4 Steps to Landing a Talent Manager Who Has Your Back

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While not every performer needs one, talent managers can help propel an actor from struggling artist to Hollywood’s next big thing. If you want to know how to get a talent manager who can finesse your career moves, amplify your audience, and cement your name alongside your idols, this guide is for you.

1. Narrow down a list of potential talent managers based on your work.

First, make a list of managers for actors in your area, highlighting the ones who represent your desired medium. Many managers represent both film and theater actors, but some specialize in a specific area. Make sure they’re familiar with the type of work you’re interested in. Also, note the ages they represent and any additional specifications, as some managers list certain types of clients they are seeking at that time. Backstage’s database of talent management companies is a great place to start when looking for a manager.

2. Follow submission guidelines.

While some talent managers prefer materials to be emailed, others prefer receiving hard copies. Do not call or visit the management company if they don’t want you to. Instead, follow their submission policy exactly to ensure that you make a good first impression.

3. Send your materials.

Send each manager the following:

In your cover letter, make sure to address which manager you are interested in working with and why based on the research that you’ve done. Explain why it’s the right time in your career to begin working with a manager and how you feel one would add to your growth and success. You may also want to briefly address your strengths and personality as an artist. Make sure to invite the talent manager to any upcoming projects.

4. Prepare questions for prospective managers.

A good acting manager will be interested in the overall trajectory of your career, including where you came from, what your goals are, and how you’re working to achieve those goals. They should be able to evaluate your career not only by the roles you get but also by how your work is received and publicized, as well as how you can use it to leverage the next opportunity. Finally, they should be aware of any presence you have online and how those who see it interpret it. 

To ensure a prospective manager can cover these bases, it’s important to have a list of questions prepared to ask at your first meeting. Some potential questions include:

  • How many clients do you represent? Are they mostly early career or established?
  • What’s your process for helping develop and guide an actor’s career? How hands-on are you? Do you help clients manage their online presence?
  • How do you help actors land auditions and roles? What are your connections and resources within the industry?
  • What’s your management style? How does it compare to other managers?
  • Can you give a few examples of the ways you’ve successfully guided other actors’ careers?
  • Have you ever had a conflict with a client? If so, how was it resolved?
  • Do you primarily work with TV, film, theater, or commercial performers?
  • How do you adapt your management strategies for TV and film, theater, voiceover, commercials, and other acting mediums? Is there a particular medium you work with the most or best?

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