Career Development

What Does an Artist Manager Do?

Find out what an artist manager does, how to get this job, and what it takes to succeed as an artist manager.

Artist managers are the people who help to manage the careers of artists in a variety of different fields. This includes musicians, actors, writers, painters, and other creative types who need someone to handle their business affairs on a day-to-day basis.

Artist managers may also be involved with helping to develop an artist’s career by finding opportunities for them to perform or display their work. They might negotiate contracts with venues, producers, publishers, etc., and they often act as a liaison between the artist and these third parties.

Artist Manager Job Duties

Artist managers typically have a wide range of responsibilities, which can include:

  • Negotiating contracts with record labels or agencies to secure the best terms possible for clients
  • Overseeing the artist’s public image, including wardrobe selection, hair styles and make up application, in order to project the desired image to fans
  • Communicating with managers at other companies to build relationships and share information about clients who may be a good fit for each other’s artists
  • Consulting with clients about their stage presence, including posture, body language, facial expressions, and gestures
  • Negotiating contracts with venues, promoters, or other businesses that wish to hire the artist for performances
  • Identifying opportunities for exposure in media such as television, radio, magazines, and newspapers
  • Reviewing contracts for legal compliance and negotiating modifications where necessary
  • Coordinating with agents at talent agencies to help select songs for albums and determine which songs should be released as singles
  • Monitoring online sales of music or merchandise to ensure that they are generating enough revenue to cover expenses

Artist Manager Salary & Outlook

Manager salaries vary depending on their level of education, years of experience, and the size and industry of the band they manage. They may also earn additional compensation in the form of commissions and bonuses.

  • Median Annual Salary: $62,500 ($30.05/hour)
  • Top 10% Annual Salary: $112,000 ($53.85/hour)

The employment of artist managers is expected to grow much faster than average over the next decade.

The need for artist managers will increase as more artists seek representation in order to gain access to new markets and revenue streams. In addition, the increasing popularity of television shows such as “Glee” and “American Idol” has led to greater interest in musical theater and other types of performance art.

Related: Artist Manager Interview Questions and Answers

Artist Manager Job Requirements

There are a few key qualifications that an artist manager should possess, which include:

Education: Most artist managers have at least a bachelor’s degree in a related field, such as music, art or business. Some aspiring artist managers choose to earn a master’s degree in fine arts or business administration to increase their employment opportunities and earning potential.

Training & Experience: Many artist managers learn the specific skills and knowledge they need for their role while on the job. Training may include shadowing an existing artist manager or learning the specific software and systems the company uses. Training may also include learning about the artists the company represents and the requirements for each.

Some artist managers have previous experience in the arts. For example, a painter may become an artist manager or a musician may become a music manager. Some artist managers also have experience in the entertainment industry, such as working as a publicist or in marketing.

Certifications & Licenses: A valid license to manage artists is often a requirement when applying for jobs as a artist manager. Specific requirements vary from state to state, so you will need to do some research to determine the exact qualifications that are expected in your desired location.

Artist Manager Skills

Artists need the following skills in order to be successful:

Marketing: Marketing skills allow you to create effective marketing campaigns for your artists. You can use these skills to create advertisements, plan events and develop strategies to promote your artists’ work. This can help you to increase ticket sales, grow your fan base and increase your artists’ revenue.

Networking: As a artist manager, networking is an important skill to have. You may use networking to find new artists to work with, find venues for artists to perform at or find other people who can help you with your job. You can also use networking to find new artists to work with to develop new music.

Time management: Time management skills allow a artist manager to plan their work schedule effectively. This can include scheduling studio time, recording sessions and live performances. It’s important to be aware of the time needed for each task so you can prioritize your work accordingly.

Financial planning: As an artist manager, you may be responsible for managing an artist’s finances. This can include creating budgets, managing expenses and ensuring the artist has the money they need to continue their career. You may also be responsible for managing the finances of the artist’s team, which can include ensuring the team has the resources they need to continue their work.

Business development: Business development skills can help you grow your career as a music artist manager. This skill can help you understand how to grow your company’s revenue and profit. You can use business development skills to find new clients, develop new revenue streams and find new ways to grow your business.

