Dominos and luck and voiceover

One of Seth Godin’s newest enterprises is The Domino Project. Several days ago Seth posted on their blog this question: Are you feeling lucky? Now, because The Domino Project is an effort to reinvent publishing, the most obvious point of that blog post about feeling lucky has to do with publishing. But the application to voiceover is equally important and valid.

In voiceover, the obvious parallel to the publishing model is auditioning for a job. Just like there would have to be a bestseller every week, there is going to be someone who books the job when auditions are sent out.

Now, this is not a rant against auditioning. I’ll leave such literary explorations to others. The point I’m trying to make here is that if you build your voiceover business on the basis of auditioning for work, then you’re always operating from the position of being “one of many” and only some of the time are you going to end up as the one who books the job. Sure, in an ideal world, auditions are only sent to a select number of talent; but in the real world where we all live and work, that’s not how it always happens.

There are lots of factors that contribute to the way things are. Again, I’ll leave the enumeration of those factors to others. What I’m hoping to persuade you to see is that auditioning isn’t the only way to book work.

Last year was a good year for me. And over 80% of my income came to me directly. An email or a phone call arrived with a message to the effect of: “Dear Bob, we’d like to send you a significant sum of money. Would you record the attached script for us?” This experience isn’t unique to me. Many working professionals in voiceover have learned the value of building relationships with people who want to work with them.

It takes time, a deep commitment to excellent service, and hard work. Put in the time and effort and you, too, can get those kinds of calls or emails. As you do, I’d love to hear from you.


  1. …thank you for the validation of this feeling i’ve been getting over the past year. not that i won’t still audition. but it’s not the lifeline i thought it was going to be a few years ago.

    good as it feels to get the message, “you won the audition”…it feels even better to hear you’ve “won” the gig before you even knew you were up for it!


    Comment by Rowell Gormon — August 30, 2011 @ 9:48 am

  2. Had one of those “Dear Brian, heres the job” emails today, too….it is a great feeling. But as you said, is built on years of building those relationships. Great post Bob!

    Comment by Brian Whitaker — August 30, 2011 @ 1:52 pm

  3. […] September 3, 2011 by Bob The other day I posted some thoughts that flowed from a Seth Godin blog piece at The Domino Project about luck and work and the old way […]

    Pingback by So where are the dominos? » The Voiceover Boblog — September 3, 2011 @ 2:58 pm

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