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Voice Over Categories, Types, Genres & Styles

Welcome to our detailed guide to the diverse world of voice over genres, categories and styles. As a voice actor, finding your niche can be a crucial step in carving out a successful career. This industry is far more expansive than meets the eye, with countless categories each requiring unique techniques, styles, and understanding. Our guide is designed to help you navigate this vast landscape and pinpoint the categories that best align with your voice and skills.

Voice over work is everywhere: in the commercials we see on TV, the narration of the audiobooks we listen to, the character voices in video games we play, the announcements we hear on public transport, and so much more. The range of categories is truly astounding, spanning areas like animation, corporate narration, e-learning, radio, dubbing, telephony, and many others.

Voice Overs are Dynamic

Each of these categories represents a unique facet of the voice over industry, with different demands and expectations. For instance, animation and video game voice overs often require a wide range of vocal dynamics and character portrayals, whereas e-learning and corporate narration may demand a more measured, clear, and authoritative tone. Understanding the distinct nuances of each category will help you tailor your performances to meet the specific requirements of each type of job.

Detailed Descriptions of Voice Acting Genres

Our comprehensive list of types of voice over goes well beyond just naming the categories. It offers in-depth descriptions of each one, shedding light on the characteristics, requirements, potential opportunities, and useful tips for each category. Whether you're a seasoned voice actor looking to branch out into new areas, or a newcomer seeking to understand where your voice might fit best, our guide serves as a valuable resource to help you navigate your career path.

Remember, part of the beauty of the voice over industry lies in its diversity. There's no one-size-fits-all, and many voice actors find success and satisfaction working across multiple categories. This guide is designed to give you the knowledge you need to make informed decisions and to spur you to explore the breadth and depth of opportunities in the voice over world.

So, dive into our comprehensive list of voice over categories, discover the nuances of each type, and unlock your full potential as a versatile voice actor. Your journey to mastering the art and business of voice acting starts here.

Click on the title of any voice over genre for a more detailed description.

Comprehensive List of Voice Over Categories: 

  • ADR (Automated Dialogue Replacement) or dubbing
    Replacing original dialogue in movies or television shows with a new voice, often for foreign language localization or re-recording poor audio quality.
  • Animation
    Character voices, narration, and dialogue for animated films, television shows, and web series.
  • Anime
    Anime is a distinct form of animation that originated in Japan but has since gained international acclaim.
  • Audiobooks
    Narration of fiction and non-fiction books in various genres, including literature, biographies, self-help, and educational texts.
  • Audio Description
    Provides additional descriptive information for individuals with visual impairments.
  • Automotive
    Narration for car commercials, product demonstrations, and technical explanations for vehicles and related products.
  • Brand Anthem
    The Brand Anthem is a narrative story that speaks to the mission and ethos of a brand.
  • Biography
    Narrating the life events, accomplishments, and personal anecdotes of individuals.
  • Commercial
    Advertisements for television, radio, or digital platforms.
  • Children's Content
    Narration and character voices for children's audiobooks, animated content, educational materials, and toys.
  • Corporate Identity and Brand Film
    These videos are created to showcase a company's values, goals, products, and services to potential customers and investors.
  • Corporate Narration
    Business presentations, training videos, product demonstrations, and explainer videos.
  • Documentary
    Voice overs for documentaries, historical content, and factual programming.
  • Dubbing Localization
    The process of translating and adapting the audio track of a video, film, or TV program into another language and including cultural nuances.
  • E-Learning
    Educational materials, online courses, tutorials, and interactive learning experiences.
  • Explainer Video
    Visually appealing and easily digestible content in video form.
  • Narration
    Voice over narration is an umbrella term for a variety of types of voice over.
  • GPS Navigation
    Voice guidance for GPS devices and mobile navigation apps.
  • IVR (Interactive Voice Response)
    Voice overs for automated systems that provide information or assistance over the phone.
  • On-hold messaging
    Telephone prompts, voicemail greetings, interactive voice response (IVR) systems, and on-hold messages for businesses.
  • Legal Narration
    Voice overs for legal presentations, depositions, and educational materials related to law and legal practice.
  • Medical Narration
    Medical and pharmaceutical presentations, training materials, and patient education content.
  • Podcasts
    Hosts or guest voices for various podcast genres, including interviews, storytelling, news, and entertainment.
  • Political
    Campaign advertisements, promotional materials, and public service announcements for politicians or political organizations.
  • Promos
    Voice overs for television show promotions, movie trailers and teaser videos.
  • Public Address (PA) Announcements
    Live event announcements, sports commentaries, and transportation announcements (airports, train stations, etc.).
  • Radio Imaging
    Station identification, jingles, and promos for radio broadcasts.
  • Spiritual and Self-help
    Guided meditation, relaxation, and self-improvement content.
  • Telephony 
    Pre-recorded vocal messages used within telephone systems. It's the voice that greets callers when they reach a company, directs them to the appropriate department, or keeps them engaged during hold times.
  • Trailers
    Voice overs for movie trailers, this includes key elements of the storyline, introduces characters, or presents critical reviews.
  • Toys
    Integrating voice recordings into toys to enhance a child's interactive experience.
  • Video Games
    Character voices, in-game narration, and dialogue for video games and apps.
  • Voice of God
    A specific style of voice over that embodies a deep, resonating, and powerful voice, akin to what one would imagine a deity to have.

This list covers many of the genres found in the voice over industry; however, it is essential to note that new genres and sub-genres continue to emerge as technology and the media landscape evolve.

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