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About

Pricing

Definitions



  • Buy-Out: a flat rate which "buys" the right to use your voice. All non-union jobs are considered "buy-outs."


  • Monthly Retainer: An agreement in which the client pays a set amount each month to compensate you for on-going work. The rate should be based on the average amount of work per month. We strongly encourage you to set a maximum amount of work the client is allowed to ask for each month at that rate.


  • Per Hour: charging an hourly rate based on the length of time you spend at the studio.


  • Per Project: charging a flat rate for a script, regardless of the time spent at the studio.


  • Per Session: charging a flat rate for the recording session (the time you spend in the studio) regardless of the number of projects recorded.


  • Per Spot: charging a flat rate for each commercial spot, regardless of the time spent at the studio.


  • Residuals: Additional compensation for a commercial, above and beyond the initial payment, based on the number of times a spot is run. Paid every 13 weeks. This occurs in SAG or AFTRA (Union) commercials only.


  • Scratch Track: a temporary recording that is a "place-holder" for the final voice-over. Not recorded as "broadcast quality" sound. Production facilities use scratch tracks to assist them with designing TV/video/flash presentations.


  • Session: the time spent at a recording studio on one given trip. If you leave the studio and come back on a different day, even if you continue to work on the same project, it is a new "session."


  • Union Rates: The negotiated minimum rates for union voice-over work which union members should follow. The two unions governing voice-over are SAGAFTRA.




Animation, Cartoon, Videogame . . .


A standard animation session fee compensates you for doing up to 3 voices. If you are hired for a fourth, fifth, etc., you should be paid an additional rate per voice.


This category covers "pre-lay" recording, meaning you are voicing characters before they are animated. See the "Dubbing" category for rates for re-voicing foreign animations.


Rates



  • Broadcast (Saturday morning cartoons, Nickelodeon, etc.) - $100 to $600 per hour

  • Non-Broadcast (talking toys, interactive CD-ROMs, Internet, etc.) - $85 to $300 per hour


Notes



  • Expect to charge lower rates for animation produced overseas.

  • Rates vary by TV station and by client.

  • If a show is sold to another station, you should receive an additional buy-out (because the usage has changed/been extended).







Audiobook



Audiobook recording rates are typically computed by "per completed hour." In other words, you will charge your client a pre-determined rate for each hour of finished product you provide to them.


Hypothetical example: An audiobook script takes you 4 hours to prep, 14 hours to record, 7 hours to edit, and 2 hours to upload to your client. This is 27 hours total. But if the final audiobook recording is 6 hours long, then you will charge your “per completed hourly rate” multiplied by 6.


Average voice over artists spend 3 hours to complete one hour of completed audio. So if you charge $150 per completed hour, then are earning $50 per hour. Yes this rate is lower than other forms of voice over, but with an average unabridged audiobook being 11 hours long, you still pocket a nice paycheck.


Non-Union Narration Rates



  • Inexperienced narrator - $85 to $100 per completed hour

  • Moderately Experienced - $90 to $150 per completed hour

  • Very Experienced - $150 to $250+ per completed hour


Editing Rates


  • $15 to $50 per working hour of editing time

Notes


Companies may have very different rates due to their place in the retail market (for instance, the Library of Congress - which does not produce for retail sale - pays less than Talking Books, which does).


Even the unions differentiate between inexperienced and experienced talent. The current AFTRA rate for a "new reader" is $139.25 vs. $168.25 for experienced.






Corporate, Industrial, Training Video . . .


You may choose to charge per project or per hour for this type of script. See the general notes for more information.


"Per Project" Rates by length of script



  • 0-5 Minutes - $100 to $200

  • 5-10 Minutes - $150 to $300

  • 10-20 Minutes - $200 to $400

  • 20-30 Minutes - $300 to $500

  • Longer - add $100 to $150 for every 10 additional minutes


"Per Hour" Rates


  • $75 to $400

Notes


When charging "per hour":



  • always set a 1-hour minimum.

  • after the first hour, charge in 1/4-hour increments.

  • consider offering a discount after the first hour (e.g. $250 for the 1st hour, $150 for every hour after that)


Consider offering a lower "bulk rate" If a client hires you for an on-going project (you're guaranteed a new script once a month, once a week, etc.).


Use WORD-TO-HOUR CONVERTER to determine the length of the script.






Dubbing


Dubbing occurs in both animation and live-action projects and requires you to match pre-recorded/pre-animated mouth movements. For "pre-lay" animation rates see "Animation, cartoons…"


Rates



  • Broadcast (anime, movies, etc.): $60 to $200 per hour

  • Non-Broadcast (Internet): $50 to $150 per hour


Notes


Animation dubbing involves replacing the original language with English (or replacing English with another language for a foreign market).


There are multiple applications for live-action dubbing:



  • replacing the original voice

  • fixing lines when the live audio is faulty

  • "cleaning up" language for a TV broadcast of a film (if the original actor is unavailable a "sound-alike" will be hired)

  • providing background "murmur" for crowd scenes







eLearning, ESL, How-To-Video, Tutorial . . .


