How To Do a Voice Over on YouTube

Keaton Robbins | January 30, 2023

Creative or producer planning about his upload video to youtube

In the age of social media, voice overs have become quite prominent on various video-based media-sharing platforms. YouTube, in particular, is among the most popular services and has a broad reach. Additionally, it’s where elements such as the voice over shine the most.

If you’re looking to take your YouTube videos to the next level and attract audiences like never before, it’s probably time you utilize the art of the voice over. Luckily, it’s pretty easy to adopt and implement.

In this article

  1. Why Voice Overs are Important
  2. How to Add Voice Over to Your Video: Two Ways
  3. Method One: Live Voice Over
  4. Step 1: Record in Your Editing Software
  5. Step 2: Editing and Re-recording
  6. Step 3: Adjusting Volume Levels
  7. Method Two: Pre-Recorded Voice Over
  8. Step 1: Record With External Software
  9. Step 2: Import Audio Files Into Your Video Editor
  10. Step 3: Adjusting Volume Levels
  11. Live Examples
  12. The Standard Car Commercial
  13. Diversity Campaigns
  14. Animated Educational Videos
  15. Final Thoughts

Keep reading to learn how to master the YouTube voice over and understand why it’s such an essential element within your content strategy.

Why Voice Overs are Important

Voice overs are an essential component of film editing and videography. They give valuable information related to what’s being seen on screen, while remaining dissonant from the actual action. That gives a third-person perspective, which allows audiences to be both visually and audibly stimulated without one sense overwhelming the other.

The voice over is heavily ingrained into video-making culture. That’s all the more reason to pay special attention to it. Like the sushi master puts extra care into preparing the rice (an ingredient that is far from the star of the show), an editor should focus on the fundamentals, such as the voice over, to create appealing, masterfully designed content.

How to Add Voice Over to Your Video: Two Ways

You’ll choose one of these methods based on your video creation style and the nature of your video. Both are equally as effective and have their advantages/disadvantages, so choose whatever works for you.

Method One: Live Voice Over

This segment will cover live voice overs. 

Live voice overs are when you record your lines in real time as the video plays. They’re excellent for saving time on a time crunch and don’t require much editing.

Here’s how to do the live voice over:

Step 1: Record in Your Editing Software

Pretty much every video editing software out there has the option to record voice over onto the video. To do this, ensure that your microphone is the device used to record external audio and hit record when you are ready to do so.

The video will play while you record, and you can pause your session at any time.

Step 2: Editing and Re-recording

If you want to redo a part at any point, you don’t have to re-record the whole thing. All you have to do is split the unwanted segment with your software cutting tool at the beginning and end of the portion, then delete it. 

Afterward, you can re-record that section and adjust it so that it fits in the audio timeline. 

Step 3: Adjusting Volume Levels

When you’re satisfied with your timeline, ensure you fit the sound levels to the rest of the video. 

This is also the time to add special effects and transitions to your audio. Remember to apply these effects to all segments if your audio timeline is broken up.

Method Two: Pre-Recorded Voice Over

Alternatively, you can pre-record your voice overs and implement them manually. That is a bit more time-consuming than live recording, but you have much better control and versatility when you do it this way. 

Furthermore, pre-recorded voice overs are how professional voice actors record audio when they’re in the studio. If you need to record multiple voice actors, this is the optimal method.

Step 1: Record With External Software

Most editors pre-record voice overs to a digital audio workstation, also known as a DAW. This software allows you to record and organize voice over sections independently from your editing application.

If you need to do a makeshift voice over or are a novice video creator, phones work wonders in these situations.

You can then import your files into an audio editing software for more precise editing tools. 

Step 2: Import Audio Files Into Your Video Editor

Whether you wish to use an audio editor or choose to import the files into your video-making software as is, this step is simple but time-consuming.

Once the files are in your editor, you must manually place and adjust your audio segments to fit with the video. Once again, this is great if you have multiple voices to work with or cover a wide variety of scenes. It’s also perfect for people who outsource their voice overs and need to work on a schedule.

Step 3: Adjusting Volume Levels

Similar to live voice overs, the final step is to adjust the volume levels of your imported audio files to fit with your video. 

Likewise, apply any special effects to your audio segments, as they will likely be fragmented. Most video editing software allows you to highlight multiple reels at once and adjust them altogether.

Live Examples

For those of you who are visual learners, here are a few live examples you’ve likely already encountered:

The Standard Car Commercial

You know the one. It’s when they show footage of the car racing down an open highway while an outer voice provides commentary on the model. 

This type of commercial is effective because it balances two things simultaneously (visual and audio) while keeping audiences captivated through expert cinematography.

Diversity Campaigns

Diversity videos are fantastic examples of using multiple voices to represent different cultures and ethnicities. For this kind of video, pre-recorded audio is a must, as this style of videography focuses on getting a message across to its audiences by speaking in a disjointed yet unified manner.

Animated Educational Videos

In an age where YouTube videos give as much information as a library, many creators have found clever ways of delivering their knowledge. 

One of the most fun vessels is the animated lectures. That is when the video provides animated visuals to go along with its voice overs.

Final Thoughts

As you can gather, voice overs are everywhere in video-based media. Regardless of what you’re trying to accomplish, you can bet that you’ll find use in them somewhere in your content strategy.

Just keep this guide in mind, and there’s no doubt that you’ll accomplish great things as you masterfully implement voice overs into your YouTube videos and take your editing to the next level.

Looking to outsource your YouTube voice overs? Voices is the #1 voice over service to find voice talent and voice over jobs in the industry. It’s easy to sign up and free to post jobs, so what are you waiting for? Join today!

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