So, you've been acting for awhile. Possibly have done a few indie shorts, and maybe snagged that cool commercial spot. Now you're getting some good credits to your name on IMDb and hopefully by now you have enough footage for your demo reel(really important tool, BTW) to really showcase your talents.
It's really pretty simple, you need to market yourself silly!
There are several online tools out there to help set you up for success. Most are free or ridiculously affordable to do now with so many hosting services out there. If you really want people to know who you are, you need them to find you. Social Media is a powerful platform but we can't rely solely on that.
So here they are..
This is a no-brainier for sure. I mean if you have gotten any jobs thus far you should have at least a decent one by now. You would be surprised how many actors and photographers don't know what an actor's head-shot is supposed to look like. They don't have to be in a studio. But a good head-shot photographer knows what to capture. Don't try to cheat this one. If you have money for other luxuries, you can afford to invest in a good head-shot. I have spent from $150- $450 on these. Just make sure you don't make many drastic changes to your look too often, that means you have to keep updating those shots. Your look is very important and it's okay to change as you see fit but remember the cost of head-shots every-time you think of changing it.
Best advice on these
-Ladies, keep it natural. No heavy makeup and if you do something with your hair remember to have your hair the same way in person when you have to go audition.n What they see in the shot is exactly what they want in person.
- When it comes to your choice of attire.Wear something that makes your eyes pop. You should know what colors look best on you and on camera. Try to stick with a solid color top like a V-Neck. Here are a few of my recent ones.
Again, this one is a no-brainer. For every career choice you need a resume. It's pretty easy to do through Microsoft Word and their really cool resume templates. Rather even if you know know how to format correctly, just google "Sample Acting Resumes" and you can find several samples in the search results.
Tip:: If you want to really impress, always make sure to have everything proof-read and completely free of errors. Trust me when I say that people really do notice. Be sure to check out Grammarly.
Grammarly, is a free software which you can download to help correct and protect your writing so that it is 100% error free. It instantly scans your document to help correct errors, avoid plagiarism, and enhance your vocabulary so your resume doesn't fall flat.
**This is a definite recommendation to those writing their own scripts for the next best series they want to pitch to Netflix. Not even kidding, this is a must for you. Did I mention it's free.
While we have the easiest access to submit these tools through our phones and computers, You will ALWAYS need a hard copy to bring with you to auditions. So make sure to have several copies with you at all times. Make sure to staple your resume and headshot back to back in all four corners. If you paperclip, most of the time it will get easily detached and lost in the shuffle.
Casting Directors do NOT have time to find them when that happens so then you will most likely get overlooked and will ultimately cost you that job.
This isn't a requirement but still a recommendation. Many people have these for various business ventures so why not actors? After all, our careers are our business so we must treat it as such. We have to basically sell ourselves to Agents and Casting Directors, Managers, etc
You can easily design your own custom business cards online with vendors like EZPrints.
You should make sure to include your Headshot, Name and Contact information ( Email, Phone Number, Website) on these. If you are ever at an networking event and you don't want to carry around the your portfolio around, these are a very smart alternative to have.
If you have some legit speaking roles on your resume, you need a Demo Reel to back it up with. Since I have started I have learned that casting directors don't want to sit through 3 minutes of an reel going back and forth between contrasting roles. They prefer each clip to not be any longer than 1 -2 minutes perhaps less.
If you have experience with editing along with some good software, you can do it yourself. If not, hopefully you know a good editor that works in the business, they would be your best option to ensure you get your quality reel put together. Again, this is an area that you want to invest into and try not to cheat the process unless you are an editing ninja.
Like audition tapes, the first 5-10 seconds of an reel is all a CD needs to decide whether to keep watching or go on to the next person. Just keep that in mind.
If you don't have a website, just stop what you are doing now and get on that immediately. If you already have everything I listed above, then you basically have what you need to make your own custom website. You can be creative just don't go overboard. It's not rocket science and most website hosts offer free hosting with limited features. I use Weebly for both this blog and my acting website. Mostly, because I love their templates better than other sites and I have had a great experience using them thus far. And yes, it's super easy to navigate and use.