Voice Over Branding
A lot of Voice Actors ponder the question if they should brand themselves and their business. I myself went through the same dilemma, wondering if I should invest the time and money into creating a brand. Many VOs question the value of branding. There is the camp that thinks branding doesn’t do anything for one’s business. Then the other side strongly believes the opposite – that a brand will help make them more recognizable and memorable. Industry experts will agree that branding is an essential tool in a business’s marketing strategy.
Why You Should Brand Yourself
Branding yourself can help make you stand out from the crowd. Let’s use ice cream as an analogy. When looking at all the different ice cream flavors and names, does vanilla stand out and make anyone say “WOW!”? I believe that without branding yourself and your business, it leaves you in the same category as vanilla ice cream. Don’t be like vanilla ice cream. Voice Over is a tough business to truly succeed in and is very competitive, and like most businesses that succeed, you need strong brand recognition. You need to stand out from the crowd and ensure that your brand reflects your unique selling proposition.
What is a brand?
Although a logo and website are key elements in a business’s branding, it’s so much more than that. We all recognize the Nike swoosh and the yellow arch of McDonald’s. We even associate certain colors to certain brands, such as blue for Walmart and red for Target.
A strong brand essentially creates a relationship with the client. When people wear Nike products, they are essentially buying into the philosophy, value and the feel of the company. What about Louis Vuitton and other luxury, high-end brands? Why would one pay thousands and thousands of dollars for a purse? It’s so much more than simply how the product looks. Instead, it’s more about how it makes the owner of that luxury good feel.
Key Points to Remember When Creating your Brand
A voice actor’s branding should do the same. Your brand is your public persona. Your brand should be true to you, who you are, your values and an honest reflection of your business offering. More than that, it should also reflect your target market. You need to consider if your brand will be appealing to your target audience and potential clients. It is all about how your brand will be perceived by clients and how it will make them feel about doing business with you – just like those lovers of the luxury goods.
Ask Yourself These Questions When Creating a Brand
What is that emotional connection between you and your customer that you want to create? What does your brand say about you and your service? Is this the public image and persona that your potential customers will buy into? Does it make you memorable and distinct? Does it authentically represent you and your services?
Is Branding Necessary if I’m Just Starting Out?
The professionals will agree that it would be a wise decision to brand yourself and your business right from the start. Even if you are new to the voice over industry, it is essential to differentiate yourself from the crowd and to make that emotional connection with your potential clients.
Creating a Brand
It’s certainly not an easy task to create a brand, which is why companies spend enormous amounts of money and resources for this very purpose.
If you are serious about branding yourself for voice over, I highly recommend starting with Celia Siegel’s book Voiceover Achiever (now available in Audiobook format, narrated by Celia herself). This book was invaluable for me when I was in my brand creation phase. She also offers personalized services to help you develop your brand, if you do not want to take on this daunting task on your own. You can purchase a copy at Voiceover Achiever | Celia Siegel Management VO coaching & branding or Amazon.com: Voiceover Achiever: Brand Your VO Career. Change Your Life. (Audible Audio Edition): Celia Siegel, Celia Siegel, Celia Siegel: Audible Books & Originals.