In a recent coaching session, one of my students asked me, “so, is it possible to have more than one agent?”
And the answer is: absolutely!
While some agents are bi-coastal (meaning they have offices on both coasts – usually New York and Los Angeles), very few agents cover more than a couple of markets. Your first step will be securing a hometown agent in the area where you live. Once you have a good working relationship with your primary agent and feel like you’ve got the swing of things, you can start to explore adding to your team and connecting with agents in new markets.
Adding agents in multiple regions throughout the United States, and possibly beyond, is very doable. You probably want to keep your reps to five or less, so that they aren’t all pitching you for the same national spots, but having more than one agent means more people advocating for your voice and opening doors for you. Everyone wins.
Once you’ve completed your Such A Voice demo(s), if you want to connect with agents in new markets, there are a few steps to get your foot in the door.
1. Research Other Markets
Start by considering where you are on the map. What other large, metropolitan areas exist which aren’t too close to you? Big cities have advertising agencies, who often need voice-over talent for their marketing clients. Pinpoint 3-5 cities or areas that could be a good fit for you.
If you have a regional dialect, perhaps stay within a broader geographic area where that accent could be utilized. Alternately, work on accent reduction, to create a more neutral, General American accent.
2. Use Google for Research
Once you’ve narrowed down your cities, check with friends in voice-over to see which agents represent them in different markets. This can help you get an idea of agencies whom your peers trust. Then, use Google to build a list of other voice-over agencies in those same markets.
It’s also a smart idea to research what other talent the agencies you’re interested in working with represent. If they only represent voice-over talent who do legal tags, but you want to do animation, you need to look elsewhere. Listen to demos on agency sites to find which agencies don’t have someone with your unique sound.
3. Send in Your Information (While Following Submission Guidelines)
Last but not least, read the fine print on voice-over agency websites. Generally speaking, there will be submission guidelines for talent who would like to be considered. Follow all instructions to a T, as agents are quite busy (and also want to know if you can follow directions and be courteous).
In your submission, you’ll likely include any demos you have, as well as a note about your past training, work, and how you actively market your voice-over business. Agents like talent who aren’t just waiting for the phone to ring, so explain how you also put the work in to get bookings. You can mention any jobs you’ve recently worked on, as well as include links to ads or other samples you’ve voiced.
Remember, when submitting, agencies will likely respond to those with voices unlike what’s already covered on their roster. If you don’t hear back, keep your chin up, and submit again in six months or so. Reps and talent shift, so you never know when a hole might open up that you’re a perfect fit for!