Vox Daily The Official Voices.com Blog

Buy Now Packages Designed to Make Selling Your Voice Easier

By Stephanie Ciccarelli

June 13, 2008

Comments (61)

Buy Now Voice Over Packages

Want to be cast based upon your voice and not your quote?

For those of you feel you should be cast based upon your voice and not because of what you've quoted, I am going to propose something that should help remedy that age old concern and level the playing field as well, ultimately making it easier for clients to quickly pick a voice and for you to be hired without having to quote.


PLEASE READ THIS BEFORE COMMENTING

We've received some valuable feedback and were also able to make some clarifications where there were misunderstandings as well as raise the rates from what they were initially when this was posted earlier today.

This feature is not active yet and we are looking for feedback now so that we can make the feature the best and most seamless that it can be.

Any positive feedback is welcome with regard to what you feel the rates should be.


What's up?

Many of you have voiced concerns regarding what you suspect some people may be quoting at online marketplaces and feel that there is likely lowballing going on that gets those voice actors the jobs.

While at Voices.com the vast majority of people quote within the set budget ranges, it is a known fact that there is a degree of underbidding that goes on within the industry as a whole.

After much thought the team at Voices.com is about to implement something new that will put both clients and voice actors in the fast lane while evening the quoting field so to speak by removing the quoting process.


Interesting, but what do you mean and how will this work?

Essentially, we're going to add a new set of categories, similar to the Featured Talent directory, and each category will have reasonably priced packages that clients can "Buy Now!" selecting from a variety of featured voices listed in that category.


Example

Let's talk about the forthcoming radio commercial packages categories.

Clients will be able to buy packages for their radio commercial voice overs. There will be individual packages, all priced appropriately, for small, regional and national markets. These rates are based upon the non-union standard rates sheet for voice overs at Voices.com.

The client reviews the samples that are listed within the radio commercials category and once they hear a voice that suits their commercial, they'll have the ability to "Buy Now!" just like on sites such as eBay.com.

This process, by virtue of set pricing, eliminates the need to quote which in turn eliminates underbidding and dispels the myth of seeking out that "magic number" to quote when auditioning.

If you've read between the lines, you'll also notice that there is no auditioning involved, a perk for those who have no time to audition but certainly do have the time to cut voice tracks and be paid for their work.


What Happens After a Client Clicks "Buy Now!"?

The client will make a deposit using SurePay for the advertised price of the package they are purchasing.


This is where things become slightly different

For those of you who are familiar with the workings of SurePay through auditions, you know that the transaction fee is added on top of the price you quoted (i.e. you quote $100, client pays $110), however, with "Buy Now" prices for packages, the transaction fee would be included in the advertised price so that clients know right off the bat that they are buying a package for X number of dollars and not be surprised by an additional fee at the point of sale.

We've found that although SurePay is very effective and many people use it, clients who buy voice overs, just like any other buyers, are accustomed to sellers covering the marketplace transaction fees.

That is a common practice at marketplaces.

At Guru.com or Elance.com, for instance, the seller charges X fee for a product and the buyer pays that same fee. Any transaction fees are taken out of the sale price, not added on top.

One of the reasons why we opted to have the SurePay transaction fee on top of what you were quoting was because the last thing we wanted to do was have our customers (specifically the voice actors) think we were taking a commission when it was truly a transaction fee.

Anywhere you look, it's always the sellers who cover fees, never the buyers. Why should it be any different at Voices.com?


Sounds great! Where do I sign up?

Premium members of our service will be able to take part in this new exclusive marketing opportunity. The listings will rotate dynamically using the same algorithm as the Featured Talent Directory.

Starting out clients will be able to buy packages for radio spots, television spots and Internet (which includes videos, podcasts, etc.). Telephone voice over packages will also be available.

To be part of this special program, you will need to opt in (agree) to do the voice over work for the set asking price listed for the categories which includes the escrow fee.

(UPDATE - 1:49 p.m. EST June 13, 2008) Please be sure to note that the escrow fee is included in the overall price that the client pays. It is not a commission, it is a transaction fee.

The graphic at the top of this article shows voice talent earnings and then the deposit as the client would see it which includes the transaction fee and simplifies the process immensely when purchasing these packages.


Let us know what you think about this idea by adding a comment.

Best wishes,

Stephanie

* Update - previous example citing eBay removed and replaced with far better examples, Guru and Elance, as those sites do charge membership fees for people to promote their services and apply for jobs as well as have an escrow service that includes the fee such as was described in the posting.

Related Topics: buy now, buy now packages, hired, industry, Non-Union, packages, radio, union, voice acting, voice actors, voice overs


Comments


    Hi Stephanie,

    I liked everything up to the point of the fee issue. And I'm sure you're expecting some backlash.

