The Oldest Trick In The Book


It’s nothing new. Listen to any radio station or local TV station, heck even national television. You’ll hear it or see it.


The client is in the commercial.

It’s the oldest trick in the book.

It’s a simple and effective technique that simultaneously…

  • Sucks up to the client and appeals to their ego,

  • Sells a lot of advertising because of the “creative concept” of the spot, which is (and I don’t want to lose you in esoteric advertising language here) “you’re in it,” and

  • Saves the cost of hiring a professional actor.

In fact, professional voice actors are replaced or substituted for every day by the client, the client’s spouse, the client’s kid, the GM, the sales manager, the doctor, Papa John, graphics and animation (no spoken words at all), or Sheldon from HR who “has a nice voice.”

I get it. I don’t argue. And I don’t ask them if they also do their own plumbing.

Here’s why: the client and Sheldon are not my competition.

  • If the driver is budget, then they can’t afford me or anyone like me.

  • If the driver is the “creative concept,” then I’m not a fit.

  • If the driver is the fact that they don’t understand the value of a professional message delivery provider, I don’t have time to convince them.

My competition is the professional voice actor. The one who has spent dozens, hundreds, or thousands of hours in training. One who’s done thousands of auditions and voiced thousands of projects. The one who is kind and funny and easy to work and do business with. The one who turns around projects quickly and stands behind their work. The one who delivers reads you can’t imagine being done any other way.

That’s the competition that scares and inspires and motivates me because that’s the second oldest trick in the book: being great.