Voice Acting

Voice Overs for Pre Recorded Announcements

Keaton Robbins | May 27, 2022

An asian woman wearing a green shirt touches the screen display in her airplane seat.

What comes to mind when you hear the term ‘voice over’? You might think of narrating for specific subjects such as video games, documentaries, podcasting, and other skills. Another skill form that is featured for voice actors would be for educational and informative purposes like eLearning, Voice Assistant or Pre Recorded Announcements and Music – PRAM for short! 

Voice over requires an extensive amount of practice and determination to execute an excellent delivery. Here at Voices, we understand the importance of providing high-quality audio services for jobs big or small, which is why we are now offering PRAM services to any freelance creative talent willing to take on this task! If you’re interested, read the guide below on providing your voice over skills for PRAM. 

In this article

  1. What Is Voice Over? 
  2. What Is PRAM? 
  3. Why Is PRAM Important? 
  4. How Does PRAM Grab the Passenger’s Attention?
  5. Benefits of PRAM
  6. Challenges and Objectives 

What Is Voice Over? 

Voice over acting means providing a voice for use in a professional audio work setting. Originally, voice over would be generally used for commercials, radio broadcasting, and even animated cartoons. However, over time, the skills needed for voice over work changed to providing voices for automated informative messages or announcements. Voice over acting is not only used for entertainment. Voice over for transportation is another voice acting job that often gets overlooked.

There are all kinds of certain jobs that voice over acting is perfect for. To get a better idea, here is a list of the top 5 jobs where productions use voice over acting. 

  1. Narration: Often used for media that is supposed to describe what’s on the screen. Usually, they would use this form of voice over with environmental programs and documentaries.
  2. Commercials: Typically used media for voice over acting, which deals with placing the narration over a series of images and sounds. Mainly used to advertise a product or service to viewers. 
  3. Educational programs: Often incorporate voice over acting as a means to explain concepts in video and to also educate staff and students. Organizations often use these sources for online learning, training, or human resources 
  4. Automation: Usually when voice over acting deals with recording a short yet informative message. Think of when you would set up a voice message for your phone. Used for service messages or alerts for public transportation.
  5. Digital: Voice over acting that is mainly online. Jobs related to this would include either full-length or short audiobooks and podcasts, which can use voice actors for announcements or promotional purposes. 

What Is PRAM? 

If you are interested in voice over acting, you may or may not have heard the term PRAM before. Luckily, if you have ever flown in a plane before, you have encountered examples of this when watching their announcement or listening to their public address or PA system. PRAM is often used for safety messages you hear on a passenger aircraft. 

PRAM is primarily a term used to describe audio transmitted throughout the aircraft during boarding, flight, and landing. Voice actors mainly record audio messages to be used. They are entrusted with providing safety information and delivering the message to their passengers. Once you have buckled in, the airline is obligated to explain its safety issues and overall message to its customers. You would either hear this on loudspeakers or watch an informative video before and during take-off. The main goal is to ensure that their message is clear and concise to those onboard the aircraft. 

Why Is PRAM Important? 

For voice actors, they must instill a calm yet informative tonal approach when delivering the safety message for the aircraft’s passengers. For their safety and the safety of others, passengers need to focus on what the safety announcements are telling them. To keep their attention, it is best that the safety messages make them feel at ease and unstressed. Voice actors have to ensure that they can be understood when explaining what to do in the event of an emergency or where the life vests and oxygen masks are required. 

How Does PRAM Grab the Passenger’s Attention?

Sometimes, even if the voice actor can deliver the message clearly and actively, the passengers tone out, and their attention drifts away from the important announcement. Some airlines have approached delivering safety messages in an intriguing way to better catch and keep their passengers’ attention. 

For instance, Virgin Atlantic uses animation and an entertaining voice over to provide safety guidelines for their passengers. They do this by taking the viewer through various movie genres while also giving information on what to do in the event of an emergency. The visuals and voice can grab their attention while also giving them necessary instructions.

Another example of turning an inflight information video into ‘inflight infotainment’ would be Virgin America’s safety video featuring a catchy song and dance number. The voice is sing-songy yet informative as it physically demonstrates how to put on a life vest or put on your seatbelt. It turns something that would usually be dull and dry into something fun and easy to memorize! 

Benefits of PRAM

There have been positive comments on the use of PRAM as it not only benefits the passengers but the time and energy for flight attendants as well. It provides information with ease and positively engages with the customers more than an average text-to-speech message would. Using PRAM enhances the relationship with the customer by engaging with passengers naturally with a more human voice than a robotic one, making the interaction more organic than monotonous.  

Challenges and Objectives 

The recent pandemic set a series of challenges for many job industries, and many voice actors have had to work from home. There may have been fewer job listings for PRAM because people were flying less frequently.

While the world slowly goes back to normal, we may find ourselves readapting and readjusting our schedules. Our objective is to help you find more opportunities to pursue your passion for voice over work while also balancing your personal life. Just because airlines are not as popular for travel does not mean these jobs will disappear. For more information, please visit our section on voice over work.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *