Tips for Negotiating Management Contracts for Artists from John Branca UCLA

As an artist, getting an offer for professional management is a sign of years of hard work, time, and effort in the ever-changing entertainment industry. Because this may seem like your “big break,” you may believe that you have to take what the management team offers or walk away from the deal altogether.

However, this isn’t the case, according to John Branca. As the artist, you have power and options. When you are presented with a contract or agreement, knowing how to negotiate favorable terms is a must. Keep reading for some tips to help you get the best entertainment management contract terms.

Limit the Term of the Agreement

Most managers try to “lock-in” artists to an agreement for as long as possible. Usually, these agreements have an extensive “initial term,” with some being as long as five years. Once you sign, you will have limited options to get out of the contract if you don’t like the services provided by the management team or don’t get along with the management.

Because of this, it’s a good idea to shorten the initial term of the agreement, if possible. This will help you avoid an expensive legal battle if you want out of the agreement down the road.

Avoid Career Management Agreements

As a musician, finding a manager who has experience with musicians is smart. However, this management service should not merge over into your other activities, such as potential modeling or acting career that you may pursue in the future.

Most managers want “exclusivity” rights to artists. That’s because they will have more control, and this is what their goal is. Instead, find a manager that is willing to accept being the manager for just your music career and then seek other management options if you pursue other activities in the entertainment industry.

Hire a Professional Bookkeeper

The purpose of a management agreement is to determine how the manager will handle your day-to-day activities. They are also going to determine how your finances are managed. That’s because the manager will receive a commission from your earnings.

It’s best to have a separate bank account and bookkeeper to help you manage your money and avoid any type of serious issues.

Hire an Entertainment Lawyer for Help

When it comes to entertainment-related matters, having an entertainment lawyer is a smart option. They can review your agreements and contracts and ensure you get favorable terms for your needs and situation.