Using Gmail As Your Universal Inbox

Hey, there!

If you haven’t heard me wax poetic about Gmail and what an advantage it is for VO talent and actors in general, we need to get more bagels and coffee together.

And one of the best options in Gmail is one that, if you have more than one email address, will make your email life far more streamlined than you might ever imagine.

Especially if your email is handled by a cable company (cox, comcast, roadrunner etc) or an ancient service (Hotmail, Juno, AOL, Prodigy, etc).

You could be missing a lot of valuable information and not even know it.

Over the years, I’ve created more than a few email addresses, going all the way back to

Yep, that was me you were CBing with back then.

AOL, Yahoo, and Gmail, as well as email addresses that are managed by my website domains, like, all are active and still receiving messages.

And I used to use Microsoft products to manage multiple inboxes and check each one on a round robin basis. Then, Gmail came into my life, the clouds parted, the sun shone and the string section started a sweet song.

What did that?

I started to use Gmail to gather mail from all of my other accounts. And I did one thing to each account before I set Gmail to do that: I turned off the spam filtering on those other accounts, so that all accounts would be filtered by Gmail’s state-of-the-art spam traps.

To create this bit of email nirvana, here’s what you do:

1. Click on the gear icon in the upper right hand corner of your Gmail main page. Choose Settings.

2. Then, click on Accounts and Import on the Settings menu bar.

3. Scroll down the page until you find the section labeled Check mail from other accounts (using POP3):

4. Click on Add a POP3 Account You Own.

5. Enter the login information for each account, and give Gmail time to go out and get your mail from those other accounts. (They’ll check every half-hour or so.)

That’s it! All messages from those old accounts will now end up in your Gmail inbox, alongside any Gmail messages you receive.

I also strongly suggest that you set up a Filter in Gmail that checks the TO: address and applies a Label to messages received from each old account, so you can still see them separately if you want to. I do both, so I can go to my individual folders and see what mail’s coming in. It’s simple to do:

1. Wait until you get a piece of mail in your Gmail inbox from one of your old accounts, open the message, then click on the More button in the icon menu bar above the email message content.

2. Choose Filter messages like these from that drop-down More menu.

3. In the To box of the form, type in the email address of your old account. This will tell the filter to only act on email addressed to that account. Also, remove anything in any of the other text boxes on that form.

4. Click on the Create filter with this search link in the lower right hand corner of the form. This will take you to the second and final screen of the process.

5. Check Skip the Inbox (Archive it) if you just want the mail from your old account to end up in its folder, or leave that unchecked if you also want messages to appear in your inbox. I suggest you have it checked, as you’ll be able to tell if there is any new mail for you very easily.

6. Check Apply the label: and choose New label… for your old account. This will be the name of the folder that your messages from this account end up in. I made my labels in the format of “[user] on [service]”, so davidlawrence on aol, lawrence on aol, david on davids etc.

7. Check Never send it to Spam.

8. Check Also apply filter to matching conversations.

9. Click on Create filter. The mail messages from your old account will all be waiting for you in that folder, from now on. And when you do have new mail from that old account, the unread messages will cause the folder label to be displayed in bold letters (in the list of folders on the left hand side of your Gmail dashboard), signaling that…you’ve got mail.

And you can reply from your new Gmail account to those mails. Eventually, people will start to write to you at your Gmail address rather than the old one (or not, and it won’t matter.)

Simply gorgeous. And if you don’t have a Gmail account yet, well, we need to get more bagels and coffee together.

Hope this helps.


9 Responses to 6 Steps to a Perfect VO Demo

  1. Kelli August 18, 2011 at 2:58 am #

    I feel really good about my demo. It is a quick and fun process, even for someone like me who gets very self concious. :)

  2. David Britz September 5, 2011 at 11:25 pm #

    The demos are great. Superb quality. Why go anywhere else?

  3. David Britz October 20, 2011 at 3:51 pm #

    Can’t wait to record my Narration VO Demo!! :))

  4. Mike Brang December 31, 2013 at 9:44 am #

    Having a well-produced demo is one of the most important things in the VO business. I had a number of demos made from other producers in the past and they all had one thing in common — that manufactured, cookie cutter sound!
    What sets David apart from the rest, besides his affordable price and tremendously fast turn around time, is that all of the clips you record with him sound unique. Each spot sounds like an actual commercial you recorded for a job.
    My agent loved the quality and even asked who produced it to refer his other talent there!

    Thanks again, David for producing such a great, high quality demo for me. You made the process relaxing and enjoyable. I urge anyone reading this unsolicited reply to listen to David’s student demos to hear the difference for yourself. Anyone would be lucky to work with him

  5. Kristy Liles February 9, 2017 at 7:04 pm #

    I can not thank you enough. I worked so hard on 15 page IVR project, one day I cryed, look for answers, pull my hear (not really) but I was about until another VO send me this great tool. Thanks!

  6. Frank June 11, 2017 at 9:51 pm #


    When v123 indicates the audition is for a student/ nonprofit are we to assume it is for $0. If so, why does the audition ask for an amount to be entered?

  7. shirley jordan June 12, 2017 at 5:58 pm #

    I did get this scam through Voice 123. In our discourse, they offered me the gig and they gave me the name of a legit local place to record and the same runaround with the money. I didn’t send anything, but instead, I called the studio to make sure the booking was for the day we set up, and lo and behold, the people there had no idea what I was talking about. I then tried to call back my “contact person” who was setting this up and there was a fax machine beep on the other end. I immediately contacted Voice 123 and told them what had happened. You know what they say…if it sounds togaed to be true, it probably is. Thanks for the reminder!

  8. shirley jordan June 12, 2017 at 5:59 pm #

    …too good…not togaed.
    The one time spell check didn’t work!

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