Oops! Are guilty of sending naked voice over demos? If you are, it will almost certainly cause your demo to be trashed.
A naked voice over demo is a demo sent (or emailed) without a personalized cover letter, or with a brief impersonal note such as:
“Here is my voice over demo. Please listen and call me if you can use me.” Ouch!
The personalized cover letter should include a summary of your experience (if any), a brief description of your voice type, and something to indicate that you have done some research about the company you are sending to and that you really would like to work for them.
Personalizing your cover letter so the person you are sending it to knows you did your homework is the “secret sauce” that will get you noticed and listened to.
When emailing your demo, include a personalized cover letter in the body of the email, not as an attachment.
Here’s how to write the perfect cover letter for your voice over demo.
First research the person or company you are sending to by going to their website. Often you’ll find press releases and samples of their work. Then, GOOGLE ” the person you are sending the demo to. Type their name into a search engine and see what comes up. Have they won any awards? Spoken at any industry events? What are some of the recent productions they have done?
Sometimes these will be posted on the company website and you can comment about them intelligently when you speak with the prospect. Remember, getting ahead in voice-over and in life is all about building relationships with clients and prospects. Be interested in them and they will be interested in you. With this attitude you will also really stand out from the crowd of wanna-be’s clamoring for attention.
Here’s an example of a cover letter a voice talent with no experience could send.
123 Main Street
My name is Pat Voice. I’m a voice talent here in Anytown. I thought the commercials you did for the Anytown State Fair were really creative and hilariously funny and I would love to read for you next time you are casting. My voice type is wry, quirky 30 something.
By the way, congratulations on the award Goofball Productions got from the Ad Council. You must be really proud.
My demo CD is enclosed and you’ll find more about me on my website at joanbarnes.com. I’ll check in with you again in about a week.
By the way (and this is important) NEVER say that you are a beginner. If your demo is good and you sound professional over the phone they will never suspect it. But if you do admit that you have never done this before they’ll lose faith in your abilities before they even give you a chance.
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Susan Berkley is a top voice over artist
and founder of The Great Voice Company, a company devoted to teaching great voices around the world how to become successful voice over actors.