VAMFR 010 | Marketing and Self-Promotion for Voice Actors, Part 2

VAM_FieldReport_PodcastLogo_300px

VAMFR 010 | Marketing and Self-Promotion for Voice Actors, Part 2

Welcome to episode 10 of the Voice Acting Mastery: Field Report podcast!

In this episode our correspondent, DanWill McCann, shares with us the second part of his special report on how to market and promote yourself as a voice actor!

In the previous episode, DanWill began his discussion on marketing and self-promotion by looking at voice acting first and foremost as a business. While becoming a successful voice actor is a personal passion for many, it is always important to remember that your acting abilities and your vocal skills are the products you’re marketing to potential employers. DanWill discussed what marketing tools are most helpful in today’s market including business cards, demos and good old-fashioned face-to-face networking. In addition, he talked with some established professional voice actors about how they applied those techniques to market themselves.

In this episode, DanWill will be exploring how to use social media as a tool for self-promotion in the voice over industry. One thing DanWill’s noticed is that the more he develops his relationships with fellow voice actors, the broader his professional network becomes. This may be due to the fact that the voice acting community is, for the most part, made up of very friendly and congenial people. It’s easy to feel right at home with such generous peers. However, while it’s always good to develop friendships with your professional colleagues, it is also important to know when to adopt a more business-like attitude so that you don’t come off as being too intimate or familiar. This can be quite a challenge when you’re interacting over social media. Some sites have different cultures and traditions that you have to learn how to navigate in order to strike the right balance when communicating with industry professionals. What complicates the situation even further is the fact that social media platforms are constantly changing and expanding. It seems like there are new ones being created almost every month! DanWill has found it challenging to know the best ways to interact with voice over professionals online. So he went out and asked some well-known voice actors how they manage their own social media presence and marketing efforts.

Once again DanWill will be sharing advice from the same five talented and established performers who were kind enough to chat with him in the last episode. He met them at a Los Angeles area convention called WonderCon, and they were gracious enough to share their insights and experience. We’ll be hearing from David Sobolov, who specializes in deep voiced villains like Grodd in the TV show The Flash. We’ll also talk with the talented husband and wife team of Lex Lang and Sandy Fox. You may know Sandy from her bubbly performances in Sailor Moon Crystal and Lex may sound familiar to you as the voice of Dr. Doom from the Marvel Heroes video game. Dino Andrade will join us as well, a voice actor who has played numerous characters in the World of Warcraft video game franchise. Also speaking with us will be Rikki Simons, the voice of Gir in the animated series Invader Zim. DanWill found it very interesting to address the same topics with several different actors and see how each one of them had a different approach to social media. DanWill really appreciated their insights and he can’t wait to share with you what he learned, so let’s get started!

The VAM Field Report will be released on the 1st Wednesday of every month so stay on the look out for it!

 

Download VAM Field Report Episode #10 Here (MP3)

 

10 Responses to “VAMFR 010 | Marketing and Self-Promotion for Voice Actors, Part 2”

  1. Kalyn McCabe says:

    On Facebook, you can also share a project as your Facebook Page. Great way to promote both the studio and your page.

    Tumblr is also fantastic for spreading media around. You can post videos, audio (up to 5 minutes, as of this writing), text posts. It’s much like a blog. You can customize your tumblr’s theme and give it a specific username. You can follow and reblog/like other people’s posts as well!

    That’s my little add on~ thank you for all that wonderful info, DanWill! Can’t wait for the next one.

    • DW McCann says:

      Thank you, Kalyn, for your added information!

      Sharing a project or event on Facebook is great for getting the word around. I am also looking into how projects work on LinkedIn, instead of listing each project you work on as an item in your resume. LinkedIn has a specific path to create projects, though it has seemed a little tricky so far.

      I haven’t tried Tumblr yet. I think I will look into it, thank you! What kind of projects do you personally tend to share that highlight your voice acting? Or do you highlight your acting in general? Have you found groups there for doing the same, or do you have to gather your own followers?

      And also, thank you for listening. I am also really excited for part 3! Take care!
      ~DW

      • Kalyn McCabe says:

        I don’t really highlight my voice acting in general on my tumblr, but if another user posts a project I’ve been in or some of my own stuff, I usually throw it on there. But that is a really nice thought to make a blog dedicated to my voice acting in general! Perhaps I’ll make another one specifically for my acting.

        For Tumblr, you do have to gather your own followers and follow others to have a feed in the Twitter sense, and there is a search bar where you can find posts with a specific “tag”, much like Twitter’s hashtags. So typing in “voice acting” (with no #) will bring up all the post that have that tag in the first 5 tags of the post (Tumblr only searches the first 5 tags of a post, anything after is non searchable, why? I have no idea.). But groups? I’ve yet to see one. It’s more individual based.

