Work Your VO Sweet Spot

You can’t be everything to everybody. A truism because it’s, you know, true. In life, we are many things to a variety of people: Spouse, partner, parent, sibling, employee, manager, cook, athlete, artist, voice actor. It’s exhilarating. And exhausting. Why do we insist on being some many things in our voice careers when, let’s face it, we’re only really excellent at one, and pretty good at a couple other things?

All that time spent pitching jobs we perform adequately, if not brilliantly,  might be better spent unearthing projects – some right in our own back yard – that best flaunt our  talent, and better suit  our unique sensibilities.  Streamline and simplify.  In other words, find your niche.

Maybe it’s time to take stock, assess what you excel at, invest your energy to promote your money-maker. What’s your voice over sweet spot? Quirky characters? Amazing storytelling,  and endurance for audio books? A trusted, approachable way with big word pharma projects? Go with that. Focused attention, and intention showcase your VO excellence, and not only make you an expert, but the go-to person for that genre. Their voice over super hero. Dazzle them with what’s already in your wheelhouse.

A probate lawyer doesn’t take on a capital murder case. An orthopedic surgeon isn’t the person to see for a mammogram. Specialists: A group elevated to coveted ‘best of list’ and cult-like loyalty. Like my colorist: Absolute genius with lowlights. And worth every penny.

In a world of middling generalists, be a specialist. Find your sweet spot. Do what you do best. Then tell everyone about it.

Boston area marketing maven, Evelyn Starr helps brands that are ‘stuck in adolescence,’ those businesses going through a mid-career crisis. I’d like to pass on her brilliance with this link on why it’s important to find your niche. Enjoy

The Thrill of Victory

“I found these in the front yard.” My son, grass stained, and sweaty from mowing the lawn, dangled a heavy set of keys, and dropped them into my hand. Among myriad car and house keys was half of a small plastic bar code card, its other half probably chewed away by the blades of our lawn mower. I recognized the logo on the other side as that of my local yoga studio.

Checking into class that evening, I handed the keys to the studio manager, and told him the story. On my way out of class, he stopped me, and said, “Hey, we found the owner of the keys, and he left you this.”

He slid a small envelope across the counter addressed to me.

The relieved owner, who’d been separated from his keys for three weeks, thanked us, and mentioned a time he’d found someone else’s keys on the high school field, and tracked down the owner. He hoped someone would experience the same ‘thrill of victory’ in finding his keys, and pay the kindness forward.

The thrill of victory. In our business, we often think about it in terms of what we get, and not what we give. Book the gig. Win over a client. Receive an award. Amazing accomplishments, but not necessarily daily occurrences. A typical day may not present ‘the thrill of victory.’

It could.

Show some client love and appreciation with a small gift, or email of gratitude. Encourage an emerging or struggling colleague. Refer another voice actor for a job you’re neither available, nor appropriate. The client will view you as connected and smart, and you’ll get that warm, toasty feeling of lifting up another voice actor. Which may be reciprocated in the future. Win-win-win.

Have a resource you can share? Studio hack, fabulous editor, amazing coach: share it. All that talk of a rising tide? It’s a thing.

Offer your voice to a cause or organization that does good. These days we can use all the positivity we can get.

The richness of our day is not defined solely by our bookings. The thrill of victory can be found in a variety of big and small moments in our day. Are you feeling it?