Tv commercial agents

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    ThreeSixtyEight is a full-service digital agency founded in 2011 and based in Baton Rouge, LA. Their small team of 18 employees creates unique digital experiences using its expertise in SEO, web design, branding, and social media.






    Notable Project

    ThreeSixtyEight redesigned a secure website for a government agency after the agency experienced a security breach. They created a more user-friendly website that was SEO-friendly and included a Google Maps feature. Since the redesign, the website has experienced 50% growth in traffic.

    “ThreeSixtyEight exceeded our expectations. They have been great to work with, and anything we have asked them, they have done.” – Communications Director, Government Agency

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  • Tell us about your project


    Based on your budget, timeline, and specifications we can help you build a shortlist of companies that perfectly matches your project needs. Schedule a free consultation with a Manifest Analyst.


  • 2

    Daniel Brian Advertising is a digital advertising agency based in Rochester, Mich. Founded in 1992, the team of about 40 provides advertising, branding, and marketing strategy services. Their experience spans the healthcare, retail, energy, and financial industries. 


    Hungry Howie's

    Michigan Medicine

    Lake Trust Credit Union

    Flagstar Bank

    Notable Project

    Daniel Brian Advertising served as a full-service agency of record for a regional pizza chain. They did traditional and digital advertising, redesigned a logo, and oversaw marketing campaigns. Their involvement drove sales and advertising ratings in areas such as awareness and persuasion.

    “DBA helped to contribute to many quarters of increased growth, and we saw increasing sales for the entire time that we worked with them.” – EVP of Marketing, Regional Pizza Chain

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  • 3

    Sid Lee is a creative agency headquartered in Montreal. It has expanded to offices in Paris, Toronto, and Culver City, Calif. since its establishment in 1993. Sid Lee employs 796 professionals that provide web design, social media marketing, digital strategy, advertising, and branding to small, mid-size, and large companies alike.

    Notable Project

    Sid Lee built an email marketing campaign to build a stronger conversion rate. The team also assists with optimization and A/B testing.

    "Their communication was lightning fast."

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  • 4

     Toast is a TV advertising and visual production agency based in London. Founded in 2002, the team of 11 specializes in advertising, video production, and media planning & buying.


    Morgan Stanley

    Cancer Research UK

    Notable Project

    Toast provided a software company with their video production services. They produced 5 animated videos used online and at events and arranged facility availability, royalty acquisition, and voice talent. The client was impressed with the positive feedback the project received.

    “We’ve received very high praise from people that we value. Investors and attendees at conferences have remarked about the quality of the videos. Our sales team expects top quality, and they have said that they are proud to stand in front of these videos.” – Head of Marketing and Communications, Software Company 

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  • 5

    Manifesto Agency is a branding company that also provides marketing strategy and advertising services. With offices in Portland, Ore., and Milwaukee, they work primarily with enterprise and midmarket businesses in the consumer products, healthcare, and IT industries. Founded in 2011, they have just over 10 employees.






    Notable Project

    Manifesto Agency developed an employee-led brand reinvigoration campaign for a semiconductor manufacturer. The team created marketing assets that sharpened the brand strategy and helped realign employees. All of their work was well-received. A massive project, the team worked efficiently to unify teams across the globe.  

    “They have high integrity, are really creative, and love what they do, which shows in all the work they present.” – Global Brand Strategist, Semiconductor Manufacturer

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  • 6

    Blend is a creative branding agency founded in 2012 and headquartered in Los Angeles, CA. The team of about 15 full-time employees (and a mix of freelancers) has a diverse skill set, providing services ranging from UX/UI design to video production to digital strategy to branding to development.






    Notable Project

    Blend worked with a creative studio focused on broadcasting, brand marketing, and media production. The creative studio needed assistance creating a website for its client. Blend was responsible for frontend and backend development and continues to assist with maintenance. Later, the creative studio worked with Blend again for help developing a mobile app.

    “Comparing Blend to other providers, I would say [they] pay more attention to detail. The quality of work is better. ... They can look at the big picture but also look at the more detailed side of things as well.” – CFO and Executive Producer, PUB Creative

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  • 7

    California-based full-service branding and digital communications agency Jacob Tyler works with clients to bring their story to life. Founded in 2000 and now 20+ employees strong, the agency specializes in corporate identity development and positioning, planning and strategy, SEO, social media, and UI/UX design.




    Discovery Channel


    Notable Project

    Jacob Tyler was the second agency a wildlife theme park partnered with for web design, SEO, and ad retargeting. Jacob Tyler delivered backend and frontend design for a new WordPress site that allows the wildlife theme park to manage its content internally, instead of relying on third-party providers.

    “This year, we’ve seen 72% new customers and 38% repeat business. That’s a significant increase in the number of people coming to the park for the first time. Jacob Tyler is doing a fantastic job attracting new people, and have really upped our game.” – Marketing Manager, Wildlife Theme Park

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  • 8

    Duncan Channon is an advertising and media company with creative expertise in branding, design, print, video, and digital marketing. They also provide business strategy and media planning and buying. Founded in 1990, the San Francisco-based team is made up of nearly 100 employees.



    Diamond of California

    Kettle Brand Chips


    Notable Project

    A public service corporation hired Duncan Channon to help with a branding project. Duncan Channon revamped the client’s website and point of sales materials and focused their social media strategy.

    “The team has a genuine passion for our brand. The level of engagement has been outstanding. ...They’ve helped shape how we will build our business. It is a true partnership.” – VP of Marketing, Hydration Company

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  • 9

    Division of Labor is a advertising agency based in Sausalito, Calif. and founded in 2010. Their team of 11 employees specializes in advertising, social media marketing, and video production for clients of all sizes in the marketing, entertainment, and business services industries.

    Notable Project

    Division of Labor ran a brand awareness campaign for a streaming device. They ran a campaign of outdoor, radio, and digital advertisements for two years. They also created the overall marketing strategy and taglines for the campaign. The client was very happy with the results of the campaign and said that their sales and brand awareness increased as a result.  

    “I loved their passion for creativity. They cared about my personal success and the success of my company.” – Former Director of Marketing, Streaming Device Company

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  • 10

    Studio B Films Inc. is a creative and video production agency based in Berkeley, Calif. With a team of 20 employees, they have provided video production, broadcast video, and advertising for midmarket and enterprise businesses since 1992. They work with clients in the IT, consumer products, and advertising industries.





