Whether driving in our cars, at the movies, or our favourite TV shows, we are influenced by dubbing and voice overs every day. No matter the medium, dubbing serves as a necessary medium to get a message to the audience. With the digital age we live in, the importance of an effective dubbing is significant to enhance the effectiveness of content and provoke thought and emotion in viewers and listeners. The power of dubbing offers an effective way to peak the interest in a certain audience and spread information. Voice overs enhance productions with a creative element while dubbing is a technique that should be invisible to the audience. Its purpose is usually to either replace unusable sound or change a language. For instance, old sound can be replaced with new or an English film can be dubbed in Spanish to broaden the audience. With the proper techniques, dubbing will go unnoticed and just be a smooth part of the video.
Because dubbing requires multiple steps and often multiple experts, it is worthwhile to reach out to a professional dubbing company in India. The intricacies involved in creating professional quality dubbing not only requires the actual voice work require expertise, but also the components of scriptwriting, choosing and recording talent, and layering the sounds. If you too are looking to hire a professional dubbing actor for your project, we have summarized a few qualities of a good dubbing recording and an excellent demo that will help you to assess the dubbing easily and hire the right voice for your job.
Points To Know Before Selecting Dubbing Talent
The most important rule of selecting dubbing talent is to define exactly what you want to achieve before selecting dubbing talent. The keyword there is ‘exactly.’ Be as specific as you can be as you define the following criteria:
- Project Type: The type of information you want to present to your audience determines your project type. Do you want to hire a dubbing talent for an explainer video, a narration, or a sales commercial? Dubbing talents have different specialties. Some have voices that are expressive and just perfect for storytelling. Others have years of experience with Elearning dubbings and some can produce professional voice recordings without much direction.
- Know Your Brand: When it comes to listening through demos and zeroing in on the right voice, knowing precisely what you’re listening for is half the battle. You can’t know what you’re listening for until you determine how your brand is supposed to sound. You can conduct a number of exercises to pin down the type of voice you’re looking for to represent your brand sound: from doing a deep-dive to define the essence of your company (including your brand’s origin story and current core beliefs), to envisioning how your brand would behave in certain contexts were they a real live person, as well as a review of how you want to engage with your audience on macro and micro levels. Are you listening for a calm, tranquil dubbing that will read your script in thorough, clear detail, or are you in search of a lively animation voice over services that will heighten the energy of your script? Gaining a handle on character dubbing roles and styles of delivery will help you designate the type of dubbing you want the recording for. Your overall brand sound consists of a lot more than the mere services you provide or the product that you’re selling. A robust branding strategy will take into account the feelings and associations that instantly come to mind when a member of your audience hears the name of your brand.
A lot more goes into forging your brand sound than simply building standalone audio elements like a sonic logo, or adorning your ad campaign with a catchy jingle. Defining and designing the usage of your overarching brand sound will impact everything from the hold music that plays when customers contact you by phone, to the dubbing voice over characters you create and the dubbing actors you ultimately cast to bring those characters to life. The important part is blending these elements into one cohesive whole through the employment of a thoroughly evaluated marketing strategy. Once you’ve compiled a list of words to describe tones that effectively convey your brand sound, you ought to incorporate these same words and vocal styles into your dubbing actor job searches, in order to give prospect dubbing actors a sense of how to perform a delivery of your script that aligns with your branding.
- Tone: Your chosen dubbing talent will need a lot of direction if they are to deliver your script perfectly. They will need to stick to a specific tone that reflects your brand guidelines. And there are no restrictions here. Your brand tone should influence the listener and help you achieve your goals. If you want to educate, go for a tone that sounds instructional and not commanding. You can then select dubbing talent based on the way they deliver your chosen tone. When describing tone, you should outline as many details as possible, from the actual volume or pitch of the vocal delivery, to the emotional ambience that you’re aiming to create.
However, if you find yourself struggling to find the right words, Voyzapp - largest online voice over marketplace makes it easy to describe the tone you’re looking to achieve or emulate with your dubbing, by providing you with dozens of artists with vocal attribute descriptions like accents, dialects, languages, roles, and styles.
