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Finding the Right Voice for Life Sciences Training

By Suzanne Weintraub

Life sciences trainers, writers, researchers and project managers spend countless hours on the creation of training and development programs. When it gets to the final step of recording the audio portion of a project, it is important to choose a voice-over talent with the expertise needed to narrate scientific scripts.

It is essential to use a voice that can convey authority, intelligence and confidence in a relatable and trustworthy tone. Your audience will be more motivated and responsive to a voice that keeps them engaged and interested in the subject.

Pronounce Properly

The correct pronunciation of scientific terminology can take years of practice and experience for a voice over talent. Once in the booth, it becomes immediately apparent when you are working with a professional. Complex terms and complicated drug names are fluidly pronounced in a conversational manner, adding a clear and comprehensible quality to your program.

The following scenario is, unfortunately, very common with inexperienced talent.

“The final scripts were approved, the recording studio was booked, and the voiceover talent had been selected. Based on the recommendation of the audio engineer, a session of three hours was reserved to record the modules. As an additional three hours would be needed for editing, the costs involved for the production would not be insignificant.

Thirty minutes into the first hour of recording, it became clear that three hours would not be enough. The voiceover talent was not familiar with much of the scientific terminology and struggled to pronounce even the most basic drug names and medical conditions.  The audio engineer tried his best to guide and support the narrator but had no success. The talent was simply in over his head and could not get through the material in the allotted time. Another session was booked, the audio engineer needed hours of extra editing time, and the budget for the session was blown.”

This is familiar to many who are involved in medical audio/video production and highlights the importance of hiring an experienced medical voiceover talent/narrator for training, education and marketing programs. Staying within your budget is important, however, there are many other reasons to hire a professional, seasoned talent for your next session.

Finding the Right Talent

What should you look for when hiring a medical voiceover talent/narrator? Here are some general guidelines.

  • Experience. It takes years of experience to be able to read medical, pharmaceutical and general scientific scripts with precision, fluidity and expression.
  • Stamina. An expert narrator can record long-form scripts without taking many breaks, which can save money in studio time and talent fees.
  • Confidence. A confident narrator conveys that quality to your audience. It is essential that they believe the voice of your project.
  • Voice quality. An authoritative and intelligent voice can convey a command of the subject. The right voice keeps your listeners engaged, interested and curious.
  • Consistency. Medical scripts can take multiple days, weeks or even months to complete. A professional narrator must be able to record with the same tone, pace and emotion for every session.
  • Expertise. The talent you choose must be able to record complex scientific terminology quickly and efficiently without stumbling.

Clear and consistent communication is vital to the success of your training program. Hiring an experienced medical voiceover talent will ensure that your listeners will be actively learning and achieving their educational goals.

Suzanne Weintraub is founder of Suzanne Weintraub Voice Overs. Email her at suzanne@suzanneweintraub.com.


SIDEBAR 1

Pro Tips: Home Studios

Recording the audio for your training programs is much simpler and quicker than it used to be. While nothing can replace the creativity and camaraderie that comes with in-person studio sessions, it is not easy for all parties to be in one place at the same time.

Home studios have made it possible to have your programs recorded and sent back in as little as one day. Most professional voice over talents now have the equipment and capabilities needed to produce a high-quality audio product.

Your voiceover talent will be able to record while you and your colleagues listen – enabling you to conduct the session, give direction and make corrections in real time.

 

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