    Publicis Group

    Notable Project

    Studio B Films Inc. created a video series for a public science center. They created drafts of the project during pre-production, filmed the video, and finished all of the editing and graphics work. Internal stakeholders were pleased with the final project, and the video series has already been used by over a million children across the United States.

    “We got a lot of positive feedback internally from the publisher; they were so happy with the work. We also got a lot of positive feedback from review panels and school districts on the quality of the videos and what they brought to the curriculum. The level of polish and engagement in the videos helped the curriculum stand out and sell as well as it has.” – Senior Producer, Science Center

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  • 11

    Nuro Marketing is a full-service digital marketing agency located in Miami, Fla. and founded in 2009. The agency has a small team of 5 or fewer. Nuro Marketing specializes in marketing strategy, but also provides advertising, branding, and direct marketing services.






    Notable Project

    Nuro Marketing worked on a car dealership's advertising campaign. The agency optimized the dealership's website, increased lead generation, and provided PPC services. Nuro Marketing continues to provide advertising and branding services.

    "We sold 20 new cars last month and 90 new cars this month. Traffic has also gone up 300% while bounce rates have decreased from high 70s to low 30s." - Manager, Car Dealership

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  • 12

    Theory SF is a San Francisco-based creative agency. The agency was founded in 2015 and has a team of 2 that provides a variety of services including branding, marketing strategy, web design, advertising, digital strategy, and more.



    SF Museum of Modern Art


    Net Gear

    Notable Project

    A radio station was undergoing a rebranding of their entire network and needed to overhaul various parts of their online presence. Theory SF conducted market research in order to redesign their website as a fitting part of their overall rebranding.

    "They’re highly professional, but also down-to-earth people that feel like part of our team. The team’s industry knowledge is incredible and they’re not afraid to think outside the box." — Program Director, Radio Station

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  • 13

    IPNY is a brand communications agency based in New York, with a team of 10 employees.  Founded in 2012, IPNY’s services focus includes advertising, branding, and direct marketing.  The majority of their clients are midmarket businesses, and they primarily serve clients in non-profits, financial services, and health care industries. 


    City of Hope Medical and Research Center

    Thirteen (WNET PBS NY)

    Weizmann Institute of Science

    Brooklyn Museum

    Notable Project

    IPNY helped design and execute a bank’s rebranding campaign. They developed and used advertising, digital, and direct marketing to raise brand awareness.  The client was pleased with IPNY’s performance, which ultimately increased customer reach and acquisition. 

    “We saw an increase in brand awareness and consideration. Our acquisition, customer expansion and retention scores, all improved.” – Head of Marketing, Bank

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  • 14

    True to its name, Citizen Group is an advertising agency with a pro-social, citizen-based approach. Founded in 2006, Citizen Group is headquartered in San Francisco, CA and its small team of 15 employees offers social media marketing, design, and branding.


    Amnesty International

    Bloomberg Philanthropies

    United Nations

    World Wildlife Fund

    Notable Project

    Citizen Group played a significant role in figuring out how to use the sports industry to support sustainability. They worked with a startup sustainability organization to conceptualize the connection between sports and the environment and produced strategic plans and advertising materials, such as videos and slide decks, to push the initiative forward.

    “They’re extremely responsible and very timely. You can always count on them to follow through in a reliable way. They imbue every project with stature, confidence, and intelligence. They’re a top-shelf organization.” – Former Senior Scientist, Sustainability Organization

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  • 15

    Founded in Baltimore, Md. in 1981, GKV is an advertising agency that offers a variety of services: digital strategy, advertising, social media marketing, PR, and branding. The team of more than 200 employees mostly works with mid-market businesses across several industries – consumer products, healthcare, and telecommunications.




    Old Bay

    Center for Disease Control

    Notable Project

    GKV has an ongoing project with a food production company. The partnership began with a focus on traditional media. GKV created marketing materials for print and TV. Now, GKV is helping the client build its social media presence on Facebook and Twitter.

    “[W]e've never had anybody help us drive the numbers like they've helped us drive the numbers.” – Operations Coordinator, Food Production Company

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  • 16

    Founded in 2013, Anchour is a branding, web development, and logo design agency based in Lewiston, ME. A small team of about 20 employees runs the company, and they mainly work with small and mid-market businesses. Their branding offerings include visual identity, brand strategy and messaging, and naming.



    Baxter Brewing

    DaVinci's Eatery

    Frosty's Donuts

    Notable Project

    Anchour partnered with a dog daycare to build a WordPress website and create a complementary brand strategy and logo and perform SEO maintenance. This step was crucial to helping the owner launch the new business.

    “Anchour's team seemed interested in getting to know me and the story behind my company, compared to other agencies, which treated it as a job. … I wanted my story and mission to be reflected in the brand.” – Founder, Dog Daycare

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  • 17

    Williams Whittle is an advertising agency that practices a wide variety of services including media planning & buying, branding, and marketing strategy. They are based in Alexandria, Virginia and currently have fewer than 20 employees. The company was founded in 1967.


Best Acting Agencies


What Are Acting Agencies?

Acting agencies are groups of talent agents who help connect actors to roles in TV, film, theater, commercials, and more. Agencies are well-connected with casting directors and therefore have access to job opportunities that actors wouldn’t otherwise be able to find on their own. Signing a contract with an acting agency can help an actor land more auditions and ideally more jobs, thus boosting their income and exposure.

What Does an Acting Agency Do?

Things commonly handled by acting agencies include:

  • Submit your headshot, resume, and other marketing materials for auditions
  • Pitch your abilities to casting directors, directors, and producers over the phone
  • Schedule callback auditions
  • Negotiate better pay
  • Recommend acting schools and headshot photographers

Although an agency can send an actor on dozens of auditions, it’s ultimately up to the actor to land the parts. An agent is not responsible for helping you brush up on your acting skills, crafting your image or marketability, nor will they network with other people specifically on your behalf. Actors are still responsible for taking classes, managing their own social media presence, and building their own network of contacts in the entertainment industry.

What Is the Cost of Using an Acting Agency?

