By Stephanie Ciccarelli
February 18, 2011
What do clients using Voices.com want?
Surveying our customers is important to us at Voices.com and we hope you find this information to be useful.
So, what do people looking for voice talent online have in common and how can you use that knowledge to your advantage?
Find out in today's VOX Daily as we discuss results from our Client Experience Report from Winter 2011.
What you see here is pretty self explanatory. While we love hearing from all of our customers, those who have recently signed up in the last three months have consistently been the most likely to provide feedback on how they found their experience at Voices.com. 305 people responded to this survey. Let's see what they had to say.
At Voices.com, we provide a number of ways to search for, audition and hire voice talent. The most popular way clients find talent is by posting a job. Given the benefits, I'd use the job posting form (and have used it) too! The beauty of this approach is that our patented system receives job specifications from the client and matches their needs with the most qualified voice talent based upon a number of criteria.
For those who would like to 'handpick' talent and send private invitations for their job, the Voices.com search engine allows clients to find the right voice based upon a descriptive keyword as well as gender, language, age range and union affiliation. Leveraging the power of the search engine is especially useful for people who already know what they want and choose to audition a handful of talent.
Finally, there is still plenty of activity from those clients who navigate directly to a voice talent profile and click the button to request a quote. These clients have done the groundwork and have an even more defined need that they feel can be filled by the voice talent they send a private request for quote to.
While we've seen this statistic many times before, it often surprises talent that the majority of clients review all their auditions. I say majority as that includes those who reviewed "all of the auditions" (45%) plus those who reviewed "50-100 auditions" (8%).
Remember that many jobs are either private audition requests where generally only a small group of voice talent would be invited to respond while other jobs are in a language other than English, where again, there is a limited number of voice talent who could respond.
If you've ever reviewed a job posting at Voices.com and seen that there have already been 50 or so voice talent who have replied, don't let this impact your decision to audition if you feel the opportunity is right for you! Not only do the majority of clients review all their responses, but they also tell us that they received just the right number of responses (75%). Some clients even ask for more! (9%).
You might be wondering about what we're doing for the clients who say they've received too many responses. We are working on a solution to allow clients to close the door to further auditions which will both save your time and make the selection process for clients even more enjoyable.
Every client is different but there is an obvious preference here for custom demos. If the client provided a script, the expectation on their end is that talent take time to read a small portion of it. That's the lesson and the key takeaway after learning that 55% of clients will not consider generic demos. Yes, 44% of clients will consider your standard commercial demo, however the edge definitely goes to those who provide a sample read of the script.
From someone who has casting experience, I can confirm that I would much prefer hearing a custom read, even if it is short or truncated, than receive a stock demo. When you read from the script, you take a lot of guesswork out of the reviewing and decision making process for clients who don't have the time to try to imagine how you might read their copy. Many people also want to hear the copy because they simply need to in order to make an informed decision so that there are no surprises when it comes to working with you.
Not everyone who is casting these days has casting experience or regularly works with performers. By recording a brief custom demo, you demonstrate a heightened interest in the opportunity as well as a sample of your artistic abilities and interpretive skills as they pertain to a particular job posting.
While we're on the topic, the custom demo isn't just an online marketplace phenomenon but is something that is expected on all levels of work acquisition. Agents will have you read custom copy to audition. Trailer voices often need to provide a scratch vocal for consideration. Based upon conversations I've had and presentations I've seen, doing a custom read in an audition situation is not uncommon these days, even among those who are booking some of the biggest jobs.
Whether auditions are held traditionally in a recording studio with a producer, engineer and creative director or the audition is received and reviewed online, shortlisting is a technique to narrow down the number of amazing responses to a few finalists.
Voices.com has a new shortlisting feature called the "Like" button which we talked about yesterday. In the chart, we see that 60% of the people are shortlisting their responses.
To clarify, "Liking" an audition is not the same thing as adding someone to your "Favorites" list. Favorites is a system wide feature and Likes are on a per audition basis used to shortlist talent and help clients identify talent they are considering for a given opportunity.
Good news! Clients are most interested in your audition recording which also explains why they prefer sample reads of their script. Again, the emphasis here is placed on crafting relevant and impressive auditions. Some talent have even given two or three reads in a single MP3 while others add music and sound effects and others still prefer to record dry voice samples. If you're interested in hearing about what others are doing, consider engaging fellow voice talent at the Voices.com Facebook community to learn about their audition techniques.
One of the better ways to protect auditions is to record a brief portion of the script and then let it fade out. After hearing from a number of people on this topic and having listened to some of the auditions that have booked on the site recently, brief custom demos tend to work best.
As you know, Voices.com offers a secure payment service called SurePay. Clients prefer to pay through Voices.com as it's easy and also provides a means of receiving and approving the files. Plus, you and your client can rate each other on how the transaction went which builds up your public feedback ratings as displayed on the profile and alongside your auditions. Here's a link to where you can learn more about how SurePay benefits voice talents.
I hope you've gained some insight from the statistics and additional clarity when reviewing our analysis of these findings.
When we publish these survey results, the hope is that they benefit you and also that there are some takeaways... did you learn anything new?
Add a comment and let us know what you learned!
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