Imagine being able to earn extra money without needing to type thousands upon thousands of words or stand in front the camera and become a social media influencer.
Standing in front of the camera takes a lot of confident. To put yourself publicly on display for all sorts of comments evokes a fear of emotions worse than the waiting room of a dentist’s surgery.
Making use of just your voice is much easier. We speak and communicate all the time. According to a report by the BBC, men speak approx. 7,000 words per day, and women speak around 20,000 words per day.
Speaking is second nature. We do it almost, to some of our detriment, before thinking.
So how could we make use of this most natural skill and make money using our voice – well you may be surprised, there are a few ways
Become a Podcaster
You may have something to say and an engaging way to say it, but just don’t feel comfortable enough in front of the camera. Step forward the podcaster. A worthy side hustle that could see a nice return for just your time.
A podcaster is someone who presents a story, show or information in an audio format to be listened to rather than watched or read. Much entertainment is consumed this way, you only have to look at services such as Google Podcasts for instance to see the range and breadth of postcasts available.
Podcasting is relatively easy. You record a show, create a Podcast channel, upload your podcast through a podcasting service such as Spotify Podcasts and find ways to promote and market it.
Podcasting is relatively cheap to setup and start. You need a few things before you do, and we’ll cover a few of these off here.
Podcasting needs to be about quality as well as content. If you want to keep people listening your voice needs to be clear and not tinny. You can’t for instance just record your voice into your mobile phone or laptops microphone. The quality will be too poor.
You will need to invest into a microphone. Some costs thousands, but for starters you won’t need to spend that kind of money, not until your podcast takes off and you find ways to monetise your audience.
Some great microphones exist on Amazon around the £100-£200 range which will be adequate for a beginner’s podcast. Look for good solid reviews and ratings.
Here’s a step by step guide on creating and uploading a podcast, by podcast legend Pat Flynn
Once you have your podcast you need to find a way to monetise it. This is where the number of podcast followers you have helps.
If you plan to become a podcaster you should listen to popular podcasters to see what they are doing, and how engaging their podcasts are. You may also listen to adverts and sponsors. This is the main way a podcaster makes money. They take on sponsors who pay to have their company name read out to an audience of potential customers.
Become a Voiceover Freelancer and Make Money
Now perhaps you would rather work freelance using your voice, rather than as a side hustle through podcasting.
With the number of educational content, videos, adverts, PR content and online videos – the demand for voiceover work is never higher.
So, what exactly is a voiceover provider?
This is someone who reads from a script provided, records this and provides the audio file to the client for them to use either on podcasts, online videos etc…
Say for example a client has created a new product. They want to create either a video to promote the product and have a great video produced showing the product in action – but now they need a voiceover, someone to explain about the product, it’s benefits etc… The customer may not feel comfortable providing the voiceover themselves but would rather outsource this.
You’ll listen to voiceovers every day, whether listening to adverts on the radio, or adverts on the TV – whether watching an advert on YouTube which doesn’t have a presenter, or perhaps listening to an audio book.
If you feel you could use your voice skills there are great places in which to advertise your services, such as Fiverr – have a search for Fiverr Voiceovers to see the services other providers are offering, and prices being charged.
As Fiverr is a global marketplace, British voiceovers are in demand and it’s worth noting there is a clear lack of supply from British voiceover providers. It may be the perfect opportunity to fill this demand.
Become a Narrator for Audible
Audible has become a global powerhouse in the demand for audio books. Almost any book you can think of has now been narrated and can be purchased on Amazon Audible individually or as part of an ongoing Audible subscription (at the moment around £7.99 per month for 1 book credit).
But how do you become a narrator for Audible?
First you need to join ACX for Narrators. This has become the go to and most established marketplace joining together authors and narrators. This is where you can set your own profile, upload samples of your spoken word talents and then choose books you would like to narrate for, and feel your vocal talents would best suit.
You can submit an audition, and the book author or publisher will choose a provider of their choice from all submission. If you’re the chosen narrator, you then agree to the terms etc… and start providing the narration for the book.
Once all is finished and the book author or publisher approve the file, you are paid – and it’s off to find your next book.
ACX for Narrators has this 9 step by step summary:
- Create a Profile on ACX
- Upload samples of your work
- State how you wish to earn – and whether this is at an hourly rate for your services, or 50% royalties of the ongoing audio book earnings;
- Search for books you would like to narrate for, and audition;
- Accept the offer if your audition is chosen;
- Start the recording;
- Work with other studio professionals if you need help with your audio book creation;
- Finish the recording and submit to the author or publisher;
- Get paid;
- Search for more books to narrate and repeat the process;
Hopefully you will have found something here to get started. The best practice is one of fine tuning your voice. Your voice needs to be clear, with good pronunciation of each word and enjoyable to listen to.
This can be a great way to either create a full or part time income or just as a side hustle using any free time you have.