- Audience Preferences: You may have found a dubbing talent that represents your brand, but do your listeners feel the same way? Conduct demographic testing to find out. It doesn’t have to be a big study (especially if your audience is small), but always strive for a comprehensive survey that answers all your questions.
- Male or Female dubbing Talent: Your campaign may be geared towards men, women, or it may be gender-neutral. Select dubbing talent based on what your audience can relate to. People find male dubbings forceful while female dubbings are soothing and nurturing. Take all this into account when selecting dubbing artist for your brand.
- Accent: Selecting dubbing talent with the right accent will make your dubbing narration relatable. Whether you’re a local or foreign business owner, you can always appeal to local audiences by selecting a dubbing that best represents their country. While this may seem obvious: go with a proficient English-USA voice over accent when addressing an American audience and so on, it’s not that straightforward. Sometimes, a foreign accent might be the way to go if your audience is open to it. And don’t forget about the regional accents. It’s easier to select dubbing talent when you know the type of language that appeals to your audience.
- Age: The age bracket of your audience will determine the type of dubbing talent you choose. Young people might relate to an expressive and upbeat dubbing while older demographics may be more inclined to a deeper and more mature voice. Again, it’s about eliciting specific emotions from your audience. Selecting the wrong dubbing actor could mean alienating your listeners.
After you have all this information down, you can start to narrow down on the dubbing talent you want to select. Sample different dubbings before selecting a dubbing artist. You can’t select good dubbing talent unless you know what he/she sounds like. Listen to some voices and identify with what you like about them. You can even hire dubbing artists online from a dubbing agency like Voyzapp with a variety of actors in their portfolio. Before you settle for dubbing talent, listen to their previous demos and samples. This will give you an idea of what their dubbing can achieve in terms of adaptability and flexibility. You will also get to compare their previous work to your project so you can determine if the dubbing talent is the perfect fit.
- Developing a storyboard: A storyboard serves as a basic visual portrayal of your script. It’s made up of a series of still images, segmented into frames and typically no more refined than hand-drawn sketches. It plainly conveys the narrative arc of your work from a visual standpoint. Each frame exhibits the key components of each frame, including characters, props, setting details, camera movements, and the type of shot (close-up, establishing, etc.). Storyboards include as many frames as necessary to convey the visual sequence of events. They predominantly rely on visual illustrations to tell the story, using words only when necessary. However, depending on the medium the storyboard is being produced for, some frames need to include extended notes, clarifying what certain frames are meant to be depicting, while never overpowering the visuals. Think of a storyboard kind of like a comic book. Storyboards are generally used for:
- Proof of concept: A storyboard functions as evidence that you and your creative team have a clear vision that you know how to execute. This can come in handy when you’re trying to bring stakeholders up to speed with your latest ideas and developments. Especially when it comes to animation, apps, and video games, it can be far more effective to prove your concept’s visual palette or interface than to simply rhapsodize about it. A robust proof of concept can mean the difference between receiving support for your project or not.
- Outlining budget requirements: The budgeting for projects that use dubbing can range from the minuscule to the gargantuan. Sometimes it takes a visual layout to determine which side of the scale your project is leaning toward. Mapping out a storyboard featuring shot lists will help your team identify just how much time and effort will be required to produce each shot, in a comprehensive manner that just can’t be achieved by merely flipping through the screenplay.
- Confirming the narrative makes sense: Oftentimes, when you’re still immersed in the scriptwriting stage, you can get bogged down in the story and dialogue, and lose sight of the work at large. Storyboards help to break down the flow of images that the audience will lay eyes on, ensuring that it makes sense on a fundamental shot-by-shot level. A storyboard thus helps to clarify the script’s intentions and thus enhance your brand image.
