Part III, Your VO Social Media Plan

by | Jun 7, 2011 | Networking, Social/Professional Networking, VO Community | 18 comments

Repeat after me:  Voice Acting is a business…Voice Acting is a business…Voice Acting is a business.

Yeah, it’s a fun business.  There are real ego-boosting moments.  It’s performance, it’s technology, it’s rubbing up against Hollywood.  All that.

But above all, it’s a business.

Getting down to…er…BUSINESS

Self-styled Social Ecologist Peter Drucker was famously attributed with saying:  “…the purpose of a business is to create a customer…”  Notice he didn’t say: “grow” the business, but “create a customer.”

Uh-huh.  What exactly does that pie-in-the-sky gobbledygook double-speak MEAN, Dave?   It means you better give some serious consideration to what you will be doing for roughly 80% of your time in this business:  marketing, sales, finding a need to fill, convincing the prospect you can fill that need, and then providing customer service better than anyone else at a competitive price you can live with and still feed your family.  THEN you can get behind the mic.

Where Social Media Fits In

So you’re willing to spend most of your time finding clients, and not just play around in your studio.  Great!  You’ve found the financing, sketched out a business plan, read Peter O’Connell’s Voice-Over Entrance Exam, and perused through all the links on my blog article:  Advice for Newbies, part II (just making sure…if you’re an experienced VO, and just want the Social Media tips, skip that last part).

Yes, Dave…I’m ready to do the work.  How can Social Media help me?

You’re alive at the right time in the history of humankind.  The kind of marketing tools that Twitter and FaceBook and YouTube provide have NEVER been available before in history.  They’re FREE.  They reach more people than you could handle if just 1% of them offered you a job.

Great.  But how do I find them?  Well, some of them will come to you in time by doing your social networking right, and that’s Part IV tomorrow.

The Holy Grail of Leads

But how to actively seek out qualified prospects?  There’s a free social media tool for that, too, and it’s called LinkedIn.

Using their basic free membership, and working its deep, broad, and advanced search tools, you can find more names, addresses, descriptions and information about specific companies seeking voice talent…or studios who use voice talent than you can possibly contact for the rest of this year.  For a mere $24.95/mo you can upgrade to a “business” account and have access to even more extensive resources!

I’m not going to do a step-by-step tutorial right here…that would be an insult to your intelligence, because you’re smart enough easily navigate the intuitive and rich LinkedIn interface and make your own way.  Right?  I kid, but seriously…it’s not hard, and I don’t want to (1) give away too many of my secrets, nor (2) limit the unique style YOU will develop in mining the deep veins of golden prospects on this social media site.

Nonetheless, watch the video below I put together about a year ago on this very subject.  It’s still totally germane to this topic.

CourVO

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18 Comments

  1. George Whittam

    Nice work and a very polished presentation with that screen cast, Courvo!
    I’ve been a member of LinkedIn for 6 or 7 years now, but not sure it’s ever lead to a job. It’s all about relationship building, so it’s just a part of that process for me.
    Perhaps it applies more to those seeking VO work, as apposed to a studio tech seeking clients.

    Reply
    • CourVO

      George….

      When I dragged that video out of the archives and dusted it off, I realized at the time I had worked my way into a pretty good familiarity with CamTasia, that is probably pretty rusty now. I need to do more of that stuff… I guess after doing 3 newscasts/day, I’m just tired of “playing to the camera”.

      But you’re right about the relationship building…. some days THAT’S an effort, too… I like to joke that I’m an introvert in a very extroverted job…thank goodness…I’m at heart more of a geek than gregarious. But my guess is that the LinkedIn search tools would work just as well for you to find possible clients. Just play with it… you’ll be surprise how it works for you in ways you didn’t expect.

      Thanks for commenting, George!

      Dave Courvoisier

      Reply
  2. Randye Kaye

    Dave, Dave – awesome as always! Thanks for all you do, all the info you provide. You rock!
    Randye

    Reply
    • CourVO

      Randye,

      Thanks for reading and commenting, Randye….I’d write it anyway…but it means so much more to know somebody took the time to digest it, and even more…to comment with an attaboy!

