For as many lights as there are on Broadway and Hollywood hopefuls here in LA, I have learned there are more ways than that to getting an agent. Everyone’s journey is unique and while there are a few standard strategies in which to acquire said agent it’s vitally important to follow your gut when determining what is the best approach for you. Implement strategies that resonate with you because doing so will attract the right kind of agent for you! It’s like a marriage, hence the reason to following your gut.
I have come to learn that every agent is different, with different and varying requirements. Some say only send your package via email while others say only send via snail mail. Some like walk-ins while others do not. Some will look at post cards and possibly call you in while others will toss them the minute they arrive without so much as a glance. Just as sure as one says do it this way, another will say do it in the total opposite way. Again why it’s so vitally important to follow your gut and approach the process from a truthful place that seems right to you regardless of what your friends might say or be doing or what you might have just heard from an agent you have been pursuing. Stay true to yourself.
Personally I do not have an agent, not yet anyway. Given I’ve been here just over 9 months, and so new to the industry with only 2 credits – a movie and a TV show, I bring very little to the table at this point so I think about that, a lot. Why would an agent want to sign me? Then I think about what I do have going for me which is I have a unique look. Silver hair with a very fit and youthful face and body so I know it’s different, and I think about that a lot too. And honestly I do vacillate on whether to try at this point to get a commercial agent or wait (and for those of you who might be new, a commercial agent is far easier to get than a theatrical agent). On the one hand I can get work on my own via self submissions which I did with both my credits, so at this early stage why do I need an agent? However at the same time I think about the fact that if I did have one I could be doubling my efforts and doubling my chances of securing work. See….vacillating. Having said all that I present to you some of the more common ways at getting an agent.
Get a referral: Bar none the best way is to meet an agent is via a referral, because now you have a mutual friend or business colleague and that makes you very attractive to the agent.
The Right Agent: Wendy Alane Wright. a talent manager has a YouTube channel that has been very educational for me. She talks about this book “The Right Agent,” and how to use it when searching for an agent. I highly recommend her channel.
SAG-AFTRA: You can find a list of franchised agents right on SAG’s website. Another way of building your target list.
Workshops: Talent agents hold workshops that you pay for, yes it’s paying to get in front of an agent but if you think you’re ready and can wow them with your awesome acting chops then why not spend the $40 or $50? There’s a website that pulls all the workshops together in one place. When I feel I’m ready I’ll utilize The Workshop Guru.
Work backwards: I’ve heard about this more than once from more than one seasoned person in the industry. Start with a list of TV shows you think you would be right for that also has a lot of Guest Stars and Co-Stars, usually it’s the one-hour episodics. Go to IMDbPro, and then find the agents for those actors that had one or two lines and build your agent list that way. This tells you the level of actors they handle. It’s a great way to target agents that are already working with the casting directors for those shows.
The list above is not all inclusive. There are many other strategies however these listed are ones that can definitely get you in front of the agents that are right for you.
Til next time…Victoria xox