The right voice over to sell your product

3 min read

You’ve got your product. It looks great, functions well, and you think it has great potential to sell. Now for the right voice over to help you do just that.

You’ve heard of the ​power of voice over​ to help grow your business. But chances are, unless your product has to do with voices, you might not know what a the right voice over should sound like to sell your product.

Where should you start? There are so many variables in the equation, what should you consider when trying to ascertain whether you have the right voice over to do the selling for you?

The answer is in the ability of the voice over to both effect and affect emotion.

We can examine certain qualities of the voice over, such as pitch, timbre, volume, and even sound quality, to measure this.

Sound quality

The right voice over: image of a sound engineer behind a DAW
Photo by Troy T on Unsplash

We’ll start with sound quality. If the sound quality is poor, it’s going to ruin your entire voice over. That’s why it’s extremely important to have excellent sound quality.

According to ​studies​, 25% of respondents will watch a video until the end because of its good audio quality, and 33% of people abandon a video within seconds if the audio quality is poor.

Have you ever been on a call with someone who’s walking on a busy street, or whose neighbors are renovating?

It’s hard to hear and understand what they’re saying. Similarly, if a voice over sounds fuzzy or foggy, the listener is going to have to put in extra effort to understand it. And usually, they won’t put in the effort — they just won’t listen to it; they’ll scroll on by and forget about it.

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It’s unlikely that the voice over’s ambient noise is going to be as bad as a busy street. But finer distractions like a buzz, distortion or echo, can really distract a listener. They’ll be more interested in figuring out what those noises are rather than listening to the voice over.

You should also consider the volume of the recording. You don’t want a voice blasting in your ears, but you also want to be able to hear it comfortably. This is where compression comes handy.

Compression is used to balance the loudest and softest parts of a voice over, creating an even volume. But ​over-compression​ can result in a voice over that is too loud.

As a general rule, you’ll want a voice over that is at a comfortable volume, and doesn’t have buzz, distortion — or anything distracting for that matter. Nothing should negatively impact the message.

Timbre and inflection

The product you’ve made is going to affect your customers emotionally. Matching that effect with a voice over will help you sell your product.

So you’ll have to consider the timbre of the voice. Timbre is the quality of the sound, and it will have an emotional effect. Is the voice over rough and does it remind you of gravel? Or is it soft and gentle like a pond?

The right voice over: image of a producer directing a voice actor
Photo by Soundtrap on Unsplash

An effective voice-over’s timbre should reflect the mood you want to set for your product. You wouldn’t want a soft and calming timbre for something exciting and engaging. Think soft and peaceful for something like an ad read for the newest cola flavor. It just doesn’t work.

So you’ve got the timbre sorted out, now you need to manage inflection. It’s the way the voice changes pitch and intonation through a script read. Too much of it, and the voice over will sound fake. Too little of it, and it’ll sound robotic!

There’s a balance to it, and communicating the appropriate amount of inflection to your voice-over artist will do you wonders.

Pacing and diction

A lightning-quick read is not going to help listeners understand what your product is about. But then you don’t want a snail-paced read either. The customer’s attention span would go out quicker than the read, and then you’ve lost the customer’s interest.

Instead, you should look for a pacing that matches the emotion you’re trying to evoke. The right voice over will take the listener for a ride, whether that be a gentle river, or a truck revving through mud.

That can sound like having elongated reads that take their time to arrive at the point. Or it can sound short and abrupt.

As a general guideline, you’ll want a pace that naturally matches the emotional effect of the product.

You’ll also want a voice over that has good diction. You shouldn’t have to wonder what mumbled words mean, and you shouldn’t have to cover your ears when a voice over practically spits at you.

Again, a natural read with clarity is what you’re going for. While you’re considering diction, you’ll want to clarify how certain words are pronounced, like “either” as “EE-ther” or “AI-ther”.

A good voice over

So there you have it. Sound quality comes first. Then you can consider the color or timbre of the voice, the level of inflection, and the pacing and diction of the read.

Hopefully, the voice actor can show all of that with a great audition and final recording. Then you’ll have exactly what you need to help you sell your product. We want both you and your customers to be smiling…

The right voice over: image of two shoppers smiling
Photo by Trust “Tru” Katsande on Unsplash

And finally, remember Voice123‘s roster of fantastic voice actors is sure to provide you with just the right voice over for your needs!