How an Entertainment Agency Works
An entertainment agent is responsible for obtaining the work. This includes writing contracts, calling, and sending emails (sometimes 50 per day). Since the post-war period, this has been much easier. Sometimes, an entertainment agent can spend the entire day looking for the perfect act. An entertainment agent might spend 40 hours a week searching for the right act. Let’s take an example:
40-60% promotion of the agency (front Page on Google, etc. 16-24 hours
Bookings/issues between 4-12 hrs: 10%-30%
20% Response to inquiries (weeding time wasters, etc.) 8 hours
5% artist registration/maintaining a large artist database 2 hrs
5% 2 hours searching for the elusive act
Entertainment Agent Overheads
Like any other business, an entertainment agent must have overheads. Here’s a list of overheads for entertainment agents, usually around PS2000+/year
* Bank fees
* Office costs: Lighting, heating, stationary, telephone, etc
* Broadband costs
* Hosting service/domain name rental/SEO/AdWords
* Petrol – Checking out artists/venues
* Membership in FSB, etc
* Advertising – Yellow Pages etc
* Tax return and accounting (no money for the entertainment agent).
Sending your details to an Entertainment Agent
Send material via email, text message and post. This will make sure that your information is always accessible. Send as many pictures/recordings as you can to the entertainment agent. A maximum of 10 is fine. The agent will make the final decision about representation. Recordings are usually unusable so if your work is serious, leave it to the experts. It is a good idea to keep a weekly/fortnightly schedule. (It becomes quieter towards end of week). You can also have a gig list on the website. To avoid key words being made public, an entertainment agent might use an internet pseudonym. An agent friendly website is not possible.
The First Gig for a Entertainment Agent
It’s hard work to get gigs so make a good impression and not rely on your agent to get you through the door. You should bring a bag of cards to the gig. It looks professional, and it’s a great opportunity to make new friends. Satnavs are worth their weight in gold. Entertainment agents hate unnecessary calls during the evening, especially if their job is done. They might rebook because they love you more than the product.
It’s important to discuss any special requirements with the client before booking. This is reassuring and helps keep the client in the loop. special song, local gags etc. It is a good idea to check with the client if two sets are needed. Flexibility is key. Entertainment agents can’t find work for everyone. They will always have their favorite artists.
Remember that your first gig with an entertainment agency is important, but it can also be very risky. It may not make you a lot of money. If all goes well, you may have started a relationship that could lead to a successful outcome. Ask the agent to give feedback if he comes to your act. He is the only one who can tell you the truth if you are in the “zone”. What was your last product review?