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To Pro or Not to Pro

Updated: Nov 21, 2022

Pay to plays, Fivver...Martha in accounting...can’t your company cut costs by not hiring voice over talent? Or hiring someone at a steep discount? Isn’t it all the same? Well...have you ever seen something like a Marvel movie in the theatre and then watched something like your nephew’s middle school band concert off your sister’s iphone? That’s the difference. One is dynamic, interesting and memorable. The other is sweet, novel...but honestly a little frustrating and you smile through it but really 10 seconds is all you can handle.

Professional voice actors are professional storytellers. Their job is to deliver engaging storytelling with clean audio for a reasonable rate. Let me explain.


A professional voice actor will have a studio they have access to which can provide broadcast quality sound. Bad audio quality is difficult to listen to. When things are difficult to listen to, our ears tune it out. It’s called Listener Fatigue.The Accusonus blog says about listener fatigue “When people have to work too hard to listen to your content they start feeling tired and their hearing can become less sensitive...Why do we have to work hard to hear dialogue when listening to bad quality audio? The main reason for this is increased cognitive load.

Cognitive load is the amount of our working memory we’re using at any time. Our working memory is the part of our brain we use to interpret the immediate world around us and, the more of it we use, the higher our cognitive load.” In other words, you’re making your listener work too hard to pay attention. And if they have to work hard...they tune out. Hiring a professional with professional equipment helps aid in your listener’s cognitive alertness and therefore your message.


A good voice actor is less concerned with how good they sound and more with what they’re saying. This ability and understanding of text is best when a voice actor is an excellent...ya Acting is a skill that takes practice and cultivation. It may seem as if getting someone from your company who is an expert in the subject matter would be able to relay the information in an engaging way, therefore negating the need for a professional voice actor. However enthusiastic your expert is, the nuance a voice actor provides will keep your listener engaged from start to finish. The joys of hiring someone who geeks out about story arches, character objectives, pacing timers and connection. (Psst! That's us!)


At least a few times a month I am hired to ‘fix’ audio that has already been bought and paid for. There’s an economic principle called sunk cost fallacy. The idea (loosely) is...say you need to paint your house. You buy all the paint, scaffolding, brushes, drop cloths and tape. You begin and quickly realize that you are not as good as you thought (I watched allllllll those YouTube videos and it looked so easy!). But now there’s paint buckets and ruined clothes and puppy paint paw prints across the kitchen floor. Normally, you’d feel you need to go the distance and complete the project...poorly...with paint drips and ceiling smudges. Afterall, you bought all this paint! Alas, will cost you less money and time and heartache if you stopped as soon as you realized that you were, in fact, not Michaelangelo and hired a professional.

High audio quality, engaging delivery and money savings. So many wins! So yeah, do yourself a favor and hire a pro. If you need professional, excellently executed voice over, let me know. I’d love to help.

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