How To Meet People At A Film Festival The Organic Way

How To Meet People At A Film Festival The Organic Way by Dallas Travers

As an actor, one of the best ways to meet potential collaborators is to attend film festivals where you know your fellow filmmakers will hang out. It can be so much fun to watch a great short film and then chat with the director right afterward.

However, a lot of actors clam up in networking situations or feel scared of being “schmoozy.” If you are uncomfortable with the idea of making a strategy for meeting other artists at events because you want it to be organic and natural, check out these tips.

Get Connected

I’ve got a friend named Matt who truly is a connector. His LinkedIn network is massive and everywhere we go, he knows somebody. He’s a natural who’s really good at connecting with people in a real way plus staying in touch down the road.

Whenever I am in public with Matt, I notice that he very easily talks to whoever he’s next to. It doesn’t matter where we are, he feels completely secure about chatting up everyone in the room, and because he’s so confident, people feel comfortable talking to him, too.

When I asked him how he’s able to do this, he told me that he thinks of every public event as a cocktail party or a backyard BBQ. I don’t know about you, but when I’m at either of these events, I can pretty easily meet people and talk to them because I know we’re all there due to a mutual friend.

If you can think of your fellow festival-goers in this way, it will be much more easy to breezily say hello to the person standing behind you in line. You never know who you might meet.

Make It A Game

See how many people you can authentically connect with and organically meet at the event. Be curious, and treat it as though you were attending a fun party rather than crafting a “plan” that you need to execute with perfection.

You’ll notice that when you are open to interacting with people you don’t know, the opportunities will seem to come out of nowhere. Relax, smile, and make eye contact to invite others to talk to you. The more comfortable you can be in the situation, the more comfortable they will feel when you come up and say hello.

Remember, nearly everyone who attends a film festival is there because they want to celebrate the art and make connections with like-minded artists. You have nothing to lose, so have a great time.

How do you handle networking events? Share your tips in the comments below.

1 Comment »

Are You Addicted to Being Busy?

A lot of actors feel that if every spare minute is not being spent in pursuit of acting goals, they’ll fall behind schedule or that they somehow won’t deserve the success they desire.

So, they busy themselves. They look for things to do just to stay occupied rather than working in an effective way – maybe by taking bigger risks but also having a more balanced life. They’re addicted to being busy.

If this sounds like you, it’s time to really consider this question: Who would you be if you weren’t working all the time?

Watch this week’s Acting Business Bite to learn the simple step I took myself to exercise the muscle of self care and get in the habit of taking downtime.

Exercise the muscle of self care and get in the habit of taking down time. The things you think are so urgent will wait for you. Even better, your sense of self worth is no longer directly tied to your level of productivity.

Find a 24 hour window this week where you can unplug and really take care of yourself. Trust yourself enough to enjoy your life a little bit, even while in pursuit of the career you really dream of.

Let me know how it goes in the comments below. Happy relaxing!


Newsletter, Snoozeletter: 3 Ways to Make Your Emails Stand Out

3 Ways to Make Your Emails Stand Out by Dallas Travers

Let’s get real: if you’ve worked with me before or ever read my blog, you know I think a monthly newsletter is a great way to stay in touch with your “fans,” the people who love your work and support you.

Been there, done that, right?

But I still get lots of newsletters every week with subject lines like “Jane Actor’s Updates” or dry lists of resume fillers. Your fans want to hear from YOU, not an autobot with audition stats. And it’s that vulnerability that keeps you connected and on their radar.

So here are my three golden rules for email newsletters to help keep your marketing interesting and welcome in your fan’s inbox.

Take A Look At Your Subject Line

Do your subject lines entice readers to open the newsletter? I’m guessing they could use a little sprucing up.

Statistically, newsletters are much more likely to be opened if the recipient’s name is in the subject line. Make it punchy. For instance, instead of a subject that reads, “I have exciting news,” try, “Hey Dallas, open up! I have exciting news.”

Just recently, I received an e-mail from The Workshop Guru with the subject line “Need some Tuesday inspiration, Dallas?” and I opened it right up.

Most email marketing software offers a function that will include the first name in the subject line of the email. It may take a moment to learn how it works, but it is well worth the effort.

Provide Value

Find a creative way to give value back to your readers. What would they love to hear about or learn that has nothing to do with your acting career?

For example, one of my clients includes a “photo of the month.” She loves National Geographic Magazine, so she’ll always have an image that she finds really striking.

You could include a funny video you found on YouTube, an inspiring article you read, or your new favorite recipe. Whatever it is, choose something that is fun for you that your readers can look forward to opening up.

Add a Personal Touch

It’s a good idea to create a habit of reaching out personally to every person on your list once or twice a year. This can be an easy and fun way to reconnect with the individuals you haven’t personally interacted with in a while. Plus, it reminds people why they wanted to receive updates from you in the first place and may prevent them from automatically clicking “delete” when your newsletter comes through.

Send this email from your personal account, not your email marketing system, and make the message individual. Maybe you can ask them if their dog, Sparky, likes the cooler weather, or if they have any fun plans for the long weekend.

Whatever you write, make sure it’s specific to that person and not a career update.

Keep in mind that in the Internet marketing world a good open rate for newsletters is 22%. So if 22% or more of your list is opening your monthly email, you can consider your newsletter a smashing success.

Over time, people will naturally filter themselves out and that’s completely out of your control. Remember, it’s not about the size of your list, it’s about the quality of your relationships with the people on the list.

Have you found any ways to keep your marketing fun and engaging? Share your tips in the comments below.