PRICES – how can I calculate my costs?

The prices differ from project to project and depend on the text length, publication / usage (when, which media, how long…) and the wishes for recording and editing.
The price list by the organisation for German voiceover talents (Verband Deutscher Sprecher) gets updated every year and gives a good overview about the fees for German talents:

Price list VDS 2017 (German)

Price list Brilliant Voices 2017 (English translation)

Please note: since VO prices are different all over the world don’t be shocked – German VO prices are some of the highest in the world. Wages of every country take their orientation on the average income of that specific country, taxes, binding insurances, every day costs and so on. So when you want to record on the German market and publish on the German marked, the prices of the German market will be charged (for voiceover as well as for publishing). But in most cases I am willing to lower the price a bit for foreign customers.

This list includes just voiceover fees and license costs. The costs for studio and editing are not displayed here and have to be calculated additional.
But basically all talents offer these services much cheaper than outside studios.

REVISIONS – what if I want to change sth.?

Revisions are standardly not included and corrections have to be refund additional.

Exceptions are distinct mistakes of the talent, like wrong / missing text, editing / export mistakes, extremely slow or high pace of voice without direction, completely different tonality than ordered… Nuanced interpretation variables are no mistakes (check “Vision”).

All other revisions have to get payed. But just the extra effort will be charged. The license fee is payable just once per license.

These other corrections might be, for example:

  • text changes or additions after recording
  • wishes for specific operative words, breaks, pronouncations and suchlike, that haven’t been communicated before recording
  • changes in tonality or pace

If you assume before hiring already, that you will have one revision, I can make this part of the offer from the very beginning. This way it will be a bit cheaper, but has to get payed anyhow, no matter if you need the revision in the end or not.

Revisions remain revisions, when they get ordered within 14 days after file delivery. When more than 14 days have passed by, these will be classified as a new contract and have to be negotiated again.

VISION – how do I communicate my wishes?

If you order your voice recordings in own direction from the talent, you should provide him/her with concrete details about the tonality. For example:

  • Adjectives (dynamic, fresh, young, cool…)
  • Periphrases (strong bold advertising, „in your face“, spit out the main catchwords cheeky, unblushingly and challenging, have fun while doing it,…)
  • maybe, addional to general advises, put some into the text, for specific paragraphs (here energize, more pressure / here a bit afraid / here relieved / here whispering…)
  • Refer to an existing demo from a similar segment, that matches your idea of tonality
    (For example: if you need a VO for an advertising, animated explainer film, you should not refer to a demo, which is an atmospheric inner monologue, but to a demo that has a similar style like yours)
  • Refer to a similar video, that matches your idea of tonality
  • Send the rough cut (for an impression of the film)
  • Send the music that will be used (for harmony of voice and music)

Interpretations will always be different. If you give the same text and advises to 10 different talents, you will receive 10 different interpretations. None of these will match your individual vision 100%.

To avoid costly revisions, it is advisable to be as clear as possible and to measure up, which kind of recording is the best for your project and client (check “Direction”)

RECORDING & EDITING – what do I need?

Editing on text

If your film is still variable or the text isn’t too tight, in most cases “editing on text” is enough. The talent speaks the text, cuts out text mistakes, breath and disrupting sounds and delivers an audio file.
Next you have to put it under the film yourself and lengthen / shorten the breaks or alternatively adjust the pictures to the audio.

Synchronic speaking and editing

If your film is finalized already and can’t get changed anymore and/or the text has to be spoken one-to-one on the pictures, you need synchronic speaking and editing. This is more time-consuming and accordingly a bit more expensive.
Therefor the talent needs a layoutvideo with the spoken text or clear timecode declarations in the script, for timing orientation.

Please bear in mind, that the text length matches the timing! Text lengths are often underestimated.

A rough orientation:
900 characters (incl. blanks, abbreviations and numbers spelled in full) are most closely approximate one minute of spoken German text in normal pace.

Even rougher:
120 words are most closely approximate one minute of spoken German text in normal pace.

You can avoid this problem beforehand, by reading the text yourself in your preferred pace and tonality on the video and check if it matches the timing.

New language version / translated videos

If your text has to be spoken on an existing video in a different language, care about the text length during translation. German texts are often longer than foreign ones. Maybe the texts have to get changed a bit, to make them match the video length or the video has to get adjusted to the new text length.
It is not helpful to compare the character number of the original script (for example English) with the German script, cause in many languages lots of characters are not spoken, while in German mostly all characters and syllables are spoken completely.

