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How to Hire Voice Actors

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Looking for the right voice to bring your project to life? Read our comprehensive guide on how to hire voice actors and make your next production a success.

Voice acting is a crucial component when producing various types of content, from commercials to animated films. Naturally, as the demand for high-quality voice talent continues to grow, it's essential to hire the best voice actors for your projects.

This article will guide you through the process of hiring voice actors, from understanding their roles to utilizing the right tools and resources.

What voice actors do

Voiceover actors are versatile performers who utilize their vocal skills to breathe life into characters, narrate stories, and convey messages across various forms of media. The ability to modulate their tone, pitch, and inflection allows them to create a wide range of emotional and expressive performances that captivate audiences and leave a lasting impact.

The history of voice acting can be traced back to the early days of radio and voice recording technology.

One of the earliest examples of a voiceover in mass media is "Steamboat Willie," a 1928 Disney cartoon. This pioneering piece of animation marked a significant milestone in the development of the vast industry we know today. However, voice actors were already being utilized for informational purposes before they started appearing in cartoons and films.

Many consider Reginald Fessenden the leader of today's vast voiceover industry. In 1900, Reginald successfully transmitted a weather notice from the coast of Maryland. This was a significant achievement because "Steamboat Willie" wasn't released until nearly three decades later. Nevertheless, home radios didn’t become commonplace until much later, and Fessenden's recording was sent to only one recipient. As a result, "Steamboat Willie" remains the first voiceover in popular memory.

Today, professional voice actors are an integral part of various industries and genres, including advertising, animation, documentaries, video games, audiobooks, e-learning courses, and podcasts. They provide voices for beloved characters in movies, TV shows, and video games and create compelling narrations for documentaries and audiobooks.

Some voice actors specialize in only one language, like English, German, or French, but the industry is now embracing actors with multiple accents and dialects. This skill is invaluable in the globalized media landscape, where actors need to adapt their projects to various cultural contexts. 

Professional voiceover artists also lend their voices to TV commercials, explainer videos, and interactive voice response (IVR) systems.

Essential voice acting traits and skills to look for

To hire the right voice actor for your project, be aware of the following essential considerations:

  • Versatility: A skilled voice actor should be able to adapt different types of voices to suit different characters, emotions, and situations. They should be able to convey the right tone and mood for the project.
  • Language proficiency: Voiceover work demands excellent command and fluency. The artist needs to have mastered pronunciation, grammar, and different accents. To demonstrate their proficiency, most voice actors produce voiceover samples that can be quite useful when selecting the right voice for your next project.
  • Acting ability: A professional voice actor should be able to portray emotions and characters convincingly so as to engage the listener and maintain their interest. A live recording session provides the perfect platform to gauge the talent's acting skills. Organizing one shouldn't be too difficult, as most professional voice artists have personal home studios and will be able to send you custom auditions in minutes.
  • Technical skills: The best voice actors invest in quality recording equipment capable of producing high-quality audio files. The actor should also be proficient in audio editing tools and post-production technology.

Where to hire a voice actor

  • Voices.com: This is one of the largest online marketplaces for voice actors, with over 2 million registered members. You can post the requirements of your project and receive auditions from a variety of voice actors. The service also offers project management tools, payment processing, and support services.
  • Voice123: With over 250,000 completed works, Voice123 is one of the most popular destinations for entrepreneurs looking for that perfect voice for various projects. The service also offers tools for managing projects and payments.
  • Voquent.com: This platform focuses on international voiceover services. It provides a curated selection of voice actors from around the world. You can browse through the site's voiceover artists and book directly with the talent you choose.
  • Backstage.com: This is a popular platform for actors, models, and performers of all kinds, including voice actors. Thanks to a large talent pool with a good mix of male and female voices, job postings receive responses almost instantly.
  • Voiver.com: Voiver is a platform that connects clients with professional voice actors who specialize in e-learning and instructional voiceovers. You can browse through the site's talent pool and book directly with the actor of your choice.
  • Bodalgo.com: Bodalgo is a global voiceover marketplace with over 10,000 voice actors in its network. You can search for talent by language, location, accent, or age.
  • The Voice Realm: This is a global online marketplace that connects clients with professional voice actors. The site offers various voiceover services, including radio ads, corporate narrations, and TV commercials.

Use Speechify Voiceover as a seamless narration tool

Speechify Voiceover is an innovative, versatile tool that offers a seamless narration experience.

With Speechify, finding the right voiceover talent for your project doesn't have to be difficult. The platform uses text to speech technology to generate over 200 HD voices, helping you create professional-grade voiceovers that sound natural and engaging. You can adopt as many character voices as you wish, including your very own custom voices.

Additionally, it supports over 20 languages and accents, so you can target as many dialects as you wish. Whether you're looking to create subtitles for TV commercials or generate marketing material for your social media channels, Speechify has got you covered.

Try Speechify Voiceover today and discover hundreds of voices that transform your device into an A-list recording studio for all your voiceover projects.

FAQ

How much does it cost for a voice actor?

The cost of a voice actor can vary widely, but on average, it ranges from $100 to $1,000 per hour of recording time.

How do you pay someone for voice acting?

Voice actors are usually paid per minute of finished audio.

Is it easy to find quality voice actors?

Yes, it’s relatively easy to find quality voice actors, especially with the growing number of online marketplaces and talent agencies that specialize in voiceover services.

Cliff Weitzman

Cliff Weitzman

Cliff Weitzman is a dyslexia advocate and the CEO and founder of Speechify, the #1 text-to-speech app in the world, totaling over 100,000 5-star reviews and ranking first place in the App Store for the News & Magazines category. In 2017, Weitzman was named to the Forbes 30 under 30 list for his work making the internet more accessible to people with learning disabilities. Cliff Weitzman has been featured in EdSurge, Inc., PC Mag, Entrepreneur, Mashable, among other leading outlets.