Much of this work is long-form and/or on-going work. Therefore clients in this category often pay less than other types of narration. Since recording times tend to be lengthy for this type of work, we encourage you to charge per hour.


"Per Hour" Rates


  • $50 to $300

Notes



  • Be sure to set a 1-hour minimum

  • After the first hour charge in ¼-hour increments

  • Consider offering a lower "bulk rate" If a client hires you for an on-going project (you're guaranteed a new script once a month, once a week, etc.).







Documentary, Film . . .


Moderate-Play/Non-Broadcast Narrations (Documentary on local PBS affiliate only, etc.)



  • Per Hour: $100 to $300

  • Per Project: $200 and up, based on length of script *


Large-Play/Broadcast Narrations (National Geographic documentary, etc.)



  • Per Hour: $300 to $500

  • Per Project: $500 and up, based on length of script *


Notes


When charging "per hour":



  • always set a 1-hour minimum.

  • after the first hour, charge in 1/4-hour increments.

  • consider offering a discount after the first hour (e.g. $250 for the 1st hour, $150 for every hour after that)


Use WORD-TO-HOUR CONVERTER to determine the length of the script.






Home-Studio & Editing Rates


For narration, usually expect to invoice the same rate whether you record at your home-studio or if you're brought into your client's studio. However for other work (see below), we suggest charging additional:


Editing
(removal of breaths and mouth clicks, sequencing takes together, file separation, . . . )



  • charge between $15 to your standard hourly narration rate per hour

  • note that full time editors usually make $15 to $50 per hour


Phone-Patch


  • charge between $10 to $25 per "connection" fee

ISDN and Source Connect


  • charge between $25 to $100 more per hour

Translation, Localization and Adaptation


  • farm this out to a specialist (like Edge Studio), and mark-up our discounted price 25%

Corporate Sync
(timing each phrase to begin and end with a visual (eg: video, cartoon, . . . ))


  • charge between 10% to 25% extra

Lip Sync
(timing each word to begin and end with another mouth (eg: on-camera, cartoon, . . . ))


  • charge between 25% to 50% extra

Copy Writing / Copy Editing


  • farm this out to a specialist (like Edge Studio), and mark-up our discounted price 25%

Music / Sound Effects


  • farm this out to a specialist (like Edge Studio), and mark-up our discounted price 25%

Be a one-stop shop for your clients!


  • Edge Studio can provide anything you don't want to. You mark it up and make profit!

Call and ask: 212-868-edge.






Medical, Pharmaceutical . . .


Medical narration is a "special skill", so we suggest charging slightly more than for other types of narration. See the general notes for more information on "per project" vs. "per hour".


"Per Project" Rates by length of script



  • 0-5 Minutes - $150 to $200

  • 5-10 Minutes - $200 to $300

  • 10-20 Minutes - $300 to $400

  • 20-30 Minutes - $400 to $500

  • Longer - add $100 to $150 for every 10 additional minutes


"Per Hour" Rates


  • $150 to $400

Notes


If you are very familiar with the terminology and write well, consider offering copy-writing services to your medical clients ($50 to $100 per hour)


When charging "per hour":



  • always set a 1-hour minimum.

  • after the first hour, charge in 1/4-hour increments.

  • consider offering a discount after the first hour (e.g. $250 for the 1st hour, $150 for every hour after that)


Use WORD-TO-HOUR CONVERTER to determine the length of the script.






Podcast


You may choose to charge per project or per hour for this type of project. See the general notes for more information.


"Per Project" Rates by length of script



  • 0-5 Minutes - $25 to $150

  • 5-10 Minutes - $50 to $200

  • 10-20 Minutes - $75 to $250

  • 20-30 Minutes - $100 to $300


"Per Hour" Rates


  • $50 to $300

Notes


Rates vary GREATLY, on factors as diverse as contribution to the broadcast, time on air, broad or narrow band of the broadcast, sponsorships, etc. As always, its strictly a negotiable issue and usually depends on whether its a single read, a regular contribution or a simple spot. Writing gets it into a whole different category . . . that's more of a correspondent or contributor level and pays more.


When charging "per hour":



  • always set a 1/2-hour minimum.

  • after the first hour, charge in 1/4-hour increments.

  • Consider offering a lower "bulk rate" If a client hires you for an on-going project (you're guaranteed regular work)


Use WORD-TO-HOUR CONVERTER to determine the length of the script.






Promo, Trailer, Imaging . . .


The following suggested rates are per spot. See the general notes for more information.


RADIO



  • Local Promo/ Station Imaging - $50 to $200

  • Regional Promo/ Station Imaging - $200 to $500

  • National Promo/ Station Imaging - $300 to $750

  • For on-going Station Imaging (you are "the voice" of the station) - Custom Retainer*


Television



  • Local Promo - $100 to $200

  • Regional Promo - $200 to $500

  • National Promo - $500 to $1,000


For on-going Station Imaging (you are "the voice" of the station) - Custom Retainer*


Trailers (Radio and TV)



  • Local/Small Market play - $100 to $300

  • Regional/Medium Market play - $200 to $500

  • National/Large Market play - $1,000 to $2,000 or Union rates


Notes


If you record multiple spots in one session you should be paid separately for each spot.


