Why should I hire a professional? As a voiceover talent, I get asked this a lot. People will say “My aunt/sister/cousin/coworker have a great voice and they will do it for free.”
To which I have several answers. But let me back up to an example.
Home on the Range
I live next to a public golf course, in the middle of the 10th fairway, about 180 yards from the men’s tee box. To any golfer, you know that is a bad location. Anyone who’s shots are likely to fade to the right will hit my house or yard (or even my car in the driveway!) or one of my near neighbors. It doesn’t matter that the fairway is quite wide in front of our house. It doesn’t matter that there is a fair bit of yard from the edge of the golf course property to my house. It gets hit.
Luckily I live in a condo so any siding or brick that gets wrecked, they replace.
However, the deck, anything on the deck, and any windows are all on me.
The other day, I was looking out my patio window and noticed one of the panes of glass on one of the windows to my deck is shattered. Sigh. No note confessing their oops or offer insurance information. Nothing.
Now, I could have gone and bought a pane of glass and tried to replace it myself. And it might have worked. But, I recognized that even though I could probably do an adequate job, a professional would do a much better job.
Hiring a Professional for Business
For my business. I was in IT for 25 years. I’ve built all kinds of systems as a programmer, as an analyst, as a project lead – anything on the application side of IT. And yes, that includes websites. But my experience with web development is from a long time ago.
With my business website, I had a choice. I certainly could develop a website and make it work. And I did do that for my first version of a website.
I could have also hired someone to design a website and I could implement it. That’s closer to my skill set – implement a design.
Why? I could have done it myself and saved a lot of money.
Because I am a professional and wanted to be perceived as a professional when people see my logo and my website. I don’t want it to look home made.
Conclusion – My Rule of Thumb
In a nutshell my rule of thumb logic goes like this (sorry – IT geek – logic chart!):
Now the one thing I did not put on this decision tree is ‘Can I afford it?’ That question brings in a ton of variables.
- Is the project a safety thing? Money may not matter or may have to be found to fix or do this.
- You might be more willing to spend more money for your business image, or maybe vice versa.
- It may depend on how badly you want it. It might be worth not going out to dinner for the rest of the year or some other sacrifice.
In the end, everyone’s decision to hire a pro is up to them. For my business, I’m willing to spend the money to maintain a professional image.
So when you consider hiring a voiceover talent, consider what your image and message are worth. Do you really want Aunt Mary doing it?
Up to you of course.