How to order a voice-over
How much does a well-known advertising voiceover cost? When can the recording be ready? How to start? In this post, you will learn the basics that will allow you to communicate quickly and efficiently with the voice bank. Click and read more ????

How much does a voiceover recording cost?

The cost of a voice-over recording depends on

choice of voice talent, recording exploitation fields, word count or number of spots

The first element that affects the cost of a voice-over recording is the choice of voice talent. A well-known voiceover has a more expensive starting rate than a voice from the local radio, which is why the voicebank usually divides the voice-over into price categories. If you have a small budget, a cheap voiceover will be suitable for you. If your video is a big TV commercial and you need a famous voice check out the premium voices section. If you prefer that an expert from a voicebank recommends a suitable voice, just write to the recording studio you work with. In response, you should receive 3 audio voice samples with a quote.

Once you have the chosen voice, think about the field of use of the recording: where and how it will be used. The price of a voice-over service depends on how many people hear the video, hence a voice-over for a TV commercial is much more expensive than a recording for an online explainer video. This is due to the fact that the wider the audience, the higher the amount for which the voicebank has to buy copyrights from the talent. This is known as “buy out”.

It’s hard to price a recording when there is no text that will allow you to estimate the time and specificity of the work. Recordings for e-learning, explainer videos, presentations, and other forms that are not advertising are valued according to the number of words. Usually, the voice talent has a minimum rate for one or several pages. Remember that the unit price for a recording should decrease with the increasing amount of text. Prices for large recordings already include the minimum teacher’s rate, so for example, if you pay 100 PLN for 1 page, you should pay 150 for two pages, not 200. Recordings for commercials are priced depending on the field of use and the number of spots. The rate for a voice talent for a television commercial will be the same regardless of whether he records one or twenty words. If you create an advertising campaign in which there is more than one spot – you can count on a discount. Industry-standard is that each successive spot from the campaign (or its abbreviation) costs 50% of the starting price. For example, if you record a voiceover for an advertisement on nationwide television in the 30 + 15 seconds format, you will pay €700 + €350 for the recording.

Quick quote = fast recording delivery

You’re in a rush with work? Do you need an asap recording? If there is no price list on the website of the recording studio, just send a properly prepared e-mail. Thanks to this, you will avoid misunderstandings and the given costs will be more precise.

Write which voice talent you choose or ask for recommendations. Add in what language you want the recording to be and whether a female or male voice (or maybe both?) is preferred.

Enter what is the field of exploitation of the recording. The most popular are the internet (basic), internet (premium), television, radio, IVR.

Attach the recording script. If you do not have the text yet, try to estimate how many pages/characters it will have, or how long the video you are recording the voiceover for will last. If your recording is an advertisement, write how many ads there are and what are their time durations. Standard ad durations for radio, TV and Internet are 5, 8, 15, 30, 60 and 90 seconds.

Select whether the voiceover should record under the existing movie. Are you creating an English version of an existing German explainer video? The script with described timings or a movie with a voice-pilot will make it possible to record the voiceover perfectly for the video.

Voice-over recording delivery time

How long does it take to make a voice-over recording? A good voice list should always have a voiceover ready to record. Professional voice talent should deliver a short recording within 24 hours of placing the order. With longer texts, it all depends on the word count and the script difficulty. Still, making a voice-over recording should be a few days rather than a few weeks.

The recording may take a little longer for native speaker voice talents from different countries. When ordering an American voice-over from a European voice list, you must take into account the difference in time zones. Delays should not, however, be longer than one day.

Script for voice recording

If you care about time, prepare the text before recording. The voice talent will appreciate that the script contains only the text to be recorded in a readable form. Any comments on the recording interpretation or pronunciation should be included in the comments or in a separate file. Making a voice-over recording from a presentation file, which, in addition to the voice-over text, contains board texts, graphics with tables and charts, and last week’s comments from the client effectively hinder the recording and increase the risk of making a mistake.

Also, be sure to include your pronunciation. The name of the company “X” can be read in a different way by voice talents from different countries. Or maybe this pronunciation will be different for the Polish market than for the English market? The sooner you refine these nuances, the sooner the voice talent starts recording. Nobody likes corrections, so preparing a glossary with phonetic pronunciation is the first step to avoid them.

Kobieta w studio nagrań zamawia nagranie lektorskie na stronie pick a voice

Your voice recording is ready!

You don't know how to check the quality of the received recording?

right-click on the file and open the "Information" tab, there, find the values such as WAV, MP3, kbps, kHz, and bit and then compare them with the listed next

Phew! Now you made it. You chose the voice, confirmed the order with the voicebank, and finally received the audio files. How can you be sure that they are good?

Quality – MP3 files are not the pinnacle of professionalism. Recordings for professional use should be prepared in WAV format. Audio in this format with the parameters of 48kHz, 24bit is a standard in television. The exception are audiobooks and recordings for online training, where the priority is to load files quickly. In this case, MP3 files are recommended, mono with a compression not less than 96kbps.

Compatibility with the script – check if the voice talent recorded your text without any mistakes and if the whole script was recorded correctly. The recording studio always checks the text while recording, but with a very complicated technical script, it’s easy to make a mistake. Also, make sure that the pronunciation you agreed on when placing the order was used.

Editing of the recording and audio post-production – a good voiceover recording should not hum, change the volume every second and then, snap, click, or make disturbing noises. If you feel discomfort listening, give a quick note to the recording studio – perhaps something needs to be changed.

By using the above tips in cooperation with a voice bank, you will speed up the order fulfillment process and simplify your and your clients’ lives 🙂

The author of the article is Marcin Gontarz, who produces voice-over recordings (from commercials to training). Ask him a question!

Any questions?


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