Just about a year ago (wow, it's been a busy year!), I was approached by a mother, whose son was preparing for college musical theatre program auditions. He had been in shows at school and with community organizations. He took voice lessons and acting classes. But he had no formal dance training. He was a bit intimidated by the thought of a full dance audition.
So, I gave him so private lessons in ballet and jazz. Shaun Yates joined me, as the expert in Tap and for partnering.
Shaun and I realized that between the two of us, we'd been doing shows, teaching classes, and participating in auditions for nearly 30 years. We saw that the skills we had were things we could impart to others. So we formed The Audition Advantage.
There was a lot of paperwork involved in creating a business. But, now we're legal and established.
We've got cards out at theatres and dance studios. We're creating a flyer. We each mention the business in our performance bios. We have a nice website, a Twitter account and a Facebook page. We put ads in programs for high school plays and musicals. Yet, business does not seem to be picking up.
Part of the problem is our other jobs- we're rehearsing, performing, teaching, choreographing on a regular basis. Which cuts into the time we're spending on developing our own business. It's this bizarre catch-22 of making money and keeping up our skills, so we can support our business and have the experience and credentials to do what we say we will do!
Plus, there's the desire for an occassional bit of down-time. There isn't much of that when you have a collection of small jobs. But, if we aren't working on our business, no one else is! That's the trick of working for yourself- you somtimes have to really boss yourself around!
We are quite certain that the services we offer are necessary. We see it in the auditions we go to as performers and the auditions we hold as a music director/choreographer team. Dance skills are definitely lacking in many performers. Singing and acting for auditors is a different experience than practicing for your mirror. Having feedback and a mock audition are helpful experiences, for learning and comfort.
So, what are we missing? Are we not advertising in the right places? Are we unclear about what we offer? Or the benefits of service? Is it just "the economy"? I would love feedback, suggestions and resources. I know we have a great service and the credentials and ability to make this a wonderful business! We just need people to know about it!