- Recording skills: Before hiring a dubbing actor, make sure they can provide audio in the format and quality you want. You can judge the quality of an actor’s voice based on their demo, but you need reassurance that the dubbing artist can deliver the same quality of audio if hired. Maybe their demo is good because they used a better recording studio. Ask about the studio equipment and specs that they will use to record your dubbing. How is the microphone quality, and is their home studio sound-proofed? These questions seem a little obvious, but they are necessary. There’s nothing worse than hiring a dubbing talent only to discover that they don’t have what it takes to elevate your project. Here are some common recording equipment that every dubbing artist must have expertise in using:
- Microphone: A microphone is required to capture the sound of the talent’s voice. The quality of the microphone selected will have a large impact on the overall quality of the recordings and a professional dubbing talent will know the importance of selecting the right type of microphone that delivers professional recordings.
- Preamp: The preamp or pre-amplifier, amplifies the electrical signal generated by the mic and converts it into a language that the recording device (computer & recording software) will understand before it enters the system.
- Headphones: The dubbing talent should be able to hear the recording, and a good pair of closed back headphones are essential for a dubbing actor.
- Mic stand: A good artist knows that s/he shouldn’t handle the microphone. When the mic stays in a fixed position on a mic stand, the recordings will be more consistent and even-sounding and free from rattles and vibrations.
- Shockmount: A shockmount suspends a microphone with rubber or elastic bands (or utilizes similar kinds of suspension systems), which eliminates most of the vibration and handling noise the mic would otherwise pick up.
- Pop-screen/pop-filter: Sensitive condenser mics can easily pick up the plosive sounds that the mouth makes and create ugly pops on the recording (“P” sounds pop). A pop filter is a screen that diffuses these sounds.
- Recording/editing software: There are many audio recording software programs on the market. While many programs seem to do pretty much the same thing, each varies in their complexity and ease of use.
- Acoustic Treatment: Being able to hear the ambience (echo) of a room is very undesirable for all dubbing recordings, so it must be controlled to achieve professional results. The recording studio must be able to keep unwanted external noise out and at the same time control the sound reflections within the space.
When it comes to dubbing, it’s about what you say and how you say it. If you select the perfect dubbing artist but your script is bad, your dubbing will not sound professional. Not even a good dubbing talent can bring a monotonous script to life. To make it easier on yourself, define your goals and your persona before starting the search for dubbing talent. This will help you to pivot your brand message effectively. And always keep your audience in mind when selecting dubbing artists because they are the bridge between your brand and anyone who listens to the dubbing. The talent you choose will be a physical representation of who you are. The audience has to relate to this voice.
Qualities Of A Professional dubbing Artist
A professional dubbing artist can help you to connect your products and services to your customers. Therefore, before finalizing the right dubbing talent for your project, you need to consider a few points that are mentioned below:
- Professional Dubbing Experience: Experience reigns supreme when it comes to honing talent, skills and professionalism. A more experienced dubbing actor will most likely be able to deliver a high-quality final product, especially when compared to a dubbing talent with limited experience. While some dubbing jobs may require more finesse than others, some solid acting experience is also always a plus. A dubbing talent’s level of experience should be evident in their completed work showcased on their website and on their dubbing bio or resume. If a dubbing talent has been in the business for 10+ years, this is a definite sign that they know what they are doing. The professionalism and ability to work efficiently with clients only comes after years of doing so. You have to be very good at what you do and be able to provide quality dubbing service to hundreds of clients to be successful over such a long time-frame. The question to ask: “How much experience does this dubbing talent have and how many years have they been doing professional dubbing work?”
- Timely, Reliable and Consistent Service: In addition to checking on what their experience level is like, you will also want to determine how good the dubbing talent is at being reliable, consistent and keeping their word when it comes to deadlines. A prime way to check this out before hiring is to look for client testimonials and reviews. If you end up hiring a dubbing talent for repeat work, you will get a sense of their ability in these areas over time. Good artists will work very hard at making sure that they always hit the deadlines to gain clients trust and future business! Also the consistency in delivering professional recordings, without fail is a sign of a true dubbing artist.