    Your logic is flawed, by comparing it to eBay. The seller takes the fee, true, but doesn't pay to be a part of eBay.

    I already pay Voices.com to be a member, and now I have to pay a "commission" on each job?

    Isn't going to sit well, I'm afraid.

    Posted by:

      Hi Jeffrey,

      Thank you for your nice comments on the overall picture and concept.

      I'd like to apologize for using eBay as an example. True, you don't have to pay to join that site. I should have used Guru.com or Elance.com as examples. Forgive me.

      That being said, I'd like to make a clarification:

      Please be sure to note that the escrow fee is included in the overall price that the client pays. It is not a commission, it is a transaction fee.

      The graphic at the top of this article shows voice talent earnings and then the deposit as the client would see it which includes the transaction fee and simplifies the process immensely when purchasing these packages.

      Any other thoughts?

      Best wishes,

      Stephanie

      Posted by:
      • Stephanie Ciccarelli
      • June 13, 2008 1:59 PM

        Oh my, this concerns me! I need to read a bit more about all of it, however the rates listed here are very low. Union rates are a "base". Depending, my rates are within 20% or so of those rates, but these rates listed here are shockingly low. A "National TV Commercial" on a buyout with a rate of $499? My goodness, that's terrible. Another example, you show a difference of only $50 between a local radio and regional radio spot...that's crazy.

        I understand the idea behind all this, however the rates are simply too low and this hurts the industry.

        Posted by:

          Stephanie, I really like the idea of set rates. I quit other sites because they allow voice seekers to post low-ball jobs. And I'm sure I have missed out on some jobs because I wont work for pennies.

          But, I'm not sure how many voice seekers are going to want to hire without hearing a custom audition. I know if I were a voice seeker, I would want to hear reads of my copy before hiring.

          Just my two cents.

          Posted by:
          • Jerome Santucci
          • June 13, 2008 2:32 PM

            Hi Brian,

            Thank you for your feedback. The initial numbers were taken from the non-union standard rates sheet which it appears could use some updating (the sheet is about 3 years old) and refined by a new polling of what people are charging for voice over jobs today.

            David has updated the graphic and you'll note that the prices have been increased quite a bit.

            Best wishes,

            Stephanie

            Posted by:

              I like the concept - the less bidding I have to do the better. Is this the complete list right now of Buy Now rates?

              The rates for the regional and national spots seem low - especially without some sort of caveat on length of run or markets.

              The local spot rate is doable for single market - short run - especially since it usually leads to more frequent jobs. Perhaps $30-50 more. But language needs to be in there somewhere - that this rate is for short-run spots - not forever rates. And also build in some language about buy-out rates - i.e. one year buy-out for X times the buy-now rate?

              Posted by:

                Hi Jerome,

                Thank you for your nice comments. I appreciate hearing what you have to say about the concept and also about clients who may need to hear a custom read.

                Just like the categories, a sample of your voice related to the package you are selling, will be available for clients to listen to.

                Should they feel you have the right voice but want to hear a custom sample first (most people buying the packages will likely not need to take this extra step) the client could always send you a quick email letting you know that they wish to buy the package but want to hear you read a line of their script.

                Instead of cutting a voice track, I would suggest that if a custom read is requested before hiring you for a package, would be to have a very quick telephone conversation so they can hear it without receiving digital audio.

                Just an idea, but it could help those clients who do need to hear a custom read.

                The point of these packages is to make the process faster and less complicated. Those who really need to hear a custom sample may find that they would be better off to post a job and state that their budget is for X number of dollars in line with the set price for the package.

                Best,

                Stephanie

                Posted by:

                  Hi Connie,

                  Thank you for commenting and for sharing your valuable insights.

                  Yes, there would be more detail involved. Right now, you are looking at a work in progress that doesn't state all of the fine print.

                  The rates are in US Dollars and include Full Buy-Outs, session fees and dry voice recordings.

                  As I said, we're open to more feedback and suggestions as this feature is still in development and we want to make it the best that it can be to meet your needs and those of the people who will be making the purchases.

                  Any other thoughts on how we can make this feature even better?

                  Best wishes,

                  Stephanie

                  Posted by:

                    Thanks for updating the rates in the posted example. I'll wait for your comments on my other comments.

                    Jerome - I have lots of clients find my demos and cast me directly from them - rather than ask for a custom demo created in a vacuum. Those people are usually the ones that find my regular website - however I have had private leads here that simply tell me they liked "x" read on my demo and want that sound for their script. Sites like Voices.com have helped move the custom demo into the forefront. This is a relatively new thing for the business.

                    Posted by:

                      Hey Stephanie I fully support the "idea" of what you are proposing.

