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Secret Agent Man

How to Connect With Your Future Agent

How to Connect With Your Future Agent
Photo Source: Spencer Alexander

“Pull!”

Chuck launched the clay disk. I tracked it with my shotgun, waited for the peak, and then pulled the trigger. Boom! It shattered into several pieces.

That was my first time skeet shooting. Chuck had been going for years and was able to teach me the basics in one afternoon. I had a blast. When we were done, the two of us enjoyed a manly meal at a local diner.

Now, here’s the thing. Chuck isn’t a friend. He’s one of my clients.

We had been working together for about three months and I knew he was talented, but that’s about all I knew. Like most of my recent signs, he was just a name on a list. There are only so many hours in the day, so it takes time for me to get to know a new client. But Chuck was smart. He found a way to short-cut the process.

One day, he dropped by my office to sign some forms and we got to talking. He asked about my weekend and I asked about his. That’s when he mentioned skeet shooting. Chuck must’ve seen my eyes light up, because he invited me to join him the next time he went. And I gave him the quickest yes I’ve ever given an actor.

READ: How to Get an Agent

Here’s what you need to know about Chuck. In terms of type, he’s not a tough guy. Chuck has an East Coast intellectual vibe, like Jesse Eisenberg. Getting to see how well he handled a Remington 870 made an impression. I started to think my new client had more range than I realized.

That’s why it’s important for agents to get to know their clients on a personal level. The problem is we don’t always have time, and our interactions are mostly limited to short emails and quick phone calls. But a clever actor knows how to get around that.

A few years ago, I signed a young woman named Lisa who was referred to me by a manager I hardly knew. The first thing they did was invite me to lunch so we could get to know each other. And they were smart about it. The two of them made it a point to steer our conversation away from the industry so we could connect on a personal level, and that’s exactly what happened.

To be clear, I’m not suggesting you spend a lot of money on the agent who’s supposed to help you make money.

In Chuck’s case, he already had a membership to the range that allowed him to bring a guest, and he also owned two shotguns, so all he really paid for was some extra ammo and clay targets. But I’ll never forget how much fun we had that afternoon.

As for the lunch with Lisa and her manager, the three of us ate at a local restaurant and my part of the bill came out to just under $30. But that hour we spent together got us off to a roaring start, and we’re still working together.

The trick is to find a way to connect with your reps. And I’ve given you two examples of actors who did just that. Now it’s your turn to be the smart one. •

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