Tag Archive for self promotion

Blogger Profile: Recap

Hey folks! Let's RecapA few weeks ago I started a series of profiles on my fellow voice over bloggers. There are quite a few of us, coming from a good variety of perspectives, and I think it’s important to see the plethora of advice, tips, tricks, and good sense that is put out by these folks on their blogs. I had to interrupt this series because of a couple other posts I wanted to get our right away, but now I wanted to go over the folks that I’ve covered already and discuss next week’s profile. So far I’ve touched on:

Bob Souer

Derek Chapell

Dave Courvoisier

Marc Scott

and

Randye Kaye

Next week I’m going to be discussing Paul Strikwerda, of the Nethervoice blog. Paul was one of the first people to give me advice about blogging, and his writing has been a source of inspiration and discussion for many voice talent.

Less talking, more listening.

listeningI roam social media groups about voice over fairly often. It’s important to me to stay in touch with what’s going on in the voice over community, to try and contribute when I can. But one thing I’ve noticed in what seems like an increasing number of groups is the tendency to broadcast, not converse. There are some amazing (and highly amusing) discussions that happen when voice talent get together online, everything from the most basic questions to some of the most erudite.

I’m not going to deny having fallen prey to the easy social media fix where you paste in a link in a half dozen places and just hit go. It’s so easy to do, and everyone’s so busy these days, but I think it’s important to take time to participate (and begin) those discussions. It may take time out of your day, but the more discussions we have the more things we can learn and share, rather than just engaging in the blank bullhorn of a ubiquitous post.

If you’re a coach, you’re going to convince more people that your classes are worthwhile by talking to them. If you just booked a job, that’s awesome, but it really doesn’t need to be everywhere your fellow voice actors can see it. Yes, people are happy for you, but most people are members of the same groups, meaning you’re going to look a little ‘self-promotional’. The value of a good conversation–and enough of a sense of humor to know that you need to take online communication with a grain of salt–cannot be overstated. Everyone in this business, myself included can look back to a conversation or a moment that has helped them or enlightened them. Why not create more of those moments for other people? Pay it forward my friends!

Blogger Profile: Randye Kaye

I met Randye a fewFaffcons back. (such a great place to make friends!) Randye is a prolific author in more than one genre. (Her book Ben Behind His Voices about her son’s struggles with Schizophrenia has helped many people and garnered great reviews) She writes blogs and articles, coaches, does speaking, and is of course a veteran and very talented voice and camera actor in addition to her other talents! She’s been blogging at Life on the Voiceover List since 2010, and her writing is always sharp, informative, and has a great perspective. She doesn’t post every day, but her blog is worth an email subscription so that you can always be sure and catch up on her newest post.

Blogger Profile: Marc Scott

Marc ScottI stumbled across Marc on Twitter a while back and began reading his blog. I was impressed with his insight and sound advice immediately, and was happy to add him into my ‘content sharing’ stable. (Folks I trust to give good, solid advice that isn’t sales related, and isn’t from a negative perspective.) His blog covers a lot of areas, attitude related advice, business tips, and elements of his own life. I find the cheerful, helpful attitude projected in his writing to be both refreshing and a nice uplift when I read him. It’s easy to get cynical and jaded in this business, but Marc doesn’t fall prey to this. He’s also very polite and nice to talk to in the 140 character format as well. 🙂

He’s a volunteer firefighter in addition to his full time voice over work, and I discovered by reading his bio that we also have a love of DeWalt tools in common. (I used to build sets for the theatre, and I do miss my tools sometimes. :)) He posts often-he’s been posting since 2009, and frequently since 2012-and is active on social media. I recommend his writing to anyone looking to learn or just to get a different perspective on our industry. It never ceases to amaze me the great resources and perspectives that are out there for any talent, and Marc is one of those people.

Blogger Profile: Dave Courvoisier

courvo logoColloquially known as CourVO, Dave’s Voice Acting in Vegas blog is one of the go to institutions in our community. He has been writing (prolifically) since January of 2008, and I can’t count the number of times that I’ve seen or heard people referring to something they’ve read or learned about via his writing. He discusses tech products, the industry in general, and often social media on his blog.

Dave does social media curating in a Scoop.it, and has written (at a recent count) 2,317 blog posts. He’s going to publish a ‘best of’ trilogy for the mass of advice, tips, tech, and thoughts he’s written, and he’s also a weekly evening news anchor on a CBS station in Las Vegas. Oh, and his blog has an app as well! I met Dave at Faffcon a while back, and have followed his blog and social media work with interest since shortly thereafter.

Dave, Trish Basanyi, and Terry Daniel, have appeared a few different times as a social media triumvirate, discussing their different areas of expertise, and how best to apply these tools to your voice over career.

Dave is one to keep reading! He’s always got something insightful to say.

Blogger Profile: Bob Souer

bob_souer_professional_story_tellerThis series came to mind before the new year, and I knew one of the first people I wanted to feature was my father–and not just because he’s my Dad! I can’t count the number of people over the years who have mentioned Dad’s blog and how much they’ve enjoyed it, learned from it, and valued his words. They usually start out by telling me how awesome my Dad is, and then mention the blog, but still… 🙂

Dad has been blogging since May of 2005. He doesn’t post on a regular schedule, but I know that his readers find him worth the wait. His posts cover a pretty wide range of topics, but one of the first things he told me when he and I were discussing blogging, online content, and how you should present yourself was that he made a point of featuring other people whenever possible. Not only does it generate goodwill, and make you look good, there is also a lot of cool stuff going on out there that people should know about! In that vein, Dad also keeps a pretty lengthy blogroll of everyone he’s ever been able to find who blogs about voice over in some fashion.

