I know some of you are neck-deep in an agent hunt right now. In which case, I’m cheering you on – you got this. And then there’s some of you who just weren’t quite ready to dive in during this “meeting season.” If signing with a great agent is part of your 2020/21 goals, it’s time to get very clear about your next steps. We’re going to talk about how to get agents to look for you.
What will you do in the next six months that will make you more attractive to an agent than you are now? How will you flip the agent attraction switches? (A topic we cover in-depth inside Actor Business Plan.) The time to prime the pump is right now, not just before you look for agents.
My “boyfriend, Seth Godin”, has some solid advice for us actors in this excerpt from his book, This is Marketing. Check it out!
“How do I get an agent?” That’s the question that screenwriters, directors, and actors get asked all the time. The industry has gatekeepers, and you don’t have the keys to the gate, so an agent is the answer.
As Brian Koppelman has generously pointed out, it doesn’t work in this direct a manner. Sure, the agent will field calls for you, but he’s not going to become your full-time sales rep, making calls night and day and tirelessly promoting you to the industry.
The method isn’t to go out and find an agent. The method is to do work so impossibly magical that agents and producers come looking for you.
You, the one who cared enough to put it all on the table…
who fell in love with your viewers and your craft…
and who made something that mattered.
It doesn’t have to be a feature film or a Pulitzer-winning play. In fact, the approach works best if it’s not a fully polished and complete creation.
The best work will create an imbalance in the viewer, one that can only be remedied by spreading the word, by experiencing this with someone else. The tension this imbalance creates forces the word to spread. It means that asking, “Have you seen . . . ?” raises the status of the asker, and the champions multiply.
What matters is the connection you made. Everyone has ten friends, fifty colleagues, a hundred acquaintances. And you can cajole them into seeing your work . . . and then what happens?
If it’s electric, if it makes an impact, if the right sort of tension is created, they’ll have to tell someone else. Because telling someone else is what humans do. It’s particularly what we do if we work with ideas. Telling others about how we’ve changed is the only way to relieve our tension. This is the hard work we discovered many pages ago. The hard work of deciding that this is your calling, of showing up for those you seek to change. Do that first.
Godin, Seth. This Is Marketing (pp. 239-240). Penguin Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.
I love this. Fall in love with your future fans. Create something they want to talk about. And the agents will come for you.