Is Voice Acting a Good Career in 2023? Pros, Cons, Rates, and Tips to Get StartedJul 12, 2023
Have you ever found yourself breathing life into made-up characters midday? Or lending your voice to inanimate objects just for fun? If the answer to those questions was yes… it might be time to consider voice acting seriously.
The fascinating and vibrant art of using your voice to give life to characters, narrate stories, and more, voice acting is everywhere – including animated films, video games, and audiobooks. However, it often goes unnoticed as a vital part of our everyday media consumption.
Who do you think is narrating that Wendy’s commercial you love so much? Or bringing Geico’s gecko to life?! That’s right: voice actors!
Luckily, in 2023, the voice acting industry is seeing an unprecedented surge with the explosion of digital content across platforms making it a thriving and relevant career choice.
So, is voice acting a good career? That depends!
Keep reading as we discuss the pros and cons, decode the enigma around rates, and offer practical advice to help you get started in the world of voice acting. Let’s dive in!
Understanding the Voice Acting Industry in 2023
Navigating the voice acting industry in 2023 is like navigating a video game without a tutorial. The industry definitely is not what it used to be – especially as the shift toward digital content continues to rewrite the script and open new avenues.
However, one thing’s for sure: at the heart of this industry today, we see an overwhelming demand for voice actors.
The reasons? An explosion of digital platforms, a greater emphasis on diverse and unique voices, and a world adapting to remote work. What’s even better than an increase in demand is that the demand cuts across industries – from tech firms seeking voices for their latest online commercial to e-learning platforms aiming to make their content more engaging.
Looking more closely at specific sectors today, voice actors are needed in the following industries:
- Video games
- And audiobooks
However, it’s not all smooth sailing. This surge in demand for voice actors has also led to heightened competition. As the industry grows, so does the number of aspiring voice actors, which means it’s essential to carve out a unique niche.
The Pros of a Voice Acting Career
So, is voice acting a good career after all? Let's take a closer look at some of the positive aspects.
PRO #1: Flexibility and the Potential for Remote Work
One of the most attractive perks of voice acting is its flexibility. With the development of digital technology and sophisticated home recording equipment, it is now easier than ever to work from virtually anywhere.
This means that you can tailor your work schedule around your life, rather than the other way around – making it a suitable choice for professionals who value work-life balance. Breakfast at 11 AM? A nap at 3 PM? Sure thing, as long as you’ve delivered your lines.
PRO #2: Variety of Roles and Creative Opportunities
The second great thing about voice acting is that it offers a wide spectrum of roles and creative opportunities. Whether it's a sassy animated character, a formidable video game villain, or a sophisticated audiobook narrator, you can bring multiple diverse characters (practically simultaneously!).
This variety keeps the work fresh, stimulating, and full of creative challenges.
PRO #3: Increased Demand Due to Growth of Digital Content
It’s really no surprise that the rapid growth of digital content across platforms has boosted the demand for voice acting. As companies recognize the value of using real, human voices in engaging their audience, opportunities for voice actors to appear in commercials, e-learning, and digital marketing are growing.
Luckily, this need for real people is starting to seem more and more like a standard than a trend, bolstering the industry's prospects in the long term and helping you secure jobs with more frequency if you start playing your cards right.
PRO #4: Opportunity for Career Longevity and Lack of Age Restrictions
Lastly, voice acting is one of the rare fields where age is not a restrictive factor. An industry that values talent and skill over physical appearance, it provides an even playing field for individuals of all ages.
Plus, as your voice matures, you may even find new opportunities opening up! This aspect increases career longevity, making voice acting a good career choice for many.
The Cons of a Voice Acting Career
However, like any profession, voice acting doesn’t come without its challenges. Here are some potential downsides.
CON #1: The Probability of Inconsistent Work
One of the significant challenges of voice acting is its inconsistent nature. Work might come in abundance one month and be sparse the next – but it’s important to remember that this is all part of the lifestyle you signed up for.
However, it’s also worth noting that this inconsistency can lead to some income instability, especially for those starting in the field. If you’re worried about receiving a month-to-month paycheck, voice acting might not be the best choice.