Any acting agency takes as compensation approximately 10% to 20% of a client’s gross earnings for every job they book from an audition they sent you on (10% if you’re a union actor; up to 20% if you’re non-union). This payment structure means it’s in an agency’s best interest to make sure that the actors it signs will book jobs. That’s why most agencies will only sign an actor if it is confident the actor will get hired for roles.

No fees or payments are due upfront for any legitimate agency. Agencies that ask for any upfront payment from talent are much more likely to be scams aimed at defrauding the public.

Is Getting an Agent Worth It?

It’s very possible to find and book acting jobs without an agent, but agents can submit you for roles that are not posted to the public. Agents and agencies are the middlemen between actors and casting directors, and they can use their special industry relationships and connections they’ve built up over the years to your advantage. An agent also takes care of all of the busywork that comes with being an actor, so that actors can devote more of their time and energy to honing their craft. This extra time and energy to practice and get better can be invaluable to an actor’s success.

How We Chose the Best Acting Agencies

In order to build our list, we researched 25 different acting agencies. In the course of our research, we found that acting agencies may cater to varying levels of acting experience as well as different entertainment mediums, which is why we highlighted various agencies for certain categories. To choose the best agencies, we looked at client rosters, reputation, areas of specialization, and exclusivity. We felt these were the most important qualities to consider when looking for the best acting agencies. 

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After reading this article, you'll not only know where to find legitimate commercial auditions, but also what to do to book significantly more of them.

I've also included some bonus tips from casting directors, commercial agents, and even actors who've been in national commercials.

​You can see their advice towards the bottom of the article.​

How to Get Commercial Auditions Quickly:

Here's the fastest way to get into commercials with no experience:

  1. Log onto commercial casting websites and start submitting yourself. You don't need a super expensive headshot or tons of training to get started. Simply log onto one of the sites outlined in the next section below and follow the submissions instructions.
  2. Notice what's working and what's not so you know what to improve. Try to submit to at least 50 commercials per month. You'll quickly learn – if you're submitting to 50 productions per month and not getting invited to audition for at least 5-10 of them, it means you need better marketing materials. If you're auditioning for a lot of projects but rarely, booking (meaning you book less than 10% of the jobs you audition for), it means you should take some commercial acting classes and work on your training.
  3. Create your marketing materials. As you submit yourself online, you'll start to notice that many productions require a professional actor headshot, resume, and/or reel. So after a few weeks of testing the waters by submitting yourself without any marketing materials, you should begin the process of putting your professional actor marketing materials together, which will VASTLY increase your audition opportunities:
    1. Here's how to get pro actor headshots (without breaking the bank).
    2. Here's how to put together an actor resume (plus a free Google Docs template you can use).
    3. Here's how to create a demo reel quickly.
  4. As you start booking more jobs, you can begin looking for a commercial agent. Commercial agents are not too difficult to find, especially if you have your marketing materials together already (headshot, resume, and reel). Further down in this article we go into depth on getting a commercial agent, but you can also read this guide: How to Get an Acting Agent: The Ultimate Guide.
  5. Put together more advanced marketing materials and start getting hyper targeted. As you search for an agent, you can design a basic actor website and start being more targeted with the commercials you submit yourself to. Some actors exclusively look for national commercials, whereas others take a wider array of jobs. More on this later further down.

Where to Find Commercial Auditions:

This article focuses on the strategy behind actually BOOKING commercial auditions, because a lot of it is psychology and making sure you present yourself the right way to casting directors.

However, if you're in a rush to start submitting and don't want to learn strategy yet, I've compiled a list of six reliable online casting websites you can use to find legitimate commercial casting calls.

These are some of the best audition sites for actors. Click each link to be taken to their commercial casting calls:

You'll need to create a profile with most of these services.

​The only place where you can occasionally find commercial casting calls and won't need a profile is Craigslist - but scams abound there, so be careful!

Finally, you can try googling "commercial auditions NYC" (or wherever you live), "commercial auditions near me" or " casting calls near me" and you'll get even more opportunities.

Want to Book More Commercials?
Download our Free "Commercial Booking Checklist"

This handy checklist will show you EXACTLY what you must do to start booking commercials. It condenses the most important aspects of this Ultimate Guide into 8 key checkpoints to help you book commercials FAST.
​​Here's what's covered:
  • 3 Checkpoints on Submitting Yourself: The three most important things to consider when submitting yourself so casting directors think you're experienced and trustworthy
  • 3 Prep-Work Checkpoints: These checkpoints are related to the homework you should do BEFORE you go in for any commercial audition to improve your chances of booking it.
  • 2 Checkpoints on Mindset: The final checkpoints cover a shift in mindset you MUST make to begin booking high-level commercial work

​How an Unknown Actor Made $150,000 in Two Weeks

Before we get into strategy, we figured we'd share this inspirational story.

NY based actor Karim Manhattan was sick of having to choose between doing what he loved and paying his bills, so one day he decided to figure out how to be in commercials. He just so happened to have the right combination of personality,  professionalism, and work ethic for it.
How to get an agent for commercials
Karim Manhattan, a commercial actor

​After about six months what resulted completely changed his life:

​Karim booked a national commercial series and earned 3X what most Americans make in a year... from a single job.

​Check out the first commercial of the series below (The Dodge® Ram Challenge):

​In Karim's own words:

"I'm driving a convertible right now through the streets of New York, on 125th street. All due to the fact that I did a commercial. A freakin' commercial... You know what I mean?"

Karim earned over $150,000 from the two-week job.

Imagine how it would feel if you knew your bills were taken care of and you had enough money coming in from commercials that you could quit your day job?

Well don't expect it to happen overnight, but if you put in the effort and follow the advice in this article, that could be your reality sooner than you think.

