Researching the Client or Product

Researching the Client or Product

Posted by John in Articles

Researching the Client or Product

  • One script
  • Client name or ad agency
  • Computer
  • YouTube
  • Google


If these ingredients are blended properly, you will be one of the top VO Chefs in your kitchen.  The challenge with this is finding talent who are willing to take the time it needs to do the work.  I will admit to you, that this is something I never used to consider but I’ve learned as the years go by that many people are and if I want to stand out, I need to care about who is paying my bills.  Think of it this way; a client will pay us hundreds if not thousands of dollars, sometimes just for an hour of our time, so really, how dare we be too busy to put the time and effort into them.

I feel that a lot of talents have high expectations with little to offer in return.  Don’t get me wrong; we pay a lot into what we do.  Education, demos, websites, marketing, driving to auditions, studios etc., and so there is a reason we charge what we charge, but some of us are making some seriously good money in this industry and we owe it to the client to not only care about their project, but to care about them and what they want from us.

One of the best ways to accomplish this is to find out what their signature personality is.  For example if I’m voicing the role of Announcer for Sears vs the role of Mom for Sears, it’s important that I know what that might mean for Sears.  It won’t hurt me at all to go to their website, or look them up on google, or go to Youtube and type in Sears Commercial 2014 for example and see where their current style of advertising is.  It might have changed this year vs last year.  Or perhaps their mom style has changed, or perhaps it’s a bit more over the top than I assumed.
Or lets say you are voicing for a coffee company like Dunkin Donuts vs a coffee company like Starbucks.  There is a completely different form or style for each of these companies, and if I don’t take the time to research them, then when they say “non-announcer” I might actually miss the fact that it sounds like an announcer – even though their direction says “non-announcer”


Perhaps it’s a narration for a technology company and I make the assumption that they want a typical narration style.  If I take the time that it takes to look them up I might hear that they like a really young, natural read with tons of personality, or perhaps a sci-fi type read.  What the client describes in their direction for the auditions might not always be what they really want.  So taking the extra time to research them will pay off in more ways than one.
Another reason to research them is to have something to say.  If you are auditioning with pay2play type websites then you have the opportunity to speak to the client directly.  If you make your cover letter straight, to the point and personable, showing you’ve done some research (without sounding like you’re trying to kiss ass) then you will show the client you care about them.  You want them to notice you, so do what it takes to care about them and notice who they are.  This will go along way.


Until next time

All my best

VO Chef Deb

06 Jan 2015 No Comments

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