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How to Become a Voice Actor: A Step-By-Step Guide

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Do you have raw voice talent and you’re considering becoming a voice actor? You’re not alone.

According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, acting jobs, including voice acting, will grow by 8% by 2031. The good news is voice acting is an in-demand job you can start as a side gig!

Our step-by-step guide will give you basic knowledge on how to become a voice actor. We’ll cover the tools you need, and discuss your earning potential.

You might even get work as a high-paid voice artist!

An Overview of Voice Actors: A Primer

Voice acting is everywhere. Any video game, audiobook, GPS, podcast, or TV show needs a professional voice actor to bring different characters to life.

Announcing promos, making museum guides, and commenting during sports events are voice-acting as well.

There’s no fixed type of voice suitable for this work. People with raspy voices or squeaky voices can make it in the industry. You don’t need a degree to start. What matters is that the voice actor can convey emotions through sound!

As a voice actor, you can expect to go through training, auditions, dubbing sessions, revisions, and director meetings. Work assignments can last anywhere from a day to a month.

What’s great about this job is it’s possible to start it as a side gig. It’s project-based, and you don’t have to come to work every day. For instance, audiobook narration only requires three to eight hours of recording.

How Much Do Voice Actors Make?

Voice-over artists are in-demand because of rapid digitalization!

The Bureau of Labor and Statistics says that voice actors make $23.48 per hour on average. It has the potential to become a high-paying job once you get your name out there.

You may get paid $100 to $15,000 for doing a single commercial ad. Audiobook narrators make $1,000 per recording. Voice actors earn $20,000 for a leading role in an animated film.

A rare few achieve recognition as stars.

One example is Alex Borstein. She makes $175,000 to $225,000 per episode for her role as Lois in Family Guy!

What You’ll Need to Become a Voice Actor [& Associated Costs]

Voice acting may be one of the best gig jobs because you don’t need education or licenses to start. There are some investment costs, though.

Male actor doing voice over in sound studio

Here’s everything you’ll need to become a voice actor!

  • Recording Equipment: A survey by Voices shows that 46% of voice actors spend less than $1,000 for equipment. It can include microphones, headphones, pop screens, and boom stands.
  • Acting Class: Voice acting requires some training and development. You can hone your voice acting skills and become a good voice actor by getting a voice coach for $200.
  • Recording Studio Rental: At times, you may need access to a recording studio to do voice work. This can cost as little as $30 per hour, but it’s not necessary in some cases.
  • Audio Editing Software: Voice editing software, like Adobe Audition, is one of the essentials for an aspiring voice actor. It helps refine your recordings and can cost $31.50 per month.

How Much Does It Cost to Become a Voice Actor?

A job of voice acting doesn’t cost much to start. The most expensive investment would be equipment, but this is a one-time buy.

As a voiceover actor, expect to pay $1,230 up-front, and $31.50 per month for the editing software.

Is It Hard to Become a Voice Actor?

It’s not hard to become a voice actor as long as you work hard to train and audition. An innate skill for acting isn’t necessary, but you need practice so you can deliver a quality voice act.

Voiceover work is perfect for people who want a job with very little customer contact.

How Long Does It Take to Become a Voice Actor?

A degree isn’t necessary to get voiceover jobs. You can start to work right away!

Of course, you’ll need to sign up for plenty of auditions and slowly build your portfolio. A professional voice actor can get better roles because of experience.

How to Become a Voice Actor in 6 Simple Steps

image for how to schema on the post about how to become a voice actor on gigworker.com

Here’s how you can succeed in one of the best uncommon side hustles today.

Step 1: Train Your Voice

Voice actors, like singers, need to practice daily.

Training strengthens the vocal cords and gives you more control over pitch and sound. This is necessary because actors must be versatile.

Professional voice actors should have several voices. They can play a different voice and character in one show, which makes them desirable as a talent.

Taking acting classes helps to develop skills in this line of work. It will let you project emotion and give you experience. Your stamina will improve so you can work for longer hours as well.

