The Direct Approach

Ready to go .......

So, I’ve landed my first piece of paid-for work (more of that, hopefully, later in the month), but hunting down more never stops.  I’m registered with a number of websites, so potential auditions land in my in-box pretty much every day but, with so many other voice over artists going for the same gigs, I’m only likely to turn a small percentage of them into bookings.

Time to put the skills from my previous career in PR and marketing to good use and launch myself to the wider world.

The first and obvious step was to organise a mail-out of my voice reel.  But a CD on its own is pretty uninspiring and instantly destined for the bin if it doesn’t stand out from the crowd.  As my artistic skills are negligible at best, I decided to invest in a designer, who suggested presenting my CD in a card rather than the usual fiddly and manicure-wrecking jewel case.

Inside, the CD would be attached to the right hand side of the card with a self-adhesive plastic dot.  The left hand side would describe my voice and also give my contact details.  And the CD labels would list the tracks plus my email address.  While the cards were professionally printed, I would look after the labels myself, so that I could update them when my voice reel expanded or changed.

I’d already decided that I wanted the cards to be in my favourite shade of blue, best described as lapis, the colour of the sky and sea in the Greek Islands.  It’s become something of a signature colour for me.  My front door is much the same shade.  So is my car. The lettering would be white but Tamasin Cole, my designer, felt I needed a strapline in addition to my name.  Which was how Voiceovers Out Of The Blue came about.  Quite apart from being a neat little pun, I hoped it would be intriguing enough to up the chances of my CD being heard.

With the covers at the printers, there was one other essential I needed to get my voice heard – a website.  We decided on a holding page that would cover the essentials – my voice reel, The Coops Review podcasts, contact details and links to Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and this blog – until it could be expanded with examples of my work and testimonials from clients.  And, of course, the design would match the voice reel covers, which you can see above.

And here’s the finished article: www.fredacooper.co.uk.  If you’re interested to see more of Tamasin’s work, take a look at www.harperandcole.co.uk.

As I type, I am nigh-on ankle deep in CDs ready to be popped into jiffy bags so they can wing their way to TV and radio stations and production companies, among others.  The first phase will target those in London, plus ones in Surrey, where I live.  Companies and stations further afield will come next and, although I do aim to get myself an agent, they will come later as I will need to show them examples of actual work, rather than a voice reel, professionally produced though it is.

Direct mail can produce varied results and I don’t know for sure what mine will produce.  An average response to a similar mailing is about 6%, which doesn’t sound very high.  But if I generate six bookings out of the first 100 voice reels I send out, my costs should be covered by two of them.  Not a bad return on my investment.

But I’m getting ahead of myself.  It’s time I went to the Post Office …………

 

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