Hi and welcome back to the final course in this specialization. Here's where we take all of the various elements we've been talking about, the time management and goal setting from the first course, the branding and marketing strategies from, of course, to the essential media and materials that you need in course number three. Hi and welcome back to the final course in this specialization. So let's start by remembering a little bit about the portfolio career. Here's where we take all of the various elements we've been talking about, the time management and goal setting from the first course, the branding and marketing strategies from, of course, to the essential media and materials that you need in course number three. Here's where we take all of the various elements we've been talking about, the time management and goal setting from the first course, the branding and marketing strategies from, of course, to the essential media and materials that you need in course number three. Sometimes that includes a career with just a couple of those elements. Sometimes there's many, many different elements. Sometimes there's a robust teaching studio in just a couple other things on the side. Sometimes the teaching studios, a relatively small sliver and you're doing lots of digging and playing for shows and and in various clubs and bars and things, it doesn't matter what we're doing. All of the portfolio careers are similar in that they have these many, many different elements. So the principles, however, that we've been discussing from the very beginning apply equally to everybody, no matter the particular makeup of your portfolio career. So the things we're going to talk about today, we're going to start by talking about management, both artists managers and booking managers, the role they can play in your career and what they can't do in your career. Okay, so first of all, there's two main types of management, there's an artist agency, this is mostly focused on classical performance and opera, maybe jazz. And an artist agency actually represents the musicians. Then there's a booking agent and those are mostly for non classical musicians and/or events of all styles, and they represent the venue, they represent the presenter. Okay and we're going to look at each one of these in a little bit more detail, starting with the artist management. So artists agencies represent a roster of musicians of various types. They're usually just performers. They may have some composers from time to time, but most don't handle many composers unless they're like a really, really big name, because it's a different business model and it doesn't really lend itself as well to the sorts of things that the agencies are doing. And their job is to find you gigs, right? To find you concert engagements, recording projects, whatever it might be. And the way they make their money is a commission and what's called a retainer. Okay, so commission is a percentage of whatever the fee is, usually 20%. That's pretty much the industry standard. On top of that a retainer is a regular monthly fee that you send to them to support the work of the agency on your behalf. So this means that even if you're not getting gigs from them, you are still sending them that monthly retainer for them to spend time to promote you. And the idea is that retainer activity will result in gigs and there will be enough of them that will result that it ends up paying for itself in the long run, yeah. How do you get on the firm's roster? Well, there's various ways. First of all, you could win a competition. There are a lot of competitions out there that part of the prize is that you get a contract with the particular agency, usually for a fixed period of time, like two years or something like that. So that can be one way that you can get representation pretty quickly and early on in your career. You can perform at a conference. So APAP is the biggest, it's in New York every year, Association of Performing Arts Professionals. This is where musicians of all types and agencies of all types essentially get together to mingle. [LAUGH] It's a huge networking thing. So the firms are looking for new artists that they think are interesting and promising and of course the artists are looking for agencies. So you have to apply and it costs some money to go to APAP. But if you're really really looking to get on an artist roster this can be a good way to start. And networking is like so many other things we've talked about, it is absolutely key. So if you know somebody was already at an agency and you say to them, hey do you think they would be interested in me or do you think they'd be interested in our group? Would you be willing to give us an introduction or certainly attend places like APAP with a big fistful of demos and business cards in your hand. Make sure you've got all your social media lined up, you've got your website perfected, you've got the best content online. So if they are interested and they do fall, take you up on that offer to check you out. They will find everything is in order and they will find really great materials that will make them want to talk to you about management. You can also research agencies find out, what ones might work best for you. Because agencies just like any other thing in the arms, they have their own sort of flavor. There are some of the smaller firms are much more niche they're much more interested maybe in particular types of groups or particular genres. Others are much bigger and broader. But you can you can do some research, find out the ones that look like interesting fits. Then look at your network, look at the roster and say, do I know anybody on that roster that I can network with? Are they going to be at APAP? And maybe I can set up an appointment with them before we even go to the conference, I can make sure that I'm on the calendar we have time for coffee, whatever it might be. So how do you determine of management is right for you? Does everybody need management? The answer is no. So the first question is can you afford it? So again, I said that the standard Is 20% commission, so 20% of every fee that they get for you goes to them. Plus that monthly retainer which usually starts at $1,000 and goes up from there depending on basically how hard you want them to work for you right? So if you're looking at that and just going holy cow, [LAUGH] I can't afford $1000 a month, sight unseen without any gig necessarily coming forth and then just hoping that they get enough