​The Mindset Shift You MUST Make to Book Commercials

How to Be a Commercial Actor

​Commercials sound great on the surface because of all the benefits:

  • Many of them pay well - commercials can be a quick way to earn money because they're shorter and often pay better than other acting gigs. How much does the average commercial actor make, you ask? $60,145 per year, according to Zip Recruiter.
  • They can create opportunities for "other" work - some commercial directors also shoot films and other projects, so keeping in touch with them can create opportunities down the line.
  • They are looking for anyone and everyone - gone are the days where commercials only used extremely attractive actors and actresses. Nowadays, companies are looking for all different people, and there are always new commercials casting. This means the opportunities are almost limitless.
  • You can build a commercial resume quickly - since commercials are often just 1-2 days instead of 1-2 months like films or 6-12 months like theater runs, you can build your commercial resume quickly. That will lead to more and more commercial acting jobs - kind of like a snowball effect.
  • You can also build a commercial reel quickly - since commercials are shot and rolled out so fast, you can build a significant reel in a short time frame. No need to wait years until a film is finished to get footage for your reel.
  • You can get some quick wins in your acting career - if you do it right and start booking, you'll start building confidence in yourself, especially if you've struggled to get work in other areas. You can build up your experience and connections doing commercials and then shift back into film, TV, and theater later on.

With all these benefits, why is it that some actors still struggle to book commercials? And why do others seem to just land more and more jobs?

Well, there's a crucial mindset difference that successful commercial actors have, and it's related to the idea of "selling."

Most people think that selling is sleazy:

"I don't want to be like those used car salesmen!"
How to get into commercials with no experience

"Commercials are not fulfilling to me."

Well, if you want any level of success as a commercial actor, you'll need to start by shifting your perspective on sales so you can feel fulfilled doing commercials.

Focus on the fact that the companies you're working for are actually providing a valuable product or service designed to help change people's lives for the better.

By acting in commercials, you're not being salesy or sleazy, you're actually being helpful and providing value to people!

If someone doesn't need or want what the commercial is selling, they just won't buy it. But putting the offer out there is extremely important, otherwise society would never have the opportunity to move forward.

Once you make this mindset shift and start truly enjoying the commercial acting world, there will be a dramatic change in the energy you project in auditions, which will lead you to start booking more of them.

A Few Important Considerations:

​Commercials are not for everyone. To see an example of what kind of actors thrive in commercials, check out this interview I did with Toni Belafonte on commercial acting and how she's booked over 36 commercials.

There are two important factors to consider before starting a commercial acting career:

Factor 1: Is Your Personality Bright and Friendly?
Casting directors often make snap judgements about actors just by the way they walk in the room. If you don't have a naturally outgoing and friendly personality, they might think to themselves: "This actor won't be right for this."
How to get into commercials on TV
He'd be hired as a commercial actor.

Factor 2: Are You OK with Uncertainty?
You don't always know how much cash you'll make in commercials, so don't quit your day job just yet. The commercial will sometimes offer a "buyout" where they pay you a flat fee up front, but other times they might pay you residuals, meaning you'll be given a small amount up front and then sent additional checks as the commercial airs. If it airs a lot, you'll be paid a lot! But if it only airs once, you'll barely make any money.​

The Strategic Steps Behind Booking More Commercials:

Now that you've shifted your mindset around sales and you're ready to dive in, it's important to make sure you get the right training and present yourself properly.

Most actors wind up getting discouraged and giving up because they miss these important steps. Don't let that be you!

​Step 1: Stop Submitting to Every Commercial

The biggest mistake most actors make around trying to book commercial auditions is that they just submit to every commercial they see without stopping to think, "Is this right for me?" You need to be highly targeted if you want success, meaning you'll have to take some time to figure out what roles are best for you. Think of it as doing 80% of the work up front so everything else is easier. We'll discuss more about this soon, but for now, just STOP submitting until you complete the rest of the steps outlined in this article.

Step 2: Get Improv Training
​Take at least 2-3 improv classes if you haven't already. Why? Because most commercial directors are looking for an actor who can add something unique to their production. If you think you’re naturally good at improv and don't need classes, just remember that most casting directors won't bring you in unless they see improv training on your acting resume. Just google "acting classes near me" or "improve classes near me."

Step 3: Get Screen Acting Training
​In addition to focusing on improv, you also need to make sure your screen acting is up to par. Some actors try to transition into commercials straight from theater without proper training, and the results are painfully obvious to a casting director. Screen acting, whether it be for TV, film, or commercials, is NOT the same as theater, and if you’re not fully trained on-screen you’ll have a very hard time booking jobs.

I want to act in TV advertisements
Acting for Camera ≠ Acting for Stage

Step 4: Find Your Brand
Another critical element for booking more commercials is to find out what makes you unique as an actor. Why should I hire you over another actor with equal skills? What makes you any different? Once you figure out your brand and start ONLY submitting to commercials seeking that brand, everything becomes easier. You'll have less preparation to do and you'll easily beat out all the other actors who keep changing their personas for every new project. Here's a great article on branding for actors, and here's another article if you're curious about how to be yourself without seeming unprofessional.

Step 5: Position Yourself as a Commercial Actor
Casting directors are more likely to book you if you look like you specialize in commercials. To do this, ensure all your marketing materials are focused on commercial acting. Shoot a set of commercial headshots with a big, bright, cheery smile. Create a resume specifically for your commercial work. You can also write a bio and create an entire webpage on your site devoted to your commercial work. The more you look like you're a specialist, the more likely commercial casting directors and agents will want to work with you. 

A few notes about your resume: Don't include the product/company names you've done work for because it will often block you from being able to perform in commercials for their competitors. Also, special skills can be an important factor when it comes to deciding on one actor over another. If you can juggle, handstand, toss pizza dough, or do any other out-of-the-ordinary thing, list it on your resume and online casting profiles. Occasionally casting directors will jump onto Actor’s Access to search for actors with those skillsets, and who knows, you might just be invited to audition for the next Papa John’s pizza commercial! Watch this interview with casting director Kim Graham as she talks about how important special skills are for listing on your resume. 

Step 6: Create a Great Commercial Reel
​​A commercial reel is extremely helpful for casting directors to decide whether they want to bring you in or not. In less than two minutes, they can see what you've been in and how you look on-camera. Don't create a reel with both commercial and legit work - it's much better to have a reel dedicated solely to commercials. How do you get to be in a commercial if you have no footage? Well, there are tons of directors shooting spec commercials who need actors. A great spec commercial can instantly push your commercial acting career ahead by a year or more! Here's a resource if you're looking to shoot footage for your acting reel. Here's an article on how to create a fantastic demo reel for free.

How to be in a commercial without an agent
There are WAY more opportunities to act in commercials than other types of projects.

How to Be in a Commercial Without an Agent?

You must be hyper specific.