                      I am however concerned that by accepting voice over jobs based on non-union scale may have some far reaching consequences.

                      So if you can tweak that part so that it covers those of us who are in the union...

                      Posted by:

                        Thank you Eddie for your comment.

                        I agree, there should be more consideration given to union talent where the rates are concerned.

                        In fact, if higher rates were to be presented, similar to what the union quotes, it would help to bridge the professional divide and those who are non-union will also get to see a pay increase for their work, particularly those who have been struggling with ways to be paid more.

                        Interesting ideas.... keep them rolling!

                        Best,

                        Stephanie

                        Posted by:

                          Does this completely replace the old system as we know it? Will there be no auditions for any projects anymore? Or is this one avenue a client can choose along with asking for a custom audition and bid?

                          Posted by:

                            Hi Jeffrey,

                            Thank you for your follow up comment.

                            This (the "buy now" packages) is another option for clients to choose from and is not going to replace the client's ability to post a job and get responses, demos and price quotes.

                            It's another way to be found and hired with less legwork (no auditioning) for you!

                            From feedback we received, clients want the ability to get what they want quickly and actually asked for this feature to be developed and offered to them because some people simply don't have the time to go through the process of posting a job. Those same people also don't want to see varying quotes for the job. They want to see one fee and compare voices to make their decision quickly.

                            Best,

                            Stephanie

                            Posted by:

                              You've raised the rates such that my previous concern of client fees is not much of an issue for me. Even with the fees, your rates fall mostly inline with what I charge.

                              And less auditioning is a good thing.

                              So I say ship it!

                              Posted by:

                                Glad the rates were updated! The originals were a bit low ;)

                                Posted by:

                                  Sounds like a great step in the right direction. Sign me up. Anything to get rid of these infernal custom auditions. I just don't have time for them, nor feel the need to work for free, when the buyer doesn't yet even know want they want. That's why we have Demos listed in the first place.

                                  And yes, low-balling is a BIG problem, so this works to keep that it check, as well. This is the way most production houses work.

                                  Good idea, Stephanie!

                                  Posted by:

                                    Stephanie - I think this is a fantastic idea. However, the rates are still too low. For this program, I could live with a minimum of a 25% increase across the board. My local radio rates start @ $250, TV @ $350 and IVR is $75 per finished minute, dry. Music is an additional $100. Also, for radio and TV commercials I do not offer complete buyouts. One year only. My two cents. Thanks for working on this - I think it could be a really smart way to stop the undercutting. However it shakes out - I'm in.

                                    Posted by:

                                      For those in the VO industry, like me, who have not yet been able to switch to VO as a full time profession. This would really be helpful.

                                      There are many nights when I finally get home from work and whatever evening activities my family has lined up, and find it hard to sit down and work through several custom auditions.

                                      This way, I would be able to have auditions of work similar to what a "Buy Now" customer might be looking for just waiting for them to hear.

                                      As long as the two systems are left in place (Buy Now and the current system) I think it is a great addition to the site.

                                      Posted by:

                                        Hi Stephanie,

                                        Certainly an interesting concept.

                                        You mentioned this service is only for "Premium" members.

                                        How do you feel this will affect "Preferred" members?

                                        Cheers!

                                        Blair Wilson

                                        Posted by:

                                          Hi Stephanie...

                                          I have always struggled with rates. I did a lot of research and came up with a rate sheet of my own based on what other talent told me they charge - but it never seems right. I hear so much about "low balling" and then I hear other people charging more than me, so I think the set rates is a good idea. This most certainly would get us work based on our voices and not our quotes too. Whatever the rates end up being, I say as long as they are evaluated at least once a year and updated if need be, then it is a good thing. I think it is a worth while step to take. Keep up the good work!

                                          Tom Conklin

                                          Posted by:

                                            I did have one additional comment that I just thought of. I never really understood the charging the same price for a 15, 30 or 60. Is that standard and will clients pay the same price for a 15 as they would a 60? Also... Are these commercial "package rates" for a single spot or for a package of spots? That's where I'm a little fuzzy. Thanks!

                                            Tom Conklin

                                            Posted by:

                                              For me, I like the concept of making it easier for both client and voice artist alike, so bravo there for continuing to try to innovate service! But my concerns mirror what's been said before. Especially, to second Vanessa's concern, I don't want to end up with a client who feels a 'telephone package' includes music, which for us, since we're music-providers too, is priced based on a series of other factors that need to be considered on a job-by-job basis.

                                              I've found most clients who've hired me through Voices.com are a little higher end and savvy enough in their businesses to know that there's going to be a little detail work to put in, so I don't think the idea of more 'detailed packages' would be confusing to them.

