Last week I retweeted this inspirational quote:
Never give up on a dream because of the time it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway.
It got a bunch of retweets and favorites and then this heartfelt response:
sorry I don’t agree…I feel like its been so many years I will pass away or be the next betty white
Which led to a conversation back and forth including a request for some honest guidance:
give me an idea then? not shortcuts but ways to keep the sanity through the struggle to not want to give up
Which leads to this blog post because the query deserves a response longer than 140 characters.
My Twitter Friend has been pursuing her dream for a long time and is frustrated and discouraged. The market has evolved and the rules have changed. I applaud her for pushing back on my tweet – it shows she’s still got some fighting spirit. It’s time to channel that in a productive direction.
First you have to ask Why? Have an honest conversation with yourself about why it isn’t working for you. How much time do you devote to your career on a daily basis? How badly do you want it? What are you willing to sacrifice?
You have a laundry list of everything you are doing and superficially they seem like the “right” things to be doing – classes, submitting on Actors Access, attending industry Meet & Greets – but clearly if you’re not getting anywhere you have to rethink your strategy.
Do you have a strategy?
This is what you can do TODAY:
Focus on what you control in the process beginning with your materials (headshot, bio, resume, reel, website, social media).
Do a self audit:
Is your current headshot the best it can be? I don’t know because I googled you and couldn’t find it. I can tell you from my cursory search that you are not marketing yourself well because you are not marketing yourself at all.
Headshots are an important investment. There are lots of great headshot photographers. I love Nick Coleman.
Is your resume up to date with relevant credits? Is it easy to read? Does it conform to industry standard? Contact information on there? Here are some tips on creating a strong, competitive resume.
Invest in some one-on-one coaching with a good casting director. Find out from an expert what materials work best. Get better audition training.
You need a website. Get thee to Squarespace tout suite.
Be sure your website includes your contact info (phone AND email), links to your social media + your headshot (and other photos), your resume and your reel.
Be smart about what types of roles and opportunities you are right for and make sure all of your materials are on point.
I know you are on social media but you are not maximizing this awesome opportunity.
Drop whatever you’re doing right now and do this:
Make your headshot or another really good thumbnail your avatar.
Write a dynamic 160 character Twitter Bio – be sure to mention you’re an ACTOR and show some personality. None of this downbeat drivel! I get you have a sardonic sense of humor. It’s not helping you.
Tell us where you live. If it’s New York, say New York. If you are available to audition (on your own dime) in New York and LA – say that.
Link to your website.
Then: Get cracking on your YouTube Channel. When I click “About” it’s blank. Why is that?? Your contact info + inspiring bio should be there along with a link to your website.
Post only your best videos.
Tag your videos.
Read the Creators Playbook http://www.youtube.com/yt/playbook/
Once that’s all done, write out a goal statement. Next write an action plan for how you are going to achieve your goal.
Good luck to you!