A voice coach can recognize your shortcomings and take your training to the next level. Remember to choose one who’ll give honest feedback on where you need improvement!

Step 2: Find Your Niche

What character voice can you do? Can you do funny voices for cartoons, or is your sound more for podcasts and audiobooks?

You should find your niche so you can apply for roles that give you a high chance of getting hired.

To do this, you may pay attention to commercials, video games, radio DJs, and even voice-acting influencers!

Start reading things aloud to familiarize yourself with your capabilities. If possible, get a second opinion on what area you should focus on.

Step 3: Gather Equipment

The next thing you should do is gather recording equipment. Having a basic studio at home will save money and benefit you in the long run.

Set yourself up with a computer and voice editing software. Buy a good-quality microphone and audio interface. Finally, select a quiet room so you can do non-stop recording.

Step 4: Record and Distribute Demos

Once your setup is complete, you may start making your demo reel. A voiceover demo is a short compilation of your voice-acting skills. You can use it to connect with potential customers.

Each demo lasts 90 seconds and is divided into five or six segments. Because it’s so short, you should record voices that’ll catch a client’s attention!

For better chances of getting hired, submit your samples to every director and agency you can.

Step 5: Network and Market Yourself

Getting into voice acting means that you should have strong networking skills. Few directors risk hiring an actor they don’t know.

Building your self-confidence is the first step to getting yourself out there. Collecting a network of contacts is necessary to get you job opportunities.

Plus, if you manage to get clients, make sure to keep a steady stream of work coming from them. Do this by continuously promoting yourself and keeping a good image.

A good tip is to market yourself through a social media account. Share fun videos of your voice recordings on different platforms!

Step 6: Apply to Talent Agencies

This is a smart step for people without contacts in the industry. An agency can represent you and submit your demos to casting calls. It may schedule your audition and negotiate with the casting director.

Having the right talent agency can make or break your career. This is why you should only apply to reputable ones!

Reasons to Consider Becoming a Voice Actor

A female voice actor and director working in a sound studio

Voice acting is one of the great options for a second job. Here’s why!

  • Work Remotely: If you have the proper recording equipment, there’s no reason why you can’t have a remote work setup! You may tape your voice, edit your recordings, and apply for jobs from the comfort of your home!
  • Freedom to Select Roles: What’s great about having a voice acting career is you can select roles that speak to you. You have the freedom to go for jobs that challenge your creativity!
  • Flexible Time: You’ll enjoy the benefit of work/life balance since you can choose when to accept work. Aspiring voice actors may work for only a few hours a week as a side job.
  • Earning Potential:  Your voice acting job can turn into a full-time position if you nab a stable contract. You even have the chance of earning six digits per year once you become a successful voice actor.

Frequently Asked Questions

Here are our most frequently asked questions for becoming a voiceover artist.

Can Anybody Become a Voice Actor?

Yes, anyone with talent in voice acting can excel in an acting career! You don’t need a professional-sounding voice. Even people with funny voices can succeed in the industry.

The most vital aspect of becoming an artist is that you always practice your voice acting. This way, you improve your vocal range and become consistent with your work.

How Much Does a 1-Minute Voiceover Cost?

How much you make depends on your role and experience. There’s a wide range of work available for voiceover artists, making it hard to pinpoint a fixed salary.

Audiobook narrators can expect to make $3 per minute. Yet, if you’re a voiceover artist in animation, you can earn $400 per minute of recording!

Similar Gigs to Check Out

Are you still unsure if becoming a voice artist is the job for you? Not to worry! You can learn more about related side gigs through these articles.

Wrapping Up

Voice acting is one of the best jobs for those who want to make money on the side.

You can enjoy flexible schedules without paying too much capital. Anyone can start it as long as they’re willing to commit to daily training.

The best part about this job is that it has the potential to become your main source of income!

Did you enjoy learning about how to become a voice actor? Let us know what you think in the comments.

You may share our article with a friend who might excel as a voice actor as well!

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