As an independent hip hop artist, an idea that might have been floating around in your head is to hire a manager.
Hiring a manager can be useful as they can help you get plenty more work, and can deal with a lot of the stuff you simply don’t have the time, patience or expertise to deal with. Rather than ending up in this situation, though, you should consider two things.
Are you capable of learning and dealing with all of the things a manager would be dealing with?
It’s a double edged sword, so for any hip-hop artist who isn’t sure what to do here are some considerations to think about when you go to hire a manager.
Can you afford to take on a manager?
As an independent hip-hop artist you might find that the actual income you are making at the moment is about all you can afford. Bringing a manager in will usually, at the least, be eating into your profits.
Can you afford that? Do you need to lose the cash in order to start building a profile and getting more work?
Think about this before making any decisions, as it could be thing that saves you from making a mistake.
Can you promote yourself?
Typically, any good hip-hop artist will want to be promoted and want the world to hear their stuff.
How good are you at fashioning your own events and getting yourself into venues? Do you find it easy? Do you find that you have plenty of confidence when you are booking up with a venue?
If you find it hard to sell yourself, a manager might be worth considering. A manager can help you make sure that you have all of the things you need like a social media presence and a graphical artist to make your releases look great.
Do you understand the role?
Music is a cut-throat business and managers can be hard people to deal with if you don’t know how to handle their rules.
Make sure you fully understand that link – it’s very important in helping you understand what you’ll be dealing with as an indie artist who hires a manager.
As your manager, that person will be responsible for:
- Promoting your music via online and traditional channels – e.g. blogs, social media, flyers, posters, interviews.
- Organising and booking interviews with radio stations, publications and blogs.
- Sourcing and hiring other artists, DJs and producers to work with you.
- Booking and promoting your live shows.
- Negotiating with other brands and companies to fully leverage your content and maximise your exposure.
Are they a team player?
A manager will be taking up to 20% of your income in most cases, so you want to make sure they are on your side.
Can you trust your manager to look out for your career, your philosophy and your own income?
Or do they seem pre-occupied with increasing your income for themselves?
You need someone who will be happy to make sure that you both succeed – not that you are only succeeding because it helps them get somewhere a bit higher!