      You’re the best!

      Hope all is well,

      Dave C

      Reply
  3. Rick Lance

    Thanks for the review, Dave!
    I’ve never used the “deep search” function on LinkedIn.
    Don’t remember this video either. So good to have the review!

    Reply
    • CourVO

      Rick,

      Yeah, I dragged out that CamTasia tutorial video from the archives, and realized it still was relevant. LinkedIn is ALL about deep search. That’s what really sets it apart from the other more — can I say “frivolous” — social media sites. LinkedIn is more serious, and more business-like, and those advanced search tools really let you drill down into the site. It’s not perfect, but it’s one of the best social networking search tools I’ve seen

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

      Dave C

      Reply
  4. Andy Boyns

    Great information about LinkedIn. On the one hand, one of the things I like about LinkedIn is that invitations tend to be pre-qualified… I tend to have more faith that I’m not being spammed. On the other hand, I’m beginning to wonder about the benefits of the LinkedIn Open Network group, and making my profile more accessible.
    As a LION yourself, what’s your take on the advantages/disadvantages of this more open approach?
    thanks, as ever
    andy

    Reply
    • CourVO

      Andy,

      LinkedIn has backed-off its rigid approach to requiring you know ALL members of your network. I’ve embraced the LION concept because when I DO begin searching for a certain profile type; person representing a certain industry; or just a single individual, I have a ready population at hand to begin my search who are already 1st, 2nd, or 3rd-level connections.

      ‘Glad you stopped by, and congrats on Williams’ successes!

      Reply
  5. Michelle Mendoza

    Awesome blog Dave! Using Social Networking is so important now a days. Employers can find you easier and it could lead you to a few great jobs, and like you said its free! Might as well use it if you have nothing to lose.

    Reply
    • CourVO

      Hi Michelle,

      There’s very little downside to embracing at least a minimum of exposure on the Social Networks. Yes, people can make missteps with serious consequences (a la Weiner) on social networks, but done right, it’s an advantage.

      Thanks for stopping by!

      Dave C

      Reply
      • Michelle Mendoza

        I completely agree Dave. The consequences to having a bad image online could be great, but overall if you keep a clean profile then it should be a great advantage. Take care

        Reply
        • CourVO

          Michelle,

          ‘Glad you concur. Thanks for stopping by and commenting!

          Dave Courvoisier

          Reply
  6. Paul Strikwerda

    Dave digs deeper!

    I must admit that I’ve used LinkedIn primarily for the groups I enjoy being a part of. Instead of brief, facebook style watercooler conversations, I can have in-depth discussions with my peers and peeps.

    I also use LinkedIn to do a quick background check on colleagues and companies I’ve never heard of.

    Perhaps it’s time to do some thrilling deep drilling into their database and unearth new markets and potential customers.

    Thanks for another excellent episode of Dave digs deeper!

    Paul

    Reply
    • CourVO

      Paul,

      You grace me with your visit! I think if you nose around a little on the Linked site, you’ll see ways to search that you hadn’t yet discovered. Let me know if I can help in any way!

      Dave C

      Reply
  7. Peter K. O'Connell

    Good stuff as always….even in repeats! :))

    Best always,
    – Peter

    Reply
    • CourVO

      Repeats! You know all my stuff is fresh…er…well, at least in tin foil.

      CourVO

      Reply
  8. ナイキ ランニングシューズ 超安

    Hi! I know this is kinda off topic nevertheless I’d
    figured I’d ask. Would you be interested in trading links or maybe
    guest authoring a blog post or vice-versa? My website covers a lot of
    the same subjects as yours and I feel we could greatly benefit from each other.
    If you happen to be interested feel free to shoot me an e-mail.

    I look forward to hearing from you! Terrific blog
    by the way!

    Reply
    • CourVO

      I’m open to your suggestion. What is the URL of your blog.

      Dave C

      Reply

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