        But yes, Tumblr is like twitter, but more on the artsy, multimedia kinda way, in contrast to Twitter’s 140 character limit blurb.

        • DW McCann says:

          Thank you for the extra information on Tumblr. I just started poking around and it seems like an interesting site.

          I hope the voice acting blog goes well!
          ~DW

  2. Sarah Dawe says:

    Thank you for this information! I had no idea how important social media could be for developing a career in voice acting! It will now be another focus of mine going forward.

    PS. Thanks for following me back on Twitter! 😀

    • DW McCann says:

      Glad to hear you found the episode useful! And happy to add back on Twitter, we all have to stick together in this biz, have each other’s backs. See you around the Twitter-verse!
      ~DW

  3. Thank you for your insights!

    -At around the 7:52 minute mark, you talk about voice actors spending more time alone. Do you see this continuing to become more prevalent as time goes on, in regards to, for example, animation? Are the days of everyone recording together heading towards extinction?

    -I was also beginning to see that having to manage and plan for a fanbase BEFORE you have one is a profound idea, and seeing confirmation of this is very helpful.

    -Can you give tweets multiple hashtags?

    -Would I have to create a seperate account to make a Public Page vs a personal page on Facebook?

    -Youtube question: To comment on a video, you have to “create a channel”. By doing this, can people see what you are subscribed to, and is/could this be another way of extending your network?

    -Thanks as always, these are very helpful.

    • DW McCann says:

      Hi Jeremiah, and thank you for the detailed and insightful questions. Let me share my thoughts on them.

      With regards to your first questions: in my experience so far, I don’t think group recording sessions are going away anytime soon, especially for pre-lay animation and some video games. It is wonderful to get more natural reactions when you are responding to the other actors in the room with you rather than reacting to how you THINK they will read the previous line. With regards to dubbing for anime, I expect we will continue to go into a studio for most, if not all, projects, as their setup is best for the work involved; and I can’t imagine trying to do my own editing while trying to match lip flap! However, the better home studios get, I think we may see a rise in commercial and some video game sessions being recorded at home, sometimes alone or sometimes with a director or client on a phone patch. It saves them having to book studio time. These are just my thoughts and predictions, though Crispin, in his extensive experience and finger on the pulse, may have some more to add on this question.

      I am glad I could reaffirm what you had figured out on your own: that it is helpful to think about how you hope to handle and interact with a fanbase before you have one, as it can be a challenge to put plans like this in place while you are trying to do your best to work and focus on the projects you were fortunate enough to land that brought you the notoriety of a fanbase!

      As for hashtags, on both Twitter and Facebook, you can put as many hashtags as you want, and, if they are popular hashtags, each one increases the exposure of your post. Two things to consider: 1) using existing hashtags means it is more likely people search those terms. being the first to coin a hashtag means you have to help spread its popularity. When I first started out, I tried to promote my own hashtags like #LAThtr, #ShakespeareLA (which turned out to be used for Louisiana), #conversationstarters… all which did not lead to a lot of exposure for those posts. Twitter has a list of trending hashtags to the left and the comedy show @Midnight always has a new one each night for you to try and join in the funny! 2) In Twitter specifically, too many hashtags reduce the amount of characters you can use for content. Be sure to keep that in mind and be selective!

      In response to your question about Facebook and personal/public pages, you would not need a new personal account. When on your personal account, there is a downward facing triangle in the upper right corner. If you click on that, “Create a Page” is one of your options! Then, just follow the steps!

      And as for Youtube: Yes, I agree that commenting and subscribing and people seeing what you subscribe to is a great way for them to see if they have similar interests to you and can increase your network base!

      I hope you find these answers useful and thank you again for listening, even more so for commenting and keeping the conversation going! Take care!

      ~DW

    • Crispin Freeman says:

      Hi there Jeremiah. I’m very grateful to DW for giving you such detailed responses to your questions. Let me just chime in on the issue of voice actors spending more time alone. Much of that alone time is due to the nature of auditioning in the age of the internet and cheap home studio equipment. Before, voice actors got to socialize because they had to go in to a casting director’s office or their agent’s office in order to audition for projects. That allowed actors to socialize and trade information and advice. Those days are mostly gone. Almost every voice actor is expected to have their own home studio where they can record auditions and turn them around to producers on very short notice. However, the nature of how voice over jobs are recorded is not changing as drastically. While there are actors who are able to do narration style voice over jobs from their home studio, the majority of character based voice acting is still done in a third party studio. Video games and anime are almost always recorded one actor at a time. TV animation is almost always recorded in a group. I don’t see those patterns changing any time soon.

  4. Thank you so much for taking the time to answer my questions. I’ll keep asking!

    -Jeremiah

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: