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No one is safe. Searching for Talent in a Social World.

Let’s face it.  I have the best job.  I have the good fortune to work with successful businesses, great clients and new projects every day, not to mention some of the most talented people in the advertising industry. 

Being surrounded by greatness means I have to stay on my toes and adapt to whatever is thrown my way. Challenge accepted!

One particularly fun project that I’ve had the privilege to work on recently is a tourism video for Virginia’s Blue Ridge. 

We live in an amazing place, a place that out-of-towners vacation in and locals brag about.  We have beautiful mountains, outdoor adventure, arts & culture, dining and all kinds of family fun activities. 

As Access embarked on this project to showcase what our little slice of heaven looks like, it was obvious that b-roll was needed. Lots of it. And fast. (Really, is anything in advertising not needed fast?)  With the magnitude of video we needed, we were going to need a lot of talent. 

In this particular case, we didn’t need professional actors, we needed real people.  Lots of different people.  We needed kids and adults.  We needed diversity. We needed dogs.  We needed people that could swim.  People that could hike. People that would drive an hour to hug an Alpaca.  You get the point. 

In days gone by, this is when we would have hit the streets, called our friends, reached out to former colleagues and visited our local watering holes to find video volunteers. Today, however, Facebook is my talent pool. 

I scoured my social media life over the course of a couple of days, imagining who could work in each video segment.  If a slot couldn’t be filled with a friend, I scoured my friends’ friends.  Every profile picture I saw became potential talent. I even approached perfect strangers and asked them to be in our spot.  I have no fear. I mean, who doesn’t want to be on TV?  Actually, I have been turned down more than once.  Luckily that doesn’t happen often though, as the idea of being on TV seems to make even the most sour person get a twinkle in their eye.

In the end, we filled all of the slots we needed for the video and the end result turned out fantastic.

In the online world we live in today, relationship boundaries have been redefined, for better or for worse. At times, it can feel like we have never been so disconnected from the thousands of “friends” we keep up with on our daily social media adventures.

However, there are times that social media allows us to be closer than ever before, in this case creating an entirely new talent pool from which to pluck our next extra.

Consider yourself warned. If you happen to be my Facebook friend or friend of a friend and you haven’t already been asked to be in an Access produced spot just wait, your time is coming. Think about that the next time you post a really cute picture of you and your dog eating ice cream. You may have very well landed yourself in my talent pool for our next shoot.



Author Laura Robinson has been with Access for more than 15 years and manages the account executive team as well as supervises all accounts. Click here to learn more about Laura and the rest of the Access team. 

Topics: Social Media