By Master TV Host Teacher IDalis De Leon
Let me start by saying there is no one way to get an agent. Everyone has different journeys and different talent brands. So let’s say you’ve been so busy “doing the work”, building credits like you are supposed to, and you haven’t had a proper agent relationship in a few years. It’s time to buckle down and put you on the market as a hot unsigned talent looking for representation.
- FIRST things first-Make sure before you look for an agent you have three things:
- A STRONG REEL: Evidence of your work and talent brand abilities
- CREDITS (jobs and training) for actors: Inde projects, web projects and student films,
for hosts: journalism (writing )credits, live event credits, red carpet, movie junkets, and local tv station credits
- GREAT HEADSHOTS to get you in the room
- Get your Online Presence together: Revamp your Facebook, build your Twitter, and launch your Youtube Channel: Take off the photos of you doing jello shots at your cousins bachelor party, replace them with great photos of yourself on set, on a red carpet with a mic in your hand. Commit to your talent brand as a business. A big Twitter following is essential for hosts, it was the second question a Dick Clark Productions Executive posed to one of my hosts who was applying for a job to cover the red carpet for the Oscars. How many twitter followers do you have, he asked as he waited for her response? At least 10,000 and above is apparently respectable. Launch your Youtube Channel for your video projects, demo reel clips, class scenes, student films indie film scenes and begin to build an online presence that says working actor, working host, working reporter or new media journalist. When they Google your name, what will they find?
*An agent can only be as good as you as marketing material you give them to work with.
- Research IMDB PRO: Find you own method of research here, whether its looking up your favorite shows and and seeing who casts them, or credits you can acquire through which casting director or what agent represents what actors and what style of genre and actor they are normally looking for. Invaluable resource for actors, directors and writers.
- COLD CALL: Make a list of actor friends & hosts who work. Write a personal email to each one indicating that you’ve done your homework and you think that their agent might be a right fit and if you could just use their name when you submit your material you would be very grateful. As long as you have a referral, a cold call becomes a warm call. Call the agent assistant and say “ Hi, I know one of your clients “so and so” and I am looking for representation, I am a working actor/host. What’s the best way to send you my material? Then send your material, wait a week, if you don’t hear from them follow up.
- Go to Idalismedia.com for a list of Host Agents. Now Casting, Backstage, LA Casting have PDF downloads of agency listing for actors. These listings are everywhere. Stop and create your own list from your research. Make a list of your top 20 choices and then another 20 you wouldn’t say no to. These 40 are the agents you should focus on and just go down the checklist as you research and approach each one about representation. Takes notes and keep track. Someone will sign you especially if you are staying busy.
- Traditional Methods still work: Targeted mailings, postcards, attending events, networking, making connections, showcasing your work on stage or hosting a live event red carpet or movie junket and joining organizations that keep your work in front of people.