                                              Also, will the SurePay transaction fee also slide over to the voices' side for job postings or private leads?

                                              Posted by:

                                                Stephanie,

                                                Sorry for not thinking this all the way through, but thought of one more thing. With the regular audition process, it's difficult to tell sometimes what size market a spot is going to air in when we make a quote. With that in mind, how would we keep someone from "buying" a local package and then airing it regionally? Is there going to be any way to prevent that from happening? Sometimes it's obvious depending on the content of the spot, but sometimes it isn't.

                                                Tom Conklin

                                                Posted by:

                                                  Hi Stephanie,

                                                  First, thank you for asking our opinions prior to implementing this potential feature.

                                                  Since I am a Preferred member, I will not be able to take advantage of this in its present form. However, it will affect the number of jobs available, and that is of a concern to me. I understand that Premium members do pay more, but this seems to be siphoning work from the Preferred to benefit the Premium. Not sure I agree with that.

                                                  As for the idea, it is an interesting one. I do think that you may want to offer a way for us to set our own rates within a "no low-ball" range that you could enforce. That would give a bit more flexibility.

                                                  I also wonder about the "round-robin" view of potential talent that the seekers will have to choose from. That seems less than fair to me, and less than optimal for the seekers. It's fine for being "Featured Talent", but these are paying jobs where people would be excluded from the running.

                                                  I hope that once these comments are in, you will have another round of feedback from the talent. I'd like to see an e-mail questionaire sent to all talent, prior to any implementation.

                                                  Thanks,
                                                  Joe

                                                  Posted by:

                                                    Stephanie,

                                                    First off, thanks for the great site. I always get the impression that at Voices.com the talent's best interests are always taken into consideration, unlike other sites.

                                                    I'm always open to innovation and this might be a great new model, but I have some questions and concerns. I do believe auditions are a key to us getting a job and the client getting the right fit. When auditioning, I spend a lot of time trying to give a client just the right read for their unique project. Often it is a delivery or style that I do not have on one of my several demos. Also when someone selects this option how many talent will be made available to them? I know there are hundreds (thousands?) of subscribers; will this mean that we will only show up in the mix once every few days, weeks?

                                                    I'm open to innovation but I just have a few nagging concerns.

                                                    Thanks,
                                                    David K Jones

                                                    Posted by:

                                                      Hi Britt and Blair,

                                                      Thank you for sharing your comments with us.

                                                      @ Britt - I'm happy to hear that you feel this will be beneficial to you. It will make life a lot easier for those who want to make quick purchases and talent who don't have time to audition.

                                                      @ Blair - Our intention is to build more value into the Premium membership. How will that affect Preferred members? It would give Premium members even more opportunities to promote their voices that would not be available to other membership subscribers.

                                                      Great comments and questions everyone :)

                                                      Best wishes,

                                                      Stephanie

                                                      Posted by:

                                                        Hi Tom,

                                                        Thank you for your comments. I'm pleased that this will help you with rates. Quoting rates is often difficult (and sticking to them for some is too) and we are confident that this innovative feature will be a good solution.

                                                        To address your second comment, there will be licenses for each of these products that will limit usage for the product they're purchasing, for example. For broadcast, it will break down markets by population size that we are researching now.

                                                        At present every package would be a full-buyout as we don't currently have the tools to monitor airplay or usage.

                                                        Best wishes,

                                                        Stephanie

                                                        Posted by:

                                                          Hi Dana,

                                                          Thank you for your comments and questions.

                                                          We're going to start with these basic packages and should the clients request additional services such as script writing and or music we will reevaluate at that time.

                                                          To answer your other question, at present the SurePay fee will only be included in the advertised price with the packages. Should we receive a significant amount of positive feedback we will consider applying the same principle to other transactions that are conducted at the site between buyers and sellers.

                                                          Best wishes,

                                                          Stephanie

                                                          Posted by:

                                                            Hi Joe,

                                                            Thank you for sharing your comments and concerns.

                                                            To clarify, these are not jobs that would have been posted and nothing is being taken away from Preferred members.

                                                            Just like the categories, it is another way to feature talent, however, instead of having to click through to the talent's page to hire them from the categories, the option to hire and buy a service would be quite a bit easier and presented to buyers immediately.

                                                            With regard to a questionnaire, to generate ideas, we took a survey three months ago and again this past week asking "What Would Knock Your Socks Off?". We are choosing to use our blog as the mechanism to present the best ideas and then have a discussion about it. The survey has been done and we're going over the feedback received (including all comments presented here) to guide our decisions.

                                                            Thank you,

                                                            Stephanie

                                                            Posted by:

                                                              Hi David,

                                                              Thank you for your questions.