As discussed earlier, stop submitting to EVERYTHING and instead get specific. Rather than just thinking, “I want to act in TV advertisements,” you should specify the companies and/or product lines you want to work with.

You Must Target Your Submissions:
Once you're clear on your brand, you'll want to come up with a list of 10-20 companies that you might be well-suited for. Are there any commercials you've seen on TV recently that you'd be a great fit for? Write the name of the company down, and be sure to come up with at least 10.

Now let’s say one of the companies you're thinking about working with is Coca-Cola. Go onto YouTube and watch at least ten of their most popular commercials. Do this for each company you noted earlier (10 companies means you'll be watching 100 commercials - did I say this would be easy?).

Make notes on patterns you see in the actors the companies use in their commercials. What do all the actors have in common - look and/or personality? If you had to summarize the "brand" of all those actors, what would it be?

Now you’ll know the "recipe" that company typically looks for in their actors and you can see if you're a right fit for them. Don't forget what we discussed earlier - do NOT try to cater yourself to everyone. Don't change your brand just to fit into a company's mold. Instead find your brand first and then submit ONLY to the projects you're right for.

Chances are some of the companies in your list of 10 won't be right for you, and that's OK! You can just cross them off your list and search for others.

Remember this quote:

"He who trims himself to suit everyone will soon whittle himself away."

Don't whittle yourself away or you'll always struggle to book commercials.

How to Target Your Networking:
In addition to submitting yourself to commercial casting calls online, you'll also want to network with casting directors.

Find out which casting directors are working with the companies you want to target. Check out CastingAbout because it shows all the most up-to-date information on who is casting what and when.

Once you know which casting directors you'll be targeting, you can find out if they're going to be holding classes in the next few months. Sign up to attend and you'll be able to meet them in person. At the end of the class, you can ask them if it's OK for you to keep in touch. They'll usually say OK and let you know how (postcard, email, etc.).

How to get a commercial agent

​How Do You Audition for Commercials?

Preparing for the Audition:
As an actor, you already know how important proper preparation for any audition is. Fortunately, now that you're clear on your brand, getting into character will be way easier. Here are a few helpful things to keep in mind:

  • Be quick to respond - actors who respond within the first few hours of a commercial audition being posted have a higher shot at being invited in to audition than those who respond more slowly. Why? Because they often need to get auditions done same-day or next. If you take more than 12 hours to respond, you'll miss out!
  • Research the product and read positive reviews online - do your homework to learn why the product or service is so helpful to people. Avoid reading negative reviews or you might lose confidence in the product, (which will show in your audition).
  • Watch at least 2-3 other ads on the same product - take note of the tone of the other actors - are they upbeat and excited? Are they quiet but approachable? Are they nurturing and caring? Knowing this ahead of time will give you an idea of what they're probably looking for.
  • Read the submissions process and follow directions - this might sound basic, but more actors than you'd think forget something when submitting. If they ask you to submit your reel and say you won't be considered without one, make sure to include it. If you forget, you've lost your shot.
  • Memorize the script - commercials are short, so being completely off-book shouldn't be difficult. Your performance will be much better and the casting director will take note of the extra effort you put in. Why not give yourself an extra edge over all the actors who chose NOT to memorize their lines?
  • Make clear choices based on your brand - remember that you're not trying to "trim yourself to suit everyone." Instead, you want to play the scene as you would if you were living your brand. Casting directors are looking for someone who is naturally themselves and looks great on-camera, so the best way to do that is to just be yourself. If they like it but you did it differently than they were expecting, they will give you notes and ask you to try again. And again, read this article to get clear on your brand.
  • Practice with a friend or acting coach - to have a higher shot of performing well, it can help to perform in front of an acting coach or friend because they'll give you feedback. If that's not possible, try setting up your phone, filming yourself, and then either sending the video to a friend for feedback or watching it yourself and critiquing your performance honestly to see what can be improved.
  • Prepare your clothing - for most commercials, companies want to represent their brand in a positive way. Keep in mind who the commercial is for and try to dress accordingly. If you're doing a commercial for a law firm, dress professionally. If you're doing an ad for a tattoo parlor, dress more casual. And try to avoid wearing the colors or a company's main competitor. Look them up online and wear their colors! For further info, check out these guidelines on what colors and clothing look best on-camera.
  • ​​Make sure to rehearse in full voice - if you live in an apartment where people can hear you through the walls and you don't want to bother them, make it your number one priority this week to find a reliable place you can do full-voice rehearsals for all future auditions. The audition should never be where you perform full-voice for the first time.

One additional reference you might be interested in is my article on what employers are really looking for. It goes into depth on personality traits that can help you stand out as an actor.
How to submit to commercial agents

​Knocking the Commercial Audition Out of the Park:
Once you actually arrive at the audition, there are some things you can do to improve your chances of booking the role:
  • Ask the casting assistant if you have questions - if you're unsure about something, feel free to ask the casting assistant. They want you to do your best!
  • Do not change what you planned - some actors see others sitting in the audition room and start to get worried that the choices they made could be wrong. Suddenly, they decide to change up everything! Don't let this be you or you can kiss the opportunity goodbye. Stick to your guns, stay focused on your brand, and believe in the initial choices you made!
  • Say your brand in your head right as you walk into the audition - think of the most positive aspects of your brand that connect with you at a deep level, and actually feel them. It's almost impossible to feel nervous and confident at the same time, so if you focus on the parts of your brand that you're most proud of and put yourself into that character, your nervousness will evaporate completely. Examples: "I'm strong, determined, and fun," or "I'm cheerful, intelligent, and courageous."
  • Enter with a genuine smile - if you're friendly with those in the room, they'll appreciate it and you'll make a good first impression. Don't just walk in and immediately say, "My name is ____ and I'm here to audition for _____," without actually greeting anyone.
  • ​​Be confident in yourself - Some actors come in and start by apologizing. This is really awkward and makes casting directors uncomfortable. Instead, take ownership of yourself and feel pride when you come in. Focus on your brand and remember that you're there not as some lowly, unsuccessful actor, but as a potential partner that will represent their company!
  • Be natural, not theatrical - this goes along with studying screen acting. Make sure you don't over enunciate words or speak too robotically (or over the top). Talk in a natural manner the same way you would if you were having a conversation with someone.
  • Do not talk over them - When the casting director gives you feedback, just be quiet until they're completely finished. Lots of actors will say, "Yeah, yeah..." as they receive notes, and it makes the casting director feel like they're not being heard. Just listen quietly until they're done and if you have a follow-up question, feel free to ask. Then thank them for the feedback in a way that shows them you're excited to try it the new way!

