Welcome to EvO:R Entertainment
The EvO:R-Pedia Musicians Tips Section
Welcome to the EvO:R Tips Section. We call this section EvO:R-Pedia because it is like a complete
reference library for Indie musicians...Just about every tip has been used so you won't find false
promises and a series of books to buy after reading each tip. This section was put here by musicians
so that people that followed can take this knowledge and use it's power.
Entrepreneurship Is The Key To New Artist Success Today
by Posted By Les Vogt
The dictionary defines an entrepreneur as a "risk-taker who has the skills and initiative to create a business." Associated synonyms are... administrator, backer, businessman, contractor, executive, impresario, industrialist, manager, organizer, producer and promoter...
Posted By Les Vogt
Most of the above definitions pretty much outline the job description required for an entertainer to succeed in today's music business environment. Many booking agents and promoters are becoming extinct animals because of their inability to conquer the internet. Much of the talent and their buyers are beginning to contact each other directly through web sites and various internet technologies. The middlemen (mostly agents) who do not exclusively control their talent, own a specific niche market or cannot adjust to the new climate... are slowly fading away into oblivion.
Entertainers and agents must wear many different hats in order to survive in the ever changing new marketplace. The performer must often act as his/her own agent, manager and publicist, mostly because if they don't do it - who will? The business of "getting noticed" isn't easy and it certainly won't happen by itself. A lot of agents are busy learning to become producers and event planners to help them earn a living today. The most experienced agents are not particularly interested in taking the time to develop a new artist... even when an artist's potential is blatantly obvious. They understand the time and effort required to get the artist to a point of recognition and acceptance. Performers will often blindly believe they are ready when they are not. Therefore, an agent or representative can put in a great deal of time and money with an act and, at the end of the day, be fired for not bringing the performer the immediate success they were expecting.
Entertainers in specialty areas, are having an especially difficult time attracting agent interest because of the thankless work required to search out buyers from those specific market groups. All told, we have a good many artists booking themselves in order to survive. At this point, it is not much of a stretch for the successful artist to become an agent for other talent. It's a natural progression for the self-managed artist. If you are a strong act with a nose for business, how hard is it to suggest another performer to a satisfied client? When a great act comes along, most buyers think the sun shines out of their back side, and they're likely targets for the would-be artist/agent. Entertainers are becoming agents and it's happening more and more... we need to get used to it.
Many artists, especially in the beginning, offer their services to as many agents as possible... and they'll be only too happy to accept bookings directly from the end user (buyers and venues) as well. This is definitely the right thing to do... artists starting out, and/or those in specialty areas, or with borderline abilities, will find it difficult getting gigs without pushing hard on their own. When an artist becomes successful at booking his/her own dates, it is usually because nobody else will do it. Many of these acts will eventually be good, get "noticed" and become successful through determination and persistence. But, because they have learned how to book themselves out of necessity, they will very rarely work through an agency except when the agent controls a venue or a gig they want... in which case they'll gladly pay the appropriate booking agent commission. You can hardly blame them... where were all the agents when the talent really needed them?
It is easy to understand, then, that the days of an artist passing on leads (even leads obtained from an agent booked gig) back to the agent are becoming a thing of the past. Basically, it boils down to survival... whoever gets the gig, gets the commission. Many artists believe that when they book a gig on their own, there shouldn't be any agent commission to pay. Sounds like a fair deal doesn't it? Or is it? Let's look at the other side of the picture...
Every worthwhile agent is (or should be) continually preparing promotional material, searching out and pounding new prospects as well as servicing their existing contacts with all forms of artist publicity... and making follow-up telephone calls on a daily basis. The artist is also (or should be) working hard at finding new contacts... plus, all the other agents working with the artist are likely offering the act's promo as well. Sooner or later buyers will begin receiving the same promo materials from several different agents and likely won't buy from any of them... especially if the price varies which is often the case. Buyers get nervous when prices vary and many will try to locate the acts directly (if possible) in order to get the best possible deal. The internet allows anyone the opportunity to connect to almost anyone in a matter of minutes.
Entertainers must always be alert and able to recognize what is happening in their businesses. They need to know when an agent is responsible for getting the gig (especially a re-booking ) even if it comes to them directly by phone or website... and the agents have to know they will always be compensated with an appropriate booking commission. It will be this trust and confidence that will set one performer apart from the others and help build a strong, long-lasting, mutually beneficial relationship with booking agents. It is easy to build a network of positive team players when you remain honest and forthright rather than cutting corners through false entitlement and non-payment of agent commissions. Maintaining a positive attitude and a cooperative work ethic with all agents, producers and buyers will guarantee their continued support throughout your entire career. Failure to honor and maintain these relationships will eventually eliminate your support system ... and one day you'll wonder why you aren't working much anymore.
Author's site: http://www.members.shaw.ca/lesvogt
Les Vogt is an independent producer, promoter and