How to market yourself to casting directors: 5 tips
As an actor, casting directors are perhaps the most important people you can get to know in the business! But it’s important to note that there is a difference between best marketing practices and harassing a casting director. At 3-2-1- Acting School in Los Angeles for kids, teens, and young adults, we emphasize the importance of tasteful marketing practices. If you are wondering how to market yourself to casting directors, you have come to the right place! Here are five tips on how to market yourself to casting directors:
Of course, you should always be out socializing and networking when you can. It’s possible to run into a casting director at a
friend’s birthday party or industry event, but that doesn’t mean it’s an appropriate time to pitch yourself for a role. However, it is a good idea to get to know the casting driector as a person and become acquaintances — and even friends! Casting directors are people! They want to be treated as such instead of being treated as a ticket to your next audition. And chances are, if you are friendly and not pushy, they’ll want to call you in when a role is right for you. Know social cues, and when in doubt, a compliment will always work to begin a nice conversation.
- Social media.
Start your own Facebook page, Twitter, Instagram, Vine, and more to promote yourself. If you’re going to become friends with casting directors on Facebook, fantastic! Send a friend request and put the ball in their court—wait for his/her acceptance. There is no need to send a follow-up message. Once friends, make sure you’re posting positive material, updates, and footage of your very best work. Again, don’t bombard them on their personal Facebook pages, but let them observe your status updates on their timelines at their own pace. On Twitter, engage with casting directors about common hobbies, shared interests, etc. Congratulate casting directors on accomplishments. Thank casting directors for casting you! Engage in social conversations, as you would at an in-person social event. Just as you wouldn’t walk up to a casting director at a party and exclaim “cast me!”, you will want to carry out tasteful practices on Twitter.
- Thank you cards/gifts.
A casting director has called you in—fantastic! Send them a thank you card. Did a casting director recently call to book you? Yes, also buy them a gift. Often times, gift cards are the best way to go. Some actors prefer sending wine, an Edible Arrangement, or other generic gifts, which are also acceptable. No matter what you write in your thank you card, do not add glitter. Casting directors get lots of cards per week and often complain about glitter because it spreads everywhere. A simple handwritten personal message inside a thank you card along with your gift will make a good, lasting impression. Also, don’t forget to send out some gratitude on Twitter!
When you know a casting director is casting a role or a project that is specifically right for you, send them an email! Also, it is appropriate to send an email when you have new headshots or a new demo reel. Also, be sure to invite casting directors to any live shows that you are doing. Be sure to always include a personalized message any business email — rather than just cutting and pasting the same message over and over.
Though less common than emails, postcards can be great marketing tools. It all depends on the casting director. Some casting directors love them, and some overlook them. Still, it doesn’t hurt to send out postcards. Booked something worth sharing? Whether it’s a Web series or huge feature film, let the casting directors know! When used appropriately, mailers can remind a casting director that you’re around and working. Often times, you can find casting director addresses on your audition notices, but in case they switch casting offices, you can look up their information on a number of different websites like LACasting.com and CastingAbout.com.
However you choose to communicate, be courteous, friendly, generous, and kind in your conversations and notes. Always think: “How can I create value for this person? How can I solve a problem for this person?” And as always, have fun!