Voiceover talent rates are reflected by the talent’s experience, the usage of the recording and what medium it will be used for.
A voice over that is going to air on a local radio station for one month will be cheaper than a voice recording that is going to be aired nationally on radio and television for 12 months.
You’re not just paying for the voice talent to record your script in 5 minutes, but for their ability to bring a prestigious sound to your product or project and their ability to get the recording done right the first time. If they have a home studio, you’re also paying the use of a professional microphone, sound booth and equipment. A professional microphone alone can cost over $1,000.
Of course you could find a voice artist that will record a 30 second script for $30, but you’ll end up with a budget sounding read, recorded in an echoed room on a cheap microphone. This reflects on your product and could in turn hurt sales or credibility. It’s just like buying a cheap t-shirt that lasts a few washes.
If you’re paying a recording studio $200 an hour, you don’t want to waste half the time with an inexperienced voice trying to get the script to sound how you want and then the other half of the session trying to put all the best bits of 15 different recordings together!
If a voice is going to be used constantly for the same brand or project, most talent or voice agency are willing to negotiate on price. When compared to the entire cost of most advertising campaigns the voice over actor’s rate is actually one of the smallest expenses.