2nd October 2013

10 Tips for Choosing the Right Voice for Your Videos

When you’re making a company video, deciding the right voice is not an easy task.  You don’t want it to sound off, and you want it to appeal to the viewer. Determining a voice for any video isn’t an easy task, so we compiled a list of 10 helpful tips to guide you.

  1. Focus in on the audience. Ask yourself who you want your primary audience to be. Generally, if your audience is gender specific, it’s a good idea to use a voice of the same gender.

  2. Fit the voice to your brand. Is your brand sophisticated, fun, playful, edgy, etc? Match the voice to your brand. If you’re promoting a child’s game use an energetic/fluctuating voice, but if you are promoting high class liquor consider using a more sophisticated message and voice.

  3. Specify a vocal style. Vocal style gives a video character. Some of the different styles include warm, quirky, romantic, humorous, etc.

  4. Don’t bypass the subtle qualities. Small things matter with a voice portraying your company. Think about how well the words are enunciated, if is there a nice rhythm, and the tone of the voice isn’t pitchy.

  5. Not too fast; not too slow; but just right. Let’s bring up the “Goldilocks and the Three Bears” analogy, shall we. If the voice is too fast, parts of the message will be missed. If the voice is too slow, parts of the message will be missed because people will quit watching the video. But if the video is just right…you are golden!

  6. Think employees first. Employees are a great in-house talent source. Before even considering outsourcing your video’s narration, test your employees. It makes perfect business sense using the resources you have first.

  7. Hunt down the perfect voice. If your employees don’t have the magic voice, consider using some of the following sites to locate what your ear desires.

  1. Know your equipment. Do some basic research about recording equipment, so you can question the actor about the equipment they use; after all, you don’t want to spend money on a recording made using an outdated cassette recorded because digital is king!

  2. Understand the edit policy. Find out if your voice artist has an edit policy, and how you go about changing a word in the audio if you don’t like how it sounds.

  3. Remember to ask about turn-around time. Make sure this project will fit in your timeframe. Some voice-over artists can get a bit backed-up with other projects.

If you remember these tips, your video’s voice will surpass the competition. As Don LaFontaine would have stated, “In a world, where all voices are great…I would be without a career.”

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About the Author

Anish hails from London and holds a degree in software engineering from the University of Manchester. Following his education, he worked for several years in the financial industry as a platform administrator before founding Revolution Productions in 2008. In addition to over seven years of video production, Anish is seen as an industry professional, adding his insight in publications such as VentureBeat, ReelSEO and Wistia.

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