In “Things You Never, Ever, Thought Would Happen” news, nine talent agencies have joined forces to create the VO Agent Alliance.
So what exactly is the VO Agent Alliance? To quote their About Page:
We are a collective of vetted professional voiceover talent agencies committed to the highest standards the business has to offer. In response to industry pressures from outside forces and online casting sites, which have had a negative impact on talent, their representatives and most importantly those hiring voiceover talent, we have taken the unprecedented step to form an Alliance.
One feature of their website I like in particular is the Project Submission Form. This is a great way for voice seekers to submit directly to the Alliance and not have to deal with Voicebank or any Pay to Play sites.
To me the endeavor is similar to the World Voices Organization and the Global Voice Acting Academy in that they are trying to establish a set of guidelines for both voice seekers and voice talent to comport themselves in an ethical manner. Some would say that’s the job of the union and that should be true but to be honest, I don’t think they give a rat’s nose. They did issue a non-committal press statement, though so they’ve got that going for them.
The thing that really chafes my ass is that the VO Agent Alliance, WoVO and GVAA should not be necessary. They are endorsing common sense, ethical business practices but I guess there are just too many, what’s the technical term…scumbags? out there so they feel compelled to do what they’re doing.
TIP OF THE WEEK
No matter what we do, there will always be some new voice seekers and voice talent entering the industry who won’t know any better and get sucked into the bottom-feeding tidal pool. I would like to think that VDC didn’t see the VO Agent Alliance coming and even if they did I’m pretty sure they don’t care. I also don’t think they care that a few dozen of us demanded that our VDC accounts be deleted or we left some VDC or Voicebank-backed Facebook groups. New members probably join VDC every day so I doubt they will miss a beat. Unless there is legal cause of some sort, VDC isn’t going anywhere.
The real question is; what are you going to do about you?
Remember in last week’s blog when I said I would take a long, hard look at my business model? Well, I did and here is what I am going to do:
Support globally, but find more work locally. Here’s the practical application of that…
To support the voiceover community globally, I will:
Talk to all of my agents and encourage them to apply to join the VO Agent Alliance.
Encourage all voice talents to join WoVO. If you’re not a member, click here to apply.
Recommend that all voice talents use the GVAA Rate Guide to supplement their already-existing Rate Sheet. Every pro voicer should have a custom Rate Sheet already. Do you?
Join the newly-formed VO Weekly Workout.
To find more work locally, I will:
Do a better job of marketing in my backyard, that being New York City. I have far less clients there than I should because I have been far too dependent on looking online for work. I stopped going on in-person auditions years ago to get out of the starving artist rat-race and spend more time marketing myself online. I have found that it’s getting harder and harder to do that effectively because of everything we have talked about for the past few weeks. I guess the pendulum is starting to swing back, huh?
Oh, and Voicebank? Sorry you’re having technical issues with your website, particularly the comments section of your VDC acquisition announcement. Don’t worry, I’m here to help! Here are the comments that mysteriously vanished. You’re welcome!
NEWS AND NOTES
Reminder! Thursday August 31st: my August Edge Studio “Marketing 201” topic will be: 4 Words That Will Kill Your Marketing. Click here to register.
Thanks to everyone who hung out this past Saturday night in Portland, Oregon!
QUOTE OF THE WEEK
From my village to yours; this is Tom Dheere, GKN News…
Tom Dheere is a 20-year veteran of the voice over industry who has narrated thousands of projects for clients in over a dozen countries. He is also a coach at Edge Studio, voiceover business consultant known as the Voice Over Strategist, and is currently writing & producing the comic book “Agent 1.22”.