What do all the best video ads, explainer videos and documentaries have in common? Answer: they all capture audiences’ imagination with carefully crafted voiceovers to get across the key message of their footage.
Try watching the BBC’s Blue Planet with the sound turned off and the experience is very different.
Captivating voiceovers do not happen by magic, though, and you need the right company on your side to find the right voice for your footage. Here are five key things you need to know before choosing a voiceover company.
#1: You need more than a voice
Finding the right voice for your video is one of the most important roles a company is going to play, but this is not much help unless you are able to capture that voice in the right way. Make sure the company you choose has the means to record and edit high-quality voiceovers, as well as find the best voice talent for you.
Voiceover services may start with finding the right talent, but there is a lot of work still to be done before you end up with the perfect audio-visual experience.
#2: Your audience’s opinion matters most
Voiceovers are designed to get a message across in a way that resonates with audiences and the only opinions that really matter are of the people who watch your video footage. A good voiceover company will understand this and they should work with you to establish what kind of voice is going to have the desired effect upon viewers.
Sometimes, the best voice for the part can come as a surprise. For example, you might consider your business to be a formal, professional enterprise, but with so many stuffy corporate messages out there, taking a more informal approach can be the better option.
Audience research is everything.
#3: Voiceovers are more technical than you might realise
As with many things in this world, you do not often appreciate how complex something can be until you actually start doing it – and this also applies to voiceovers. Once all the branding aspects are taken care of, you need to focus on the technical aspects like pacing, pauses, mixing and how these all fit with your footage.
In some cases, you may find your video needs adapting slightly to allow more space for certain sentences to be finished or to add a pause for effect.
#4: Translating voiceovers is even more technical
If you are adding voiceovers as a means to translate your video footage, things are about to get even more technical. Translation makes words and sentences longer or shorter, which can result in a miss-match of dialogue and video.
It is best to work with a voiceover company that also provides translation as a combined service so both teams can work together to create the best final result. Sometimes, compromises are needed and it’s better to have both teams working together, rather than against each other.
#5: Voiceovers don’t help everyone
In the introduction of this article, we mentioned the prospect of watching Blue Planet with the sound turned off, missing out on the iconic narration of David Attenborough. However, it’s important to remember that many people don’t have the hearing ability to enjoy voiceovers in this way and providing an alternative for hard of hearing audiences is crucial from an accessibility perspective.
So don’t forget to supplement your voiceovers with closed captions for viewers with hearing impairments.
If you would like more information about finding the best voiceover talent for your videos and the production process involved, you can reach out to us on social media or contact our voiceover team for more details.