“Do You Need a Manager?” by Fawn Nicole
I’m writing this as an attempt to dispel the myth of a manager especially in the role of managing an independent artist. I someone who didn’t understand in the beginning and have learned quite a bit along the way. I am a #NewLegend and firmly believe in paying it forward… so here goes nothing.
A manager’s goal is to help manage your career…if you have no career to manage, there is no need for a manager. This would mean coordinating efforts between members of a team including publicity and maybe a booking agent. If neither one of these exist at this point, I want you to think about it this way…If you aren’t making money, a MANAGER isn’t making money and so there is NO NEED for one. Now, on the flip side, some managers may assist with various other duties and… YOU SHOULD COMPENSATE THEM FOR THOSE SERVICES!!!
Please stop contacting people saying you need a manager, ESPECIALLY if you don’t have a bio, EPK, website, ASCAP/BMI and other things.
What you actually need is consulting and/or development. This will come in the form of someone who has made progress with artists and has experience. And if you actually can do some research and see that this person had made moves… why the hell do you expect them to work for free? This is a BUSINESS and it is driven by money! If you don’t know that, then you simply do not want a career in this and do not need to waste any more time or money on making music.
Now, some managers do provide developmental services, and I am sure they are fee based. But do not feel some type of way if those who strictly manage and are great at it do not want to attach their established brand to yours that may not even exist yet.
Please stop using the term manager to make sure you don’t have to spend any money up front for services provided by this person. It is unfair and is disrespectful to expect someone to invest in you without you investing in them. I’ll ask you this, if I work for you for free while investing my time, what in the world can I expect my ROI to be? I’ll wait.
I am approached all the time by artists seeking management, and as soon as I respond saying that I am not looking for new acts to manage but I am accepting new clients for consulting and developmental services… here come the crickets! It is absolutely astounding! I have worked in various parts of this business for nearly six years and have the know how and connections to take an artist from a point a to b.
No matter what level of an indie artist you are, before you really get started there are things that you need to figure out. And you may not know how to go about figuring these things out, that’s fine. There are folks out here you can pay a set fee and have a conversation about it. They will help you figure it out and they may even give you a couple of contacts to move upon. These are the absolute bare minimum skills required to move through this industry.
You want to build viability for your brand to a point of significant transition as an artist. If you do not know what the previous sentence means, then you probably need to hire me(Shameless plug). This is the difference between you being able to quit the 9 to 5 you hate in order to afford recording or securing strategic alliances so your recording is funded from a source other than your own.
Follow Fawn on Twitter: @FawnNicole