That would be the title that the folks as Voices.com choose not to use for their latest e-book entitled Internet Marketing Plan for Voice Actors. I was given an advanced copy and asked by my friend Stephanie Ciccarelli to do a review on audio’connell’s voiceover blog on!
She’s read my blog before so you know right off that top that if she asked me for a review, she’s one brave business woman! You never know what’s going to fly off this keyboard.
My quick hit review is this: it’s a good product for those voice actors who have no internet savvy at all. For those voice actors for whom web 2.0 sounds like double the upgrade of their current web capabilities, they will find some good stuff in here. Some parts I thought were really well thought out including the sections on Internet Marketing Strategies, Internet Links, and Social Media.
I’ve long said that the Voices.com founders were very web savvy based on their name change alone which was brilliant (they were formally known as Interactive Voices but then invested in the domain, Voices.com, smartly re-branding to their present day success). This is a company that has embraced Web 2.0 like a sailor on shore leave. They know how to market on the internet. And they have the best customer service in their industry.
But my problem with the e-book is that it really is only a primer and lacks some depth and fleshing out of topics that would be critical to a “newbie’s” basic understanding of web marketing. While it would be unrealistic to ask this book to go into the minutia of web marketing, to me, there were glaring omissions:
• For a book that is primary but not exclusively targeted at the uninitiated in web marketing, why not spend a page at the beginning of the book to tell the reader how they should use the book. Parts of it should be read in detail, some contents could be covered as needed…but the setting of expectations in an introduction page might help those who really don’t know what to expect from marketing on the web. It might be as easy as taking the book’s sales pitch and fleshing that out a bit more.
• Some of the statistics in the book, while not key to web marketing, might be misleading for anyone using this book as a “how to marketing book” versus its main purpose as an internet marketing book (and since there aren’t many “voice actor marketing planning” books out there, the desperate VO’s may try and adapt this text for traditional marketing plans). Quoting a heretofore unheard of company (among my marketing executives’ circle anyway) called Common Sense Advisory, it was noted that “total industry revenue for the language services industry, including language translation and voice-over recording, was more than $8.8 billion worldwide in 2005.” I sure would like to know in a lot greater detail how that pie is sliced up exactly otherwise that number kinda sounds like a bunch of hooey (“hooey” is the Latin term for baloney)
• The ad promo budget, even for a beginner, seems very rudimentary and could easily be expounded upon to help readers comprehend it more fully, plan better and make more successful choices
• Finally, there is a dearth of practical examples in many of the points shared (both in text and graphic form) and that may be the greatest omission of all, especially for new internet marketers. One of many opportunities missed here would be in the logo section (communicating how to purposefully create logos and use them), where examples of one company’s logo might show a main logo, a secondary logo and how and why/how they might be used on the web
All this does not mean I hate the book. I do not. I think it was an in-house publication and it reads as if it was edited that way. As voice talents often require a second set of ears on their productions, this e-book required an outside set of eyes.
Internet Marketing Plan for Voice Actors was/is in need of an outside editor to help the authors at Voices.com expound on concepts that the company is very qualified to write about. Three quarters of it is there, a professional editor could help take this worthwhile concept the other twenty-five percent of the way.