How to voice a radio campaign

marketing-advertising-campaignNow before you start I realise that title might sound a bit, you know, arrogant.

Like I’m the font of all knowledge. I’m not. (As any producer who’s heard be struggle to voice the words “there are a” at speed. Honestly, I sound like a troubled seal). But I can tell you what I’ve learned about voicing radio ads.

When you’re lucky enough to be given a clutch of scripts to voice for the same client, that’s a campaign. These scripts might be dribbled across the airwaves over several months, so they’ve got to sound fresh, on-brand and must stay true to the original creative.

Sometimes campaign scripts aren’t all recorded at once (like this one), as the client might still be deciding whether they’re even going to DO a campaign. And this is where the success of the whole enterprise depends on a coherent approach from the copywriter, the producer and the voiceover. And, God love ’em, even the Sales Exec too.

So you’ve gotta use the same vocal style (more or less) for each ad, although sometimes (usually when the client gets bolder, once they’ve seen that the first ads in the campaign are working well) you can…develop. But you can’t deviate too much from the original style or it’ll just sound confusing and disconnected.

Essentially though, you must find a voice that’s true to the brand, the script and the music the producer’s going to use. It’s all got to sort of blend. Like a good custard.

The commercials in this campaign are great because they started with a great idea. An ear-catching, quirky concept based on Fifty Shades of Grey. Only this time, it’s THRIFTY SHADES.

See what they did there?

Have a listen and see what you think. You’ll notice that the end tag-line becomes slightly dafter as we all gain confidence and the client tells us that what we’re doing is working.

And honestly, you shoulda heard the out-takes for these sessions. Bloody lolarious.

Here’s a great blog about great marketing campaigns, where the pic above is featured.

And if you’re still bored, have a listen to these ads.

On Work

Struggling with scary pronunciation

What did the creation of Lake Windermere sound like?

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Emma Clarke

Emma is an award-winning voiceover, broadcaster and writer. Want to find out more about Emma?
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