that after 20% is taken off, I'm actually ahead [LAUGH] right? So management can be expensive. And unless you're at a point where this is something you can afford, you're not ready for it yet. The second question to ask yourself is what can they do for me that I can't do for myself? And we'll talk a little bit more about that in a second. But what exactly are you getting for that $1000 a month? Are you the right sort of fit for this agency? As I mentioned a minute ago, agencies have their different flavors their different focuses. Are you the sort of musician that they already represent? That could mean that they're not looking for yet another string quartet, but that could cut the other way too. They may be saying we represent string quartets [LAUGH] and so you might be perfect for them. So, try to figure out, look at the roster and and of course make inquiries if you know people that are already represented by them or make an inquiry to the agency itself. Do you have the materials the agency is going to want? Okay, so we've spent this whole previous course talking about one of the essential materials. Okay, so they're going to want a brochure, they're going to want some quality recordings. They're going to want a website that is really great media. They're going to want a well crafted mission statement and bios and things like that because they're not going to create that content for you, okay. They are going to use that content to promote you. So if they are interested in you, probably the first thing they're going to say is, well, what do you got? Show me what you got. And if you're like, well, I have this website that's a year old and I have this morning recording, that's not very good. They'll be like, come back when you have your materials in order. Okay, so again, you're not ready for management if you don't already have that stuff at a high level of polish level. So the bottom line is that management is not, this sort of concierge service where everything, they just bring everything to you on a platter. Okay, that is not what management is going to do for you. And if you think that it is going to do that for you, you need to, sort of get a reality check. Now, what management can do for you, I don't want to sound all negative management, is it can be a partner with you to help broaden. Just broaden the net that you're throwing out there into the world because they have connections with venues and bookers and presenters. This is their bread and butter. They're talking with these people all the time. They're working with performing arts centers and artists series and concert series and things like that. And they're always pitching people that they think would be good fits for those venues or for those concert series and so forth. And if you don't have as big a network and you're not going to have a big network probably as a management firm does because this is what they do then that's a good possibility. But if they say, hey, I'm going to be pitching you to the X and Y concert series, they're still going to, you're still going to need to do the legwork of making sure that you get the materials to them if the gig does come through probably booking your travel and doing all that kind of stuff, it's, they're not going to take care of everything, okay. But they can be a really valuable partner in terms of increasing simply the number of people that you're getting your work in front of. It can also give you legitimacy represented by X, Y, Z, then the person looking at you doesn't know anything about you that well, they can't be terrible, right? Because if they were terrible that this agency would not keep them on their roster. So it can give you legitimacy, especially if you are early on in your career, it will force you to polish your materials that we've been talking about over the last couple of, of course is in the specialization. If you do need to do a reboot of your website, if you do need to get some new promotional shots, this will force you to do that right and keep it up to date. You're going to have to do that yourself. They will not do that for you, but it will force you to stay on top of that thing. Okay, so let's talk about booking agents a little bit. So sometimes these are individual sort of impresarios, or they could be companies with a lot of people working for them, but they, in contrast to the artist agencies, they're working for the venue, they are working for the presenter. Okay, so in other words, if you're a club owner and you are wanting to book bands for shows, you might work with the booking agent who will then go out and find people for you, okay. And or another thing would be, a wedding venue is going to work with a booking agent sometimes to find musicians to play for some of their events. So, again, the booking agent is working for the venue, they're not working for you as somebody on that roster, so they also booked by the gig or by tour. Okay, and again, that's different from the artist agency which has this ongoing relationship with you and they are promoting you to everybody that they can think of and hoping to give you gigs, okay? In the booking agent case, they are going gig by gig, case by case, and then they will take a percentage of each gig that is, that is booked usually somewhere between 10 and 15%. So the thing about booking agents is that yes, they are working representing the venue and they're going out searching for folks, but they're not starting from scratch each time. They do that, right. They have a sort of a stable of musicians that they are there, go to people depending on the gig in question. Okay, and some of that stable might be classical musicians. I didn't mean to imply earlier that classical musicians don't work with booking agents. They do particularly with things for things like weddings or events where they want classical music as opposed to, jazz or pop, but the vast majority of what they're doing is going to be working with clubs and entertainment venues and things like that. And so you want to become part of their stable of of go to people because that's how you get repeat work over and over again. And so once you have a really good standing relationship with the booking agent, that can be a really valuable part of your of your gigging career, particularly if you are a musician who is making a significant amount of income from your gigs, the gigs are playing in clubs and bars and things like that. So how do you find a book, how do you get into that stable? Very much about