I received an interesting question from an aspiring voice talent the other day.
Being new to the business, and having no paid gigs yet, they were uneasy about the idea of a Pay 2 Play sites like Voice123 or Voices.com. Understandably, $300 is a lot of money to spend if you’ve never booked a job before. It’s not an investment I’d recommend to anyone. Not until you’ve got some experience under your belt.
Putting the P2P sites aside, other sites were then discussed like Elance and Freelancer. My experience with these two sites is limited. To about 5 minutes. I signed up for accounts with both a couple years ago. When I saw the rates being posted, and the bids “professionals” were placing on certain gigs, I knew I was wasting my time.
The next site mentioned by this aspiring talent was Fiverr.
5 Bucks… 5 Bucks… 5 Bucks…
In case you’re unfamiliar with the site, it works like this. For $5 you can find anyone, anywhere in the world, who is willing to do just about anything, for the low, low price of $5.
To be honest, the concept is intriguing.
Need a new logo? Get one for $5.
Need a web guru to solve a WordPress problem? Find one for $5.
Need help troubleshooting software? Tech support… $5.
Want to photoshop a zit off your head shot? Airbrushing… $5.
I’ve surfed the site. You really can find just about anything you can think of and there really are people who will do it for $5!
How Much Does It Cost?
The question I had to ask myself, and in turn, the question I asked this aspiring talent is, “how much will it really cost?”
The obvious answer is… $5. But is that the correct answer?
I’m not convinced that it is, and here’s why.
If someone is looking for a “professional voice over” but they’re only willing to spend $5, I can assure you, they’re someone who knows little to nothing about working with a professional voice talent.
In all my years of voice over, here’s one of the hardest lessons I ever learned. The clients that pay the least are the clients that expect, or demand, the most!
The clients that pay the least are the clients that expect, or demand, the most!
What Is Your Time Worth?
What is your time worth? Is it really worth $5?
Here’s a tip. A :30 voice over, is never really just :30. You need to factor in all the other aspects of the process.
- Talking to the client to sort details.
- Re-recording (once, twice, five times???).
- Chasing payment.
Is it still really only worth $5 to you?
Count The Cost
When you’re brand new in the business I know it’s easy to want to look for, and take work, wherever you can find it. I’m just not convinced that a site like Fiverr is the best place for you.
You can’t make a living on $5 gigs. You can’t pay a mortgage. You can’t feed a family. You can’t invest in training or equipment.
Take your time. Get good demos. Take some coaching. Make some contacts. Do some networking. Market yourself. Be patient and the jobs will come. And when they do, I promise they’ll pay a lot more than $5!