                                                              The demos would correlate with the package you are selling so perhaps create a new demo that has a variety of reads on it and be sure that you choose that demo to feature in the package as your sampling for the client.

                                                              As this feature would only be available to Premium (and Premium Lite) members, there would be fewer talent listed in the categories. In order to participate there will also be an opt-in listing so only the people who want to be included for the set prices and who also take that extra step to check the box for each package they'd like to sell will be part of a given category.

                                                              When I was speaking with David about this, he mentioned that there would be ten male and ten female talent listed in a category at any given time.

                                                              I hope that helps.

                                                              Thanks,

                                                              Stephanie

                                                              Posted by:

                                                                Hi Stephanie,

                                                                Thanks for your reply.

                                                                It appears with more emphasis on premium members, preferred members may be getting the raw end of the deal.

                                                                Perhaps this should be taken into consideration with some emphasis aimed at 'preferred' clients as well.

                                                                I would hope that the preferred status is not being phased out - especially after "locking in" as a preferred member to avoid membership increases.

                                                                By the way, how many "premium" members does Voices.com have compared to "preferred"? How about adding more value to Preferred members as well? Some good points made by Joe J. Thomas - thank you.

                                                                I am sure there will be more discussion on this on voiceover universe presents (aka) irocthemicpresents and other discussion forums.

                                                                Here's to a happy medium...

                                                                Cheers!

                                                                Blair Wilson

                                                                Posted by:

                                                                  Wow, lots of discussion on this one, Stephanie! I'm for anything that adds another dimension to voice casting. I wanted to tell you that I've been following many of your marketing ideas in the past couple of months, and there's been a significant JUMP in the number of jobs I'm getting! It's just like magic! Note to other voice talents--listen to these guys--they know what they're talking about!

                                                                  Thanks for adding this to your web repertoire, thanks for listening to us, thanks for responding. I couldn't be happier with my subscription to Voices.com!

                                                                  Posted by:

                                                                    Hi Stephanie et. al.

                                                                    Some of us are new to the industry and, as such, are not ready to cut that all-important demo. Thus, our only option is to submit for jobs with custom auditions. I'm concerned that these opportunities may "dry up" under the new system. If this happens, a membership here will be of no value to me until later in my career. Any thoughts?

                                                                    Many coaches and veterans advise me and other "newbies" that a produced demo must be able to compete on the NATIONAL level. They say that using a demo below this standard early in one's career will cause potential clients to not even give later demos a chance. On behalf of new talent everywhere..."Yikes!"

                                                                    Posted by:

                                                                      Hi Blair,

                                                                      Thank you for your follow up comments.

                                                                      Let me say that at present we do not have a plan to phase out the Preferred membership, however, should we do so in the future we will of course honour those same rates for people who were grandfathered in. At that time, those who have Preferred memberships would continue with their Preferred memberships at the grandfathered rate and we'd simply discontinue selling any new Preferred memberships.

                                                                      Again, let me say that it is not in our plans for the immediate future but could happen down the road.

                                                                      Best,

                                                                      Stephanie

                                                                      Posted by:

                                                                        Hi Rich,

                                                                        Thank you for raising a new point in this discussion.

                                                                        I want to reiterate that we are not going to be directing people away from posting jobs. The new packages are only an additional way for voice actors to be found and hired.

                                                                        Yes, your demo as a professional needs to be at a certain standard. Most coaches will tell you, with great veracity, that if you intend to send your demo to an agency for representation, yes, it does need to be at the national level in order to get a second listen.

                                                                        Do clients who aren't as picky as voice over agents think the same way? Maybe, maybe not. It truly depends on whose ears are listening, to be frank.

                                                                        Thank you for adding to the conversation. You've made an interesting and valid point from a different perspective and I appreciate it very much.

                                                                        Best wishes,

                                                                        Stephanie

                                                                        Posted by:

                                                                          Yeah!

                                                                          Sounds Great!!! Sign me up.

                                                                          Michael Turnbull

                                                                          Posted by:
                                                                          • Michael Turnbull
                                                                          • June 14, 2008 4:22 PM

                                                                            Hi Stephanie - I am optimistic about this innovative approach.

                                                                            As you point out, pricing can be a dicey proposition at times and this eliminates that variable and puts focus on the voice. Plus it provides incremental opportunities for voices who may always not have time to do a custom demo.

                                                                            Good luck with the rollout.

                                                                            Dave C.

                                                                            Posted by:

                                                                              I'm in!

                                                                              Randy

                                                                              Posted by:

                                                                                Stephanie!

                                                                                I think that's a terrific idea!

                                                                                It would sure take the "stress" off of voice talent. And instead, let us put our minds and voices to work producing a spot or "'spots' for a client.