- Range and Versatility: Make sure the VO talent’s vocal range suits what you’re looking for and, if you’re not sure what you’re looking for, go for someone with a wide range of vocal ability in their dubbing demos and clips. High-quality VO pros will have sample recordings that showcase their full range and versatility on a wide scope of different jobs. Always select the dubbing artist who can demonstrate a suitable amount of range and versatility in their demos and samples.
- Availability: This is especially important if you are looking to hire dubbing talent for an ongoing work project like a professional Elearning voice over, that will require them to record on many occasions over the course of a month, a year or even longer. Generally, it is much easier for a full-time dubbing over talent to be on top of this area, because they are committed full-time to servicing their clients. Part-time dubbing over talents can sometimes not meet deadlines (or be available on very short-term notice) because they are doing something else for a big chunk of their day and are not in their home studio on a full-time basis. Find a full-time dubbing actor and you’ll find someone whose total energy and focus is on meeting the needs of their dubbing clients.
- Rates and Pricing: Money is not always the bottom line, but rates can work as a clue to decide if the dubbing actor is the right one for you. One red flag would be rates that are unbelievably low, which could be the mark of a novice. Other talent rates may be competitive, considering their experience and what uniqueness they bring to the table. Competitive rates are usually the mark of a pro, as is someone who sounds knowledgeable when quoting rates. They will have the experience to understand the market rate on any given project, taking into account the important factors like broadcast vs. non-broadcast, usage period, buyout options and other factors that can come into play. This knowledge indicates they have a good idea of the work involved on a specific project and are striving to set a rate that’s fair for their time and talent and affordable for you. Always keep in mind that in dubbing, like most other businesses, you usually get what you pay for. Beware of quotes that don’t appear fair or can’t be backed up by sound reasoning. Also beware of prices that sound too good to be true.
Hiring Professional vs. Up-and-Coming dubbing Actors
Just as in various other walks of life, dubbing talent rates will also be influenced by the actors’ level of experience and status in the industry. If a dubbing actor is capable of pulling off a niche or specialty vocal performance that is precisely what your project requires, it is possible that they will be priced suited to their experience and signature style. Dubbing actors with less experience may not charge as much but it may reflect on the quality. Remember that talent reserves the right to set their own dubbing cost, and will do so based on their going rate and the budget range that you are offering.
It is worth noting that talent with the lowest quotes won’t necessarily provide the best value for your project. At the same time, talent who quote above the budget range won’t necessarily be the right fit for your project as well. The truth is, the best talent for your unique job will depend on your own unique needs, whether you require quality voice overs or affordable video editing and development services for your project.
- Custom Audition: Another keen way to gauge a person’s vocal range and versatility is to ask for a custom dubbing audition. Ask your prospective VO actor if they wouldn’t mind recording a few sentences of the project in their home studio, and sending over – kind of like a test drive. A Professional voice over agency like Voyzapp will always offer the option to get a custom dubbing over audition of the artist beforehand. This way, you and your client get a taste of what the final product will sound like, and can offer any feedback prior to assignment of the final script. Don’t expect the artist to record the whole script for you, however. Just a portion of it should be enough to get a feel for how they will sound on the final product. A custom audition gives you a chance to gauge the versatility of the dubbing talent. It also allows you to critique their delivery before dubbing the final script.
- Recording Studio Specs: Key elements in a high-end recording studio include a high-quality microphone, pristine sound-proofed recording environment, professional-grade software and current technology computer setup. If you start asking specifics about studio specs, and the person has no clue what you’re talking about, you may want to think twice before taking them on. Serious dubbing actors have an in-depth knowledge of the dubbing equipment they use. Remember, a room full of fancy, expensive equipment doesn’t guarantee a good recording. Everything must be set up properly and fine-tuned. If you have any doubt about the calibre of the recording studio, ask for a sample recording done in their home studio so you can get an accurate idea of the level of quality you’re dealing with.
One listen (just like one picture) can be worth a thousand words. And keep in mind that even with the best of equipment, if that vocal talent isn’t up to snuff, then it’s another reason to move on. Always ask yourself : Does this dubbing talent have a good quality recording studio and can they deliver high quality audio files?
