Voiceover Auditions: The ultimate love / hate relationship?

Auditions are a fact of life for Voiceover Artists.

They can come from VO agents, regular clients needing a sample read, Pay to play sites, new clients and probably more places I can’t quite recall..

Why the love / hate thing?

Voice over auditions can arrive in your inbox at any time of day or night and may or may not demand immediate attention.

It’s always best to get those files in ASAP in my experience.. sometimes that might feel a bit painful as you were heading off to bed and the studio is nicely closed down for the night.

The thing is though that that audition that arrived late at night could well be from a US Agent and contain an amazing opportunity, too good to miss.

You record your VO and get ready to send it over, then you notice a 3 page NDA that needs to be signed – arghh!

In order to do a decent audition, you have to invest yourself in the brief and script and create some good takes – you record something and you feel you have totally nailed it! That feels great – how exciting, it’s surely in the bag!

Then you wait.. nothing. Nothing at all.. top level ghosting style rejection..

3 weeks later you’re watching TV and you recognise that script on the commercial.. and the VO is male, with a totally different accent and delivery than was specified in the brief. ARGH. It happens. Fairly often. Annoying. But you’ve got to keep going haven’t you?

After all, auditions can be a numbers game?

Well, maybe.. but you need to realise that while you are auditioning you aren’t actually earning any money.
Are endless auditions the route to endless work? Not in my experience.

We often hear the phrase that some countries have “an audition culture”. I believe that in the US, for example, it’s very much the norm for a VO to audition for EVERYTHING, even with clients who know their work inside out.

In the UK, in my experience, regular clients tend to book from past work, your VO reels, knowing your sound and trusting that you know what you’re doing for them.

So more time in the booth is spent earning.

All this said, I have booked some GREAT VO jobs via auditions and those auditions have turned into work with regular clients.

So how do I make this work in my own head?!

I am choosy – I ask myself if I would want the job, if I think I am right for it, whether it’s right for me in terms of my skill sets and brand, how much time is involved in the audition process compared to money I could be earning or working on other business priorities.

I wouldn’t spend all day auditioning, or even allocate “audition time” every day.

I prefer to build my client base organically with a sprinkling of the RIGHT auditions.

Auditions are a skill in themselves and each VO genre has different things involved. If you’re interested in working as VO – do keep this in mind too.

So why do I offer samples to potential clients when they get in touch?

Because I’m pretty sure I can surprise them (in a good way) with how good I can help them to sound and benefit their brand, I genuinely enjoy showing people the benefits of a good Voiceover – it’s a bit of an unofficial mission.

It’s also a world away from auditioning for scripts that go to every VO on the planet.

I love the RIGHT auditions but HATE the potential for time wasting

Thanks for listening, I think I feel better for that.

I would be delighted to record a sample file for you, by the way!!

Clare X