Voiceover Trends, the Conversational Read
Want to be timely? Want to be heard? Ask your male or female voice over actor to make it conversational.
A recent voice industry trend report says the most sought after type of narration read now and for the foreseeable future is flawed, imperfect, and sounds a lot like your best friend. It’s erratic. The words come in fits and starts, punctuated by fast flows of phrase and occasional plodding pieces of prose placed here and there for emphasis. A conversational read, also described as genuine, believable or natural, exposes the haphazard bits and bites of thought our brains let us burp out into the world.
So why not just hire Fred next door to voice your message? In reality, most conversations ain’t pretty. The trick as a professional voice actor with your text is to balance reality (or the semblance thereof) with enough sparkles and bows (technique) to make it pass as uncontrived when in fact everything has been scripted and planned. Right down to the last, “so”, “ya know” and “uh.”
Millennials. Blame ‘em. Thank ‘em. Buy ‘em a latte. The popularity of the conversational read in voiceovers, whether commercial to corporate, eLearning to explainer video, is because of the millennials. Whether you’re actually targeting them or not, the 18-25 year old market segment influences all the rest. It’s “their time.” To create songs, muck around with styles, phrases, and art. In a word, to participate. And their take on the world trickles up and colors the rest of us.
Gen Y people are extremely communications savvy. They have been sold to and targeted since birth. Remember the Teletubbies? (“Again, again”) Anything that spells sell instead of tell earns a delete, not a click. In fact, a 2014 survey called Engaging Millennials: Trust and Attention says 84% of this age group doesn’t trust traditional advertising.
So, who do they go to for advice about stuff? Not you. Each other. On YouTube, Instagram and Snapchat, mostly. Sometimes Facebook. Who will they find there? The approachable expert. The peer. The peep next door.
Thus, the rise of regular people talking to regular, uh, um, you know…other people. On your website. Your ad. Your eLearning program. Well, if not yours, then your competitor’s.
As a female professional voice over talent, I chew on steady diet of this kind of read . What about you? Wanna join the conversation? Talk to me 😀