* Custom Retainer: You may be hired to be "the voice" of a station, meaning that you will record promos or imaging spots on a consistent, on-going basis. In this situation, we recommend negotiating a monthly retainer based on the average amount of work. The client will pay you a lump sum per month rather than per individual job. We strongly recommend setting a maximum number of spots to be recorded each month at the retainer rate.






Promotional, Video, Flash, Online presentation . . .


You may choose to charge per project or per hour for this type of script. (See the general notes at the top of this page for more information)


"Per Project" Rates by length of script



  • 0-5 Minutes - $100 to $200

  • 5-10 Minutes - $150 to $300

  • 10-20 Minutes - $200 to $400

  • 20-30 Minutes - $300 to $500

  • Longer - add $100 to $150 for every 10 additional minutes


"Per Hour" Rates


  • $75 to $400

Notes


When charging "per hour":



  • always set a 1-hour minimum.

  • after the first hour, charge in 1/4-hour increments.

  • consider offering a discount after the first hour (e.g. $250 for the 1st hour, $150 for every hour after that)

  • Consider offering a lower "bulk rate" If a client hires you for an on-going project (you're guaranteed a new script once a month, once a week, etc.)


Use WORD-TO-HOUR CONVERTER to determine the length of the script.






Radio


The following suggested rates are per spot.


Local



  • Small Market (e.g. one town on Long Island) - $50 to $200

  • Large Market (e.g. Boston or New York City) - $150 to $400


Regional


  • $200 to $500

National


  • $500 to $1,000 or standard Union rates

Tags (5 to 10 seconds)*



  • Local - $25 to $100

  • Regional - $75 to $200

  • National - $100 to $300 or standard Union rates


* Note: The payment for one tag is included with the payment for the spot. HOWEVER COMMONLY you will be requested to record multiple tags along with the one spot. It is industry practice that you are paid "per tag" for all additional tags. We strongly suggest that you clarify this with the client prior to recording.


Notes



  • If you record multiple spots in one session you should be paid separately for each spot.

  • Rates through subscription audition sites (such as Voice123.com) may vary significantly.

  • Consider offering a discount for a series of spots.

  • Consider offering scratch tracks for free or for a heavily discounted rate.

  • An "unlimited buy-out" may pay more than a "one-year buy-out".









Self-guided tours



Small Exhibit at a Small Museum



  • Per Hour: $100 to $300

  • Per Project: $200 and up, based on length of script *


Major Exhibit at a Major Museum



  • Per Hour: $300 to $500

  • Per Project: $500 and up, based on length of script *


Notes


When charging "per hour":



  • always set a 1-hour minimum.

  • after the first hour, charge in 1/4-hour increments.

  • consider offering a discount after the first hour (e.g. $250 for the 1st hour, $150 for every hour after that)


Use WORD-TO-HOUR CONVERTER to determine the length of the script.






Telephony, IVR, On-hold, Menu-prompt . . .


This category can be charged in several different ways.


Rates



  • Per Word - $.08 to $.25 per word

  • Per Prompt - $2 to $5 per prompt

  • Per Hour - $50 to $150

  • Per Project - Custom rate

  • Monthly Retainer - Custom rate


Notes


Per Project: This rate should be determined by the length of the script, as some Telephony projects are simple (welcome message + a few prompts) and some are very involved (voicemail prompts for main menu, sub-menus, sub-sub-meus, . . . ). In many cases you can charge a "project" rate for the initial recording, and then charge per word, per prompt, or per hour for updates.


Monthly Retainer: You may be hired to be "the voice" of a company, meaning that you will record for their telephony system on a consistent, on-going basis. In this situation we recommend negotiating a monthly retainer based on the average amount of work. The client will pay you a lump sum per month rather than per individual job. We strongly recommend setting a maximum number of spots to be recorded each month at the retainer rate.


Use WORD-TO-HOUR CONVERTER to determine the length of the script.






Television


The following suggested rates are per spot.


Local



  • Small Market (e.g. one town on Long Island) - $75 to $300

  • Large Market (e.g. Boston or New York City) - $200 to $500


Regional


  • $250 to $750

National


  • $500 to $2,000 or standard Union rates

Tags (5-10 Seconds) *



  • Local - $50 to $100

  • Regional - $75 to $250

  • National - $200 to $400 or standard Union rates


* Note: The payment for one tag is included with the payment for the spot. HOWEVER COMMONLY you will be requested to record multiple tags along with the one spot. It is industry practice that you are paid "per tag" for all additional tags. We strongly suggest that you clarify this with the client prior to recording.


Notes



  • If you record multiple spots in one session you should be paid separately for each spot.

  • Rates through subscription audition sites (such as Voice123.com) may vary significantly.

  • Consider offering a discount for a series of spots.

  • Consider offering scratch tracks for free or for a heavily discounted rate.

  • An "unlimited buy-out" may pay more than a "one-year buy-out".



Clients

Testimonials

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