networking if this is another one of those recurring themes, but it really is true that booking agent, once they know they can count on you once they know that you're going to be reliable and give you a good product, they're going to want to keep hiring you because it's their reputation on the line. If they send a dud to the event and the event is like, I'm not going to work you and have you worked for me anymore, you're not giving me good stuff, okay? So do your networking get to know the venue managers, get to know who is out there doing this booking, get to know other musicians and other groups begin to build a reputation of being reliable. Easy to work with your always prepared, no drama. Develop a fan base so that you can demonstrate that you can attract a crowd. How large is your mailing list? How many people do you have following you on social media? Where have you worked before? And where can you say, when I did this show at this club, we packed the place, okay, all the men you might be interested in that, right? Or the booking agent might be interested in that. So once you've done these sorts of things, then you can begin to reach out to a booking agent and say, I would like to join, you join your roster of people that you draw. A great way to get your foot in the door with that is to if somebody who is, representative working with this, booking agent asked to be a sub. So, if they can't do it, ask if they will recommend you as a sub and then you, and then you better show up and knock it out of the park, right? Or be willing to shadow somebody. This is especially useful if we're talking about doing like broadway shows, pit work for a for a show, musical theater. Just shadow somebody who's getting hired all the time and then when an opportunity comes along to sub, then you can get that call and there's your chance to start establishing a rapport with the agent and with the other musicians, and they say, I want to get that guy back again, please, please rehire them. Okay? So, these are all things about networking, building your relationships and then then making the cold call, are making the introduction and hoping to start to build but it's a building process. Next time, we're going to look at a tool to help you pull all of the elements of your portfolio career together it's called the business model canvas and we will talk more about that next time. Okay? And also, the other reason why doing some self management first is I think a better way is it really helps you understand on a personal level what's involved and where you need the most help and that can be useful in determining the kind of agency you need. Maybe you don't need an artist agency to represent you, but you do need somebody to help you with your marketing and your social media. Okay? You can hire somebody do that probably at an hourly rate or perhaps a retainer, but it's going to be a lot less than hiring an artist agency. Okay? So if that's the thing that you identify, you might be able to get that need meant in a different way and it also helps define the point we're no longer able to keep up with everything yourself. So I know a lot of groups who have, ended up going into management after they've been together for, let's say 10 years or sometimes longer where every member of the group, let's say it's a quartet I remember the group has a responsibility in their self management. This person is booking the gigs, this person is booking the travel, this person is writing the grants for the fundraising and, this person is doing the social media and marketing. Okay? Great. Everyone has a division of labor and there are a lot of groups that do that very successfully for many, many years and then they get to a point where they're getting enough gigs and there's enough stuff is happening that their plates are just starting to overflow. They're stuff is starting to slip through the cracks, everyone's starting to get crabby with each other and then it's like, okay, maybe now is the time for us to talk about management and getting some of these things off of our plate so that we can focus more on making music and continuing to get better. So, I always recommend trying to self manage first, whether you're an individual or a group and if you are a group, divide up the things amongst you depending on your strengths and interests. If you are an individual, do all of the time management and task management, things that we talked about earlier on in this course to try to keep things in balance and be willing to look at when you do hire somebody, having them represent just a little sliver of something that you need taken off your plate like, please help me manage my social media. And then if you get to the point where you absolutely need management, then you're ready to go to the next level you have a track record, you have some materials to show to this prospective management, and you have a reputation. The other thing to remember is that management is not a magic wand, it is not going to be your big break, that's going to make you famous and I think this is the biggest misconception, particularly among classical musicians, that if I get with an agency now, it's just smooth sailing. Now I'm going to start getting better gigs now, I'm going to start getting great reviews in the newspaper those sorts of things and it doesn't work that way management is a partner, they are there to help you, but in the case of an artist agency, they are working for themselves. And also in the case of a booking agent, they're working for themselves, they have to make a living and they can't do that of course, unless you are providing them with the material and the content that they need to do that well. Okay? So this is why I say that management is about one tool in your toolbox. Okay? They can help you, but they're not going to do everything for you now I kind of look at it, it's like a like a kitchen appliance. Right? Next time, we're going to look at a tool to help you pull all of the elements of your portfolio career together it's called the business model canvas and we will talk more about that next time. Right? Next time, we're going to look at a tool to help you pull all of the elements of your portfolio career together it's called the business model canvas and we will talk more about that next time. Next time, we're going to look at a tool to help you pull all of the elements of your portfolio career together it's called the business model canvas and we will talk more about that next time.