After you send out your submissions to the various agencies in your area, you should hear back whether or not they would like to meet with you and your child.
Most agencies will do a face to face meeting with your child before they have you sign a contract with them.
Here are some really easy steps to prepare for this meeting:
1. Get clearly noted the date, time and location of the meeting. You are going to want to be on time, so map it out and give yourself ample time to get there and get settled in with your child.
2. As best you can, keep your child well fed and rested the day before and the day of the meeting. Your child is going to be meeting with a stranger and needs to be open and relatively well behaved. A birthday party with tons of sugar or a late night out the night before will not help. If your child still naps, schedule around that. I have arranged photo shoots to occur later or earlier based off my kids nap times. BRING SNACKS.
3. Keep in mind that there is no reason to feel intimidated or nervous. If an agent makes you feel this way do not sign with them. You are hiring THEM to represent you. They are working for you. You want someone who is easy to work with.
4. Let your child know that you are going to meet a friend of yours, or if they are old enough to understand what is happening explain that this is just a little meeting and they should just be themselves.
5. Different agents may have different procedures. It helps to stay relaxed but attentive to what they want. Some take measurements or a picture of your child. I advise that while the agent is interviewing your child, taking pictures, etc, just stay out of it. Don’t try to direct your child to smile, or do anything other than be themselves. A good child agent knows how to interact with kids, so let them do their thing.
6. Be prepared to have your child misbehave, get shy, clam up, act odd, or any other long list of emotional responses to this scenario. It may be an indication that they just are not interested in doing modeling or commercials and you have to be ok with that. (It may also be that particular agent, so if you have another meeting scheduled, give it another try)
7. Do not sign a contract right then and there. If they offer you a contract, take it and review it where you are not rushed or distracted. The average percentage paid to an agent is 20% for all print and non-union work and 10% for union commercials/television/movies. Some agents require other fees for management services. I do not advise you go with anyone who is over 20% or charges management fees.
8. Most importantly, stay organized and professional, but stay RELAXED. Your child can tell when you are nervous or agitated or mad that they are not behaving in some preconceived way. You need to stay chill. This will give your child the best opportunity to just be themselves and be offered a contract from the agency.
Feel free to contact me with any other questions or let me know how things go with your agency meetings!