Voice Dubbing Services at International TV Stations

Have you hit the jackpot with inexpensive or free voice over services at the TV station your program is airing on abroad? When you contact your local voice dubbing provider requesting a quote for voice dubbing services, are you overwhelmed by the rates?

Well don’t be, because it does not reflect the same two services.

Many evangelical television ministries broadcast globally and their programs are frequently voice dubbed into the local language. Generally, the air-time and the voice over dubbing services will be sold together in a tight all-inclusive package and the VO fees are absorbed into that one rate - making voice dubbing seem like an easy, inexpensive venture.

As the international audience grows, these same ministries may contact our team at Aberdeen for voice dubbing rates on a different language and experience some form of sticker shock, and say, “But the network in Russia or Italy or China is handling this for us for next to nothing! How can your cost be so much more?”

How Voice Dubbing Works at TV Stations

These television stations may end up using their on-staff TV anchors to keep costs down rather than carefully selecting voice talent. And more often than not, the voice dubbing services are not done in a lip sync fashion, but more like a quick factory unit with no prior script translation being done. The production looks more like an interpreting job you’d see done live at a meeting, rather than a full post-produced, carefully-crafted performance.

Now this is not ALL THE TIME, but this is what we have found to happen most of the time to our clients. The ministries are commonly unaware of this difference, or simply do not identify the importance of quality until they get negative feedback from viewers (which may not ever reach the US-based client unless they actively seek feedback). Some dubbing work is so bad they literally make the content laughable to the viewer.

How a Professional Voice Over Dubbing Service Works

When you ask Aberdeen, or any other reputable voice over dubbing facility, for your program to be voice dubbed into another language, many elements are involved in the production to ensure that it is done professionally.

Our services include, but are not limited to:

  • Review of material
  • Transcription and time coding of the source material into the source language
  • Complete translation, review, proofreading, editing
  • ADAPTATION of translation for timing of the voice over
  • Casting of voice talent to match the original actors tone and persona
  • Producer overseeing the entire recording session (for Christian programming, we ensure the team is overseen by a Christian producer to ensure Biblical and theological integrity)
  • Studio time
  • Native director to ensure integrity and quality of the production
  • Recording
  • Post production audio editing, syncing
  • Complete studio mix offered
  • Layback to video

All of the services included in our complete post production voice dubbing process ensures a production full of integrity and quality, and there is absolutely no way to skimp on cost to get this quality.

Ministries: What You Should Do Now

Anytime a price for voice dubbing seems too good to be true, it probably is, and you are perhaps not getting what you really want and need for your program.

If you are currently getting your TV program voice dubbed in another country by the TV station for a small cost, we recommend you get the VO work reviewed by a native, objective third party.


About the Author

Joanna Scavo

Joanna is the Director of Aberdeen's AberLingo, language services department. A bi-cultural native Californian, living between the US and Europe, Joanna manages clients and contractors around the globe narrowing the lingual gap worldwide. When not tapping away at her keyboard, Joanna enjoys traveling (shocker!) to different countries with her husband and son and would rather get lost in a city than have a set plan of sights to see. Joanna loves the unexpected and cringes at routine. During breaks from work, she can be found having food fights instead of lunch with her baby boy or dancing around the house instead of going to the gym. Malaga, Spain, her current residence, is coincidentally referred to as, "the California of Europe," where old town Europe meets the sea, sand, and lots of sun.