                                                                                Hands together for another revolutionary idea from VOICES.COM!

                                                                                Kristi Stewart

                                                                                Posted by:

                                                                                  Dear Stephanie,

                                                                                  This is a very good idea. If for no other reason that building a sense of momentum in the participating talent pool that ‘something’ is coming back for all the auditions performed. It also increases the percentage of voice talent being paid anything for their work. Congratulations on this strategy.

                                                                                  Cheers,

                                                                                  Michael Morgan

                                                                                  Posted by:

                                                                                    Hi Stephanie

                                                                                    I think this is a terrific idea !! When will this begin ?

                                                                                    Bob Jordan

                                                                                    Posted by:

                                                                                      Hello Vox Daily!

                                                                                      I think this is a great idea, although not new. WE'RE BACK WHERE WE STARTED, FINALLY!

                                                                                      I've been a pro VO talent long enough to remember the late 70's, early eighties, and before when this is EXACTLY how a VO talent was chosen. Then some bright agent (I have nothing against agents. I love mine.) thought they would "get a leg up" (sorry, I used to be a dancer) on the competition by offering custom auditions for clients. The rest is history. We've spent the years before home studios running to our agents , casting directors, and studios to "do the job before we booked the job" . This added valuable hours of commute time and money for parking, gas and bridge tolls to our expense register just to be considered for a job!

                                                                                      Let's give creative directors, copy writers, and producers credit for being the talented people they are with the "ear" to identify the voice they need for a project by listening to talent demos. In addition let's give VO talent credit for making the selection process easier by providing multiple styles of demos to aid that process. Finally... all parties have the right to know exactly what they are paying or earning before the work is done.

                                                                                      Susan McCollom
                                                                                      VoiceMedia, San Francisco
                                                                                      susansvoicemedia.com

                                                                                      Posted by:

                                                                                        Hi Stephanie:

                                                                                        Sounds like a concept worth pursuing. We appreciate your help figuring all this out.

                                                                                        Sincerely,

                                                                                        Tom Matthews

                                                                                        Posted by:
                                                                                        • Tom Matthews
                                                                                        • June 14, 2008 4:30 PM

                                                                                          Stephanie, I think this is fantastic.

                                                                                          I’m tired of being undercut in the marketplace for jobs. I have been a working voice talent for over 14 years and I feel my time, training and experience are valuable.

                                                                                          Clients are still getting a very good deal.

                                                                                          Thanks,
                                                                                          Colleen Ann Barrett

                                                                                          Posted by:
                                                                                          • Colleen Ann Barrett
                                                                                          • June 14, 2008 4:39 PM

                                                                                            Stephanie,

                                                                                            Thank you to VOICES.COM for:

                                                                                            1. Coming up with a GREAT idea
                                                                                            2. Asking our opinions, and getting feedback BEFORE kicking this thing off... (unlike some OTHER sites)

                                                                                            SUGGESTION: Perhaps it could be called the VOICES.COM "POP" spot. Pay ONE price, Get one VO talent, Immediately!

                                                                                            I look forward to signing up...You guys rock!

                                                                                            JC Haze

                                                                                            Posted by:
                                                                                            • JC Haze
                                                                                            • June 14, 2008 5:11 PM

                                                                                              Hi Stephanie,

                                                                                              Wow! What a great concept!!

                                                                                              I'm loving all the comments here folks sound very enthusiastic.

                                                                                              Sign me up!!


                                                                                              Anthony Piselli

                                                                                              Posted by:

                                                                                                Sounds great so far Stephanie,

                                                                                                I agree with Connie's earlier comment re: the terms of the buy-out should be clear as well as market size limitations at the given rates. You may want to look at AFTRA's rates and how they handle additional runs and multiple markets.

                                                                                                I think is definitely a major step in the right direction. As I have said many times before to both you and V123, the model was wrong. This helps. Always remember, we are the paying clients and the ones you serve, not the buyers of our services. Thanks for really listening to us (as others have not and choose to go in the wrong direction).

                                                                                                Greg

                                                                                                Posted by:

                                                                                                  I like it. I appreciate the comments from others but I wouldn't overthink this or worry about low regional or national rates. Clients who use online casting, from my experience, are looking for cheap, easy and quick. This saves everyone time and probably eliminates some tire kickers. It can be tweaked based on experience.

                                                                                                  I'm not sure how much work anyone will get in a marketplace that is still low bidder driven but it's innovative and worth a shot. The ease of use factor for buyers and the non auditioning factor for sellers makes it worth a try.

                                                                                                  There should still be room for variables like re-dos for copy changes or client preference, pronunciation corrections that are not talent's fault, copy changes, etc. Talent will have to clarify all that once they get a bite.

