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Austin Actors
Mona Lee

Keeping in Touch
by Mona Lee

June 2000

Casting directors and other important contacts will only forget about us if we let them. Postcards are a great way to keep in touch. They keep our face familiar and remind people where they can find us–and they’re a lot cheaper then traditional mailouts of 8x10 photos. Actors save on envelopes, postage and expensive photo reproduction. Postcards are less labor intensive, and more ecologically sound–less trees have to die.

Casting and talent offices receive tons of mail, and many headshots end up in the trash. Agents and casting directors often say they feel guilty throwing away expensive photos. They like postcards because they take less then a minute to look at and read. If they throw a postcard away, it’s only a small piece of paper as opposed to an envelope, cardboard inserts, and photographs. Postcards are easier to store, too. Self-promotion is the "toughie" for most actors to handle, but creating a variety of postcard mailouts can be fun. They’re a good way to call attention to yourself in a vast sea of faces. Casting directors begin to know "who" you are and through your consistent mailings to them, you become more viable.

Every time you do a photo session for new headshots pick out some photos to use for postcards. Don’t use the same photos for postcards that you’re using for headshots. Give casting people an opportunity to see different looks. It’s O.K. to be playful, too. Everybody loves a laugh. With postcards, anything goes! Even some shots taken by a friend with a good camera can work. The main thing is to be consistent with regular mailings that highlight your qualifications and experience.

Postcards need to be correctly spelled, titled, and addressed. If you’re writing a note make sure your handwriting is very neat and legible. Remember you only have time for a six to eight second soundbite so get straight to the point in a friendly but businesslike manner–oh, and always personally sign your card.

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