As Voice Actors, there’s probably no topic more heavily debated than rates. It’s been that way for as long as I’ve been in the industry and I suspect it will continue to be long after I’ve retired.
The single biggest issue, in my opinion, is talent who don’t charge enough.
What many fail to realize is when you don’t charge enough, you’re not just hurting yourself. You’re hurting us all. The industry as a whole! When you do a job for $50 that should be $300, that slow erosion of rates begins to trickle throughout the industry.
You may not believe it, but it’s true!
Clients begin to get used to paying less and become aware that there are people out there who are willing to do it for less.
It hurts us all.
So the question becomes, why do you do it?
Two Reasons You Don’t Charge Enough For Voice Over Services…
At the core, I believe this stems from two main belief systems that are both common and repairable.
The Imposter Belief: I’m still new. I don’t deserve full-rate yet. I’m learning. I’m not good enough. I’m still developing my craft. I’m still building my business. I’m not a recognizable name like [insert big name talent here].
Be honest. How many of those excuses have you fed yourself? One? Three? All of them?
The foundational thought process here is, you don’t feel like you’re worth of charging fair-market-value so you make up some kind of excuse as to why you shouldn’t.
Lack Belief: There’s not enough opportunity. I have to compete on price. If I charge less, I’ll book more. I’m not worth as much as, [insert talent name here].
This belief stems from fear and makes the assumption there’s only so much work to go around. Bluntly… this is total crap! There are quite literally thousands upon thousands of opportunities out there on any given week. If you do the work, you’ll find them.
…And How To Fix Them
“Change your thinking; change your life.”
That quote has been attributed to several different people, but it’s most commonly known as the title of a book by Brian Tracy. It’s also an indisputable truth.
Every one of the excuses I listed above is just that… an excuse. For every excuse there’s a solution. Most of them are a matter of building your confidence and conquering your fear.
What’s the easiest way to build confidence and overcome fear?
Practice, coaching and training.
Ask any of the top name voice actors you can think of if they’re still coaching and training.
I’d be money 95% or more will emphatically tell you, “YES!”
Fair-market-value isn’t something you grow your way into. Industry standards exist because they’re commonly accepted as the value tied to the service. If you’re able to provide the service, you’re entitled to the full value!
Don’t let excuses stand in the way of your success.