Choosing a voiceover artist whose tone and personality jives with your message is key to an engaging video.
A study by research analytics company Quantified Impressions showed that the quality of a voiceover was twice as influential as the message itself. People don’t listen to a script, they listen to people, and the right voice adds an element of authority that a script alone is unable to do.
Do you want a voice that is kind and nurturing, authoritative and knowledgable, or high-energy and enthusiastic? To fully connect with your audience, a voiceover should be an extension of your brand.
This post breaks down how to ensure your script reads naturally, how to choose your voiceover artist, and some best practices for recording in-house.
Mark Twain famously said, “Don’t use a five-dollar word when a fifty-cent word will do.”
Before you give your script to a professional voice actor, it should be simplified and scrubbed of jargon.
When we write, we have a tendency to use fancy words that you would never hear anybody say in conversation. Listening to content that only reads well on paper will immediately break the intimacy of your video.
Unless a complex term is absolutely necessary, simplicity should be a focus when editing your script.
Every time you finish an edit of your script, read it out loud to someone. Preferably someone who isn’t in the marketing department.
This practice will make sure that you catch any sentences that are needlessly wordy, awkward, or hard to pronounce. The flow of the script should be able to stand alone without the context of the visuals.
If your “proof listener” doesn’t understand what you are trying to say or thinks you can be more conciser, then it might be time for another edit.
You have your million dollar script proofed and polished – now, who should read it?
It might be someone from the accounting department, or maybe you will look to the vast pool of professional voice actors selling services online. The most important thing is to choose a voiceover artist whose voice would resonate with your target audience.
ConversionXL ran a study of male voices vs. female voices for their own explainer video. For each gender, they also recorded the script with both an amateur and a professional voice actor. They randomly distributed the four versions of the video to 202 participants and polled them on how trustworthy and how visually appealing the video was.
Their study showed that:
Does this mean that you should use a female voice? Not necessarily. But you need to be very careful in who you bring on to represent your brand.
Be sure to listen to a lot of different options before making a choice. Ask yourself:
If you do decide to record in-house, you need to follow these best practices. After all, would you want to sit and listen to a video with poor audio quality and no personality?
Time is money, so have your voiceover artist practice the script as much as possible to cut down on recording and editing time. Make sure the reading has the right cadence and energy, and strikes the emotional chords that resonate with your messaging.
If they keep making mistakes while recording or get a fit of the giggles, take a short walk and regroup!
It is important to find a space to record in which there is no echo, reverb or background noise. Noisy air conditioners will absolutely kill the mood.
Read your script out loud in several locations to find the sweet spot for recording. For some cost-effective DIY soundproofing, invest in a few sound-reducing curtains to hang over windows or doors while recording.
Recording voiceover through your laptop microphone simply won’t cut it.
Thankfully you can get a half-decent directional microphone for under $200. Investing in a “pop filter” will also make sure the capture doesn’t pick up mouth noises that come from saying words beginning with “P” or “S”.
Talking consistently will dry out the mouth quickly, but drinking lots of water results in frequent bathroom breaks.
The pros will tell you this tried and true secret – green apples. Eating a tart apple during recording breaks will keep the moisture flowing without holding up the recording for constant bathroom breaks.
Recording a voiceover that resonates with your audience will dramatically increase the impact of your video. When you hit this sweet spot, the viewer will feel as if they are being spoken to directly.
So why not take that personal touch even farther by personalizing your marketing videos for each person who watches it?
If you want to learn more about how our IndiVideo platform can take your video marketing to the next level, click here.