2021: What's ahead for Voice Over and Content?
A new year, and a sense of hope and possibility that it will be different from 2020.
Voiceover and content production went through some major challenges last year. Being a sector at the forefront of cultural and social trends it was able to adapt quickly.
Looking ahead to 2021, with vaccination programmes rolling out, here is a look to how the year may play out.
1. Professional Studio v Talent Studio Percentages Level out
Going back a decade talent home studios were not as ubiquitous as they are now. As the years have passed the cost to set one up has significantly reduced and we now find the situation where talent can have sets ups that rival those of the major studios in Soho and LA. That means less of a need to go into a studio when you can dial in to a solid set up with your talent.
As the vaccine rolls out and it enables resumption of social contact (if it’s a success) I anticipate that the marked shift in 2020 to working with talent in home studios will stay. It won’t be such a leap for the creatives on the project anymore, as it had to happen to continue pipelines in 2020. There will be a parity in the proportion of jobs recorded on location in professional studios and those of talent home studios. Ensure to look for a solid and reliable set up from your artist.
2. Volumes will Pick Up
As social distancing is eliminated, consumers will be back out in force. All that pent up demand will produce the need for more content and that means volumes of work will pick up across the board. Content pipelines for animation and gaming have not stopped because these activities have benefited from lockdowns and stay at home orders. As life resumes to some level of social contact consumers will be back out in the streets and watching on their smartphones on the way to work and will be hungry for great content with sublime voiceovers.
3. Quirky, Engaging Content is Key
While still at home, consumers want to be entertained. That means content that stands out from the crowd. Vital in this is a voice that can talk to the consumer, really talk and listen, rather than preach or teach. This will be one of the keys to getting attention while in lockdown. What that friendly, conversational read is can seem like an enigma. But with the right training and skill it can be produced with ease for your next project so that your end user feels heard and like a human is speaking to them.
4. Artificial Intelligence (AI)
It’s presence is becoming more ubiquitous and there is no denying that it is coming to voiceover. At the present time, the human voice still rules. It’s march is however getting stronger, but studies suggest that humans prefer real voices over synthesised ones. So, while they may be coming for the mass market areas of voiceover and clients that are concerned more with the bottom line, they are not yet viable nor will achieve mass penetration this year.
5. Solid Reliable Voice Overs with Professional Studios are Still Gold Dust
Put together solid training with a professional studio and you still have gold dust while lockdowns are in place. And guess what, once they are lifted and life resumes social contact, you still have access to a solid and reliable talent ready to get into their booth and record your project for you with speed and excellence.
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Paul Mclaughlin © Versatile Voiceovers