Artist Manager Work Environment

Artist managers work in a variety of settings, including record labels, artist management firms, concert promoters, and artist development companies. They typically work long hours, including evenings and weekends, and often travel to meet with clients or attend industry events. Artist managers must be able to work well under pressure and handle the stress of managing multiple projects at once. They must also be able to juggle the demands of their clients’ careers with the demands of their own personal and professional lives.

Artist Manager Trends

Here are three trends influencing how artist managers work. Artist managers will need to stay up-to-date on these developments to keep their skills relevant and maintain a competitive advantage in the workplace.

The Growth of the Digital Economy

The digital economy is growing at a rapid pace, and this is having a significant impact on the arts industry. Artists are now able to distribute their work online, which has opened up new opportunities for them to reach a wider audience.

Artist managers can take advantage of this trend by developing strong digital marketing skills. They should also be familiar with the latest social media platforms, as these are often the best way to reach an artist’s fans.

Artists Will Need to Be More Entrepreneurial

As the music industry continues to evolve, artists will need to be more entrepreneurial in order to succeed. This means that they will need to be able to manage their own careers, from writing songs to promoting themselves.

Artist managers can help their clients navigate this changing landscape by providing them with the tools and resources they need to be successful. They can also help them find the right partners and collaborators to help them achieve their goals.

More Collaboration Between Artists and Managers

In the past, artists and managers rarely worked together, as the manager’s job was simply to handle the business side of things. However, this is no longer the case, as artists and managers are increasingly working together to create a better product.

This trend is likely to continue in the future, as artists and managers realize that they can benefit from each other’s expertise. By working together, they can create a product that is both artistically and commercially successful.

How to Become an Artist Manager

A career as a artist manager can be rewarding and fulfilling. It’s important to consider what you want out of your career before embarking on this path. Do you want to work with a specific type of art or artists? Are you interested in the business side of the art world? What is your personality like?

It’s also important to research the different types of artist managers that exist. There are many different ways to approach this career, so find one that best fits your needs and interests. Once you have a better understanding of what it means to be an artist manager, start building your network and finding opportunities to get involved.

Advancement Prospects

Artist managers typically start out working for larger companies in entry-level positions. As they gain experience, they may be promoted to higher-level positions such as tour manager, head of publicity, or head of artist development. Those who are especially successful may eventually open their own management companies.

Artist Manager Job Description Example

[CompanyX] is a music management company that specializes in developing and promoting new artists. We are looking for an artist manager to join our team and help us take our artists to the next level. The ideal candidate will have a passion for music, experience in the music industry, and strong relationships with music industry professionals. They will be responsible for managing the day-to-day activities of our artists, including bookings, scheduling, and promoting. They will also be responsible for developing and executing long-term career plans for our artists.

Duties & Responsibilities

  • Serve as the primary point of contact and liaison between the artist and the label
  • Develop and execute long-term career plans in collaboration with the artist and other members of the team
  • Oversee all aspects of the day-to-day management of the artist, including but not limited to: scheduling, travel, finances, social media, creative direction, etc.
  • Proactively seek out and secure opportunities for the artist that align with their career goals
  • Negotiate and execute contracts on behalf of the artist
  • Manage budgets and expenditures related to the artist’s career
  • Foster and maintain relationships with key industry contacts, including but not limited to: agents, promoters, venue owners/bookers, festival organizers, etc.
  • Coordinate with other members of the team, including but not limited to: publicists, lawyers, business managers, etc. to ensure that the artist’s needs are being met
  • Stay up-to-date on industry trends and news relevant to the artist’s career
  • Attend events, concerts, and meetings on behalf of the artist as needed
  • Prepare reports and presentations for the artist and the label as needed
  • Perform any other duties as assigned

Required Skills and Qualifications

  • Bachelor’s degree in business, music, or related field
  • 3-5 years experience in artist management, music industry, or similar role
  • Proven ability to develop and execute creative marketing plans
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills
  • Strong negotiation skills
  • Highly organized with excellent attention to detail

Preferred Skills and Qualifications

  • Master’s degree in business, music, or related field
  • 5-7 years experience in artist management, music industry, or similar role
  • Experience managing multiple artists and projects simultaneously
  • Proficiency in Spanish or another language
  • Familiarity with the US and international music markets


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