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Essentials For Running A Freelance VO Business #WoVoChat 4-8-15


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VoicerOver talents and small business owners, Melissa Moats and Tom Dheere are guests on this #WoVoChat for World Voices providing some tips, advice and insight on how to run a successful voiceover freelance career.

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Essentials For Running A Freelance VO Business #WoVoChat 4-8-15

  1. 1. Essentials For Running A Successful Freelance VO Business Twitter Chat Wednesday, April 8, 2015 12pmPT/2pmCT/3pmET #WoVoChat @WorldVoicesOrg
  2. 2. #WoVoChat Featuring Melissa Moats & Thom Dheere
  3. 3. #WoVoChat Q1: Seriously, do you really need a formal business plan to be successful voice actor? #WoVoChat
  4. 4. A1: Artists dream, businesses envision. Vague goals get you vague results. Specific goals get you specific results. #WoVoChat @TomDheere A1: IBM doesn’t just wake up in the morning and decide to build a computer. They set goals, design, test, advertise. #WoVoChat @TomDheere A1: If you can’t or won’t create a formal business plan, may I suggest community theatre? #amateur #WoVoChat @TomDheere #WoVoChat A1: Yes, seriously! If you want to be an artist inside the booth, you have to act like a business outside the booth. #WoVoChat @TomDheere
  5. 5. #WoVoChat Q2: Can you be a success as a freelance voice actor without having a great voice? #WoVoChat
  6. 6. A2: Absolutely! Being a smart business person is the better “talent” to have in VO. #WoVoChat @CourVo A2: A good voice is an asset, but it’s only about 10- 15% of your success formula. #WoVoChat @CourVo A2: Being a strong marketer will get your farther than having a strong voice. #WoVoChat @CourVo #WoVoChat A2: Good voice or no, freelancing is a completely different world from working for someone else. #WoVoChat @CourVo
  7. 7. A2: Define “great voice”. A broken gravelly voice can do great as long as it delivers. #WoVoChat @Cromerty A2: The definition of “great voice” is a relative thing. There could be an opportunity for nearly any voice. #WoVoChat @MarcScott A2: uh….Gilbert Godfried. #WoVoChat @MelissaVoicer #WoVoChat A2: Plenty of successful voice actors don’t have great voices but they have a way of making the words on the page dance! #WoVoChat @voiceoversbytd
  8. 8. #WoVoChat Q3: I’m doing “just alright” in my freelance VO. What should I do to take it to the next level? #WoVoChat
  9. 9. A3:Consistency is key! Make sure you’re auditioning multiple times daily for gigs that are right for YOU! #WoVoChat @MelissaMoatsVO A3: Auditions. Submit and forget. Don’t spend time worrying about old auditions. Keep moving forward. #WoVoChat @MelissaMoatsVO A3: Self discipline is very important. Have a start time to get rolling and stick to it! #WoVoChat @MelissaMoatsVO #WoVoChat A3: DO THE WORK. You’ll get out whatever you put in. #VO #Truth #WoVoChat @MelissaMoatsVO
  10. 10. A3: Seek out someone who can help you, whether it’s a buddy or a paid mentor or both! #WoVoChat @FaithCoonsVO A3: Market yourself. Read a book about marketing. Then market yourself. Take a class. Then do more marketing. #WoVoChat @MarcScott A3: AUDITIONS are a great way to stay “practiced”, whether you get the gig or not. #WoVoChat @JohnnyG53 #WoVoChat A3: Schedule 2-3 hours per day to work on nothing but marketing. #WoVoChat @voiceoversbytd
  11. 11. #WoVoChat Q4: For Pros & Newbies: What are your 4 favorite books/resources? #WoVoChat
  12. 12. A4: “Rich Dad, Poor Dad” by Robert Kiyosaki. It taught me how to make the right decisions. #WoVoChat @TomDheere A4: “The War of Art” by Steven Pressfield. It taught me about how to resist resistance. #WoVoChat @TomDheere A4: “Talent Is Overrated” by Geoff Colvin. It taught me about Deliberate Practice. #WoVoChat @TomDheere #WoVoChat A4: “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” by Stephen Covey. It taught me how to set goals. #WoVoChat @TomDheere
  13. 13. #WoVoChat Q5: Marketing. It freaks me out…How can I overcome my fear?#WoVoChat
  14. 14. A5: Accept the fact that marketing is required to be successful in VO. #FaceYourFearHeadOn #WoVoChat @MelissaMoatsVO A5: Identify which marketing style best suites you: Phone Calls, Email, Snail Mail or Social Media. #WoVoChat @MelissaMoatsVO A5: If your nerves get in the way, find someone you trust to reach out to potential clients for you. #WoVoChat @MelissaMoatsVO #WoVoChat A5: Brevity. No matter what, respect the time of potential clients you are reaching out to. Know what you want to say. #WoVoChat @MelissaMoatsVO
  15. 15. A5: You just have to do it; once you reach out to one client/prospect it gets easier. #WoVoChat @vallencourt A5: Marketing is a skill, trust me, you can learn it so just do it! #WoVoChat @FaithCoonsVO A5: Like anything else, you just have to do it without worrying about screwing up! #WoVoChat @voiceoversbytd #WoVoChat A5: Establish purpose, define audience/customer, then use most appropriate tactic to reach them(social media, cold call, etc…). #WoVoChat @MelHulm
  16. 16. #WoVoChat Q6: So, how do I actually write a business plan? #WoVoChat
