Few automotive shoppers treat the process of buying a car like buying groceries or clothing. They aren’t lured into dealerships by window displays or impulse purchases. Instead, automotive commercial voiceover, marketing campaigns, and careful brand management are the cornerstone of automotive sales.
Car commercials are more expensive to make than any other product commercial. They also see huge returns on investment, with the global automotive industry market valued in the trillions. Not millions, or even billions, but trillions, with a capital T. It’s a massive, influential market. Estimated to comprise 12% of total UK export, its health is often viewed as a precursor to the US economy’s overall outlook.
Initial Considerations for Automotive Commercial Voiceover
Automotive advertising and strategies form a big part of the industry’s success. And there is an equally large importance placed on finding the right talent to best advertise your product. When choosing the right voiceover artist, there are so many factors to consider that it can be overwhelming. Advertisers and brands are inundated with multiple data points ranging from the number of pets their customers have to the type of milk they prefer. Voiceover artists are an ideal way to communicate with your customer in a subtle, authentic way that doesn’t feel like a sales pitch.
Who Is Your Target Audience?
The people your advertisement is targeting might be the most vital question you can ask yourself. Not too many years ago, this could have been a broad sweep, a massive category that encompassed anyone who could afford the product. Today, sophisticated targeted commercials are a critical element of marketing best practices. At the same time, ads that are too personal and potentially invasive are seeing a lot of blowback from the more informed consumers.
Your voiceover artist should be the embodiment of your target audience and someone your customers will trust. A voice they can engage with, a friend, mentor, and confidant. A car can mean many different things to different people. The right voiceover artist knows how to convey an experience and represent the customer through tones and intonations which may include:
- Extravagance and luxury, the ultimate status symbol
- Independence, freedom from constraint
- Financial stability, the ability to thrive in the future
- Reliability, safety, family, comfort, and trustworthiness
- Forward thinkers, the environmentally-conscious buyer
- Smart buyers, people who want to shop savvy and get a deal
It’s also important to remember that a voiceover artist only needs to sound right for your target audience. They don’t have to be literally the same age. Voices age differently and an artist doesn’t have to be a millennial with two kids to sound like one. Grown adults can voice many child characters, and no one can tell the difference.
Male or Female Voiceover?
There are a lot of fundamental factors that go into choosing a voiceover artist including the tone, pacing, and personality of your ad campaign. Choosing between a male or a female voiceover is an essential consideration, but it’s not as clear-cut as it might seem. For a long time, the voiceover industry defaulted towards male voices. Recently the automotive industry has been trending towards female voices. If you find your campaign leaning one way, then ask yourself why. Is it a logical choice based on your target market or is it based on stereotypes and following the pack?
In one study respondents said they found male voices more forceful and women’s voices more soothing. Others said gender made no difference. I’ve heard female voiceover artists who have mastered the forceful commanding tone and male voiceover artists who are soothing as a lullaby. So what’s the answer? Gender is going to factor into decision-making, but it shouldn’t form the beginning and end of your choice. Deciding between a male and female voiceover artist cuts your options in half before you’ve even begun. Stereotyping can limit your talent pool. Worse it can result in the ideal voiceover artist with the perfect sound being discounted because of gender.
Investigate Automotive Commercial Voiceover Industry Trends
As part of your search for the ultimate automotive voiceover artist, you will need to consider advertising and voiceover trends. Trends can be fleeting or long-term, and they can be positive or negative. It’s not the trend that matters, but how you use it. A good example is the current demand for conversational voiceover. There is the laid-back and casual conversational sound or the more knowledgeable expert who loves talking about cars.
This could be a mentor or someone your customer admires getting down to their level and having a chat with them. It can be old comfortable jeans, designer clothes, or a combination of both. While the conversational approach won’t work for every brand, it’s a good idea to hire a voiceover talent who knows the trends and how to deliver them. As Pablo Picasso put it, “Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.”
When to Air Your Campaign
The automotive industry has seasonal trends including Black Friday, Christmas, and the New Year. It peaks during Spring and Fall and is lowest from January to March. Bad weather can affect car sales, possibly because the allure of that new car scent isn’t enough to get people to brave the cold (at least on the East Coast!) A Christmas ad might need a voiceover artist with a more inviting approach, and New Year’s something encouraging and optimistic. Even the day of the week can impact your consumer’s purchasing decisions. The time of year will influence the shape of your campaign, and it will also affect the voiceover artist you choose.
Finding the Automotive Commercial Voiceover to Match Your Goals
It’s a good idea to have a clear picture of your short-term and long-term goals for your advertisement before trying to find your voiceover artist. A short-term goal might be to sell a car. A long-term goal might be to establish trust with your consumer or create brand awareness. Your voiceover artist is integral to this process, and they will need to perform double duty to help you achieve all your objectives.
A voiceover artist with a friendly, conversational tone will be more relatable and seen as someone trustworthy. That might not be your long-term goal. Aloof and aspirational. Attainable but only by a select few. If the tone isn’t right, it will be harder for your campaign to achieve your long and short-term marketing objectives.
The Best Voiceover Artist Is Experienced and Professional
Cars are expensive, and they represent one of the major purchases any household will make, second only to buying a house or property. It’s a stressful experience for most shoppers, and as a high-end purchase, it isn’t taken lightly. A professional, experienced voiceover artist is vital to any automotive marketing strategy. It’s a voiceover artist’s job to soothe, entertain and make the experience inviting. Buying a car can be fun. It’s shiny and new, an exciting milestone to celebrate and share on social media!