Lip-synch / dubbing and editing

If your text has to be spoken on the lip movements of a human or an animated character, you need lip-synch speaking (and editing). I don’t offer this from my home-studio, but can come to another studio of your choice.
For dubbing recordings a synchronic translation script is necessary. This cares for the content, as well as for the timing, pauses and breathes.

Edit yourself

Of course you can order a bunch of unedited takes and edit your own perfect version. This gives you more design freedom, but also more work.

Audio processing

Audioprocessing is standardly not included and is usually done by the principal (or one of his cooperation partners). The recording you receive has been recorded in an isolated speaker booth and offers a dry, clean sound without echo. For a professional production these recordings have to get processed afterwards with equalizers, filters and lots more to adjust them for their purpose. As a result (depending on the filter) they might become smoother, bolder, more advertising, more reverberant, rounder, electronically, louder…

A detailed audio processing furthermore takes care for details, such as single consonants, that have been too sharp or got swallowed, as well as smack and crack sounds in the mouth and lots more.

If cou can’t / don’t want to process the audio in-house, I can offer this with the help of my cooperation partner Sonic Sparks in a full service.

DIRECTION – which expectations do I / my client have?

Direction by talent

When the budget is tight or the exacting in nuanes not too big, most times it is enough, when the talent records and edits with his/her own direction. Therefor you should give him/her concrete informations about the tonality and pace beforehand (check “Vision”).

Live-Recording-Session

If you / your client has a higher exact expectation about specific nuances, how this or that word should be spoken, where there is a short break and so on, it is helpful to attend the recording to avoid later revisions. You can connect live via skype, SLP and more to the recording, give input, try varieties and more, without being in the studio yourself.
This live session might be a bit more expensive than a recording with own direction. Nevertheless the results are much closer to your / your client’s idea, because of your / your client’s direct influence.

Meeting in the studio

Meeting in the studio with the client, the production and the audio engineer, who manages the recording, is the best (and of course most expensive) option to produce the perfect audio recording for your project, cause all parties involved are present, can discuss, try out and help shape the final cut. The talent also benefits, cause he/she can concentrate completely on his/her task and doesn’t has to direct and do the audio engineering at the same time.

GTCs

General terms and conditions

Following you’ll find the GTCs for cooperations with Anni Sultany as a voice artist, which you can also download as a PDF here.

The following shall apply: upon payment of the voice recording, the usage rights are transferred to the client; but only within the agreed framework and for the agreed purpose. Compensation for the voice recording does not constitute exclusion of competition. Total exclusivity (e.g. no other speaker advertising for a certain period of time) or product exclusivity (e.g. no other coffee advertising for a certain period of time) may, however, be agreed subject to an additional fee negotiated for individual cases. Exclusivity agreements require the written form.

In detail:

INDUSTRY FILMS

The term “industry films” includes image films, product presentations, teaching and instructional films, technical films, training videos, etc. These and speech components from these must, without the permission of the speaker, not be used for a purpose other than that agreed, and may only be presented by the client to a defined and limited audience and not released in any mass media or used there for adver-tising purposes.

TELEVISION AND RADIO CONTRIBUTIONS

Television and radio station GTCs do not apply automatically; the individual agreement between the parties is authoritative. If no individual contractual regulation has been made, the following conditions shall apply analogously.

ADVERTISING LAYOUTS (RADIO, TV AND CINEMA LAYOUTS)

Upon payment of the layout, the client obtains the right to use the voice recording for presentations and market tests. In the layout stage, the client is also permitted to create any number of motifs from the speech material.
The layouts must not however be broadcast without permission nor otherwise be made accessible to the general public, e.g. for advertising, information or sales purposes. If anything is broadcast, a usage fee is due in addition to the layout fee. The same shall apply to each case where parts of a layout are used.

SOLE ADVERTISING SPOTS (RADIO, TV AND CINEMA RECORDINGS)

Upon payment of an individual spot, the client obtains the right to broadcast the respective spot within the agreed broadcasting area, using agreed media, limited to the Federal Republic of Germany for the duration of one year, determined from the date of production of the broadcasting media (e.g. distri-bution copies) or from the first use at the latest (use/release).

As well as broadcasting rights for the Federal Republic of Germany, the client also obtains the right to broadcast in stations received across Europe that are based in Germany.
For broadcasts in stations that are not based in the Federal Republic of Germany (e.g. MTV, etc.), or for any other country (e.g. Austria, Switzerland, etc.), another usage fee is due for the respective media.

