Reporter's Notebook

The art and science of the interview

Who Does What for Entertainment Types?

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Personal Assistant

I came upon these terms, and realized I didn’t have a clear understanding of what they meant, especially with all of the creative types on Twitter and Facebook.  So I decided to try to define them.

  • Booking or Talent Agent – Somebody who finds work for creative types (authors, dancers, actors, singers, musicians, etc.) and athletes who are associated with the entertainment business.  Agents may represent many people and represent them directly.  In recent years, some managers have become agents to combine skills and be more effective and useful for talent.  But in some states, this is not allowed.
  • Personal Manager – Managers establish connections with producers and studios, labels and publishers. The responsibility of the talent manager is to oversee the day to day business affairs of an artist; to advise and counsel talent about professional matters and personal decisions which may affect their career. Managers tend to work with only a few people.  Some people believe a manager’s job is to prepare talent for agents.
  • Business Manager – A business manager is a representative of musicians and/or recording artist whose main job is to supervise their business affairs, and the proper handling of their financial matters. The role as it is understood today was helping them to both invest their incomes wisely and to recover unpaid (or underpaid) royaltoes and fees.  Business managers commonly have an overlapping presence in both the entertainment and sports industries.
  • Public Relations Manager – This is someone who researchs, writes and edits materials, including press releases, bios, newsletters and more. In addition to creating PR strategies and establishing media opportunities for talent, they create and execute client launch plans for trade and business press, while working with personal managers to create creative and timely social media content.

Each of these people can charge between 10% and 20% for their services.  Consequently, because there is overlap from double-duty, some of them are not always needed by talent while others are needed only periodically.

Written by Interviewer

December 29, 2012 at 00:20

Posted in Scratchpad

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