Best Voice Over Practices in Advertising

Voiceovers have been around for the longest time and are a staple in the world of advertising and are a must-have tool for any marketing executive looking to effectively communicate with his or her audiences. With that being said, it is worth noting that voiceovers, though effective, come with their own risks like leading to your ads being rated as generic. At the same time, the continued use of voiceovers could result in the flagging of audience engagement. Here are a couple of tips that should help you get the most out of your next ad voiceover project.

What Voiceover Does Well

The most vital thing about a voiceover should be improving communication. These tools are best engaged as reinforcement techniques that emphasise or describe what’s being depicted on the screen or that simply read the brand’s tagline out loud. While the last option may not be the best use of a voiceover artist’s talent, it still works and can be quite effective.

Harmony is Key

Voiceovers are more effective when paired with complementary visuals that enhance or back up the message you are trying to convey. They should ideally not find themselves competing against your visuals for your audience’s attention as this could lead to loss of focus and could drown out the advert’s message.

Such scenarios are quite common when visuals try to tell a story while still relying on the voice-over to convey the entire message. However, doing this has been known to split a viewer’s attention, resulting in a poor recall of both the core message and the ad itself. Ads that synchronise both the tell and show aspects of advertising are often the most effective when it comes to communicating a message to viewers.

The Choice of Voice Is Critical

Finding the ‘perfect’ or ‘right’ voice for your advertisement can be a time consuming yet worthwhile process. Voice search platform, Voice Fairy, is a great place to sample different voices and selecting the desired artists. Two vital factors to consider when choosing a voiceover artist include:

Longevity – consider the longevity of your ad when choosing an artist as studies have proven that people tend to respond better to advertisements that use the same artist across multiple adverts. The artist you choose could quite literally become your brand’s voice, and, therefore, needs to be a voice that possesses a staying power reducing your audiences’ ‘repetition fatigue’.

Audience – Another thing to consider when choosing an artist is understanding your audience. Who is the ad meant for? It would be preferable if you prepared a shortlist of about 4 to 5 voiceover artists and use a focus group consisted of your targeted audience to listen to their samples and give feedback on what they’d prefer. While not the best method, it still offers you the opportunity to get feedback fast and at a minimal or no cost.

Less is Sometimes More

When used indecorously, a voiceover could derail an ad’s effectiveness. Advertisements without voiceovers are often rated as being more unique or different but are also considered to be less likely understood by audiences. It is, therefore, vital that you strive to strike a balance when deciding on when and how to use voice work in your ads.

While there are many benefits to using voiceovers and that includes the opportunity to directly inform your consumers about what you’d like them to hear instead of hoping they comprehend what your ad is trying to communicate is quite tempting. Just make sure that your voice-over does not cause interference or conflict the message you are trying to convey. Remember, ‘conciseness is the soul of wit’.