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How Does a Voiceover Manager Work?

By Alan Shires. Published Mar 29, 2024.
Filed Under: Business

A voiceover manager is a very interesting job. In this article, we will look at a manager more generally as well as how they differ in the voiceover industry. Additionally, people often confuse agents and managers so we will work to clear up that confusion. Without further adieu, let’s get to it!

What is a Manager?

A manager will work with a small select group of people and they will be looking for opportunities that fit them. Notice I said ‘people’ not voice actors. The reason for this is that managers can work with anyone, a casting director, a grip, or even an actor/voiceover artist. The important thing to know about managers is they take a percentage (Typically between 10% and 20%) of everything you earn. Are you scratching your head thinking to yourself ‘’hmmm why would I give them a cut for work they did not get me?’’ well, simply put, it is because they are more deeply invested than that. You are investing in them, and they are investing in you. They keep their roster small so all their focus can go into their talent. However, they still need to pay bills, and you’re praying for representation. They will still be hustling for you, advertising you, and supporting you even if your booking rates are a little low. The issue comes when you are getting nothing from your manager and should you be in that situation for a long time, it might be time to consider parting.

Voiceover Managers vs Agents

It is exceptionally rare to have a manager who specifies specifically in voiceover, though, they are out there. What is important to know is that they differ greatly from an agent. For example, agents don’t take a percentage of everything you earn. An agent will just take a cut of what you earn from the bookings they find for you. Additionally, agents often have 100-300 people on their roster which is a lot more than what a manager would have. The manager will likely coordinate with your agent/agents, and it is uncommon to have multiple managers whilst multiple agents are the norm for many voice actors. Agents probably won’t go into the same depth as your manager does when it comes to your branding. However, an agent will likely recommend new headshots and reels when they notice you need something updated. They are. after all, seeing the casting briefs and talking to the casting directors. Ultimately it becomes a big team, just ensure communication is always excellent between you, your manager, and your agent/agents.

Voiceover Manager vs Acting Manager

Well, to start off with, voiceover is acting that everyone hears, but no one sees. For many of you reading this, you will know that voiceover is acting. Managers often have actors on their books and will open up for voice actors too. So, what's the difference? Well, the onscreen content a manager has access to is likely to be paying more money than the voiceover work (Though not always). That said voiceover is very prominent in the commercial world and then we have video games which make more money than movies so it’s all dependent on perspective. Certainly, those actors who are making massive theatrical debuts and working on the top TV shows are making way more money than a voice actor hustling an audiobook. Actors (On screen) ‘generally’ will make more money than voiceover artists, but there are rare exceptions. Now, a voiceover manager may specify specifically in voiceover and keep his books exclusive to the voiceover industry. This does happen with onscreen managers too, but they are more likely to have voiceover talent, on-screen actors, casting directors, and other creatives too. So, if you are solely focused on voiceover, get a manager who solely focuses on voiceover. If you want to diversify into other areas, find a manager who represents clients across multiple genres and avenues. 

How Does a Voiceover Manager Work? by Alan Shires

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