I began this episode intending to help fitness professionals similar to myself develop themselves as fitness models. With the help of my guest, fitness photographer, James Patrick, this episode became a full guide on how to build your brand on a broader scale. He offers several tips on how to get started, how to create and maintain authentic relationships in the industry, and more.
What You’ll Learn from this Episode:
• How to find your “niche” that will set your apart
• How to build relationships with publications
• If finding an agent is the right path for you
Here’s the Complete List of Tips:
Where do you start when looking to become a fitness model?
1. Use the “So What?” Method to find what makes you unique. Here’s how it works: say something about yourself. Now ask yourself, “So what?” Do this until you find what makes you stand out. Use this as your selling point to publications.
2. Do your research. Who are the publications you are pitching to? What type of work do they run? Does it relate to your brand? Who will make the decision? (Tip: Open the magazine, first page has the mass list of their staff. If its not there, Google!) Submit your pitch directly to the most relevant editor.
How do I build relationships with publications?
1. Know the person you’re trying to build a relationship with. How often does the magazine publish new content? What type of content are they putting out? Research.
2. Demonstrate your value. Here’s my approach. Here’s my value. Here’s what I’m willing to do for you.
3. When they offer the opportunity, over deliver and reinforce why they took a chance on you. Give them everything they asked for and more.
4. Once you have established yourself, stay in touch. You will get most of your work and most of your opportunities from the people that have already given you a chance.
I want to become a fitness model and I am looking to build a portfolio. Where do I start?
Find a great photographer that can shoot images that are similar to the publication you are pitching to. This shows that you’re paying attention.
I submitted a pitch and I didn’t hear back, what next?
Many people think this means they are unworthy for an opportunity with that publication because of one rejection. It can take up to a dozen times to be noticed. Editors are busy, and may just be filing your information. Stick with it, stay in contact.
I’m thinking about getting an agent to support my fitness modeling. What are the pros/cons of this?
Whatever gets you in the door is what matters. The tricky thing about agents, is that they pitch not only you, but the other talent they represent as well. They are invaluable in a sense that agents often get casting opportunities that are only offered to agency affiliated work. This often happens with commercial work looking for subjects that is looking to sell something else. If you are pitching yourself directly, you are pitching yourself and your story directly. At the end of the day, the best person to create relationships is you.
What are some recommendations on how to best maintain a relationship with a publication?
Start with thanking them for the opportunity, and continue to stay in touch. Share ideas you have, comments/support on their work, offer collaboration opportunities. Keep a conversation going and show you are in tune with what they are doing. Become a resource to them. Prove your loyalty and show you are in it for the long haul.
Other References in This Episode:
FCM Episode 2: Becoming a Fitness Professional- Part 2 of 2 with Jonathan Goodman