Well… How did I get here?
About 4 years ago, I decided that my voiceover business had grown enough to justify a good website and its own social media presence. I knew how to code, but I knew ZERO about creating a social media presence or how to create a website that felt like “me.”
I enlisted the help of my friend and author, Rachel Schmoyer, to teach me about social media and blogging. Rachel sat at my dining room table and patiently answered all of my remedial questions. At the end of that afternoon I knew two key pieces of information. First, I needed a unique hashtag for my social media. And second, despite Rachel’s encouragement, I was terrified of blogging. I felt certain that I had nothing useful to offer the VO community at large, as a talent or a peer.
I shelved the blog idea quickly then set about finding a hashtag to call my own. The winner was #YouJustFoundYourVoice. A not-so-subtle way to let clients know they’d landed on the right page.
Not by coincidence, I came across a post on Facebook about a brand new book by Celia Siegel called “Voiceover Achiever: Brand Your VO Career. Change Your Life.” WHAT?! I clicked the link and immediately ordered a paperback copy on Amazon. (Because I AM a geek who likes to make notes in the margins, underline and highlight key ideas and answer ALL the questions at the end of the chapter.)
Identifying my brand was a process, but once it started to gel, it snowballed into a cohesive idea quickly. I had a domain name and plan within minutes. Not satisfied with the provider’s shiny new “answer a few questions and pick a color palette” web builder, I opted for a soon-to-be-defunct older builder that allowed me to add my own code so I could have a scrolling marquee of clients, customize my players and make it mine. I spent hours that turned into to weeks perfecting every detail before hitting the publish button.
Recently the host stopped supporting the old builder altogether and I knew it was time to move my concept to the service whose work was showcased throughout Celia’s book, Voice Actor Websites. They did a beautiful job keeping my theme and streamlining it to bring my site on par with the level my career had grown to need.
In these last four years, my business has grown in leaps and bounds and I’ve been blessed with a career far beyond what I imagined it could be. I’ve built wonderful relationships, in some cases friendships, with my clients. I upgraded my studio, my coaching, my demos and my website. I’ve even gotten bold enough to go after representation and am rapidly growing that aspect of my career as well.
Before taking a crack at getting an agent, I decided I’d take part in one of Anne Ganguzza’s Agent Workouts (highly recommend it if you haven’t!) to see what an agent might actually say about my reads. During the Zoom, one of the other participants messaged me privately, complimented my work and told me I was inspirational. The impact of that note will stay with me the rest of my life. I was absolutely humbled. I really had no idea that anyone knew my name unless I’d worked with them.
Right here, Right now
Since then, I’ve been thinking about the VO artists who inspired my journey. Listening to their demos and thought, “some day…”. I read their posts and blogs. I admired their talent and achievements. By no means do I place myself at their level yet, but I’m working on it! I realized I may have something to offer to up and coming VOs are where I was four years ago. Heck, 15 years ago when I started, I just had a small rig in my attic and a handful of clients who stayed with me when I left radio. I wrote and produced their commercials that ran on a two or three local radio stations.
It hit me out of the blue. Add that blog to my website. Turn the YOU around to point to new talent instead of my clients. If you just found YOUR voice, I hope I can help you along your journey.