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Top 8 Trends in the World of Voiceover Right Now

The world of voiceover, advertising, corporate films, e-learning and training, and animation and gaming often run hand in hand. We are seeing an explosion in new voices and faces on film, television and stage.

It is no different in the world of voiceover.

Here are the top 8 trends in voiceover right now.

1. The Global Sound

National and international markets are looking for a global sound – composed of someone who could be from anywhere on the planet. We have voiceover artists on projects today that would never have been conceived of decades ago because of the pre-dominance of a sound from on high, telling you what to do. It means that we get such a warm and heart rousing project like Uncle Ben’s “Melting Pot.”

2. English in Foreign Accents

Requests for English with a foreign accent won't match the huge demand for British and American English, but will continue to rise. Australian English is experiencing an increased demand, with Latin American Spanish being the top accent in demand around the world right now.

3. Gen X'rs and Millenials

Gen X’rs and Millenials dominate as the main targets of advertising. Gen X (1960s – early 1980s) accounts for around 54% of projects in the market. Millenials account for 40% with a rising trend towards becoming the main target in the decades ahead.

So. How do I find a voice for the millennial market? One that can really speak to them? Talk to someone who has come from there and can speak to and connect with them.

4. Content Connection and Impact

Creating an impact with a project and voiceover is more important than staying on budget in an increasingly crowded content market.

Key abilities a voiceover must embody right now:

A. Form an emotional connection with the audience

B. Be a friend to the target market, not the stuffy "announcer" voice of the past

C. Reflect and be the voice of the brand

D. Arouse the target market's dreams, desires and aspirations

Witness what Nike did with their controversial “Dream Crazy” campaign featuring Colin Kaepernick, instigator of the NFL kneeling protests.

It ticked all the above and more, creating a lasting impact.

So right now it's about story telling not selling. If the voiceover and project can make a genuine emotional connection with the listener, they are more likely to remember and therefore more likely to take action and share what they are experiencing.

5. The rise of the feminine

As women start to demand equality of outcome in business, career and other aspects of life, they have also become a market that has spending power and demand. The need for female voiceovers is rising and will start to match the demand for male voices. A great and welcome development.

6. Curation of voiceover talent

Voice seekers are becoming curators of talent. They have their go to lists and are seeking a path between agents on one hand and online casting sites on the other. Trust, reputation and service delivery become crucially important.

7. AI is Coming…but is a long way off

AI is coming, but the quality is nowhere near what it takes to match the emotional, intellectual or human qualities of voiceover artists. 93% of respondents to a survey said they prefer a human to a robotic voice. AI will catch up, but not for some time.

8. The All-In-One voiceover artist

Buyers of voiceover services are increasingly wanting an all in one package. The voiceover needs to voice the script to the right tone and style and then have the technical skill to provide ready to use audio.

This involves mastering it like an engineer does with compression, equalisation, normalisation etc. And they want it in a few hours too. Thus the development of the voiceover who has a complete package to offer, forming a valuable part of your supplier chain in business.

Where will voiceover be in 5 years? Hard to say, but these 8 trends give a window into the future and what is coming.

If you like, please share.

Paul Mclaughlin © Versatile Voiceovers

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