If the client uses a spot or (speech) part of a spot to create another or a new radio, TV or cinema spot, then another usage fee is due; the same applies to a change of media (e.g. if a radio spot or parts thereof become a cinema spot) and/or the use of a new media such as the internet, multimedia applications, etc.

The same shall apply to producing and broadcasting sales videos, industry films, in-store radio produc-tion, public events, etc., if these are broadcast or released via another media or a new media. For the production and processing of videos, CD-ROMs and other multimedia applications that are offered for sale or are used for advertising purposes, additional separate usage fees, dependent on circulation numbers, are due.

Only the radio spots for local or regional stations regularly have a special position in the pricing structure: here, the publication fee is cheaper because the broadcasting area is strictly limited. A local radio spot covers broadcasting in any number of stations in a single town or city; here, a very limited area within a district is meant. It is considered to be a regional radio spot if broadcasting takes place in more than one individual local area and applies up to broadcasting in any number of stations within a single state.

It is considered to be a national radio spot if the spot is broadcast in more than one single federal state.

For any other country outside of the Federal Republic of Germany, another national usage right is needed.

TEXTS

The speaker is allowed to reject texts at the moment of receipt, if he considers them not to be ethically acceptable. The speaker’s decision is final. The rejection of the text has to be announced immediately and no later than 24 hours after receipt by the speaker. A once by the speaker accepted text can’t be rejected afterwards, just if there happen major events after the acceptance that cause this decision.

FEES

If a separate fee agreement has not been made in written form (email is sufficient), the respective current speaker price list applies when determining the amount of individual fees, which can be requested at any time and which is available for inspection at the production studios.

The fee is immediately and without subtractions due at the moment of invoicing and payable by no later than 30 days after invoicing.

In the case that a production appointment can not met by the client, a cancellation fee of 40% of the individual fee index is due for the payment to the speaker, unless the client cancels production in good time, i.e. at least 18 hours before the agreed deadline on working days before 6pm German time. If the speaker cannot meet an agreed production deadline due to reasons out of his control, e.g. illness or force majeure, of which he must present evidence on request, then he is not liable for client costs associated with this.
Errors for which the speaker is clearly responsible (e.g. pronunciation errors) must be reported within 14 days from acceptance. Within this period corrections shall be made without any additional charge. After 14 days have elapsed, in case of corrections the principal shall be charged a fee for new recordings.
If a voice recording has been accepted by a principal or a representative thereof who is personally or via audio conference present, complaints (due to errors for which the speaker is responsible) can no longer be made subsequent to that acceptance. In such cases, a correction of the original recording shall be considered a newly payable recording.
Should a text require re-recording following acceptance due to changes in the text, this shall also be considered a newly payable recording.

OBLIGATION TO INFORM

Before the first broadcast, the client is obliged to inform the speaker when a voice recording,
layout and/or spot, whether in the original or altered format, is sent out via the original agreed media or another media or one of the new media, within the new area (e.g. local, regional, national, internatio-nal), within a certain time period. If, in justified and exceptional cases, the client cannot provide this information on time, then he must give it to the speaker at the latest within 10 days after the first broadcast.

If the client does not meet this obligation to inform on time, then the speaker can demand 10% interest p.a. from the invoice amount for the period of time that has elapsed between the date the information was due (at the latest within 10 working days from broadcast) and the day on which the speaker learned of the broadcast. The right to demand default interest in cases of delayed payment after invoicing is unaffec-ted by this.

BREACH OF CONTRACT

If there is a breach of the obligation to inform or in the event of use or distribution of a voice recording, layout or spot in violation of the agreement, e.g. beyond the agreed period, area, or with other than the agreed media, then the client is obliged – notwithstanding the obligation to pay to respective usage fee – to pay the speaker a contractual penalty in the amount of 4 times the usage fee in the case of non- compliance, precluding acceptance of continuation of offense. The client is equally liable for breaches that are caused by third parties involved in production at his instigation.

LIABILITY

The speaker is not liable for the content of productions.

APPLICABILITY OF THE GTC

Upon award of contract to the speaker, these GTCs shall be considered as being agreed and the client’s GTCs shall also not apply automatically.

APPLICABLE LAW/PLACE OF JURISDICTION

For these GTCs and for all legal relationships between the contracting parties, the law of the Federal Republic of Germany shall apply. The place of jurisdiction is the speaker’s place of residence.

FINAL PROVISION

Should a clause of the GTCs or a clause as part of other agreements be or become ineffective, then the effectiveness of the remaining clauses or agreements shall not be affected by this.

Effective since: August 2018 (last change: „texts“)