Using Ispot.tv is a great way to find your recent commercials and track when and where they’ve aired. But there’s an ongoing debate around tagging yourself in the commercial so people know it’s you. So what’s the right answer.
First of all, there is no “correct” answer, it’s a personal preference. Let’s discuss factors you might consider before tagging yourself.
WHO IS LOOKING AT ISPOT.TV?
This is the smallest population of people looking at your ispot page. Sure, if someone were to google “Pepsi Commercial Dancing Grandma,” ispot.tv might help them find out who the grandma is. But that’s not ispot.tv’s primary function.
But more often, industry people use ispot.tv to track advertising statistics. This means producers, directors, ad agencies, clients, and sometimes casting directors. The people in a position to hire you for commercials.
A casting director looking at your breadth of work on ispot.tv might have an upside. They can see you’re a professional who can pull off a range of roles and this could develop trust.
AD AGENCIES & CLIENTS
Ad agencies and clients are where things can get dicey. Chances are, they won’t be looking you up unless you’re in the final stages of casting for a product. But when it gets down to you and one other person, an ad agency might look you up to see what else you’ve done.
A lot of listed work might look impressive. They think “She can totally pull this off, look at all the commercials she’s done!” Or it could be the opposite.
AVOIDING THE APPEARANCE OF OVER-EXPOSURE
Hopefully, you have a long career booking commercials! When you’re tagged on ispot.tv, it creates an “actor page” where viewers can see all your spots at a glance. If you have a wealth of commercials listed, it may appear that you’ve been “over-exposed.” Even if those commercials date back to 2010!
The SAG-AFTRA contract covers residuals because over-exposure may harm your ability to get more work. There’s an argument to make for not all your commercials viewable on one page.
AVOIDING THE APPEARANCE OF CONFLICTS
Our residuals are also paid because “holding a conflict” can hamper our ability to book more work. If I’ve done a commercial for Tylenol, I’ve agreed to not do a commercial for Advil as long as the former airs or pays holding fees.
So, if I’m the Advil client looking to cast you in my upcoming commercial and I find a Tylenol commercial on your page, I may question hiring you. Even if your conflict is no longer active!
With so many actors to choose from, why cast the one who’s worked for a competing product?
The appearance of conflicts or over-exposure doesn’t necessarily mean a company will choose to not hire you. But I’m very careful about giving them “opportunities for ‘no’”!
I don’t imagine decision-makers think they’re talking themselves out of hiring you. It’s subconscious. But when it comes to how I make a living, I prefer to err on the conservative side.
WHEN SHOULD YOU TAG?
Let’s say you’ve got an amazing commercial running, one that’s getting viral buzz or where you are incredibly funny. You might choose to tag it until it’s no longer airing.
This means that people who are curious about it can find you. It won’t cause you to book less work because you’re currently holding conflict anyway. Once the commercial has finished airing, you can untag yourself. This is a great option if you’re not willing to quit the tagging, cold turkey.
HOW TO UNTAG YOURSELF
You cannot untag yourself without the help of the ispot.tv team. To untag, reach out to them using their webform. You may send them links to the commercials you’d like untagged or send them a link to your actor page to have them all untagged at once.
WHAT TO DO INSTEAD OF TAGGING
If you want a shareable link to your catalog of commercial work, consider downloading the footage from ispot.tv and adding it to a private Youtube playlist. You can share this link on your website or with your reps so they can use it at their discretion.
This is a personal business decision that you can make for yourself. You will never truly know how it has helped or hindered you from booking commercial work. So just weigh the options and go with your gut!