Want to Book More Commercials?
Download our Free "Double Your Callbacks" Audition Prep Sheet

Thousands of actors have downloaded our "Double Your Callbacks" audition prep sheet, which contains 20 quick and easy things you can do to prepare properly for auditions. Proper preparation is guaranteed to improve your booking ratio!

Here's some of what's included:
  • 12 Quick & Easy Audition Preparations to improve the chances of the casting director liking and remembering you.
  • 6 Advanced Audition Strategies to help you instantly stand out and vastly improve your chances of getting the callback
  • 2 First-Impression Tactics to give the casting director a reason to pay extra attention to when you enter the room

​When Will I Hear Back?

In general, expect it to take about 2-3 business days before you hear back. If they went with someone else, you probably won't hear back at all.

Don't take it personally if you don't hear back. There are tons of reasons that could happen - they might have chosen someone else because of how they looked or the sound of their voice. And in some cases, they might have completely scrapped the entire commercial and won't be needing actors after all!

The Next Level: How to Get a Commercial Agent

How to get an agent for commercials
The most efficient way to get consistent commercial acting opportunities is to get a commercial agent. They'll do their best to push for you to get more auditions, and they also have special access to roles you won't be able to find through the links I provided at the beginning of this article.

In general, it's easier to land a commercial agent than a legit agent because there are so many more commercials being cast than there are television shows or films. Commercial casting directors and agents are always looking for new talent to keep things fresh, and you can get one without much experience or footage!

To help you find commercial agents, you can use this fantastic resource that contains the contact information of all the current SAG-franchised agents in the industry.

​Look for someone who would be a good fit for you and the types of commercials you're interested inJust like finding the right auditions, you want to carefully target the right agents instead of mass mailing everyone.

Once you figure out who you want to meet, you can attend agent meet & greets or pay to play auditions, and then ask to keep in touch with them if they don't ask you to interview/audition with them. Check out this interview I did with Margaret Emory to learn how to land a talent agent and keep in touch.

Remember that the more improv training and commercial credits you have on your resume, the more likely a commercial agent will take you on. They also love seeing strong commercial reels.

​Follow the steps below to get yourself a commercial agent:

  1. You can use this SAG-AFTRA resource to find the contact info for all the SAG-franchised agencies – meaning reputable, union-approved agents – throughout the country. You can use the dropdown menu to select your region.
  2. Visit the websites for each of the agencies you're interested in. Take note of any specific submissions guidelines and be sure to follow them when you start to submit.
  3. Write out a very short and simple cover letter.Here are two free cover letter templates that have gotten responses for many actors. Remember, the shorter it is and the more it shows why they should work with YOU (as opposed to just any actor), the higher your chances of hearing back. ALWAYS include at least 1-2 sentences that are customized to that specific agency, referencing some of the projects they've been involved in or the type of work they do. It's extremely important that your cover letter not be more than six sentences, broken up into at least 2-3 paragraphs. Related: Acting Cover Letter: The Ultimate Guide
  4. Be sure your headshot, resume, and footage are prepared. It's important that they are up to date and concise, easy for the agency to look at. Ideally, they should all be very professional and meet industry standards. Here are three videos if you're interested that go into detail on your headshot, resume, and footage.
  5. Send your cover letter out to just five of the agencies on your list. Start with five that you don't care as much about just in case they don't respond. Wait three days and if you don't hear back, send a follow up email to inquire as to the status. It's a good idea to include at least one question so that hopefully someone responds with "Yes, we received it," etc.
    1. Example: Hi, just wanted to shoot a quick follow up email to my submission a few days ago. I understand you're probably extremely busy, so no rush, but I just want to make sure you received it. Did it come through? Thanks!
  6. If no one responds, email out to the next five agencies on your list and continue repeating this process over a few weeks. Again, be sure to customize at least 1-2 sentences in each email so they're tailored to the agency you're contacting. Each time you email out to five agencies, modify your cover letter slightly based on what you think could be better or different to capture their attention.
  7. After a few weeks, chances are high that you'll have received a few positive responses. As long as you do a good job and be yourself during your meetings/auditions, you'll probably get signed with someone soon!

As you can see, the process of getting an agent is based on YOU reaching out to THEM, not them reaching out to you.

Most actors are afraid to reach out to agencies, and that's what keeps them stuck. Remember – no risk no reward!

Finally, a word of warning: No agency will ever charge you a fee to join them. They only take a percentage of what you earn, so do NOT pay an agent to sign you, no matter how much they ask you for!

Related: How to Get an Acting Agent: The Ultimate Guide

​Create a System to Start Booking Commercials Repeatedly

How to Get In Commercials
The more systematic you are, the more success you'll have.

​If you really enjoy acting in commercials and want to build a career around it for the next few years, I recommend systematizing the process of submitting so it's automatic and you never miss a step.

Since you've already got your brand, training, resume, reel, and marketing materials all set up, you've done most of the hard work. The only thing left is to ensure you're consistently submitting to the right auditions.

Since time is of the essence, I recommend you check listings every morning - even if you have a commercial agent (never expect your agent to do your work for you).

In order to build this habit and not forget, you should check out a free service called Follow Up Then. Send a blank email to [email protected] and you'll instantly get an email back with instructions on how to use their free system.

Essentially the way it works is that anytime you send an email to [email protected], their system will automatically send you a followup email at the time you wrote down (like [email protected], [email protected], or [email protected]).

Here's an example of an email you could create:


DAILY REMINDER: Check for Commercial Auditions!

Remember, my brand words are passionate, loving and reliable.

Which auditions support that?


If you send that email to [email protected], the system will start sending you that exact email every day at 9am, and now whenever you go to check your emails, you'll be reminded.

Then all you'll need to do is click the links to visit the webpages for each casting site and check for audition opportunities you resonate with (based on your brand or the specific companies you're targeting). Simple!

Once you've built the habit you can cancel the daily reminder if you want.

