Jump to content

The Truth About Voice Over Artists


Recommended Posts

Whenever people ask me, what I do for a living, I tell them "I am a voice over artist". Generally their response is: "That's cool, but you can't make a living off that, can you?". The honest truth is that if you are good, you can make a fortune by being a voice over artist. The key is marketing and building a base of satisfied clients. The question is, how hard is it to make it big? To be honest, it is pretty difficult to always have steady income coming in and I am going to share my story of how I am doing in my career.



Not too long ago, I left an agent who has "helped" me get work in the industry. Agents, in my opinion, are only there to make money off people and that is why I left. You pay an agent to do what you could do on your own if you worked hard at it. Now, being independent can be very hard, and most people who are independent have a second job because work is not guaranteed. Me? Well, the only job I have other than my voice over service is chartering out my sailboat for tours/sailing lessons here in Baltimore (Chesapeake Bay), as well as teaching sailing classes in the summer time. So, during the off season time, I rely 100% on my voice over service. Changing to being independent has been very difficult to me because after leaving my agent, alot of my clients went -poof-. Once again, marketing is the key, you can never forget it. Most of my clients now are either friends, family or local stations in my area (commercials). If you can imagine, I actually do make a decent profit. Some people who request FREE voice overs never seem to realize that, time is money, even if its 15 minutes. Those 15 minutes could have been money in our pockets. So, those of you who post requests here, keep that in mind...even a donation here and there shows a bit of thanks and encourages us to keep on giving.


My question to you all is, why not share your story with the community here at Broadcasting World? How did you get started? Do you have more than one job? Do you make more profit from voice overs or another career? Are you independent? I'm curious if other people are going through the same problems I have been recently, with the downsizing stations are doing, and using their own staff for voice over work.


I'll also use this time to encourage any stations/DJ's out there to check out my services for great deals on voice overs.



I can't wait to hear everyone's stories :)



Jon Bova


"Successful people have libraries. The rest have big screen TVs. - Jim Rohn"

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well JB ... You have made your point and I guess many people do have the same experiences.

Concerning myself ...

I never was a "real" VO, however when I'm in the right mood ... I can do the strangest things with my voice ... but to earn money with that I'm born to early and into the wrong country ...

I founded and started into 1978 my own radio and was one of the hosts and most important it was a hobby and to earn some money as young guy I did almost Weekly a dj MC gig at weddings, community events etc

Into time I had the opportunity to start full time at several radio projects and that was the step I made before I became an independent.

To tell a big story into a short way : at first sight my Father wasn't that satisfied with what his son did ... untill I told him that I earned almost the same amount of money in 2 days of what he received for 1 Month hard work.

Strange enough ... these days I adore to take part to broadcasting and production as "hobby man" ...

reason for that is simple : since I had the age of 16 - 17 I never knew the difference between weekdays, weekend and holidays ... I was going all the way ...

Making fun with my current project and being a BW member offers Me these days also a good feeling and I hope that what I'm doing is helpfull to others.

If you wanna learn more about Me ... well visit my own homepage :

http://www.djmcharry.be/ ... most of the items are also in English and you'll find a tab "Home English"

Enjoy ! :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hey Jon,


Nice thread here.


When im asked what i do for a living i reply " I work within the radio and imaging sector primarily i am a presenter first, voice and production second " so yes 2 jobs to make ends meet.

I started my career way back when i was 17 with a moblie disco Oh those were the days then moved up to hospital radio for a few years and then on to main stream fm. Its been a tough but very enjoyable journey one which i would gladly do again.


As for income from these ventures i do pretty good presenting obviously being my main source of income.

In the Voiceover sector i am independant and make a fair amount of money doing this maybe because of the contacts i have within the radio industry without them i think i wouldn't make a great deal at all, when i came across BW it wasnt for the extra income but more for the community and knowledge i could give and recieve as alot of my work here never gets paid for even though sometimes it was given on the basis of a donation but having said that the majority was given as freebies to market my voice as i still have a lot to learn.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well I guess I can give it a shot... Here it Goes:


Surprisingly I have a feeling that none of you Know (Except the few whom I have told) I am a Kid. Teenager really. I am Thirteen years of age, and I live in New York (Luckily Not the city). I am still in Middle school, Yet I spend alot of time on the internet. I got very interested when I was about nine, about websites and programming. I came across the game Runescape. I looked at it, Played it for a while then got bored. I left it for a few months and came back to it, and said to myself "Wow." At that time I realized how many people were playing that game. I started to think, If there were that many people, I would say about half spent money for premium memberships. Looking at Runescape right now membership is about seven dollars, Lets say there were a thousand people playing (Although there is wayyyyyy more.) Divide that in half, and multiply it by seven, That's 3500 PER MONTH for making a 'simple' game like that. So I began reading tutorials on the internet about programming and started a 'freebie' website. The Tutorials did nothing for me really so I grabbed a Radio DJ Panel And started to rip it apart and learn from it. I am now finishing up learning PHP / MYSQL and writing small web application from them. I make money when ever I can, by making some things for people, and getting paid via Paypal. I hope soon, to learn C+ and C++.


I came across this site, from google. Searching for "free shoutcast radio", That's when there was a giveaway contest was going on. I did what ever was required and won it, Had it for a month, then the service provider quit. I read alot of post on this site and said to my self "What a great community." I then became very interested in getting 'my neck in the woods' and Joined and met all of you. So far, and I hope it always will be a great experience. I've been with BW for awhile now, I've been with BW through The good times (all the time) and the bad times (Spammers, Site being hacked) and I always will be with Broadcasting World.


Although many times I have thought about getting into the business (VO's) I thought it was not the right time to get into it, seeing that I am young and my voice would not sound professional as all yours. I know, very little about radio broadcasting (except for the time when I DJ'ed on the internet) and it was a great experience, Yet I do not know what you people are talking about half the time, I am still here. I get interested in what you all are saying, and I research or find out what something is. I currently have two microphones, nothing great. One from my Webcam, (Logitech, my favorite brand) and a Logitech headset, Which I have two of. One is mine, (Broken, Microphone part that is) and the other is mine when I steal it from my older brother. He uses it to 'record' himself singing, and let me tell you, It's worst then Brittney Spears... :)


Any Questions? Feel free to ask, PM, Post, What ever Ill do my best to answer.




- - - - - - -


Now that you all know my age, Please do not think differently of me, treat me the same way you have been. I've been around alot of, D***s, So I know language, Act as if I was one of (and I know I am) your buddies.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Create New...