One-on-one BRANDING Session
In every business, the key success is to KNOW YOUR BRAND!
Once you know your specific brand, you can market yourself effectively and make more sales.
To get work, actors also need to know their specific brand. But it seems to be so much more difficult for actors to identify their brand. Why? As an actor, you are your own product and so it can often be impossible to step out of yourself to get a clear picture of WHO YOU ARE as an actor.
Actors spent hundreds of dollars trying to find their brand but often come to me unsatisfied because they still don’t have a clear picture of how to market themselves.
Over the years I have worked with thousands of actors and have developed a series of specific questions that I get actors to answer BEFORE coming to see me for a branding session. Then once an actor has the answers prepared, I spend 1 1/2 to 2 full hours reviewing the answers to questions, looking over an actor’s resume and seeing how he/she has been cast in the past. We review their demo reel and I continue to ask questions till I’m able to use my years of experience and intuition to help arrive at a unique BRAND.
When coming up with your brand, you’re searching for something that is unique and yet it is general enough to cover a variety of jobs in film, TV and theater. I’ll explain by sharing my process with one of the actors who came to see me. We’ll call this actor John.
John came to see me because he really wants to work more, have more auditions and get on with his career. He had already done the exercises in my e-book and wanted to get my help to further develop his brand. John is tall, all American looking with dark hair and a nice guy energy. The first thing I noticed that was unique is his voice. John’s voice is a little gruff and sounds blue collar to middle class. He could play a detective or a lawyer with that voice. He wouldn’t be the guy who went to all the right schools and became a high-end business lawyer. He’d be the guy who always worked hard, perhaps being the first one in the family to go to college. John also could be an all American family guy, a blue collar to middle class hard working father and husband. He also might be running a family business.
So now is where I began getting his answers to the 4 main QUESTIONS to help us discover his unique brand.
Question #1 – What are 10 qualities you love about yourself as an actor? and
What are 10 qualities you love about yourself as a person?
They are often similar but they helped me see how John saw himself. I also answered this question for myself based in my intuitive understanding of his personality, energy, etc.
Then we moved on to
What movie and/or directors do you love and (most importantly) WHY?
This is an essential question to ask yourself when developing your brand because it helps you become aware of WHO YOU ARE as an actor and what you relate to most.
John had a diverse list of directors prepared, so we began searching for a common thread. It didn’t take long to realize that all of the movies and specific directors John admired shared a common theme. They were all “inspirational stories”. They ran the gamut from Christian themed movies to major blockbusters to cool independent films. They all featured lead characters who were struggling against some kind of injustice. We were now able to begin to identify John’s brand.
In order to really get clarity, I asked John to share his answers to the following question
What are the dream roles you’d like to play and why?
When John got very specific about his dream roles, it became clear to me that he identified with the UNDERDOG. He was not attracted to playing characters in a position of power, but rather to the underdog who the audience roots for and who eventually triumphs or at least goes down trying.
In order to get even more specific, we took took time to review together his answers to question #3.
What are the roles you have already been cast in and what do all the roles have in common?
John brought in his demo reel. We watched it together and we also reviewed his resume for theater roles, etc. He had also played a “bad guy”, but even that “bad guy” was actually a “good guy” who had been wronged and was seeking justice. John had also done a lead in a comedy independent film. We realized that role was also that of an underdog living under the tentacles of an overly domineering mother. The pattern became clear.
I arrived at the following brand
John – the likable underdog fighting against injustice (with a sense of humor)
John had been getting auditions for TV detectives and pro bono defense lawyers. This made complete sense as cops and criminal lawyers are definitely underdogs fighting against injustice.
We decided that John needed to portray his brand in his new head shots. I suggested that he get a good detective and lawyer shot. I also suggested that John should share his new brand with his agent and manager so that they would all be on the same page. Once you know your brand, everything needs to reflect your brand – your pictures, your new reel, the kind of shows you audition for, the kind of directors you want to meet, etc
Using these 4 simple but powerful questions can help you begin to identify your brand. But when you do discover your brand, it will feel right and it will inspire you to share your brand with others. Your pictures, reel, website and all of your communication with producers, casting directors and directors should reflect your new brand.
There is a huge power for you as an actor when you get clarity. Once you determine and begin to focus on your brand, you’ll be amazed at how the universe will bring you auditions and roles that fit your brand and begin helping you build your career.
And don’t be afraid of limiting yourself. One of the biggest mistakes an actor can make is to think that he/she should not get a specific brand for fear of being typecast. Get smart and don’t worry about typecasting. Learn to be the “type” of actor who gets “cast” consistently! You can always expand your range of characters once you have a consistent career. Also, remember that the brand still has a big range within it. The underdog fighting against injustice can be a father fighting to save his family, a cop, a lawyer, a social worker, a character in an action adventure film, a romantic comedy, a crime drama, etc.
I’ve helped so many actors since John determine their specific brand to huge success and I welcome helping more confused actors take control of their career by understanding their brand.
My 2014 rate is $175.00 for a one and one-half hour session.
To book a session, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org