In short, I would venture that my Dad is one of the mainstays of the voice over blogging world, and someone that is always interesting and valuable to read.

Content Context

Personal-Blogging-Hullabaloo-All-the-WayDo you write a voice over blog? There are quite a few of us who do. But my question for you is do you realize what you’re saying? When you write, is it just to share your thoughts with the community? It’s important when you write to have a purpose for doing so, and to know what that purpose is. Otherwise, why do it? There’s so much for each of us to do that it’s a good idea to consider and focus each of our efforts.

What content are we creating?
Why are we creating it?
What is the goal of this content?
Are we achieving this goal with what we write or share?

If you just want to talk about the cool things you’ve done, well that’s a purpose of a blog, although it’s pretty unlikely that anyone’s going to want to read it. Interspersing this with cool things that other people have done or are doing you may garner some more interest as you’re not just talking about yourself. If your purpose is just to put your name out there, you can get some traction with that, but the type of content creation that will really get you attention is almost another full time job. Rather than writing fitfully and without direction, perhaps delete that extra page on your website and focus yourself on marketing in a different avenue.

Everything we do is connected. What’s the context of your writing in your other personal promotion and marketing efforts? Does what you’re doing, what you’re writing about make sense and fit in with everything else? Make yourself into a lean mean effective use of time machine, focus your efforts, and measure the totality of what you’re doing against where you want to go with your business.

EWABS and Me!

ewabsBy the time this post appears, this will have happened a while ago, but on December 9th, 2012 I appeared on the weekly EWABS podcast. I had a great time-both Dan and George were wonderful hosts and we had a great conversation about organization and outsourcing and my own background and experiences. It was a new thing for me–I’ve been interviewed before but either in print or by voice only. Another interesting element was being interviewed on a primarily tech based show, since although I do plenty of editing and proofing my primary driver in business terms is not in that area. But we had plenty to talk about, and I truly enjoyed my time on the show. I would recommend the show and both Dan and George’s services as audio professionals to anyone in the voice over community!

If you’d like to watch the episode, you can find it here!

A Virtual Assistant’s Diary

Many times, I’ve had a hard time explaining exactly what it is I do to people. The hardest part is the ‘virtual assistant’ tag, because it’s so many different things in the course of various projects that it’s hard for people to wrap their minds around exactly what that means. So I decided to keep a diary of what a typical day is like for me, so you can understand how I balance my day and the variety and complexity of the things that I work on.

So I get up at the sound of the alarm going off at 5am. I get dressed and go exercise by walking 2.5 miles and come back to shower and get started on my day. Today my to do list includes proofing an audiobook, social media posting for a client, editing some audio for another client, and doing my thrice weekly social media check in. On my celphone, I have a note writing app (Samsung Galaxy Note II) where I cross off items as I complete them. For my social media posting, my client has entrusted me with their usernames and passwords, and I follow our regular pattern, posting information that she sends me at certain times on certain networks. During the day, I get some emails related to an ongoing project where I schedule guests for an internet talk show in Japan, and I mark them on a Google Calendar and send emails for when the client wakes up. I visit all the voiceover groups that I am part of, skimming through the posts to keep up on what is going on in the voiceover community, and adding my thoughts and comments in any places I feel I have something to say, or congratulations when someone posts about a new project.

After editing and sending the files, I get to the proofing where I speed up the audio and listen through, noting down mistakes by highlighting and marking the .pdf I’ve received from the client. This particular client has requested green highlights to make them easier to see, so I change the color for the forthcoming chapters.

Later, I answer some more emails, replying to a request from a repeat client for me to proof another book for them. I knock off around 5, and have some dinner and relax, getting ready to head to bed around 9 so I can wake up and start the cycle again the next day.

Social Media 101: Twitter Update!

It came to my attention the other day that I had missed a very important part of Twitter in my original posts. My mom mentioned the subject of hashtags, and I realized that I had forgotten to include the purpose and importance of these. Hashtags are a method to categorize tweets by topic. If someone does a search for a word you and others hashtag, all of those tweets will come up. They are slightly harder for VO’s to use, as you have to carefully tailor your tweets to something that people might actually be searching for. It’s not as simple as it would be for someone who’s looking for a recipe, for example. But if you figure out what potential clients might be searching for and interested in, this can be another avenue to make contact.

One caveat, however, is to not overuse hashtags. Tagging every word or more than say three words at the most looks obnoxious, plus makes you harder to retweet for anyone who is inclined to do so. Also, consider if your hashtag is really necessary, as another way to look like a net neophyte is to tag really random stuff.

As always, this feeds back to your online presence, and even if Twitter isn’t a source of work for you, it’s important to interact on a broad level so that when people are looking for you online, they have a variety of good context to place you in. I have also written about this here and here.

I hope this update has helped you understand Twitter a little better, and as always I’d love to hear what you think!

Next week I’ll be taking you through some ideas on how to survive until your next dose of Faffing!

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