Thursday, June 21, 2007

Packaging

I recently installed a private phone line in my studio. It was for a variety of reasons, mainly I never seemed to be where my cell phone was and kept missing calls. Now I have a land-line with a very loud ringer and voice mail.

After having the line activated, I set out to buy a new phone. When I found the perfect phone, I eagerly raced home to try it out. However, when I tried to open the package I absolutely could not get through the layers of plastic! They had been glued together around the phone, I'm assuming to keep thieves at bay. Unfortunately, it was also keeping me at bay! I grabbed a pair of scissors which I promptly ruined trying to cut through the thick plastic, then I resorted to trying to tear through the packaging with all my might.

After an hour, I finally got to the phone inside. Mind you, I was at this point 1) mad 2) really mad 3) hot and 4) covered from wrist to elbow in cuts and scrapes.

At last I could plug in my new phone and give it a try. Once it was properly plugged in, I gave it the required 12 hours to charge, and awoke the next morning to make my first call.

Only...

The line was filled with static and hissing. I called the phone company sure they had somehow messed up and discovered it wasn't them at all. It was my new phone. It was a dud.

In my haste to buy a phone, I did not do my research. I went a cheaper, easier route with a flashy package.

In the end, I returned the phone, did some thorough research and went with one that was a bit pricier but ultimately was clear as a bell. No difficult packaging to get through, no cuts, no scrapes, no anger.

The same can apply to us in our own voice over business. If your packaging is difficult to get through...meaning your website is cluttered, your demos filled with fluff...you are only going to make your clients angry. If they are willing to fight through the web, and your product doesn't deliver upon its promise, they will trade you in for a better model.

For the clients, if you are willing to settle for something that is easier and cheaper than the rest (as I did), you will ultimately get what you paid for.

In the end, it is worth the time and research to find a product that is reliable, un-cluttered, and priced appropriately.

Now if you'll excuse me, I have some calls to make :)

5 comments:

AVATC said...

Kara, I LOVE this analogy! It's funny how we can find lessons applicable to voice-over throughout our daily lives. Thanks for writing such a good story!

PS. I hate that molded plastic, too!

Karen Commins
www.KarenVoices.com
www.KarenBlogs.com

Kara Edwards said...

Karen,

Thank you for your comment! Yes, the plastic stuff just slays me! Why on earth would you sell a product that is nearly impossible to get to? Ugh.

Here's to using more cardboard!

Kara

Bob Souer said...

Kara,

Wonderful word picture. Thanks for this thoughtful post.

Be well,
Bob

PS: Thanks too for the delightful conversation during our NC VO get-together today!

Kara Edwards said...

Bob,

Thank YOU for your comment! Yes, it was a true delight to spend some one on one time with you! You are an amazing talent and one heck of a guy :)

Kara

Mark said...

Kara, you are so sexy