Fiverr Community Forum

Bulk Discounts for voice overs?!

There have been a few times where I have received messages from people thinking that there is such a thing as bulk discounts for voice overs. This is the latest response I gave to such a client:

"Voice overs aren’t something people give discounts for. They aren’t pre-made.

For instance; Let’s say you go to IKEA. You want to buy 100 chairs. IKEA can give you a bulk discount because the chairs are already made and you are buying a lot of them.

Voice overs are different. They aren’t already made. There is a lot of work that goes in making them. 7,000 words is a HUGE script. There is a lot of work involved. Not only in recording but also in editing. I don’t do less work with larger scripts. I do more. Bulk discounts don’t apply to things like voice overs or anything that involves one person working on a project and personally creating content that is not already made.

Why would anyone give you a discount for something when they are doing MORE work?"

I think that this applies not only to voice overs but to any sort of work where you are the content provider and you are creating custom content for each client. Something that’s not pre-made or "batch processed."

It really steams me when someone just assumes voice over work is “just reading” and they send you an offer like this:

"We are looking for a voice over artist willing to read approximately 21,000 words (3 hours of presentations). The task is to be delivered by Wednesday 11PM EST, the script will be delivered to you by 3PM EST. You will be paid $150 for the entirety of the recording."

21,000 words for $150?

Why would you even bother to send an email like that? Just say I am sorry I cannot do the job for $X, the job will cost $X. And then no need to discuss it any further.

As for why people think 3 hours is worth $150…well, its a site called Fiverr, which stands for $5. And depending on where someone lives in the world cost of living and wages are much less. And even if let’s say in theory you spent 3 hours for each of those 1 hours of finished product that’s still a little over $10 per hour…so yeah, people can think that, but yes, VO artists make way more and the value of that art is way more, but then you just say no I am not able to do it at that rate. Good luck to you. Don’t get yourself all worked up over it.

There are always people who don’t want to pay value for things…like a massage at a spa, some people would think spending $120 for a massage is outrageous and want it for $40.Yeah, maybe some untrained person off craigslist working for a few bucks…so similar thing.

Reply to @kcijseries i checked your gig and you offer 150 words for $5 . This means that the client was supposed to order for $700 but he was willing to give you only $150 for 21000 words. That’s too much, It’s frustrating but i appreciate how you told the client in a nice way “sorry i will have to decline your request”

Honestly I do usually give discounts to bulk orders. The logic behind this is that a large portion of the voice over work I see is short 1 gig stuff (1 gig/150 words). As mentioned that can get quite expensive for a large order. I would rather put my effort into a larger order at a discounted rate than have to hope that I get enough smaller orders to balance out.

kcijseries said: Why would anyone give you a discount for something when they are doing MORE work?"

I agree, online work isn’t like offline work. If you had a flower shop and they agree to buy 1,000 roses, maybe you can give them a discount since you’re gonna make a lot of money in the same amount of time. Here, you’d be working longer for less, that’s a raw deal.

Of course, one should try to keep their prices competitive. If I ask for $100 for 24/hour delivery, few people will order that. But if I ask for $10, many will and I’ll make much more than $100.

@kcijseries I feel your pain brother. I get that all the time. What I’ve learned the hard way in my 2 years on this site is:

  1. Set your prices as consistent as possible across all your gigs.
  2. Never give a discount. Ever. Under any circumstances.

Almost always, when I used to give discounts, I had troubles with the gig buyer. In my experiences for some reason, stingy,ultra picky, and poor communication go hand in hand. It’s the old adage of “Give 'em an inch, they’ll take a yard”

99% of folks will never see or understand what we do; That less than 50% of your time (sometimes as little as 10%) is actually spent in the booth. The rest is in selecting takes, editing/spacing/timing, effects processing if necessary, and making a cohesive product that meets the customers expectations by exceeding them. (Not to mention, then after it’s ll done you have to playback the whole thing with the script in-hand and do your final Q/C. On a two hour read, that’s another 2 hours of work in itself)

Also, often times, buyers on Fiverr forget costs of operation for a real studio. When 2 preamps and my workstation failed on me last year, I had to replace them. Fiverr gigs still haven’t paid for those. Yeah I suppose a lot of the competition just uses a $30 mic off of ebay and can offer discounts and high word counts, but put theirs next to ours in an A/B test and you’ll see what folks are paying for.

Nope nope nope.

I had a client ask for a bulk discount once, so I thought why not, and decided to give them one free image (a $5 discount). Never heard from them again. Stingy people are stingy. I will never do that again, unless it was a long time customer, as a way to thank them.

As a translator I often get this question and every time I say no to them. More words in a document does not mean I will give you a bulk price.

I create animation and usually face same problems. For me big project is more time consuming as editing and rendering will take lot of time.

I have found giving discounts to be really frustrating too! I had several people contact me about reading audio books (huge, we are talking 50,000 word books) and were offering to pay only $300. When I quoted my price they called me ridiculous, but seriously?? My time is worth something, and if I am going to be working for $2 an hour (if that) it is just so not worth it.

Another thing too is the modifications. I try to be really accommodating and make it the right file for the client, because no one wants to be stuck with something they paid for but cant use. But one day I was on my third revision for a client and realized that I had been working on this file for days and it was a 5 dollar order. Just too much of a chicken to stand up and ask for more money, but I really have to start!!

Discounts in a 5$ marketplace? Not for me!

Reply to @kjblynx: Of course, once in a while I also give discounts but not massive ones. As you say, it’s people’s right and motive to give hefty discounts. However, I think that tends to de-value the rest of us. It’s up to us to stand by what we set as our own personal price point and not bend because of people who try to “gut” the competition by drastically cutting their price points.

Reply to @sincere18: Completely valid points. Thank you. I didn’t mean to put up that I was worked up. It is just frustrating sometimes. The majority of the time I do just say “I’m sorry but I’m going to have to decline your request.” Something just rubbed me the wrong way about this particular client’s message. Perhaps it was just the bluntness of it.

Reply to @havardh: Thank you. I appreciate that. 99.99% of the time I try to be nice about it, as we should all do, but once in a while it gets frustrating.

Reply to @sincere18: 15 minutes of my time is worth $5. One hour is worth $20.

Reply to @fastcopywriter: That makes sense. It’s good to know I’m not alone in my thinking.

Reply to @kcijseries: How are you handling modification requests? Sometimes I do them, sometimes I send a $5 custom quote, sometimes I refund.

Reply to @fastcopywriter: If it’s a mistake I have made, it’s free.

In the requirements I put “Make sure your script is finalized before its submission”

If it’s something on their end, they get charged.

Reply to @liquidlettuce: I have never given a discount. If anyone complains, I tell them that the rules are the same for everyone. No one is given special treatment.

Reply to @calisto2986: Of course you would not do work for $2 per hour. But there are many sellers who do this to earn extra money and for them $300 would be an amazing amount of money, regardless of time. Not all freelancers factor in their time per hour in the same way but rather by project.

I also think many buyers of creative services in general, do not have a real understanding of what is involved to produce the work they want to order.