Over the years we've worked with hundreds, if not thousands, of dancers who are seeking to promote their skills and work to people all over the world.
Being a professional dancer requires a unique blend of artistry, athleticism, and thoughtfulness. Dance truly is one of the classical art forms of the world, just like music and visual art.
It's clear that dancers of all stripes can I'm very interesting careers and stories. What's far less clear, however, is just how a dancer can share with their skills and experiences with the world.
Most dancers we've worked with just want to worry about dance and choreography. While they have all been driven enough to seek out ways of promoting themselves, without a proper resource that explains just how you can promote yourself, it can seem extremely daunting.
We've made this guide to help both amateur and professional dancers understand their options when it comes to self-promotion. After all, dance is an art form, and like any other artist (whether musical, visual, etc.) if you want to field as many different professional options as possible, promotion is key.
For some of you out there reading this, you may not be totally convinced that you need to promote yourself as a dancer.
The reality is, if you take your career seriously and are looking to get to the next level of your career, promotion in some capacity is going to be an absolute prerequisite.
It's a tale as old as time – A brilliant artist does the most amazing work in the world, only to find that no one seems to care, and their skills aren't taken seriously.
Perhaps once the artist passes away, the masses will realize. If you're fine with being appreciated once you're dead and gone, you likely don't need to worry about promoting yourself.
But, if you want to experience success while you're physically here on earth, you're going to need to actively spread the word about all the awesome things you've done.
Something that we hear a lot from dancers (and something we do very well here at promo panda) is that they don't often realize when they're consuming some sort of promotion from someone in the arts.
They may not realize, for example, that a video they see on TikTok was actually produced with the help of a PR firm that knows exactly how to create and publish content that will create a buzz.
Another example – Perhaps one of their fellow dancers will be shouted out on Twitter or another social media platform by a celebrity who is known for dance (such as Sharna Burgess). .Little do they know, however, that the social media posts coming from the celebrity is often times the results of a shrewd manager or agent who is helping to promote their client
The truth is, very little of what you see in media (social or otherwise) is organic. There is nearly always something going on behind the scenes that result in the content that you see.
.We are pointing this out because we want you dancers to realize that it's OK to promote yourselves.
In fact you should never be embarrassed about promoting yourself in ways that may flatter your brand and professional opportunities.
Always remember that promotion can seem organic without necessarily being fully organic.
Point is, don't be afraid to put work into your promotion or seek out help with promoting yourself.
Now, onto our guide!
The rise of the Internet and social media has resulted in a massive explosion of short-form audiovisual content that people consume on a daily basis.
The great news here if you're a dancer is that your medium is instantly engaging and compelling from a visual perspective.
Depending on the type of dance you specialize in, all you may need to do to start a promising social media channel is to film yourself dancing.
These days, people with very very small followings can instantly go to have 100 and not a few thousand followers seemingly overnight after publishing the right video.
This is especially true of social media newcomer TikTok.
All you need to do to begin using social media as a means of promoting yourself as a dancer is to set up and start doing what you do best.
You don't even necessarily need to have any sort of big following in order to gain benefits from having a social media presence.
.For one, choreographers or people in a position to hire you as a professional dancer will likely be impressed that you have a channel dedicated to your dance in the first place. Having a decent follower count would just be icing on the cake.
Secondly, gaining followers who are not dancers themselves or who are outside of the industry may eventually give you an opportunity to make these fans customers should you begin selling something besides your dance skills.
Perhaps one of your followers may end up hiring you as a private dance coach, or a clothing brand they offer you free gear and or money in exchange for wearing their goods in your videos.
Social media is just one of many ways to promote yourself, and while we highly recommend you don't just focus on social media promotion, this tactic tends to be fairly straightforward and relatively easy for dancers to do on their own.
To be totally honest, a lot of the dancers we've worked with have a minute to not being... let's say... "tech gurus."
In fact, a lot of them tend to avoid thinking about their online visibility and reputation because they are unsure of how they could even begin to improve it.
Let's do a test:
Open up a new tab in your browser and try googling yourself or your stage name.
What results come up?
If you're like most dancers we've worked with, maybe you'll see your LinkedIn, and maybe one or two other social media profiles.
Maybe more alarmingly, you won't see anything at all about you (this tends to happen when you have a relatively common name).
If your google search results are lacking, people may not think that you are relevant or exceptional.
One of the easiest and quickest ways to make sure that you have at least a semblance of an online presence is to make a decent looking, professional website.
.One of the more advanced (potentially rewarding) methods of improving your online visibility and reputation times in the form of media coverage.
Getting interviewed or featured in a dance or art blog will likely result in that article appearing when people search your name on Google.
Since dancers aren't traditional businesses, potential employers can't use a review system (like Google reviews) to verify whether or not a dancer has the skills they claim to.
One signal that may greatly help demonstrate your relevance and talent is by appearing in online magazines and blogs.
People who come across your articles are short to be impressed by this relevance, and these appearances are likely to result in increased opportunities for you professionally.
Our last tip is concerning live events, which are still a fantastic way to promote yourself professionally.
If there are opportunities to perform at any local festivals or speak at any local industry-related panels, absolutely take those opportunities!
Like media appearances, speaking opportunities at events can be a great way to demonstrate to people that you're a bona fide professional.
Are you not in a location with many opportunities to speak or perform? Consider starting up your own festivals or events and help shine a light on the dance culture in your community. This will instantly make you appear to be an expert in your field.
We hope this guide helped you recognize that promotion needn't be tedious or daunting.
In fact, once you get in a daily or weekly routine to ensure that you're taking the time required to promote yourself, it's likely that you may even enjoy the process of self promotion, especially when you start seeing results.
And don't think for a second that you won't see results in the long run. Some promotion is always always always better than no promotion, so get out there and start letting the world know all the amazing things you have done and will do!