3 Steps to a Marketing Yourself as an Actor  


Sharon Moist

The most important thing every actor must do when it comes to their career is to market themselves on a regular basis. If you're ready to step up to the plate, then here are three steps to marketing success:

1) Look Like Your Photos

There's nothing that annoys casting directors more than actors who don't look like their pictures.

Initially, you're being called in to audition for the part because of what you look like (i.e. the picture the casting director received). If you don't look like the actor the casting director is expecting to walk through the door, you (and your agent or manager) are going to have one very unhappy casting director on your hands, and that is NOT a good thing.

Take a look at your current headshot. If it doesn't look like you, then it's time to have new pictures taken. See my friend Edie's headshot? If you were to meet her in person today, you'd see that she looks exactly like her photo.

2) Define Your Target Market

Once you have a headshot that looks like you, the next step in the process is to determine who you are as an actor.

Are you a leading lady, or the nerd next door? A waitress at the local diner or the hot new fraternity jock? The more specific you can be in knowing the kind of roles you're right for, the more success you're going to have getting auditions.

The second thing you need to determine, after you have a good headshot, is where your strength lies as an actor.

If your forte is in comedy, then you need to focus on submitting yourself to the sitcoms that are currently on the air.

If drama is your thing, then you need to see what television dramas appeal to you and focus on them.

The key here is to remember that you cannot be all things to all people, so focus on your strengths.

Need proof? Think about Julia Roberts' career success as the romantic lead in Pretty Woman and The Pelican Brief. Unfortunately, the minute she tried to step out of that role and did the movie Mary Reilly, it bombed because that was not the type of movie her fans wanted to see her do at that point in time.

3) Use a Sniper Approach

Last year I met an actor who was looking for work in Los Angeles, and told me that she had done one mass mailing to 30 different TV shows, but never heard anything back from any of them.

Now the fact that she only did one mailing and expected an immediate response was ridiculous because casting directors get thousands of headshots a week from actors looking for a job, so doing ONE mailing was never going to accomplish anything.

However, her decision to approach 30 different shows was also ridiculous because it was the equivalent of throwing a bowl of spaghetti against the wall to see what sticks.

As an actor you need to take a sniper approach to your career, meaning you need to target a few very specific shows and market yourself to them on a very consistent basis. Once you do that, your odds of booking work increase greatly.

Remember, you need to be running your career as a business, and the most important element in any good business plan is a strong marketing strategy. 


Copyright 2008 Sharon Moist. All Rights Reserved.


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