Hollywood and Music Industry veteran Bruce Edwin gives here his exclusive advice on how to contact agents, managers, and producers in our current times. He gives this advice free of charge. Those with specific questions on this or anything else can contact him below. If he replies, your question and his answer may be published here in our next issue, for the world to see.
How to Succeed In Hollywood
Despite what some wrongly think, there are films and TV shows being made in Hollywood in 2020 and on in to the first quarter of 2021, and there actually are some agencies and management firms that are seeking talent. The smartest agencies and management companies are expanding, or diversifying into other areas during the so-called “pandemic.”
So, when you do send an email or text to a producer, or an agent or manager, HOW do you it? There are certain successful steps, and certain ways sure to fail. These rules apply not only to the entertainment industry, but to any area of business as well.
The best way to do marketing to and close anyone, is in person, with the second best way by video or phone. We will cover those areas in a future issue. For now, we cover here email and text marketing, which are also vitally important.
The rules are as follows:
Hollywood Marketing 101
1, Research the company you are contacting. Know about them, what they do, what their mission statement is if they have one, who their top clients are or top projects, and know who their CEO and staff are.
2, When contacting them, use the company name and the name of the CEO or person you are contacting at top. Do not except a reply back if you send a text or email not using their name, or if you misspell their name or the name of their company.
3, Tell them something positive that you admire about them right away, in the first sentence. Maybe you like their last film, the fact that they just donated to your favorite charity, or that they give special consideration to minorities. Commend them right away, but be sincere.
4, Next, ASK them for whatever it is you want; a meeting, an appointment by phone, to send your headshot, resume and reel, to send your synopsis or script. ASK. Never order, and certainly never ever send anything without asking their OK FIRST.
When people contact us without getting our name right, not using our name, or even worse, doing none of this AND sending a script without our consent, it immediately stays unread, gets deleted, and the person gets BLOCKED forever. Don’t make that mistake!
5, Tell them something that you can do for them. Don’t say you will make them rich with your great talent or great script. It has to be something unique and different. One guy recently told us he works at a certain museum and could get us free tickets. Never mind that the person may be rich and doesn’t care about museum admission or can maybe get in free anway. It’s a nice gesture. Everyone likes free things and to feel as if they are being treated special as a VIP. And everyone appreciates a kind gesture. Use your imagination. Maybe you do fitness coaching on the side and want to offer them a free class as a way of saying thank you. Create your favor, and use them.
6, Lastly, thank them. Use their name again. Close off with thanking them for their time, and be sure to include your website, your email, and your phone number WITH the area code. I can’t tell you how many actors foolishly have told us their phone number without telling us their area code. Generally no one that can help you is going to look up your area code. Include your social media addresses as well. Some people may be more comfortable on instagram or facebook or some other manner, than email or a phone call with you. Include everything. Linked In is also a good avenue for communication.
7, Include your photo so they remember. One of my clients even is now making personalized videos in this manner for each person, using their name at the beginning. This is smart.
If you don’t hear back after about 4 or 5 days, send them another message, using the same steps above, but with a few slight changes. Acknowledge that you know how busy they must be, and that you wanted to contact them again just in case they had missed the first message. Repeat everything again.
You have to be polite, but aggressive in Hollywood–especially now more than EVER.
8, If you get rejected, the worst thing to do is to get mad. When we used to sign aspiring new actors or models, we would often test how they handled rejection, before we signed them. Sadly some that we really wanted to sign, blew up, getting insanely angry and abusive. Needless to say, those people failed the test. Be kind and cordial, and keep your cool under all circumstances.
9, The second worst thing to do aside from getting angry over rejection, is to be cold, indifferent, and ignore the person rejecting you afterwards. The correct thing to do, is to thank them, follow up with them, thank them again, and actually re-pitch them again, asking what it would take to make them say YES. Ands then do so.
10, When using a video platform or in person to pitch, get creative. Stand up if it gives you more energy. Move around, show people things if it can serve your presentation. Get creative. Test your audio, camera, and sound and picture quality with a friend before your video call.
11, Practice your presentation and pitch on friends or family, or a trusted co-worker, and ask for their constructive criticism. Always be improving, refining, and perfecting your pitch.
12, Never take no for an answer. Never give up, and always be closing!
Wishing you the best,
© 2020, www.BruceEdwin.com