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Bloggers and Agents: Commercials are Coming!

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Are bloggers a good bet for your business's ad campaigns? A few brands are betting that the women shooting out missives on smartphones and laptops are the the next faces to launch important ads campaigns. And this trend has swept me up into the movement. The NY Times recently (photo by Yana Paskova for The New York Times) discussed this phenomenon and now I'm jumping in.

Last year I started down the road of pitching myself as talent and I even briefly worked with the DBA agency (full disclosure--they never landed me a campaign while I was working for them)-the same agency that got Lindsey Calla (saucieglossie) this fab TJMaxx commercial.

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In fact, I went on a casting call for this very commercial. It was apparent at the call that I was a.) too old and b.) not funky enough for the spot. And I was a little bummed out about being so obviously out of the running. But I've kept my chin up and kept going. Just last month I sent in some tantalizing video of me flipping my hair to land a potential shampoo commercial. That didn't pan out either.

And finally I did have a break-through moment and a paying video gig this month. I spent two days at the Dorel Boston offices shooting videos for Maxi Cosi. And while it was tremendously fun and rewarding, it's not all a walk in the park. Acting is hard! I've done live camera segments and shot plenty of my own video, never having to memorize anything. This was completely foreign. Thankfully, I still have some shreds of short-term memory and was able to get all the relevant points on tape.

But here's the big question: Why me and not an actress or model? I suppose they hired me because I have an audience, I have clear preferences about style and safety and let's face it...I am not camera shy. It's an interesting trend and I DO hope to land more on-air work. Thanks to TJMaxx I'm a smarter savvier business decisions. See what failure can teach you!

My advice is be careful what you wish for and pick your partners well. In the end, TJMaxx would not have been a terrific fit. In the commercial, Lindsey talks about shopping every day. What mom in her right mind shops every day! I could not be authentic in that role. Plus, I often buy full-price. I'd rather build a stylish wardrobe that chase fashion and dig through racks.

A few months into this experiment I am a little wiser and want to share my findings:

Be sure that the brands you partner with make sense for you and your blog.
Be wary of long-term agency deals.

Never give up more than 20% of your earnings and try to finagle a 6 month contract when you are testing the water.

Be sure you can take criticism. Actors need thick skin and patience.

What about you? Are you willing to put yourself out there in a bigger way? Do you want an agent and a fabulous commercial? Leave a comment and let me know.

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