Did you know there are 11 main genres of voiceover? And that doesn’t include the sub genres under each of those. You may be familiar with TV commercials and radio ads, but you may not be familiar with the other genres of voiceover that Voice Actors get paid to work on every day.
Today I want to help you understand the 7 most popular genres of voiceover and what Voice Actors can possibly get paid* for each one.
TV commercials or ads that are broadcast include local, regional, and national commercials. Everything from your local hardware store’s ad to the national ads you see for McDonald’s are considered TV broadcast because they are being broadcast, or aired, on regular TV.
Depending on the market, one broadcast TV spot could pay anywhere from $400 for a three month run time for a local ad, to $3500 for a year run time for a national ad. There is a lot more money in TV ads both for Voice Actors and (potentially) the companies that run them, so that’s one reason the payout for these jobs is quite a bit higher than most other genres.
Unlike TV broadcast, non-broadcast spots are exactly what they sound like - videos that are not broadcast or aired to the general population. These include…
A popular genre to say the least, video games, voices for toys and any kind of at home game that requires a voice are a genre in and of themselves in voiceover.
Video games are by far the most popular genre outside of animation. Not only for a lot of Voice Actors but for consumers as well. Though popular, they don’t pay as much as say, commercials. The average video game job ranges from $200-400/hour for non-union Voice Actors.
Voiceovers for toys and games, depending on the type of toy or game, pay anywhere from $500-$750 for a 2 hour recording session.
Radio broadcast voiceover is similar to TV broadcast but rates for these jobs are much smaller. The average radio broadcast job ranges anywhere from $250 for a three month run time to $1700 for a national ad on a year run time.
E-learning, or electronic learning, means that educational material is utilizing electronic means, i.e. the internet, to share educational information. So voiceovers for e-learning projects are simply adding voiceovers on top of educational material. This is similar to what we talked about for corporate and industrial voiceover recordings. If the material is strictly educational, it is considered e-learning.
Payouts for these jobs range anywhere from $600 an hour for RAW audio to $3300 an hour for edited audio, depending on how technical the language of the project is.
Think of any and all videos you’ve seen on the internet - both advertisements and general website info. These jobs are under the genre web usage and can include broadcast paid placement for social media, broadcast paid placement on the internet like YouTube and streaming services, and internet radio like Pandora or Spotify. This genre also includes non-broadcast web videos that outlines general information about a company, explainer videos, as we discussed before, podcasts, YouTube content, and digital greeting cards.
The broadcast jobs start at $400 for a three month run time in a local market and up to $4000 for a one year run time in a national market, depending on the particular type of broadcast media.
The non-broadcast spots vary widely in price. To learn more visit the GVAA rate guide (linked at the end of this article).
Animation is exactly what you’re thinking - any voices for characters in a Pixar film you’ve seen or an adaptation of your favorite manga, animation is a super popular genre for Voice Actors and the world at large. Animation refers to Feature Film, Animation, Animated Series, and Direct to DVD.
These jobs pay about $1000 per session for an 11-22 minute episode on Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, etc. And if you’ve been hired to dub an animation, you could get paid $75-200/hr, depending on the platform on which the animation will be placed.
The world of voiceover is HUGE. It includes any type of job you can think of that requires a voice to share a message. Everything from the training you have to take at work to the voice that comes on the overhead speaker at Home Depot talking about how much they value you as a customer - it’s all voiceover, and usually these are jobs that hire out professionals.
The genres we talked about today in no way encompass the entire industry, but they’ll provide you with a good idea of the kind of work Voice Actors do on a normal basis and will hopefully give you some inspiration if this is a career you’re interested in pursuing.
*Note: All rates in this article are based on the GVAA Rate Guide
Melanie Scroggins is a Voice Actor and Content Creator hailing from Texas. She has had the opportunity to voice projects for companies like Google, Subaru, Hyatt Hotels, Wix, Duolingo, Mars Wrigley, Hobby Lobby, and more. Melanie runs Work From Home Voice Actor - a comprehensive platform designed for aspiring and beginner Voice Actors to learn everything they need to launch, build, and grow successful voiceover businesses from home.
On the home front, Melanie is a married cat mom of two. She loves spending time outdoors, listening to podcasts, and watching a good crime show or anything about the British monarchy.
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