CON #2: High Competition and the Need for Continuous Improvement
While the demand for voice actors is high, so is the competition. And with the industry continually evolving, voice actors must be prepared to regularly update their skills and stay on top of industry trends. This means taking lessons, investing in new equipment, and upskilling constantly.
CON #3: Physical Strain and Vocal Health Concerns
Here’s a secret that not many people will actually know: voice acting can be incredibly physically demanding.
Long recording sessions can strain the voice, and inadequate vocal care can lead to serious issues that might prevent you from finding work for a long time. With this in mind, maintaining vocal health becomes crucial – which means you’ll also require regular exercises, proper hydration, and often, vocal rest.
At the end of the day, it’s important to keep in mind both the good and the bad when it comes to answering the question “Is voice acting a good career for me?". No career is perfect, and it’s entirely up to you to decide whether the pros outweigh the cons.
Voice Acting Rates in 2023
One of the most common questions asked is, "What do voice actors earn?"
Well, unfortunately…. the answer isn't as straightforward as you’d like.
Nowadays, voice acting rates depend on a range of factors including the actor's experience, the type of project, its duration, and even the potential usage of the recording.
For instance, a seasoned voice actor working on a major video game or animated film may command a higher rate than someone who's just starting out. Similarly, the type of project significantly influences the pay. For example, voice-over work for a local radio commercial will typically pay less than a national advertising campaign.
On average, a voice actor could earn anywhere from $55 to $290 for a local radio spot, to several thousand dollars for a national commercial or a leading role in an animated series or video game.
Our Top Tips to Help You Get Started in Voice Acting
So, are you certain voice acting is a good career for you? Well, if you're considering diving into this exciting industry, here are a few tips to help you get started.
1. Find Reputable Training
Just like when it comes to practicing any other profession, training is vital in voice acting. To navigate this dynamic field, it’s crucial to keep your skills sharp and stay updated with industry trends.
That’s where an academy like A VO’s Journey comes in. From workshops to 1-on-1 mentoring and online courses tailored to different levels of expertise, we cover everything from voice modulation to script interpretation – equipping you with the skills to excel in various voice acting roles.
2. Create an Impressive Demo Reel
Your demo reel is more than just a compilation of your work – it showcases your versatility, talent, and what makes you unique as a voice actor. It's the first impression you'll leave on potential clients, so make sure it's a memorable one.
A well-crafted demo reel should highlight your vocal range, your ability to embody different characters and the varied tones and emotions you can bring to a script. And don't forget – quality is key! Make sure your demo reel is professionally produced, with clear sound and seamless editing. It's your best work, after all, so make sure it sounds that way.
3. Network and Find Work Opportunities
In the voice acting industry, who you know can sometimes be as important as what you know. Networking is a powerful tool for finding job opportunities and building relationships with people who can help your career progress. To do so, we suggest you join industry-related groups and forums, attend conferences and workshops, and never ever underestimate the value of online communities. Engaging with peers and others who have more experience in the industry can provide valuable learning opportunities, feedback, and insider knowledge about job openings that you wouldn’t have heard about anywhere else.
4. Invest in a Quality Home Studio
In our increasingly digital world, more and more voice actors are working from home. As such, a home studio is no longer a luxury – it's a necessity. After all, a quality home studio enables you to deliver professional-grade recordings from the comfort of your own home – and your pajamas.
As a rule of thumb, we suggest your setup includes a quiet, well-insulated space, a good-quality microphone, headphones, and sound-editing software. Your home studio reflects your professionalism and commitment to the craft, and having one can make you a more appealing choice for clients.
Wrapping Up: Is Voice Acting a Good Career in 2023?
As you can probably see by now, voice acting is a unique and vibrant field, filled with opportunities. It offers flexibility, creative satisfaction, and various roles across different sectors.
However, it wouldn’t be the career it is today without the need voice actors have for constant learning, networking, and investment. There are two sides to every coin, and if you ask us, voice acting is still a pretty sweet gig no matter which face it lands on.
In essence, though, whether or not voice acting is a good career in 2023 boils down to your personal goals, skills, and dedication to the craft.
If you're passionate about using your voice to breathe life into characters and stories, there’s just one thing left to say: welcome to the club.