Welcome to 2018. The turning of the proverbial calendar to an entirely new set of twelve months can provide all of us an opportunity to reflect on the past year and to think about the endeavors of the coming year.

It has been one year (give or take a few weeks) since I took over Minnesota Playlist. And unlike a lot of endeavors I’ve taken on in my life, Playlist was kind of boring – in the sense that it was stable, the site worked, and the business model that Alan and Leah had shown me, well, just worked.

I find that to be a rarity – at least in my own life.

And so, Playlist – and its week to week operation -  was absorbed into my very tumultuous new “gig” life of 2017. It became part of something on a diverse and varying list of things I took care of and worked on every week. And while I did a lot of thinking about Playlist and where its future might lay, I did very little adjusting of it. I really wanted this transition to be as seamless and simple as possible for you. Because let’s be honest, our industry doesn’t lack for chaotic transitions.

As we entered 2018 I thought about how to help you more deeply connect with Playlist as a service and tool for your work. How to bring my email signature catch phrase of “promote: your show, your jobs, yourself” more to fruition for new users and for long time users.

In light of that here is a small “resolution” for you to follow if you’d like to greater connect to this tool and the community that relies on it.


Renew your talent profile (or get one)

If you don’t have a talent profile (or yours has lapsed) the first thing you should do is get one or fire that old workhorse back up. Talent profiles make up the backbone MN Playlist. For you (dancer, actor, designer, director, etc) it is a one-stop-shop for your updates and work. With video linking, image hosting, resume holding, and a status update ability a talent profile is the MOST affordable way to have a single url about your career in the performing arts. And all of it is at the heart of a HIGHLY trafficked site for industry professionals.

A recent artistic director let me know that while they LOVE the talent profile section they wish MORE people had active profiles so that they could make potential casting decisions right from Playlist.

Talent Profiles = job opportunities.

So, get your profile renewed or purchase one today.


Update your profile

Ok, you’ve got an active profile that you haven’t touched in a while. Here are some things you should do at the top of 2018.

  1. Check your profile for all your contact info – is everything up to date? If I am interested in inviting you to an audition but your contact info is wrong – oops that’s not going to work.
  2. Update your filter options – perhaps you’ve developed a new skill that you want to make sure people searching for it know that you can DO IT.
  3. Update your biography – a great way to get some short hand info about yourself is to have a quick and compelling biography. This shoudn’t be a list of what shows you’ve worked on – that is for your resume. Instead let this be a bit about you as a person, your history, your hopes, your ideals, etc.
  4. Speaking of resume, use the resume section to do a quick “last 5” productions you worked on so that if I don’t want to download your full resume I still can see some the recent work you’ve done.
  5. Post a status update. Did you realize that Playlist was built and conceived of as a kind of theatre social network long before social became thing we all got our fake news from? Yeah not only can you post status updates in your profile, but that big red bar up top with the star? Yeah you can follow people so you can keep up on what they are working on. This is great for directors who want to track performers work or vice versa.
  6. Finally update your images – you can have up to five, and upload some video content – you can upload up to three videos.

These are the kinds of things that are really useful to casting directors, artistic directors, talent agents (of whom we get MANY on the site looking for new talent for commercial and movie work) and all the folks who are trying to find new and interesting people to work with. Keeping your profile up to date and interesting is really critical to getting the most out of it.


Share your profile

Your talent profile is a single URL that can be shared through social media, email, and anywhere else you want to stick it (QR code business card anyone?). And if you want to get really fancy you can buy a domain name (like damonrunnals.com) and have it “point” to your unique talent profile URL and WHAMO! Instant website.

The best part of these profiles is they integrate with the site, specifically our calendar. So that when you are cast in a show and your profile is added to the show listing on the calendar, your profile image shows up in the show description, and a fun bubble shows up on your profile saying, “Hey the next performance of ME in this awesome SHOW is such and such date and time”.

But obviously more succinct and with specific info.

There you have it, start off 2018 with a few quick and easy updates to your talent profile. Get out there and PROMOTE YOURSELF! Next week I’ll talk about some changes coming to the magazine portion of Playlist.