I had the privilege of leading a portion of a communications workshop with Mary Jane Copps, The Phone Lady, and coached two dozen people on how to voice a commercial. Breaking down the steps for the workshop was a great exercise in my own recognising that there is indeed skill and talent required to record scripts that I have honed over the years. You see, I didn’t really realize all that goes into voicing material, until I had to dissect it because, to be honest, I never thought what I do is all that unique or skillful. While I am aware of the fact that my schooling helped educate me and my talent as a singer is valuable in my business, I believed that what I do is definitely unglamorous and at best, fairly run of the mill. The ego is ever-present in the business world and as a proponent of “keeping it real”, I am unimpressed with the façade of success that comes from a slick webpage.
For the workshop, I established nine important keys to reading a commercial that include: sell style, voice quality, energy level, timing, pace, pauses and breaths, pronunciation, tone and musicality, and use of equipment. Each point is important in setting the stage for a successful voice-over whether for a commercial, a business narration, or otherwise. (As it turns out, these points are also key in telephone communication as per The Phone Lady!)
I will elaborate on the purpose and importance of each point in future posts. Suffice it to say that coaching others in voice-overs was satisfying and eye-opening, offering me a fresh perspective on what I do every day. Turns out, hey, I’m a pretty talented gal, and, occasionally glamorous!
*song written by Fergie, Ludacris, will.i.am, Elvis Williams, and Polow da Don