- Acting Ability: While dubbing artists may sound fine on a mic when given specific directions, authentic dubbing actors have the ability to give you the nuance you need – often with little or no direction required. Top-notch dubbing actors come armed with the training, experience and skills required to portray a character, in any given situation or relationship, not just provide so-called “lip service.” Whether to add intrigue to your documentary or to engage an audience for your Audiobook narration, this kind of expertise is what will lift the words off the page and take your project from something bland to something engaging. Every commercial or documentary demands a specific voice appropriate for the script. You need to check whether your dubbing artist is able to act or not.
- Enunciation and Articulation: Enunciation is a crucial element as it can make or break the project. A great dubbing artist must possess exceptional enunciation skills. If the enunciation is poor, then that may damage the brand image and the company conveying the message. Also, articulation is a speech quality that cannot be ignored. After all, you want your dubbing to the sound natural, right? Articulation comes from being a native speaker of a specific language. These experts can master the script and deliver the lines in a clear format.
- Flexibility and pacing: Is the artist flexible? Can the artist speak different accents? The message should be conveyed clearly to the audience. Therefore, it is vital to check the quality and clarity of the dubbing. Different recordings will require different dubbing personalities. So it is advised to work with someone who possesses a range of dubbing qualities.
Also remember to look for pacing and timing, while selecting a professional dubbing artist for your project. The artist must know how to pace himself for the time he is given for his line, without sounding rushed. By employing the right rhythm, an artist can add unique personality to characters through voice overs.
Judging A dubbing Artist’s Demo
A ‘right dubbing’ can help you to reach your content to a wider user base and a professional dubbing actor will ensure that the dubbing understands the intent behind the brand’s message to deliver it just the way you want it. Therefore it is vital to assess the dubbing demo or audition of the talent carefully to gauge the competency of the dubbing. Here are some factors to look out for when listening to the demo or samples of the dubbing actor:
- Noise: This typically refers to any noise other than the actor’s dubbing that you may be able to hear on the demo recording. Noise can be in the form of static, hum, an air conditioner, intermittent popping, hiss, or crosstalk. Some noises can be so severe – that the actor’s dubbing is practically unintelligible. And noise can make all the difference to the quality of the dubbing.
- Distortion: This is typically related to recording equipment or software and affects the dubbing itself. In today’s digital recording environment, any kind of distortion is likely to render a dubbing unusable.
- Editing skills: Poor editing can make dubbing narration lose its rhythm. It is often particularly evident when breaths get removed and the audio-clip ends up sounding robotic. As a rule, professionals won’t submit a dubbing to a client that has choppy transitions and audibly abrupt cuts.
- Creativity and professionalism: Other aspects to look at when evaluating a dubbing actor’s demo relate to creativity and professionalism. You may want to convey different emotions in your project and need a dubbing actor who can narrate both engagingly and convincingly. Consider pronunciation, clarity, pitch, and accent as crucial factors that contribute to believability. Your target audience must relate not only to what is being said, but also to who is saying it.
- Detail oriented: Details are important: If you hear something you like, you ensure that you are paying details to dubbing characterisation, narration speed and pacing. The dubbing artist should be conversational, relaxed and confident during dubbing and should have the ability to deliver a good performance, every time.
Hiring dubbing Actors on Voyzapp is a Breeze
Enterprises and professionals who come to Voyzapp to find their perfect dubbing and professional subtitling services in multiple languages, are usually balancing an array of commitments and deadlines, are strapped for time, and are simultaneously striving to get a quality dubbing recording. This is why Voyzapp - a reputable dubbing company, offers the fastest and easiest way to find and hire dubbing actors who possess the precise vocal attributes you need, from the largest pool of talent on any online dubbing over marketplace. Through Voyzapp, you can also collaboratively listen through a series of high-quality auditions with your team, and ultimately hire the best dubbing actor for your project who you have decided to move ahead with.
Explore your options carefully while making the choice to hire the dubbing artist and take you time to assess the demos. Undoubtedly, the perfect dubbing is out there just waiting for you to take the right decision. Good luck!