Artist Managers are the hub of all that goes on with the artist. This person is responsible for making sure the artists themselves are successful. Like any business it is the managers job to know what product or service they have and how to exploit it. This cannot be done without a support team created from others working in the industry.
There are five major entrepreneurial traits and skills that are necessary to be successful as a manager. They are to drive business results, deliver results through people, ensure market-driven direction, guide product “fit” and function, and manage multiple priorities. With these skills the manager will use his support team to drive the artist to success.
Understanding the market of which the artist connects creatively and commercially with will increase the chances of fans buying the products. Those products are the artists in several forms. Some are CD's, mp3, tickets, videos, or T-shirts. It is the manager’s job not only to help the record label sell CD's or digital content but to sell tickets and other merchandise as well. Such things as age, sex, race, and religion, geographic, psychographic, and behavioristic can define the market demographics to which the manager must be aware of. Branding and image is something more detailed under the marketing aspect of the product. The purpose is to make the artist distinct in the current market.
The managers support team should include a booking agent, attorney, publicist, and possibly some business advisors. Each of these four groups has many things to deal with. Booking agents provide connections to paid performances that may also include appearances in commercials, tour sponsorship’s, and television specials. Attorneys are the people who read, write, and negotiate the contracts between artist and those the artist work with. This is how the artist gets paid and the attorney should be someone who is very familiar with the music business. The publicist is the person who sends information about the artist to radio, TV, cable, newspapers, magazines, and or the Internet. In other words they have all the connections to relevant media outlets and are trained in knowing what the needs of editors and decision markers are for those outlets. Business advisors are broken down into four categories. The first category is bankers who deal with the financial portion of the business. The next would be someone who could recommend appropriate insurance coverage’s for such things as transportation of tour equipment and or injuries that may occur during set up or tear down of a show. Another is an accountant. The accountant will have special skills pertaining to the music industry and will then take over writing checks, making deposits, and paying expenses. They will also keep track and understand taxes from other states and countries. This may become a position for a certified public accountant. The last manager is one who handles money for the artist. They also pay bills, make deposits, and make investments for the artist to build wealth. All of these people must have special skills in their area and it is the manager’s job to choose the people who do.
The manager must have a career plan for the artist. It’s the manager’s job to implement the artist and support team together for success. The manager is the center of all actions and there is much responsibility required to do this job.
Allen, Paul Artist Management for the Music Business
McGraw Hill Product Managers Field Guide