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Artist Talent Booking Agents - How to Get Signed continued....

The agent calls the club owner, and by the way, the club owner who wears many hats in his or her small business, is signing for the beer delivery, and at the same time, entertaining the idea of the agent's act, but feels a lack of excitement, and here's why.  The club owner has, let's say 250 seats, that they can sell tickets with.  The local band, that brings in a fairly large crowd, who eats there and buys drinks, etc comes with their own sound equipment, along with their reliable friends who will fill a bunch of the house and spend money.  Now you're on the other end of the line, as an agent, and you are trying to get a guarantee, along with sound and lights and now this club owner has to spend money and advertise, because nobody knows who your act is.  As the club owner, do you take on the risk, or do you just fly with the local act?  That's what you're up against. Your obtaining an agent isn't about the logic that he or she can just make some calls, and you've got some gigs to play.  It's way beyond that.  And besides the traditional brick and mortar agencies, the market is now flooded with cyber agents who have limited rolls, working mainly to obtain the potential promoter and they are not as interested in the signing of new acts - the playing field has significantly changed.  In some ways that's good and in some not so good.  So what do you do as an artist?  Some of that depends on where you are at within your career.  How much buzz have your received with Indie air play or downloads, etc.  What is it about your career that would want to cause an agent to say yes?  Take the time to answer that question.  What's in it for them?  If you can find some ways to answer those questions, you're much closer to the potential deal.  Here are some ideas.  Try giving the potential agent a smaller percentage on your record sales - make it worth their while.  After all, the big labels are all creating 360 deals where they take a percentage of the record, a percentage of merchandising and a percentage of publishing.  Find ways to answer that question of, "What's in it for me" and you'll be much closer.  Now if you're selling a bunch of records and you've got some traction, than obviously, you've got more options - that's just a fact.  But if I were some of you, I would get creative and find ways to sweeten the deal with a good agent, one who is going to reward you with time and effort.  Perhaps you can make an arrangement where you work "X" number of hours creating social media content for yours and other acts that they represent.  Perhaps you offer them a percentage of the agent's fee that is a little higher and perhaps you work it down after a period of time when your career starts taking off.  Maybe you tell them, I'll mail everything out and follow up by such and such.  I'm just getting creative, because at the end of the day, there has to be an answer to the what's in it for the agent - there just has to be.  And no, it's not good enough to grab a typical percentage on a baby act requiring much more energy and time on the phone.  There are better ways to spend that time and other acts that require a lot less of it - that's just a fact. On the positive side of the equation, there is always room at the top, but you'll have to push and be creative to grab the attention of those who can help you get there.  Evaluate your career to see how you can approach an agent and to what extent you'll have pull in the current state of your career.  Look at creative ways to bridge the equation and make it worth their while.  Always have a polished and pro EPK available along with your great sounding music.
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