I cannot stress the importance of a Smart Phone for an actor. This industry is quickly becoming more and more electronic and the actor needs to keep up. It was only about 5-10 years ago that we started online submissions. Before that it was all hard copy submissions and couriers. We slowly have switched to 98% electronic submissions. The next phase of the industry going electronic is audition notifications. No longer does the Casting director call out auditions. Now they are emailed out. The agency in turn now forwards the emails and texts information on.
As an actor it is important to stay in touch with your agent. Confirming auditions quickly!
An actor also needs to be able to receive texts and be able to text back. We are constantly submitting on breakdowns and it is easy for us get a text confirming an audition. Stopping to chat on the phone greatly interrupts the very important work we are doing trying to get auditions for our actor.
Even with the recession and the cut backs on commercials as well as the SAG negotitations-our agency has done very well. I think that this is because we are available constantly to our casting directors via email, text, cmail, and phone. This industry has a lot of time constraints and using technology is very helpful. Some agents are working the way they did 10 years ago, refusing to utilize technology and are suffering.
I personally think going electronic is amazing. Not only is it green, the amount of paper that is being saved is incredible. It is saving the starving actor a ton of money-Not having to reproduce photos as often. Also it saves the agent money by not paying a courier and printing costs. The cost of text messaging is minimal. Missing audition information is devastating.
Having a smart phone allows immediate notification of auditions, avails, bookings. If you have Internet access you can then confirm directly with LA casting or with your agent. You can also access sides and character information. If any last minute changes occur on the way to an audition we can stay in contact. Smart phones have the capability to record auditions, voiceovers, take photos (some casting directors want a photo of actors as they look at this very moment, especially kids, since some headshots do NOT look like the actors). Maybe they want a picture of your hands for a hand modeling job, snap it, email it and you are all set!
Technology scares some people, but it is making our lives easier and those who do not keep up could be left in the dark!