More ways to stretch your 2023 video budget

    Scalable video production with AI

    Now that AI voices have been trained to mimic human intonations, pauses, and breaths, an AI voice generator is a option worth considering. They won’t be as charming or persuasive as a professional voice actor. But they will sound human, not robotic. And they will probably sound more at-ease than many of the employee-narrators now recording screencasts and webinars to explain your solutions and services.

    Here are three ways to get more out of your video production budget with AI voices.

    • Generate multiple demos and tutorials in different versions that are scripted and edited so as not to waste the viewer’s time — or that of your subject matter experts.
    • Make interim versions of videos with AI voices to check the pace and length of an explainer video. You’ll still need a well-paid professional voice actor for the final cut, but a relatively inexpensive AI voice can help you improve the script as you work.
    • Add narration to diagrams, photos, and animations in blog posts, social media posts, and announcements.

    Amazon and Google have text-to-speech tools you can try. Microsoft’s Azure lets you copy and paste your script into their publicly available converter to hear your script read back. WellSaid Labs lets you try out their top-notch voice generator free. They offer a wide choice of voices and promotional, conversational, or narration styles. It’s easy to add emphasis and correct pronunciation by making edits to your script with tools accessible through a browser.

    Budget Guidelines

    Here are some guidelines you can use to plan your 2023 video marketing budget:

    • DIY or semi-professional videos cost $1,500 – $3,000
    • Professional-quality videos cost $5,000 – $20,000
    • Ad agency-quality videos (as seen on TV) will run $25,000 – $50,000
    • Top-of-the-line videos (as seen on the Super Bowl) cost well over $100,000


    Those DIY videos will be less onerous to produce if you start with a template. Here, for example, are Vimeo’s templates for different types of announcements. Here are some good ideas from Vidyard for using video for sales in 2023.

    That’s all for now.

    Bruce McKenzie & Lorna Pautzke