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More Answers to Your Voiceover Questions - Round 2

Updated: Sep 13, 2020

Gabby sits down and answers more of your voiceover questions like: Where do I find VO jobs? Why can't I find work? How do I pay taxes? What are royalties? Does Toastmasters equal a career in Voiceover? How do you do VO with a full time job? Where are the talent agents?

More Answers to Your Voiceover Questions - Round 2 - 9:34

Hey everybody, welcome to another edition of The Gift of Gab. Today we are continuing our Youtube series of answering your most common questions about voiceover.

Question: Does Toastmasters equal a career in voiceovers? No... Not that I've seen. In fact, I don't even totally understand what Toastmasters does? I feel like I guess if you're learning to speak to a large group and to present information on a corporate level or setting, or to give speeches, that there's probably a lot of benefit to Toastmasters, especially if you're shy or if you just have some issues with confidence in your delivery with large groups of people... so I'm sure Toastmasters is great and there's a lot of benefit to it in that, but have I ever seen it really be hugely beneficial to voiceover actors? I can't say that I have. Your better bet, or your better time investment, is to take some acting classes. Question: I'm just i'm gonna read it because, this is, wow... okay... so on this video that I did about voiceover agents, and how to get one, and when to know if you're ready to get one, one Youtuber asked, "If not having an agent, how does a voice actor find roles that don't offer one-time payment that ultimately mean people may later be making continuous money off of something you got paid minimally for? Wow so I *think* what this person is asking about is residuals, and residuals are a very real part of the acting profession, and voiceover is no exception to that. If you book a job and you get paid on a session, and a usage, and the client decides that they then want to extend the usage of that material, they pay you again for this usage. That is called a residual and the whole job is under a contract that makes that possible. So what can happen to folks who are very, very, new to voice over in the very early stages of their career is: they often get involved in a project that they either fail to inquire about usage and they get taken advantage of that way - meaning that they sign what's known as an in-perpetuity deal or a buyout - and so what then happens is the material and the voice-over that you recorded are owned by the company and owned by the person who actually holds that contract. Therefore you get no more money. So the way to avoid it is to not do that. If you don't sign a buyout or agree to a buyout term, then that can't happen, and this is largely the big difference between union and non-union work. You see a lot of debate and you see a lot of divide amongst voice actors about this very topic because it's a bit heated, but ultimately it comes down to: get paid for your session, get paid for your usage, make sure that that usage has a expiration date or a restriction, whatever it might be, whatever term you agree to, and then know when it's set to expire, so that if the client wants to continue to use the material, they have to pay you again. Question: Paul Tinsley asked, "May I ask a question?" Yes Paul, yes you may! Continue. "Well that was silly, how would I know what you answered? Ha ha. I'm gonna assume you said yes." Yes I did, I said yes. "Okay if I were to assume you said no, this would be the end of this comment." Right Paul, get on with it. Let's do this, ask the damn question! "Okay I'm wondering what a typical day is like for someone just starting out in this vo adventure? I'm working part time and mornings, and is it possible to spend the rest of my day sitting at my computer trying to find out where I can look for jobs to audition for?" Yes and that's exactly what you should be doing! I assume when you say you're working mornings it means exactly what it sounds like, you're working a job that probably has you clocking out or done by about 11 a.m, typically before noon. Yes that means you have the entire rest of the day in which to audition for jobs, scout for opportunities, network, promote your services, and that's how you do it. You get out there. Most voice actors don't start off as voice actors, full time. We start off doing something else, whether it's on camera, theater, radio, broadcasting, some other form of television or entertainment, and we work our way up to full-time voice actor. But when we were part-time, that's what we were doing with the rest of that time, was really building up our businesses. So absolutely, if you've got the time to invest, get your ass out there and meet people, network, and sell your services. Hustle! Question: So in one of my YouTube videos where I talk about submitting to voice over agents one YouTuber asked, "So where can I submit? Basically how do I find talent agents?"

Well I don't know how long I'm gonna have it up there, but for the time being, if you go to my website, right on the homepage, there is a section for my free voiceover talent agent directory, and it's basically something my staff and I have compiled. It's vetted, it's confirmed, it is a list of talent agents across the country who accept voiceover demos, and how and what they look for, and you just start going down the list and submitting your material. But make sure you have the right material - don't make me look bad! Question: So in this video about beginner voice over rates, thiskid2 asked about taxes and do taxes get taken out of voiceover work like a regular job? No... no they do not. So every voiceover actor is a freelancer. We are sole proprietors, solopreneurs, entrepreneurs, whatever you want to call us. We run our own business, which means most of us are operating as actual businesses with the government. We have corporations, LLC's, sole proprietorships and therefore, at the end of the year, we get a bunch of tax forms called 1099s, and then we have to pay our taxes from that. If we are set up as a corporation, we pay them quarterly and we have accountants and other fun money management people to help us do that. So yeah, that's that's how that works. Question: In the video "Five Things You Should Never Do in Your Voiceover Auditions", worldhunter95 asked, "I get what you mean, but where do I find them?" Meaning voiceover jobs. He said, "I'm asking as a grown voice actor who can't find any work." Okay, so the big question there is, where are you looking? That's primarily where we see the problem. When I meet voice actors who tell me that they're really, really struggling, and they're not finding jobs, and they're having a super hard time just getting opportunities, then that's what I want to help you figure out, is where are you looking for these opportunities? What are you doing? Because if you're looking in the wrong place... well, yeah, no wonder you're struggling. No wonder you're having a hard time. First and foremost, you have to, have to, have to identify the area of the industry you're trying to get work in. If you don't know what area of voice over you're trying to make a name for yourself and trying to dominate, you're going to have a really hard time. Half the battle in finding work is knowing what companies are hiring, why, when, where, if they hire on a regular basis, basically how frequent their need is for voice actors, because if you don't know that, you could be searching for the wrong thing.

There's no possible way for me to cover all of that in a Gift of Gab video, it would just be way too lengthy. But I do have one of my pre-recorded business classes that you can take a look at if you really want to dive deep into this, and it'll help you to understand all of the different aspects of how to market yourself, and get your voice out there, and really find clients because that's what it's all about. Hey guys, thanks so much for watching. If you want to be featured on an upcoming Gift of Gab or you just have a question for me that you'd love for me to answer about voiceover and your voiceover career, send it over, I'm happy to do it. You can email me at or shoot me a message on one of the socials. Thanks so much for watching, we'll see you next time.

Gabrielle Nistico, Gabby Nistico, The Voiceover Vixen, The Business First VO Coach, #VoiceoverVixen #VoiceOnFire #BusinessFirstVOCoach Voiceover, Charlotte, North Carolina, Voiceover Demo, Voiceover Coaching Advice, What Not To Do, Working Actors, Los Angeles, New York, Virtual Voiceover Exchange, How to Be a Better Voice Actor, Ask Gabby Anything, Biggest Voiceover Questions, VO 101


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