How To Avoid Voice Over Screw-Ups: Spanish Edition

avoid Spanish voiceover pitfallsWe are seeing more and more of our customers embrace multi-language messages as the best way to interact with their own customer base. That is certainly an admirable pursuit, but companies need to be careful to avoid some common mistakes in recording Spanish language messages. A well-executed Spanish language message will not only inform the customer, but it will communicate to them that you care about their business and will go the extra mile to accommodate their needs. But if your message falls into one of three very common pitfalls, well, that communicates something else. Here’s how to avoid Spanish voiceover pitfalls:

Pitfall #1

The first and most common pitfall is not considering the geography behind the version of Spanish that you will be deploying. There are many, many differences between European Spanish and Latin American Spanish (the latter being the most common used in the United States) and conflating the two, or using a voice artist who only speaks in one to try and voice the other, will result in a message that plays as gibberish to your desired clients.

Pitfall #2

That leads into the second pitfall: Not using a neutral accent. Along with the broad differences between European Spanish and LA Spanish, there are subtler, region-specific variants of the Spanish language. These differences can range from word choices to phrasing to differences in pronunciation, even if the sentences look identical on the page.

The best way to get around this pitfall is to have an actual Spanish speaker listen to whichever Voice Artist you have selected. With a practiced set of ears, they can determine if the selected Voice Artist has some kind of regional-specific accent that is altering the intended meaning of a specific message.

Pitfall #3

The final pitfall we frequently encounter is customers not using a bi-lingual Voice Artist. If a company is recording messages that are predominantly in English with only a couple lines, if that, in Spanish, it is tempting to just have the English speaker voice the Spanish as well.

Do not do this.

Assuming that the English speaker even manages to say the words correctly, (as previously mentioned, the Spanish language’s meaning is often as much about pronunciation as it is with the actual letters in a word) it will still sound sloppy and stilted. What that communicates to your Spanish-speaking customer is that they matter less, and their needs will not be seen to by your company.

Instead, if your message contains both English and Spanish, the best course of action will be to utilize a bilingual Voice Artist, someone who can deliver a neutral reading in both English and Spanish. For an example of this, visit our Voices page and listen to some audio examples from “Roxanne” and “Amy”. Choose either one of them, and you’ll avoid Spanish voiceover pitfalls. The benefits of a bilingual Voice Artist handling a bilingual script speak for themselves.

Need some help choosing a Spanish or bilingual Voice Artist for your next voice recordings? Contact us so we can learn about your business needs and then give you some recommendations.