How to Use Social Media to Advance Your Acting Career

Wendy Alane Wright

Wendy Alane Wright

Social media marketing is an effective way to reach new audiences and grow your fan base, but it’s important to know what your end goal is. Do you want to be an actor, or a social media celebrity?

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Social Media Marketing for Actors

Hello my darling, beloved actors. It is Wendy Alane Wright, Talent Manager at WAW Entertainment. Today, I’m going to talk to you about social media and I’m going to read you an email that I got from an actor. Now, when I do this, I’m not trying to embarrass anybody, I’m not trying to hurt anybody. I’m just trying to give you an idea of where actors are coming from and then address those issues so never will I mention your names. It will always be anonymous but if you do recognize yourself, please understand I’m not trying to hurt you or make fun of you. I am trying to help you understand and I’m trying to help other actors understand the same kind of questions that you have. 

So this email basically says he has a quick question. 

“I hope you don’t mind if I start using social media as a way to jumpstart my career. Will it work? I went to a tour of the UCLA campus and one of the spokespeople said that we could use social media in a positive way to do just that. If I start taking nice pictures and adding my interests like acting and acting classes and sports and celebrities, I find myself meeting certain celebrities or well-known people and use social media such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to get myself a good audience and recognition from that. Do you think that may work? 

I asked because I see a lot of fellow amateur actors and some YouTubers who use social media in a way like that like Joey Graceffa for his acting, Bethany Mota for her clothing line and the guys from Our2ndLife for a fanbase. But sometimes I wonder if that can ruin your chances of being taken seriously because I don’t plan on this not being serious. So I ask again, do you think it’s a good idea for me to use social media as a way to get a head start on my career?” 

Now, it’s a very interesting question and I’m grateful and thankful for you sending that in and taking the time to ask me. What you sound like and there’s nothing wrong with this is somebody who wants to be famous for being famous and famous as quickly as possible and becoming a celebrity. You want to be a celebrity and you want people to recognize you and notice you and you want to figure out the quickest and fastest way to do that so that you can then maybe use that fame and that notoriety that you got on those social media to jumpstart your career into something else.

Yes, that’s possible. I mean obviously, Joey Graceffa has done that. What I would say are two things. I have spoken to Joey myself. I know exactly what he is doing. He works very hard at being a social celebrity on Facebook and Twitter and YouTube. He does a video every single day of his life. He is constantly shooting interesting ideas or stupid ideas or catchy or gimmick ideas and has friends on. He puts a lot of thought, attention, and time into shooting his videos and he video vlogs every single day. He spends a lot of time editing them and he takes them on location and he appeals to a certain demographic that likes to look at him, hear him talk, and just talk about nonsensical things or interesting things that teenagers would like to talk about. 

Because he is a very good host, he has a beautiful smile, he is a good-looking kid, and he fits the kind of today’s demographic. He is a young gay, positive, happy, interesting to watch personality. That has led him to being signed by managers and getting agents and also getting small parts and roles in television and he has been a host on numerous TV shows. 

So yes, that kind of celebrity can work if you’re putting out instant but interesting content. It’s not something that works if you just hope it works and maybe if I do a couple of videos, maybe I’ll get noticed. I mean he has literally been vlogging every single day for years. He was a contestant on Great American Race or America’s Race or whatever that is. He is not somebody who has to ask me if that’s something he should do. That’s just something he does. It’s in his blood. It’s in his creativity, his system. He just gets on there and he starts talking and entertaining because he is an entertainer and that’s the medium he chooses and prefers to use. It has worked for him. 

Will it work for you? I don’t know. Put out some content and see if you get a response. See if you can make interesting videos. See if you get people to watch. See if what you do is interesting to other people.

Celebrities & Actors Have Different Approaches

If you want to be a celebrity, that is certainly a way that you could go about being a celebrity. If you want to be a serious actor, you need to go in a different direction which would be to study and train to become a serious actor who has skills and chops. I mean listen, there’s Joey Graceffa, there’s Daniel Day-Lewis. There’s Bethany Mota for her clothing line and there’s Meryl Streep. I mean who do you want to be? Who you want to be is your dream. It’s up to you. You can be whatever you want to be. There’s no right or wrong or good or bad and I don’t have an opinion either way. I don’t care what you do except I care if you follow your goals and your dreams. That’s all I care about. 

So if you dream of being a celebrity whose famous for doing not much or doing nothing or doing videos or doing clothing line, that’s your choice. Do whatever you want. Social media has two billion hits on Google every day and there are a billion users on Facebook and it is absolutely a legitimate, reasonable way to build a following, to get people to know who you are, to network socially through LinkedIn and Instagram and Twitter. And I do it for my business. I do it for my videos to teach actors how to be successful, to get my book out there so people can actually get the tools they need to be actors who are not just dreaming about it but actually have the skills to do it. 

So yes, I encourage you to use those mediums. But if you’re going to be a serious actor, you need to be a serious trained actor who does Indie films and short films and gets into festivals and then gets a good demo reel, gets a great sizzle reel together and then gets a great agent and is auditioning for real projects where you can show your acting talent and you build one job upon the other upon the other and people start to recognize you for your incredible acting ability. 

And then the way you use Twitter and Google and all those social media sites is to publicize every single project that you do. So you shoot a student film or short film, it gets into a film festival, your Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and you tell everybody that you did that. You blog about it. You vlog about it. You send out press kits and like press releases to all the local newspapers and you make everybody know what you did. If you’re in a play, you do the same thing. If you’re in a short film, you do the same thing. A student film, you do the same. If you get a one line or co-star or any kind, a guest star role on any kind of television show or any part of a feature film, you’re constantly supposed to be using all of those social resources and media to get recognition and to further promote your name, your brand, etc. 

So really, yes, use all those tools that you can. Use everything that’s available to you and decide who you are, who you want to be known for, what you want to be known for doing, and who you are as an artist and then follow that to the fullest extent of what you’re capable of doing and don’t expect overnight results. Don’t be lazy. Be creative. Tap into your inner resources and find something brilliant to do that expresses who you are.

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