For many of us, the past year has been somewhat of a strange dream that hasn't quite ended, but with more and more people being vaccinated every day, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Companies are slowly rolling out 2021/22 Season offerings, and audition notices are trickling into our email accounts. It’s time to start marketing ourselves again, and after a year away from the stage, it might be time to re-evaluate your brand. Here are a few tips on how to market yourself after a significant time off.
1. Assess yourself and what you are offering.
The audition repertoire that you were singing a year and a half ago may not showcase you in the best light anymore. Before you even begin to sign up for auditions, take a beat. The prospect of working again and being onstage is exciting, but you’ve changed, and you want your repertoire to reflect the artist you are now.
2. Update your online presence.
Before putting yourself back out into the world, make sure your website is up to date. Add new headshots, fresh recordings, and a revised bio. You might not have sung onstage for a year, but what did you do? Were you part of a Zoom opera? Did you learn new repertoire? Did you make new recordings that better represent your brand? When companies see your resume, they may also peek at your website, so make sure your information is up to date. It is also an excellent time to re-evaluate your social media. If you have a Facebook, Instagram, or YouTube page dedicated to your brand, go through and see if there are videos or posts that could be removed or hidden. They may no longer be relevant to your brand. For example, if you shifted fach during the past year, you may want to remove some of your older videos.
3. Seek outside advice.
It’s time for a check-in with your teacher or vocal coach. If you aren’t currently studying, talk to a trusted colleague. Present your aria package and discuss your current career goals with them. Another set of eyes can only help. If you want to improve your marketing, reach out to a social media or digital marketing agency. Many offer one-on-one consultations for a flat fee that can refine your online presence.
4. Network. Network. Network.
Are there any virtual masterclasses or socially distanced company events you can safely attend in your area? As you re-emerge, it’s important to get your name out there again and let individuals and companies know you are available and looking for work. Don't limit yourself to the performing arts. Plenty of organizations offer networking events. A quick Google or Facebook search for "entrepreneur and networking events" in your area will give you some starting points. There are plenty of singers who are ready to jump in after honing their skills during the pandemic. Be proactive.
5. Be patient.
This last tip is the most important one. We don’t have a full scope of what performances will look like in the fall or even the next year. Many companies have taken financial losses and may not be at a point to mount large productions in the near future. Work on controlling what you can, and do your best to let go of what you can’t.
Exciting times are ahead with the re-emergence of the performing arts. In bocca al lupo, and remember, we’re all in this together.