Tried ‘n’ True
One of the time-honored traditions in client/talent relations is loyalty. Once a strong, mutually-beneficial bond is formed for the right reasons, it’s common for producers to reflexively go with a proven performer time and again – sometimes for years.
And yet, no business should be above making a voice talent change if any part of the context around that arrangement no longer makes sense.
Five Indications It’s Time to Fire Your Voice Talent
1) Times change.
In other words, what were perfectly acceptable voice delivery styles 10, 5, or even 2 years ago are thrown under the bus with today’s fickle trends and attention spans. If your current talent can’t handle the new demands of advertisers and the marketplace, you may have to go with someone else.
2) Voices change.
With the march of time and maturity, that 20-something voice may no longer be what you’re hearing back from the jobs you’re sending out to that guy/gal you hired 5 years ago for Gen-Z spots.
3) Consumer preferences for voice over change.
Traditional announcer voice talent are all-too-familiar with this shift. Beyond automotive ads, and a live-announce gig, the VOG delivery is non-negotiable. If your end-point clients are demanding “conversational” (even if they can’t define it, see: Prodcers & Agents: Tell your Clients to Define Conversational), maybe your legacy talent is passé’. Is your go-to voice hitting the mark with cultural trends?
4) Is your voice artist taking you for granted?
Your steady flow of voice over work should never be a foregone conclusion. Is your voice talent giving the same effort to the project as before? Is the quality still high? Are they as attentive to your deadlines as they should be? Are they taking advantage your loyalty and good graces?
5) Has your standard talent kept up with technological/Social Media changes in the?
Today’s clients have come to depend on as much digital exposure from as many different directions as possible. Today’s online market is competitive.
- How’s your go-to guy/gal doing in that department?
- You switched from ISDN because of costs…did your talent understand that, comply with it, and accommodate your needs with the new IP solutions?
- Do they understand the new mastering techniques, file delivery options, and online collaboration tools?
Sometimes those tangential issues can make a difference when your regular contact is no better talent than the rest, and hasn’t been agile enough to stay with the other changes.
Have you considered giving someone else a chance?
Yes, I know predictability, and convenience is huge. You need it done now, and you need it done right, and XXX always comes through for you. But what if you took a modicum of effort to open up the field, and find someone just as dependable, cost-worthy, and even more attentive? If you haven’t looked in a while, you might be surprised.
Look, I’m not suggesting you go looking for trouble if it doesn’t exist; or change if there’s no obvious need. But if you regularly hire voice talent based on momentum (inertia) or convenience, then you may not be serving your business bottom-line or your end-clients with enough respect.