                                                                                                  There should be some kind of opt out for the buyer for cases where talent has a cold, is not available has a product conflict or other reason that might give hesitation to buying sight unseen. Some kind of 48 hour return policy type safey net for the buyer would seem to be called for.

                                                                                                  Posted by:
                                                                                                  • Jim Sanders Beasley
                                                                                                  • June 15, 2008 3:41 AM

                                                                                                    Hi Steph,

                                                                                                    This is a good idea but I agree with others that there should be a union fee option as the fees you are proposing are very low.

                                                                                                    My concern is mainly about availability. If a seeker wants to buy now a voice, surely he wants to get it now. My point is, if they buy now and the voice is not available, the seeker won't be happy. (I could be available for 350 words but not for 3000 on a particular day for example)

                                                                                                    So maybe there should be a request availability button before the buy now?

                                                                                                    Also there are jobs that we should be able to refuse if there is a conflict with existing client etc...

                                                                                                    If the client has already paid, then it's a bit problematic. We could use the "not available" option is one was created.

                                                                                                    Thanks a lot for working at raising standards! :-)

                                                                                                    Posted by:
                                                                                                    • Claire Dodin
                                                                                                    • June 15, 2008 7:54 AM

                                                                                                      Stephanie,

                                                                                                      I think this is a great idea and takes the guess work out of standard jobs. Will some jobs still be featured as leads?

                                                                                                      Sign me up!

                                                                                                      Sandre' Moore

                                                                                                      Posted by:
                                                                                                      • Sandre' Moore
                                                                                                      • June 15, 2008 1:13 PM

                                                                                                        Hi Greg,

                                                                                                        Thank you for your comments and I am glad that you see this as a major step in the right direction.

                                                                                                        That being said, please do not forget that we serve both buyers and sellers and are aware of the unique role each plays within the marketplace.

                                                                                                        The buyers (clients) are only here because of the high level of service and quality of experience that they have hiring talent and one of the main reasons why you're here is because there's work with literally thousands of transactions happening each month.

                                                                                                        As such we listen to all customers equally and work hard to build new features that will satisfy everyone.

                                                                                                        Best wishes,

                                                                                                        Stephanie

                                                                                                        Posted by:

                                                                                                          Hi Jim and Claire,

                                                                                                          Those are some fantastic ideas! Thank you for sharing them.

                                                                                                          @ Jim - you've really provided some great suggestions. Thank you.

                                                                                                          @ Claire - we have been considering the feature you are referring to (i.e. so and so is unavailable) and also thank you for sharing your other ideas and requests.

                                                                                                          Best wishes,

                                                                                                          Stephanie


                                                                                                          Posted by:

                                                                                                            Hi Sandre',

                                                                                                            Thank you for commenting and I am happy to hear from you.

                                                                                                            There will still be auditions through the job posting service for clients. The packages are just another way to be found and sell your services faster and easier.

                                                                                                            Thank you for your enthusiasm :)

                                                                                                            Stephanie

                                                                                                            Posted by:

                                                                                                              Hi again,

                                                                                                              how about, when the client clicks on buy now, he fills up the date he needs the recording by. Then the voice talent on his side would have 24h to click accept or decline. If declined or not answered within 24h, the client would be informed straight away so he could choose another voice.

                                                                                                              Also, to protect the seeker, shouldn't there be a normal demo available and a sample recorded at the voice actor's studio so the seekers know what studio quality they will be getting? (to avoid bad surprises)

                                                                                                              The more I think about this new feature, the more I like it! :-)

                                                                                                              Posted by:
                                                                                                              • VOX Daily Reader
                                                                                                              • June 16, 2008 7:02 AM

                                                                                                                Hi, Stephanie --

                                                                                                                Thank you for asking our opinions ahead of the change! It shows consideration and respect for us.

                                                                                                                At first look, this appears to be a great way to simplify life. Time is precious to me. I have always felt there is too much request for custom auditions -- and on the very lowest paying jobs, too! Most of the work I have gotten on these on-line sites has been through private leads and my generic demos, anyway. And saving me the hassle of quoting on every lead would be another de-stressing feature!

                                                                                                                I like it.

                                                                                                                Thanks again for your consultation.

                                                                                                                Posted by:

                                                                                                                  After banging out over 830 auditions and over 11 months at this site with no jobs thus far, I say do it!

                                                                                                                  Jerry

                                                                                                                  Posted by:

                                                                                                                    I like the idea of a set rate to ameliorate the effects of low bidding. Some quotes are so vague that one feels uncertain about quoting a price in the first place. I think the prices should be a bit higher to take some of the impact of the talent - 20% does take a chunk out of the bottom line and because the voices.com service is free for buyers, it is more of a hit to the talents who have to subscribe for the benefits. I think if you bump the flat fees up 10 or 20% you can keep the talents happy and keep the buyers happy too - the prices are reasonable even 20% higer than what you have listed. Thanks for your consideration to my comments with regard to this idea.

