tips will help you best utilize our mailing labels. As an actor,
I follow these guidelines when I do mailings. No matter what your
experience, take a minute to read through these tips. I think you'll
find them very helpful.
You may see
duplicates of some casting directors when looking through our labels.
That isn't a mistake. It's because some casting directors cast different
projects out of different offices. We include the address for multiple
locations because it gives you the choice of which location to send
to. In general, the first address would be considered the main address
for the CD.
When you send
a headshot and resume, you should avoid putting your personal information
on it. You never know who may see the submission. Never put your
home address on it. You should also avoid putting your home number
or cell phone number on it. Many actors have been plagued with crank
and harassing phone calls because a headshot got into the wrong
hands. I suggest you use a service, a voicemail box with a pager
or a separate phone line.
the standard headshot (9" x12" envelope that weighs more
than one ounce) is .57. You can buy .57 stamps at the post office
and will save quite a bit over using 2 .34 stamps for each envelope.
Postage for a postcard is only .21, but it can't be larger than
6" x 4 ½", so keep that in mind when design your
postcard. You don't need to put a return address on your mailing,
but if you do don't use your home address. Get a PO Box or use your
If you can
get your mailing to weigh in at one ounce or less, it will only
cost .45. The only way I know of to do that is getting a litho and
printing your resume on the back, not on a separate piece of paper
and stapling it to the headshot. Most printers will print on the
back of a litho.
over the standard headshot and resume. Postcards are less expensive
to make and to mail and they don't need to be opened. They have
a much higher chance of getting seen than the standard manila envelope
submission. You can be very creative by using your laser printer
to put messages on the back of the postcard.
There are two
different schools on this. Photos look better and lithos cost less.
Period. Some say the difference in price is worth it, some say it
isn't. If you are sending a mass mailing out, lithos are fine. If
you are sending postcards, lithos are perfect. If you are sending
a smaller, more targeted mailing, then it's a call you have to make.
I like photos better. It's your calling card and it needs to stand
actor feels they must send a large number of headshots and resumes
out to every casting director in town. Having worked in casting
director offices, I can tell you this is a long shot. Generally,
you must be extremely good looking or a unique character type to
get attention this way. Having said that, I realize that if that
as aggressive actors, you will most likely not be swayed by that
If you are
going to send "cold" headshots to all the CDs, I would
recommend that you think about just how many submissions a CD gets
everyday and think of some way to make yours stand out from the
crowd. Nothing extreme, but something to get them to open it. Perhaps
a note on the outside of the envelope. Perhaps a smiley face. Perhaps
a different color envelope. Perhaps a "log line" of who
you are. I have a friend who uses the following log line - A cross
between Danny DeVito and Jason Alexander. Something makes it stand
out and entice the assistant to open it.
When you are
doing a show or have something airing that you want people to see,
a promotional mailing can help increase your visibility. In most
cases, I would recommend using your hit list (see below), but sometimes
actors want to do a mass promotional mailing, like above. If that's
the case, consider the message and packaging. As with mass mailings,
you need to send something that is different and will catch someone's
eye. Also consider postcards as an alternative.
increase your chances of getting a call. Every actor may have the
ability to play a variety of types. But that ability doesn't help
much until you are a recognizable name. In most instances, you will
be cast on who you ARE not what you can play. Knowing your type
is invaluable. Are you naturally serious, funny, odd-looking? Are
you a lead or a character? What makes you stand out? What are your
natural tendencies? These all tell us what our type is.
Once you know
your type, you need to make certain your headshot and marketing
materials reflect this. YOU are the product and you have to market
it to the people who want to buy it. If you know your type, you
can see what shows and movies are casting people like you. That
is where you have the greatest opportunity to get called in and
Make a list
of the CDs who cast your type and target them with your mailings.
Your first job is to try to move them into the Hit List mailing
section below by getting in front of them through generals, CD workshops
or other creative ways.
If you are
mailing to this group, you again need to do something different
to get their attention.
Our labels are alphabetical by last name so you can easily find
The most effective
use of mailings is a targeted "hit list" mailing. A Hit
List contains casting directors who know you or your work, who have
worked with you in the past, who have seen you at a CD workshop,
who have called you in to audition or with whom you have a relationship
with. Part of a continuing relationship with casting directors (CDs)
is to keep them apprised of what you are doing, new headshots, new
agents, hot auditions or anything else that will show them you are
still here and actively pursuing your career.
This type of
mailing should be done every one to two months. Usually they should
be a postcard mailing, with a new headshot send no more than once
every 6 months.
If you need
addresses for single mailings, they are available for free on our
web site at http://www.laactorsonline.com/tool-cddata.htm. That
will take you to our searchable database where you can search for
individual CD addresses at no charge.