Don’t Assume You’re Talking To A Listener Or Viewer When Voicing Commercials

Photo by San Fermin Pamplona from Pexels

Hey there, hero!

In guiding a client during a private coaching session today through the process of identifying her audience of one, a small but very crucial point popped up.

I asked who she was talking to, and where they were in space (close to her, across the room, on the phone, over the fence, etc.).

What she responded with seemed logical, but is rarely the case.

Hope this helps!



Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  1. This couldn’t have come at a better time!. I got an invite to self-tape audition for a health care insurer this morning, and as I was getting ready to do the prep work before I tape, this came up. Between this, your Arthur Godfrey example from the classes and Karen-Eileen’s list of the Fab Four questions that I should be asking, I think I’ll have a better shot at booking the gig than I would’ve had before I signed up for your classes.

    Brief aside: at the same time I submitted for the on camera part, the CD also had a call out for a VO part for the same commercial. They wanted to hear demo reels, but since I can’t afford to put one together right now (it’s either you or the mortgage), I taped one of the examples from class and sent it in. I know I’d have no shot at the VO part, but I think they heard it and decided I was worth a look. Fingers crossed.

  2. This is a great mental exercise, and sometimes it can be difficult to suss out that audience. I’ve been fortunate that most of the time I can shape that person into someone I know or a situation I remember happening.

  3. I feel that I make good choices regarding my audience of one, but I’ve had difficulty with proximity on occasion. I’ve been told, “You’re trying not to disturb your audience of one,” the idea being that I’m very close, and therefore should be quieter, but without losing the energy. I was recently told, “Pretend they’re on the other side of the room,” meaning be louder. I need to develop a better feel for the appropriate proximity to my audience of one. Thanks for the video David.

  4. Back in the day, back in “radio school” (1971) we were taught to envision that one person that we really wanted to talk to, be it a typical target listener or someone specific that you knew and were pretty sure they liked you. (Mom, Dad, Wife etc.)…an early version of this concept. The idea was that even if someone was standing in a crowd…everyone listens individually.

  5. Brilliant observation. The person to talk to is the other person in the scene with you, not a person in the audience. I’ve never thought of that person as a member of the audience, but it’s so easy to see why someone might (based on common coaching), and also easy to see how it would be easy for a coach to overlook it as what might be wrong. Thanks both to you, David, and your student for bringing this one to light.

    1. That’s IF there’s another person in the scene. I’m talking specifically about single voiced spots with no dialogue, and being clear about who the inner “audience of one” you decide on is – it’s not a random listener or viewer.