  17. 17. A6: Next, write a list of goals you want to achieve for the year. Make them large and clear. #WoVoChat @TomDheere A6: Then list all of the Actionable Items you need to do to achieve your Annual Goals. #WoVoChat @TomDheere A6: Last, write a Monthly Action Plan and include the # of Actionable Items you think you can do in one month. #WoVoChat @TomDheere #WoVoChat A6: First, write a Mission Statement to declare who you are, what you want and what you’ll do to get what you want. #WoVoChat @TomDheere
  18. 18. A6: I’ve used the One Page Business Plan; easy to use and very good. #WoVoChat @pamelamuldoon A6: $$$ goals are important, they give you a measuring stick to work with & to work backwards from. #WoVoChat @DownunderVO A6: I took an online Entrepreneurship course through a local college. Learning to create a Business Plan was part of the course. #WoVoChat @MarcScott #WoVoChat A6: Set clear goals and measurable objectives. Set annually, review monthly. #WoVoChat @MelHulm
  19. 19. #WoVoChat Q7: How do I know which area of VO is best for me? #WoVoChat
  20. 20. A7: Work with VO coaches and attend workshops. Experienced ears can provide solid, honest feedback. #WoVoChat @MelissaMoatsVO A7: Know your sweet spot. Watch your booking trends. You’re good at THAT! That’s why you’re booking it! #WoVoChat @MelissaMoatsVO A7: Pay attention to the type of VO you’re drawn to. Watch, listen, study, learn. #WoVoChat @MelissaMoatsVO #WoVoChat A7: Be real with yourself about your voice type, vocal range and where your strengths lie. #WoVoChat @MelissaMoatsVO
  21. 21. A7: Ask yourself – Who are the clients booking you for work?. What kind of jobs are you getting? #WoVoChat @vallencourt A7: Part of discovering which area of VO is best for you is seeing what you enjoy doing. #WoVoChat @randyekayeVO A7: The market tells you where your niche is by what you book. #WoVoChat @JackWestCoast #WoVoChat A7: Record commercials, trailers, documentaries, etc…Transcribe them and voice them! #WoVoChat @BobGlavinVO
  22. 22. #WoVoChat Q8: How do I break down my business into manageable parts? #WoVoChat
  23. 23. A8: Cash Flow, Tools, Technique, Marketing and Health. #WoVoChat @TomDheere A8: Organize your Annual Goals and Actionable Items using these five categories. #WoVoChat @TomDheere A8: Once you do that, it will be MUCH easier to envision your business and what you need to do. #WoVoChat @TomDheere #WoVoChat A8: Dan Duckworth of Voiceovers Unlimited taught me there are five aspects of your VO business. #WoVoChat @TomDheere
  24. 24. #WoVoChat Q9: What does a full-time Voice Actor’s day really look like? #WoVoChat
  25. 25. A9: It’s a juggling act. Auditions. Bookings. Quotes. Bookkeeping. Marketing efforts. #WoVoChat @MelissaMoatsVO A9: Your client’s project is #1 to them. Staying on top of your email and communicating with them quickly is crucial. #WoVoChat @MelissaMoatsVO A9: VO Pros start early. Especially if you live on the West Coast! Get up early and get going! #WoVoChat @MelissaMoatsVO #WoVoChat A9: Prioritizing. We have to stay on top of our audition and project deadlines while still managing our live sessions. #WoVoChat @MelissaMoatsVO
  26. 26. A9: Practice, auditions, marketing, practice, invoicing, follow ups, practice, voicing. #WoVoChat @MelHulm A9: Breakfast. Marketing. Auditioning. Lunch. Recording. Marketing. Snack. Marketing. Auditioning. Dinner. Marketing. #WoVoChat @MarcScott A9: Voicing, emails, marketing, lunch, voicing, marketing, voicing, invoicing, dinner. #WoVoChat @JohnnyG53 #WoVoChat A9: For me, it’s marketing in the morning, recording in the afternoon and brainstorming in the evening while drinking a Guiness! #WoVoChat @voiceoversbytd
  27. 27. #WoVoChat Q10: Why is this so hard? #WoVoChat
  28. 28. A10: Impulse Control = making a series of small decisions over a LONG period of time that move your forward. #WoVoChat @TomDheere A10: It takes self discipline, consistency and values. That’s why you need a Mission Statement and written down goals. #WoVoChat @TomDheere A10: Many are called, few make the right choices! #WoVoChat @TomDheere #WoVoChat A10: It’s hard because to be a truly successful voice talent requires maturity. Maturity = Impulse Control. #WoVoChat @TomDheere
  29. 29. A10: Because it’s constant work without a guaranteed paycheck. #WoVoChat @vallencourt A10: Is anything awesome and worthwhile ever easy? #WoVoChat @MarcScott A10: Because we love what we do. And so many share ideas, we are always reinventing ourselves to keep up. #WoVoChat @JohnnyG53 #WoVoChat A10: If it was easy, everyone in your family would be doing it! #WoVoChat @voiceoversbytd
  30. 30. #WoVoChat Join Us for the next #WoVoChat on Wednesday, April 22nd 12pmPT/2pmCT/3pmET! Topic: Marketing Your VO Business
  31. 31. Check out the entire 4-8-15 #WoVoChat at our Storify: Join us every 2nd & 4th Wednesday of the month in 2015 for #WoVoChat at 12pmPT/2pmCT/3pmET! #WoVoChat January 14th & 28th July 8th & 22nd February 11th & 25th August 12th & 26th March 11th & 25th September 9th & 23rd April 8th & 22nd October 14th & 28th May 13th & 27th November 11th & 25th June 10th & 24th December 9th & 23rd