How do advertising agencies sell their services? They create case studies. Meant to gain clients before selling to their clients, (or afterward for followup campaigns) advertising case studies demonstrate how an ad agency or a media company helped meet their marketing objectives, how they overcame problems, and achieved successful results. Case studies are some of my favorite voiceovers to do. Often they are presentations that say “hey, we did this really cool thing that we’re really proud of, and here’s our awesome result.” Regularly, marketing teams put together case study videos for industry awards or to be shown on websites or at presentations or press conferences. They rely on the psychology of “cool” – showing audiences their work in clever and unique ways without directly pitching for work. Case studies let audiences see campaigns and their results and decide whether they want that for themselves.
The Impact of Voice Over On Persuasive Storytelling
So how does voice over impact an ad case study? A case study is essentially a story of a project or campaign’s life. And good stories need good storytellers. All good stories include a beginning (the conflict or problem the campaign or project was solving), a middle (the explanation of what happened), and an ending (the resolution explaining how the company solved or improved on something). Great case study stories often include research and stats to back up points made about a project’s results.
A compelling case study is a powerful strategy for showcasing an agency’s capabilities and attracting future customers. A case study presented by a voice over actor who understands advertising and the nuances of persuasive storytelling builds trust and showcases an agency’s credibility and effectiveness without being heavy-handed or overtly sales-y. They need a pro who is well-versed and flexible in the styles needed to win over the audience.
Crush Your Case Studies With These 7 Voice Over Styles
Because the overall goal of the “humblebrag” or case study is to engage the audience on a human level, the styles of voice over lean away from the announcer-y, high-energy promo styles you might hear in a retail pitch, the professorial styles of e-learning or the professional corporate tones. These voice over styles must connect and inspire. You can crush your case studies with these seven.
When a case study needs to converse with the audience, the voice over needs a casual delivery. Perfecting the illusion of not trying to sell, but tell, lends a “just between you and me” vibe to the case study. No hype, a very subtle polish, a conversational voice over style still accomplishes the selling, by simply sharing with clients about a campaign’s effectiveness which (hopefully) keeps them coming back to the agency for more or may lead to referrals for future prospects.
Like an extreme close up vs a long shot, or a voice-inside-your-head virtual reality character vs an actor playing to a 10K audience-holding theatre, this style of voice over is very real and authentic. Perhaps your voice over actor makes it sound a bit raw or unpolished, but they still come across very much as the subject matter expert in this type of case study presentation. The feeling? The audience gets a glimpse inside the minds of the creators.
“Matter of Fact”
Some have called this style the “millennial” read, although I call it “matter-of-fact” because it gets right to the point without any fluff. This delivery veers toward a blunt, “this is the way it is” attitude and often a slight bravado or sometimes even a low-level sass infusing the voice over (though it doesn’t always). It’s very much a “let the story speak for itself” kind of presentation. Done well, by getting out the way, it hits all the notes the case study needs for demonstrating how impressive and successful the project or campaign was.
Confidence sells and is a popular style of voice over for case studies for food and beverage campaigns, retail or other everyday products. This “we are killing it out there” excitement and surety draws people in. It asserts power and authority and demonstrates leadership.
Often big financial firms create campaigns without self-aggrandizing fanfare. Their enthusiasm is grounded, with no fancy lights or glitter. They rely on believable deliveries underscored with competence and reliability. The same style is reflected in case studies of their campaigns – delivering facts without hype, just the truth as it happened expressed with an understated authority that inspires trust.
When the project or campaign is focused on work done in healthcare, education, or charities and NGOs, the tone needs to match. This is where empathetic, calm, heartfelt voice overs with quiet deliveries can underscore the pathos and heartstrings reflected in the work.
A sidestep from the caring read, without tugging on warm heartstrings, projects and campaigns centering around products or movements perceived as benefiting the greater good can be inspiring. Technology, AI, bioengineering are often areas where an inspirational style underscores the ingenuity of the field. Innovations that benefit the environment or stories of sacrifice often also employ inspiring voice over.
Brilliant thanks for sharing
Dean T Moody says
Another great entry, Kim! I will be referring to it often. Thanks.
I’ve never seen any discussion about voiceovers for case studies before. I’ve voiced a few of these previously, but will take these ideas into the next one that comes my way. Thanks!