When launching a business, there is a concept called, “Cost of Entry.” Cost of Entry is the cash spent to start your business. When you decide to become a voice over actor, there are definitely Costs of Entry: your education, demo, website, and home studio, to name a few. All totaled, these basic necessities to launch a proper VO career total $5,000-$10,000. Seems like a lot when you look at it as one number, so actors tend to find ways to cut corners. They try to find a cheaper demo, but don’t bother learning any skills to book a job. They have no online presence, and then wonder why no agent will sign them without a track record. Actors skimp on their cost of entry and then wonder why they’re never able to make a full-time living in a business that can be incredibly lucrative.
Anytime there is a business with a relatively low Cost of Entry, the market will always be flooded. Lots of people want to do voice over (can’t blame them, it’s awesome), but the market doesn’t need any more voice over actors. So if you are dead set on launching this voice over career of yours, how do you intend to set yourself apart in this flooded market? Why does the marketplace need YOU?
If you want to hit the ground running, be excellent, in every way. Hone your skills until you are amazing (and then hone some more), get the best demo you can, make a kick-ass website, have an online presence and start booking jobs, spend some extra $$ on the nicest home studio and soundproofing you can afford. It’s a bargain to invest $5,000-$10,000 to help yourself become excellent. If spending $1500 on an excellent demo nets you $250,000 in bookings and the ear of several agents who want to sign you, isn’t that better than spending $500 for an OK demo that nets you very few to no bookings, agency passes, and nary a skill set to use on an audition? An OK demo doesn’t cut it. You need an excellent demo. You need excellent skills. You need an excellent marketing plan, and you need…wait for it…an excellent home studio.
If you know you want a career in voice over, do everything in your power to stand out in the marketplace and be excellent.