Is Fiverr the best option for your specific voice-over requirements?
Fiverr provides an innovative ‘buy it now’ solution to customers wanting to get a voice-over recorded cheaply & quickly. However, customers seeking a personalised managed voice-over service for producing large multi-voice or multi-language projects may find that a voice-over agency better meets their needs.
- free for customers to use
- an intuitive interface makes ordering simple
- messaging system and app make communication quick
- lowest priced voice-overs available online
- lacks detailed search attributes which can make casting time-consuming
- audio quality is highly variable between sellers
- managing larger projects is challenging
- strong focus on price over quality means some top talent avoid the platform
Fiverr launched in 2010 and enables independent contractors to sell one-off jobs, or gigs, priced from $5. It is one of many gig economy companies. Since its launch, it has benefited from continued investment and acquisitions, enabling it to grow into a monster online marketplace worth more than $5 billion.
Over the last decade, it has come under fire many times. Its treatment of the creative industries and a strong focus on low priced gigs. There are claims it is forcing freelancers into a race to the bottom on prices.
Despite this criticism, Fiverr has continued to grow year on year. The considerable traffic Fiverr now gets from buyers of creative services like voice-over continues to attract new freelancers to the platform, keen to take advantage of the captive audience.
In contrast, even the biggest voice-over agencies are small businesses with less than 100 staff. Indeed many have less than ten employees. Yet, despite their smaller size, voice-over agencies can provide buyers with project management, unique talent and the production skills to make projects run smoothly. Let’s compare how each works.
Fiverr voice-over services compared
Voices on Fiverr can create up to 7 gigs that they can typically offer at a minimum price and a per word price. Customers can choose to buy the default gig or contact the seller for a customised quote.
Fiverr’s voice-over search offers filters for gender, language, accent, age, purpose, tone and service. There are thousands of voices on Fiverr, and many provide gigs that include commercial and broadcast rights as a standard add-on. Compared with going to a voice-over agency for a quote, the purchase process is more straightforward. If you see a gig you like, you enter your word count, choose the services required and buy it. Purchasing a gig will immediately open a dialogue with the seller to complete the brief.
Sellers are keen to please and get a positive review to grow their seller ranking and get the amazon inspired ‘Fiverr’s Choice’ badge. Buyers have incredible power and can request a complete refund if they’re not happy. Many Fiverr sellers are concerned about this because uninformed buyers can quickly impact their seller rating. With just a couple of so-so reviews dropping a sellers rating from level 2 to level 1. A drop in level has an immediate impact on the sellers’ visibility.
Voice-over agency quotes
In contrast to gigs, reaching out to voice-over agencies for a quote can seem more daunting initially. But when you find an agency you like, their team becomes an extension of your own – an enduring resource worth more than the price of a single job.
The gig system relies heavily on one contractor’s expertise. Nobody is managing the process. If, for example, you’re producing a voice-over where top-quality audio is paramount, such as a commercial or videogame. You are putting a lot of control in the hands of one seller who may not have all the requisite abilities.
Without an exclusivity contract, Fiverr voices also have no obligation, beyond the gig purchased, to any one buyer. So, companies that desire a unique sound to enhance their brand may rightfully be concerned. There is no guarantee the voice-over actor they pick isn’t going to voice a competitor’s promo the following week.
And whilst Fiverr’s messaging system can make managing contractors simple, it can become time-consuming when you’re handling a multitude of contractors at the same time. For example, a voice-over script translated into multiple languages will require translators, proofreaders and voices in each language, not to mention the engineers needed to ensure consistent audio quality.
Voice-over agencies like Voquent can offer a suite of such services and a dedicated project manager, which may be worth the associated additional costs to save time and headache with coordination.
Agencies will also offer talent that is not available anywhere else. Many performers do not want to negotiate deals or handle finances by themselves and rely on agents or agencies to do this on their behalf. If you’re looking for a unique vocal talent, a voice-over agency will offer highly experienced and accredited performers.
There is no denying the Fiverr platform’s might and the benefits of the messaging and transactional services offered to sellers and buyers alike.
If you need a cheap voice-over, it is unlikely you’ll find it priced for less anywhere else, making it the preferred choice of cash-strapped buyers. In contrast, customers seeking higher quality audio or unique vocal performances will find agencies better suit their needs—especially if they want a professionally managed service, casting assistance, or script translations.
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- Writer: Al Black