After about 6-12 months of doing this, you'll start getting really great at commercials and should have a pretty strong resume and reel. You'll be well on your way to building a name for yourself in the commercial industry, and money shouldn't be a problem for you anymore.

After just a few years, you'll have enough experience and credits on your resume that you can start targeting National Commercials and earning tens of thousands of dollars each month (seriously!).

I want to act in TV advertisements
National Commercials - The Gold Standard

​A Brief Note on National Commercials:
The gold standard of commercial casting calls is the national commercial. The reason Karim Manhattan (from the story at the beginning of this article) earned so much from one commercial was because it paid residuals - that's where the big money usually is.

There are no special tricks to landing a national commercial. The reason it seems so hard is just that there are far fewer of them and just as many actors submitting (if not more).

As long as you're experienced, talented, and have the right connections - all of which you'll gain over the next couple years as you work in the commercial industry - you're almost guaranteed to land one at some point. And that first one will inevitably lead to more!

To find opportunities for national commercials, you'll should pay extra attention to the Big Three casting companies: Beth Melsky Casting, Stacy Gallo Casting, and House Casting. They frequently post national commercial opportunities on online casting websites.

Questions & Answers

​Do Actors Get Paid Every Time a Commercial Airs?

It depends on whether you signed a "buyout" contract or not. A buyout means you get paid once, and then it's over. If you didn't sign that, you'll get residual checks every few weeks in the mail for as long as the commercial airs. These days, buyouts are very common, but there are still plenty of opportunities for residual commercials!

Do Commercials Pay Well? How Much Do You Get Paid for Commercials?

Some pay terribly, but most pay pretty well – it really depends on the commercial. Some commercials are for tiny little companies in a local neighborhood where they might just give you free food and let you use the footage for your reel. Other commercials are for huge national or international brands like Coca Cola or Starbucks. Those major companies can pay you anywhere from $2,000 a day to $150,000 or more for a two-week project (from residuals). As of 2021, SAG-AFTRA (the union) requires speaking actors to be paid at minimum $1,005/day. The best way to get into those higher-paying commercials is by getting a commercial agent.

How Much Do Extras in Commercials Get Paid?

For non-speaking roles, how much you'll get paid depends on whether you're part of SAG-AFTRA (the union). Non-union background actors (the technical term for "extras") can get paid as low as minimum wage, and as high as $200 per day. Union actors are guaranteed a flat $174/day.

How Do I Get Started in Commercials?

The fastest way to get started is to sign up for a free or paid profile on one of the casting websites outlined at the beginning of this article. You can then start submitting to auditions, build up a reel and resume over the course of six months, and then look for a commercial agent. Make sure to submit with a professional actor headshot or you won't be taken seriously.

How to Be in a Commercial as a Kid?

Luckily, most of the same tips and tricks outlined throughout this article work whether you're a kid or adult. The only difference is the contract signing. So rather than thinking, "How do I get my child on TV commercials," you should focus on "How do I get my child a commercial agent?" This is because most agents know what goes into contracts for under-age performers – they'll make sure you don't sign something that could block your son or daughter from acting in future productions later on (yes, this happens). You can of course hire a lawyer, but they usually charge by the hour, whereas an agent charges a percentage of each project they book, making them much more affordable when you're starting out.

Anything Else I Should Know?

A few final things to keep in mind:

  1. Most commercial casting directors will look you up on social media to see if you've been involved in anything that could hurt their brand. They don't care about how many followers you have so much as they care about what kinds of things you post about. If you've been involved in anything controversial, delete it because they'll never hire you!


Casting directors want actors that are serious about their career and are willing to put in the effort and do their homework.

Get the right training, figure out your brand and what makes you unique, and start submitting to the right projects. Make submitting for commercials systematic every single day and over the next few months you'll just start booking more and more.

And get a commercial agent – this is the single most effective way to start booking commercials and increase your chances of eventually landing a national commercial!

​--About the Author of this Guide--

Martin Bentsen uses “outside the industry” thinking to help actors book more work. He’s helped over 6,000 actors with their careers and actor headshots since 2009 and his photography studio City Headshots is ranked #1 on Yelp. He’s spoken at NYU, The New England Theater Conference, The Actor’s Green Room, and other venues.

Want to book more work by thinking strategically? Start with his free Actor’s Toolkit to create new opportunities right away, or visit his website at

​​Industry Experts Give You Their Best Tips

Nicole Pryor Dernersesian
Talent Agent at Firestarter Entertainment

how to get my daughter into commercials

"If you want to book more commercial work, you need to not only pursue commercial representation, but also sign up for casting sites like Casting Networks and Actors Access, where you can self-submit.  Everyone wants an agent, but what they don’t realize is that if they want to start working, they can do it on their own if they self-submit. 

"I would also recommend that you remain available for the opportunities WHEN they become available. Having a flexible job that allows you to audition is KEY to the process. If you can’t get to an audition, you will never be able to book the job.  And casting directors hate it when they need to rearrange their entire schedule to accommodate for an actor's “day job.”  If acting is your priority, you need to prove it by making it your priority."

Ian Hersey
Professional Actor & Acting Coach (booked a national commercial)

Commercial Actor
"Relax. Live in the moment. Be your most playful and available self. Go with the flow of the room. Don’t try to “get it right.” If you do that you end up leaving yourself out of the process. Rather, commit yourself fully and playfully to the process.

Watch Ian's national commercial here:

Alison Franck
Casting Director at Franck Casting

How to submit to commercials
toothpaste commercial auditions 2020
"If you're wondering how to get into commercials on TV, just meet as many casting directors, agents and talent managers as you can through networking events and classes/workshops. Then be sure to follow up with those you've met when they post breakdowns.

"Be sure to ask how they'd like to be contacted - some are fine with email, some are not. Some prefer snail mail, some do not. Some just want everyone to submit through casting sites only. Make sure you have that information so you're contacting everyone in an appropriate manner.

"Another tip - try following casting directors on social media. They actually post breakdowns on their social pages occasionally as well!"

Mari Lyn Henry
Teacher & Author of The Total Actor (to be published March 2020)

How to get an agent for commercials

"You don't have to be a trained actor to land a job as a 'seller' of a product. Perhaps there is even more appeal if you are a good voice actor! According to a talent agent who specializes in voiceovers, there is a site called which sends out casting notices to L.A, Chicago and NY. Lots of actors are sending MP3's to the casting directors and getting bookings that way.

