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On The Table Read, the “Best Entertainment Celebrity Magazine in the UK“, David Ciccarelli, CEO and Founder of Voices.com, discusses the Voices YouTube Channel and the work that goes into producing the videos.
Written by JJ Barnes
I interviewed David Ciccarelli about his life and career, what inspired him to create Voices.com, and the work that goes into the Voices YouTube Channel.
Tell me a bit about who you are.
I’m David Ciccarelli, CEO and Founder of Voices.com, an online marketplace that connects creative producers with professional voice talent. Since founding the website more than a decade ago, it’s grown into a community of more than 2 million people from 160 countries around the world.
The team at Voices has a simple vision, to positively impact the world through the power of the human voice. We do this by helping individuals and organizations to tell stories that entertain, inform and inspire audiences.
How and why did you start making YouTube videos?
Initially, our YouTube videos were product tutorials, teaching voice talent how to create a profile, reply to jobs and deliver finished work through our online marketplace. We also created video showing clients how to search, post a job and hire voice talent.s
These product tutorial videos were scripted and included both on-camera actors who were my fellow team members at Voices and animated screenshots. Our guiding principle was to “show not tell.” As much as possible, the host of the video had one role which was to serve as the guide and talk through the steps in the process, just like you’d be showing a friend or co-worker.
From there, we shot interviews with our customers, putting the spotlight on them and their careers. These videos were not scripted but rather followed a loose storyline and were much more conversational in nature.
Having a variety of videos, from how-tos, to customer success stories and even interviews with industry experts have all served us and our audience well.
What is your channel called, and how did you come up with the name?
Our channel is simply the name of our company, Voices.
Do you have a particular series you’re working on, or do you vary your content?
Right now, we’re working on a series called Voice Branding. On Voice Branding, we explore what it takes to shape messages, tell stories and brand the world’s most influential organizations. We take a look at the creative process, the tools and technology brands use to engage their audiences.
I’m looking to chat with creative minds working at advertising agencies, production houses, in sound design and sonic branding. If you or someone you know would be a great guest for the podcast, I’d love to hear from you.
What inspired you to start making videos and what do you hope to accomplish?
Initially the inspiration was thinking up ways that we could better teach people how they can use Voices.com to hire professional voice talent. However after the product tutorial videos, we began looking for other ways to personify our brand, and we discovered that by having our own team members appear in the videos communicated that there are real, caring people behind the website.
We extended this idea to tell the stories of our customers. Everyone has a story to tell, and I wanted to create a video series that captured the stories of voice talent, their career journey and how they’ve been successful on Voices.com. These have become some of our most popular videos.
Do you feature in your videos personally, or make your videos from other content?
We make a point of featuring people as much as possible, either my colleagues at Voices or our customers. People like watching and hearing from other people, especially those who have a unique insight, a compelling story or advice to give.
Do you feature other people on your channel in the form of interviews or co-hosting?
More recently, we’ve been conducting interviews with myself serving as the host and having a conversation with the guest. I prepare questions ahead of time and send them to the guest a week in advance so they can reflect on how they might answer the questions. During the recording, I glance down at my iPad to see the questions, but do my best to ask them conversationally.
Do you edit your own videos or have someone who does it for you?
We have a Content Production Team here at Voices.com that covers graphic design, copywriting, audio production and video production. When it comes to video editing, we do that in-house only because there is limited editing done on the videos, especially for podcast-style video interviews.
Do you script your videos, or just chat as you go?
Product tutorials are always scripted to ensure that the terminology used is correct, clear and concise. Word choice matters when you only have 1-2 minutes to communicate a new idea or teach prospective customers how to use your service.
For the interviews, questions are planned and circulated to the guest in advance, however we’re not prescriptive about it. They are more conversation starters and aim to move the conversation forward in a logical manner. A common format is structuring the conversation in a three-part play; beginning, middle and end or past, present and future. Another format used when structuring a business case or success story is covering the current situation, the complication or challenge and finishing up with the resolution. As you can see, this three-part play works in a variety of ways.
Do you have any specific equipment you use, such as camera, lighting, screens etc? Or are you a mobile phone camera user?
Camera: Sony A7IV
Lens: Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8
Light: Godox VL-150
Audio: Sennheiser MKH-50 and a Zoom F6 Field Recorder
How has your Voices YouTube channel changed or developed since you began?
Like most things in life, it takes time to gain traction. And, with our YouTube channel it took several years to get to 10,000 subscribers however now, we’re at nearly 25,000 and have nearly 2 million views.
What are your biggest challenges with your Voices YouTube channel?
Consistency is the biggest challenge. That goes for both coming up with new content ideas and dedicating the time to produce new material every week or so. For those interviews, we also need a backlog of guests scheduled so we always have a video ready to be published.
What are your favorite YouTubers to watch?
Derral Eves is quite the legend and has demystified how YouTube works. After discovering him online, and watching his videos, I purchased the book and have since passed it around the office.
Pat Flynn is an entrepreneur at heart and also a great storyteller. Pat has a natural teaching ability who can both speak confidently from experience and what he’s learned along the way, as well as engaging his guests to pull out their story.
How and where do you promote your Voices YouTube channel?
We promote our YouTube channel on a videos page on our website ( ) as well as our monthly newsletter. From time to time, we run ads on YouTube, however only if the video is an advertisement.
Do you earn money from YouTubing, or is it a hobby?
We don’t earn money directly from YouTube but rather leverage the channel as a way to attract visitors and gain customers for Voices.com.
And, finally, are you proud of what you’re accomplishing with your YouTube channel? Is it worth the effort?
What I’m most proud of, and I believe this is shared by others at Voices who appear in our videos is the opportunity to teach. I love sharing my knowledge and perspective with others that hopefully passes on a new idea, develops a skill or serves as an inspiration.
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