If you feel yourself being overwhelmed and drained by all the work you have to do to advance your music career, it may be time to think about getting a good manager - one who will understand your vision and do what’s best for your career.
There’s music and then there’s the music business. As you begin your journey as an artist it’s easy to overlook music as a business, as you just want to write songs and share your music. But as you grow, the business duties needed for a full-time music career may seem to get in the way of your creative process. This is where it may prove helpful to hire a manager.
A manager may turn out to be the most important person in your career; your number 1 fan, your teammate, and somebody who will do all they can for you to succeed. Not only do they oversee everything from the recording of a song to the release of any project, but they are also the link between you the artist, and everybody else. Depending on the agreement; from booking, performances, social media management, and even your personal welfare - the best managers handle business effectively thereby enabling you to focus solely on your music.
They are the voice of an artist in the business world; a creative mind who is able to navigate changes in trends so the artist keeps growing. Every day’s a new day with a new business idea.
Here are some additional duties of a music managers.
Building your team
Which includes, agents, publicists, accountants, lawyers, and other people who will work in line with your vision for growth.
Day-to-day operations and liaising
As they are the voice of an artist, they daily find connections and opportunities. These may include proposals for gigs, interviews, and features; making sure taxes, scheduling, merchandise, and other small business details are in order. This is why it is important for a manager and an artist to have a good level of understanding to avoid confusion or conflict. A good manager should understand the artist's vision as they are their voice.
A manager may provide an artist with advice about their next move and help them come up with sound decisions. They may track down sponsors, sync licensing, ad placements/endorsements, and other income streams. By creating connections within the industry and nurturing those connections, advancing to the next level becomes increasingly likely.
Give you credibility as a professional music artist.
They may coordinate with and talk to labels, venues, promoters, and other entities on your behalf. They may also introduce artist to industry people who may help in boosting their career.
Enable you to focus on your music.
If you have to engage with fans, talk to promoters, radio stations, and journalists, run your official website and do all the things needed to have a firm hold on the industry, it may leave you with little time and energy to actually create music. Having a music manager allows you to do what you need to do - focus solely on your music and make appearances when necessary.
At this point, you may be thinking about what the next steps to take may be. As for hiring the right manager, we advise that you do it slowly and carefully. Observe! Look at their people skills, organizational skills, marketing skills, and reputation. Can they take calculated risks? Are they willing to spend wisely? Do they have musical abilities? It may be a good idea to look within your circle, maybe a friend or family member who is interested in getting into the music business. Managing you will give them some experience and take some duties off your back. This should, however, be handled with the utmost care as working with family could turn sour. You could also do some research about music managers in your area, ask for referrals and when you’re ready, introduce yourself. Orient them on your vision, goals, and style; be honest about everything and if they can see the big picture, they will probably be a good fit.
If and when you finally find a suitable manager, it will be wise to draw up a contract. Seek legal advice if you must, and make sure that all parties involved are on the same page. Get everything in writing so as to protect yourself (and them). Although it may vary, there are two basic ways a personal manager may be paid: a percentage of gross income (15% or 20% commission based on gross income) or a flat rate. Also, be wary of conflicts of interest.
Most importantly, don’t just hire somebody because they show interest as your choice of management could make or mar your career.
We hope this was helpful. If you already have a manager, what factors did you consider when choosing them? Let us know in the comment section.