play’ platforms
We voiceover artists call them ‘Pay to Play’ platforms, because we pay an annual membership that allows us access and then we pay more money each time we book a job. Essentially they’re ‘online marketplaces’ that specialise in voiceover. Using this method to find your voiceover professional might be more economical in terms of your time. You can post a job calling for custom auditions, wait for the recordings to roll in and then you or your client can select the voice that most fits with your project. Some of these platforms have set rates, some allow the buyer to select a rate they wish to pay & some allow the voice artist to ‘bid’ for the jobs they want. All will take a cut from the voice artist. Some will take FAR MORE THAN THEY SHOULD. I currently have paid membership to two ‘Pay 2 Play’ platforms and I book a lot of work on them.
Things to keep in mind: some of these platforms do not vet their talent at all. Therefore, you will get a mixture of professionals with absolute newbies who have only just started and may not be able to deliver on their promises. Hence, it’s wise to ask for custom auditions and not just hire someone who has a good demo. That demo may have been recorded in a much more professional studio than the one the talent uses. It may have been produced by an audio engineer, whereas the talent might only know how to press record and stop on their software!
Find Voiceover Artists on Freelancing Websites
Freelancing or Online Gig sites such as (and this is in no particular order) Freelancer, Fiverr, Upwork, AirGigs, Guru, People Per Hour etc. The gig economy has really shaken the VO industry up. Some of these sites are better than others in terms of the quality and professionalism of the talent. If you choose to source a professional Voiceover artist this way, bear in mind that it may be time consuming and hit and miss, depending on which sites you use.
I personally only use one of these sites, but I have a lot of success with it. It’s great in that I can be selective about the jobs I choose to apply for and I am able to challenge the budget selected by the buyer. On that note – it’s up to each voice artist to value their work and I find that not every buyer knows the value of a voiceover or understands how or why the rates are different for different genres. Very much a case of ‘you get what you pay for’ if you choose this method.
Use an Online Voiceover ‘Stable’
Voiceover ‘stables’ are different to Pay to Play websites or marketplaces. You’ll find a select roster of voices that are available to record at set rates. You can hear a short sample from each voice and hire straight off the website. Custom auditions are not usually on offer. Often times, the voice talent only gets a small portion of whatever the set rate is. In the past, I have been on the roster of three of these kinds of sites, but after being treated very poorly by two out of three of them and deciding that I was worth a lot more than what they were paying me, I took my leave. If choosing this method, it is a case of buyer beware. If you like to make ethical purchase decisions, I do not recommend.
Source a Professional Voiceover Artist Through a Talent Agent
You can also approach a talent agent who will be able to present you with a number of different options. Keep in mind that this often a more costly approach. However, you can be guaranteed of a certain level of professionalism from everytalent on the books. What you can’t be guaranteed of is every artist on the agent’s books having their own broadcast quality studio. So, depending on who you select, you may well be up for the cost of studio hire as well, which definitely makes this method the costliest by far. It’s also possible that you won’t get any custom auditions this way.
Ask For Voiceover Referrals
Referrals – asking your colleagues who they would recommend is a great way to get options that have been vetted by people with similar needs to your own. If someone in your network vouches for a particular voice talent, then you’ll likely have more confidence in them! As freelancers we very much appreciate referrals from our clients as they really are the best form of compliment!
Different Voiceover Markets
Except for the one where we direct market to YOU, each of these methods caters for different types of buyers. In other words, they service different sections of the market. Each method has it’s own pros and cons. Some buyers will only ever use one method, or one ‘supplier’. That’s why a lot of voiceover artists choose to be found a number of different ways, to ensure they’re covering more sections of the market.
Ethics in Voiceover
At the end of the day, any of the methods involving a third party is taking money away from the artist, some more than others. So, if ethics plays much of a role in your purchasing decisions you may want to consider that and choose one of the more direct methods. Of course, in my version of a perfect world all of my clients approach me directly (after finding my website on the front page of a google search, or hearing about my great work through their colleagues) and I’d never have to send a cold marketing email to anyone!
That about covers it! I hope this helps those of you who may need a Voiceover artist in the future or weren’t aware of all the different ways that you can find us. Good hunting!