Had my 4th class last night. New teacher, and this time we did less script reading and talked a little more about the business of voice acting.
Just in case you didn’t realize it, this career you are embarking upon is a little different from filling out an application and starting to crank out the Crabby Patties!
At some point down the road, we are all going to be possessed of the Magical Golden Pipes (we hope), and we will sally forth into the bright sunshine with our hot little CD clutched in our sweaty hands! — Now What?
Well, I have read a lot of books, many of them several years old, and most all of them devote quite a bit of space to the idea of marketing yourself. In fact, some of them are so old that their marketing ideas actually revolve around Cassettes!
Back in the day, you had to make a hard copy of your demo somehow, cassette, CD, mag tape, Vinyl! (The first recorded Demo was actually Thomas Edison reciting Mary Had a Little Lamb! He was all announcer-y though, couldn’t do the conversational thing, that’s why he never made it into the big time…) and then mail copies out to everyone and everything you could think off at no little cost!
Well, now is the time to really thank that Computer of yours (even though it never works quite right, and you suspect it hates you), because it has changed everything. Nowadays you send most things out over the internet as MP3’s, whether you are sending it to an agent, casting director, producer, or your mom -just so she can hear how good you are.
So, class, if you send your MP3 out electronically to all 1,442,673 hits that come up on Google for the word AGENT, do we still call it marketing? No, class, we don’t — we call it SPAM!! And just what all those people on the receiving end call You, we can’t print here.
No fellow learners, my teacher tells me that what we have to do here is find our target market. By the time you get to the point that you are ready to record a demo, you should have a pretty good idea of what you are good at. It may not be exactly what you want to do for the rest of your career, but when you are starting out, it might be a good idea to start with something you can actually do competently! Find out who the players are in that market; the studios, the producers, the ad agencies, the casting agencies. Find out who works at these places and see if you can get an email, do some legwork and qualify your leads. THEN you are ready to send out a targeted e-mailing, addressing people by name, telling them what you are good at and how YOU will benefit THEM. Let them know you are familiar with their work and that you have something that will add value to their business. Personalize it! Make yourself stand out from the rest of the nameless, faceless horde that just spammed the entire Northern Hemisphere.
Well, that’s the idea at least – of course it is easier said than done, but what the heck, who told you this was easy anyway?