                                                                                                                    Best,
                                                                                                                    Jennifer Thayer

                                                                                                                    Posted by:

                                                                                                                      Stephanie:

                                                                                                                      I'm all for it and I'm selfishly going to tell you why. It helps us who are "handicapped" in certain ways to get some business without "low-balling". I for one, don't have the luxury of sitting at my PC all day, ready and waiting to pounce on a job the minute it hits the system. I have to wait until the end of the day and sometimes 2 days later to do a custom audition and submit it. By then the dog-pile has occured and 30 other hounds have thrown their hat in the ring. What chance does number 31 have? I submit... not much of one. As for the "union rates". I've never been union and I never plan to be. I know guys who are and they don't get any more business than I do because of it. If union dudes don't want to opt-in to this, they don't have to right?

                                                                                                                      I have a good "recall rate". I know that if I can do at least 1 job for a client, I can get more jobs from him in the future through direct contact. This looks like a good way to level the playing field for me at least.

                                                                                                                      Posted by:

                                                                                                                        This is a good idea. I always charge the equity rate for work in here in Australia - not just because I'm a member - but because it makes the casting decision one of - the right talent for the job - rather than the lowest price.

                                                                                                                        Also, as more and more technology gets into the hands of more and more "enthusiastic amateurs" it's important that we defend standards wherever possible.

                                                                                                                        Fortunately all good producers and writers know that you can't get a great read for peanuts. Sadly it’s often the clients themselves that find this hard to believe.

                                                                                                                        I’m in,

                                                                                                                        Bob Knowles.

                                                                                                                        Posted by:

                                                                                                                          Dear Stephanie,
                                                                                                                          I think it's worth a try. As we have seen by the comments, there will be bugs to be worked out.
                                                                                                                          Although custom auditions are sometimes burdensome, I would not be in favor of sidelining or eliminating them, because every talent brings "something new to the party", or at least we should.
                                                                                                                          Anything that will help eliminate low ball rates is a winner.
                                                                                                                          Here's my unvarnished truth:
                                                                                                                          It's tough enough to get the audition right when most of the direction given is woefully insufficient. To then have to muster up all my psychic powers (which are zilch) on top of that and guess where the client's REAL price range is...is nothing less than maddening and tiresome. BTW Apparently I am clueless (after 25 years in the business) or I have no talent, because the booking rates are "lackluster" to put it mildly.
                                                                                                                          I will be glad to help any way I can and Thank you all for striving to make things better for us lowly talent.
                                                                                                                          "Will voice for food" '-)
                                                                                                                          Cheers,
                                                                                                                          DC

                                                                                                                          Posted by:

                                                                                                                            Hello Stephanie,

                                                                                                                            Yes I think that this is a good idea. I've been at VO long enough to know like many other things, the more people hopping on board make it a client's market. They are what drive your ideas and the concepts like this one you hopefully plan to implement.

                                                                                                                            I get booked off my demo through my agents far more and fruitfully than I have off this site or any other sites of this nature. I still though almost always have to submit a custom audition that the client furnish's to finalize the deal. For those on this site that get the jobs, more power to them. I also know that many of the top people are not low ballers as they have established themselves.

                                                                                                                            I would like to see this plan implimented. For those who don't like the rate structure, keep playing in the submit audition sandbox. Others like myself welcome a new sandbox as long as we can keep the cats out.

                                                                                                                            Posted by:
                                                                                                                            • Craig Koepke
                                                                                                                            • August 22, 2008 12:20 PM

Leave a Comment



Recent Articles

YouTube Hits The 60 fps Gas Pedal

Toy Story 4 Set for June 2017 Release

Where Does Pixar Find Its Animators?

Feast On Disney's New Short

DreamWorks, Marvel Studios Play Release-Date Bingo

Audition Improvements Feature Helps Talent, Raises Project Quality

London Poppy Day 2014: Using Voice To Honour

Big Hero 6 = Big News For Animation

SpeechMasterPro Helps Pros Speak Better

When Famous Actors Voice Video Games

   

Free Webinar

Music Licensing Webinar

Join us for a FREE webinar on music, how you can purchase it, the legal ramifications and key factors involved with integrating it into your projects.

Subscribe by Email

About Vox Daily

Vox Daily offers a daily dose of voice acting news, articles, tutorials, interviews, intelligent conversation and business ideas for voice talent and voice actors.


Follow Us

   

Our feed & social options update you with special offers and news as it happens.

New YouTube Video

Watch videos on YouTube