"Backstage also contains audition opportunities. If you are trying to land a principal role in a commercial, you should definitely self-submit.  Also roughly two-thirds of all commercials (whether local, regional, cable, or network) hire non-union talent.  

"The only tips I would suggest are: take an on-camera class for commercial technique (there are several in NYC taught by commercial casting directors). Practice reading ad copy on your own time. It will help you improve communication, improvisation skills and knowing what to wear to the audition and callback. Bring your personality into the room to engage the casting people. Also watch commercials and identify with the characters you could have played.

"Finally, the Henderson Casting guides have updated lists of talent agencies with commercial departments as well as the casting directors at ad agencies and the independent casting directors who cast for commercials. In many cases it will be not so much about talent but about the right look for the spot."

Valerie Adami
Legit ​Agent at SW Artists

How to be in a commercial without an agent

​"For many years I was the director of the Weist Barron School for Film & TV. Created in 1956, Weist Barron was the very first training program for commercial actors. The newly minted TV commercial industry was hungry for faces to populate their spots.

"Bob Barron and Dwight Weist made a fortune for themselves and their talented students, who walked out of their classrooms and almost immediately onto sets. They knew the hallmark of a bookable commercial actor was naturalness, likeability and an every-person quality. And that is true to this day!

"The commercial industry is constantly searching for that special face that can represent the client and product. A face that can get our attention, provide the message and even entertain us. Training and experience are important, but don't necessarily guarantee success in commercials. A successful commercial actor is good at conceptual thinking, understands and incorporates direction and is completely comfortable in their own skin. Timing, spontaneity and a natural warmth are a bonus.

"Many skills can be acquired in classes, but the best advice I have ever given to actors seeking work in commercials is: WATCH COMMERCIALS. With the advent of premium channels and streaming services you don't get to see commercials as often as you once did, which is a shame as it's such a creative art form and so varied in style. I'm always amazed at how much story and message can be packed into fifteen seconds. I could go on and on about the advantages of pursuing commercial work - it's the very best gateway acting job.  It provides exposure, experience and income and best of all it gives actors confidence.

"Now that I work as an theatrical agent, I'm still constantly on the hunt for that special face."

Joshua Nelson
​Professional Actor & Acting Teacher at LaGuardia Acting School

How to Get In Commercials
"First off, some good news: The days of having a "commercial look" are gone... Nowadays, they take all ages, all types, all ethnicities, all shapes and there's more opportunities!

"To book commercials you need two things:

"First, you need be as natural and conversational as possible. You’re not selling a product - don't think of it that way. Instead, you're having a conversation with someone about something they need. You're not talking to America, or the camera or the general public. Imagine you're talking to one person. Not selling them, but talking to them. And it needs to be very conversational. Just like you're at a bar with your friends! Now of course the things you say in a commercial usually aren't things you would ever say conversationally to friends...but that's where the acting comes in. Honest, conversation... letting the dialogue flow.

"Second, you have to understand the basic premise: Imagine that the person you're speaking to has a life that sucks and the product will make it better. Kidding, but not kidding! The basic premise is that you need to sell something. You have to give the feeling that whatever it is you're selling, whether it be shampoo, rug cleaner, food, soda, etc... whatever it is, it makes you happier! And we need to legitimately see that - in other words, when you drink a coke, it makes you smile... The smile has to be authentic because that sends a signal to people subliminally that this soda/yogurt/coffee/pizza makes you happy and can make them happy too.

"So be honest and show people how much better the product makes your life and you'll be well on your way to booking commercials!"


Rita Litton
Acting Teacher & Coach

How to Be a Commercial Actor

"It’s helpful for actors to have an improvisational skill set, so they can convincingly & immediately create ‘real’ situations. It helps to think like the sponsor, understand their point of view: intimate, ironic, friendly... Use the “who, what, when, where, why” in commercials just as you should be doing in all acting.

​"Copy needs to be rehearsed out loud. Actors should be relaxed and able to listen well.  Beginnings and endings are key elements. Many a commercial is booked by a meaningful look, glance, gesture, or silent moment."

Nimo Gandhi
​Professional Actor (booked a national commercial)

How to get into commercials with no experience

"Stacy Gallo is an NYC commercial casting director that you should check out. She offers a class from time to time where you train with her and she sees your base skills and guides you to improve from there. She is the eyes of what gets an actor hired by a client. I.e. Verizon, Geico, Coca-Cola, etc. So she is teaching from that vantage point.

"In the final class she invites commercial agents to watch you do an actual commercial scene. Actors get signed commercially from these sessions!"​

Curt Bonnem
​Professional Actor and Voiceover Artist  (booked 3 national commercials)

How to get into commercials on TV

"One important thing I learned early on after I'd signed with my first big commercial agent... Be yourself! Another way of putting this would also be... Know yourself. Even big, powerful, experienced agents don't know you as well as you do. For example, my agents asked me to dye my hair dark and get new pictures. They suggested that I get pictures that were 'All American.' My natural hair was salt and pepper, which was certainly unusual for someone of my age at that time (25), but it was a distinct part of who I was. Also, my general style and vibe would never have been considered 'All American,' it was edgier and more unique. But, what did I know? So, I did as they asked. In turn, the auditions I was being sent on were not right for me. I would walk into a waiting room full of six foot two, buffed out football player, actual 'All American' types. Needless to say, I didn't book.

After several months of this, I made the decision I would let my hair go back to natural and get new pictures. The picture I ended up using wouldn't have even been considered 'commercial'. No smile, slightly scruffy, salt-n-pepper hair... Within a couple of weeks I was receiving auditions which actually suited to ME. Soon after, I booked my first national commercial for Volkswagen, which took me to New Zealand to shoot and made me enough money to qualify for SAG Healthcare. I followed that with two more nationals within a few months.

Don't be afraid to let your agents know what you think will be best for you, how you want to portray yourself and what types of roles you would like to focus on. Be true to yourself, with your agents and in the audition room."
How to be a TV Commercial Model in the Philippines - Talent agency, Talent fee, Freelance, Auditions


Agents tv commercial




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