So You’ve Booked Your Session with a Voice Over Coach
Wonderful, you’ve pulled the trigger and you have decided to book a free consultation to meet with a voice over coach. This meeting or call could be the beginning of your voice over career if the coach you are talking to is the right coach for you. Just as much as you want to find out if they are the ideal person to help you build the foundation for your business, they too are looking to see if you are the right fit for their voice over coaching program. Keep in mind that this working professional is setting aside time in the middle of booking gigs, running a business, and coaching others to speak with you FOR FREE. So here are some dos and don’ts to come in as prepared as possible for your consultation session. Remember, you only have one chance to make a first impression:
- Actually prepare for your call. Know something about the coach you are speaking to, what genres they work in, their niche in the industry.
- Educate yourself about the voice over industry.
- Know why you want to work with a coach.
- Have some personal goals. Why do you want to pursue voice over?
- Ask about how this coach is different than other coaches?
- Do ask about where this coach sources their scripts?
- Do ask about how this coach designs and creates lessons.
- Do ask about whether the coach only works on craft and vocal technique or if they cover business and marketing strategy too.
- Do ask about the path that the coach took, what was their story.
- Consider pricing and bulk packages.
- Do a base line read if the coach sends one.
- Don’t come unprepared.
- Don’t ask for general life advice, like whether you should commit to voice over or go back to a day job.
- Don’t ask for guidance for multiple genres all at once.
- Don’t ask how much the coach earns in a year. It is fine to ask about typical career trajectories, but do not expect a stranger to share the income with you.
- Don’t ask someone you have not hire to refer work to you.
- Don’t ask a coach you have not booked work with for discount codes.
- Don’t take more than the allotted time.
- Do not continually email the coach who has already given you free time more questions.
- Don’t take advantage.
What it it’s a Demo Consultation?
- Do your homework in advance. Listen to and watch samples to see if you actually want to work with this coach before you schedule the consultation.
- Do ask what is included in the Demo package.
- Do ask how the demo recording session is run.
- Do ask what the demo script selection process is like.
- Do ask how the demo will be marketed and if that is included in the package.
- Do ask about different genres the coach produces demos for.
- Do ask about general demo guidelines.
- Do ask why this coach’s demos stand out.
- Do ask how long the demo and the various spots will be.
- Do ask about the order of the spots and who determined it/how it is determined.
- Do ask about the demo turn-around time.
- Do ask about the music/video for the demo.
- Do ask about different versions of the demo.
So How Do I Know
In the end, you have to trust your gut. If the coach has good referrals, and you feel like you will go far from working with them, it is reasonable to try coaching with them. Sometimes you can tell a lot by the demos they have produced and others that have coached with them, sometimes you can’t. One of the best coaches I ever had, Fred Frees, never coached anyone until I begged him to coach me. He was amazing. I found him in a testimonial on another coach’s website, and Fred was incredible. He gave meaningful feedback, he listened, he was genuine, he was kind, and he had years of industry experience. What more could I have wanted? I think about Fred often. Don’t pick someone because of their name. Find the right fit for YOU. We all need something different, and we all learn differently. So, find someone who is the right coach for you!
Conversely, if you are rubbed the wrong way from the start, there are plenty of coaches in voice over. Do not force yourself to work with some you do not click with. That is the point of the free session. See what feels right! See if it’s the right fit. When the free session is over, you should be super excited for the next and first real session to start. If you are not feeling that way, something is terribly wrong.