How to Build Industry Relationships

Building Connections — It’s Threefold

When it comes to building your reputation in Hollywood, there are three phases I believe to be of utmost importance.

Phase #1: List Creation.

When looking for representation, cast your net wide. And remember — you won’t fill that net overnight. Sit back, be patient, and keep your options open. Don’t simply cold-call every agency and management company in town. Think carefully — who do you truly want in your network? Try to pick 3–4 “personas” to pursue. Agents and managers are merely two examples, and while they’re great, don’t neglect producers, writers, or even fellow actors.

Once you have your categories, add 5–10 names to each to finalize a list of 15–40 people you want to build relationships with.

This should feature an eclectic combination of characters, from people you want to work with to people you want relationships with, to people whose work you admire, to people you simply want to acknowledge your existence.

Phase #2: Research.

The more you know about someone, the more likely you are to connect with them eventually. It’s not stalking — it’s called due diligence. In this business, there are few secrets, and you’ll be better off for knowing as many of them as you can. Read the trades and search high and low to identify the types of talent representatives you should be working with.

  • What’s their background?
  • How did they find success?
  • What are they working on?
  • What do they like?
  • Are they on social?
  • Do you share a network?
  • What can you offer them?

I’ve said it already, and I’ll say it again — the strongest teams are those featuring individual players that all recognize and respect both their strengths AND weaknesses. Let’s say an agent lacks diversity on their client list — a comedian could be just what the doctor ordered.

Ultimately, you need to research how potential connections treat others. Do they truly care about other people? If someone has a reputation for being an a*hole, they’re probably an a*hole — and there’s nothing you can do about it. Likewise, a reputation for laziness is almost always earned. That’s why you need a hard-working, patient, and diligent team that cares about you and your future success, especially if you’re just starting out.

Phase #3: Outreach.

You’ve got your people-list, and you’ve done the research. Now, it’s time to tune into their radar and start connecting with them…one by one.

They want to discover the next big thing. All they need is convincing — a job they want you to do.

No matter how you reach out, always focus on the exchange of value and relevance. Both are easier once the homework is done.

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Brian Medavoy

Brian Medavoy

262 Followers

Manager. Producer. Hollywood Navigator. Honored to help people achieve their dreams for 20+ years. Founder, More/Medavoy Management.