Talent Managers vs. Talent Agents: The Difference and What's Right for You?


Happy Tuesday Talent!

I hope everyone is having a great day landing roles and building your showbiz careers! I wanted to write a quick article on a question that I have gotten over 50 times in the last two days alone! Fact is, there is a lot of talent that don't know the difference between Talent Managers and Talent Agents! Both are very vital to your career in showbiz. Pay attention and feel free to ask me any questions in the comment section below. :)

Talent Agents
Talent Agent is a person who is hired to find you jobs in the entertainment industry. Agents generally work for an agency that can represent as many as 100-1000 clients. An Agents sole purpose is to take your material, (Headshots, Reels, Resume, Snapshots, etc.) and attempt to find you as much work as they can within your type cast. They are not responsible for investing anything in your career whatsoever. Due to the overwhelming amount of clients and deadlines most agents have, don't be alarmed if you haven't heard from them in a couple of days, or weeks. They will generally only call if work is to be discussed.

Talent Agents are regulated and must be licensed and bonded  in their states of residence. General contract terms can be anywhere from 1-3 years. A reputable talent agent should take anywhere from 10-15% of your income. Anything higher should be accompanied with an academy award and a crown! It is also very important to do research on who you plan to work with: Analyze their roster and credits.

A common misconception with agents in Hollywood is that once you're signed: You'll get jobs coming in every second. NEGATIVE.  The industry is VERY fluid. You'll have times where you're booking 3-4 times a month, and then you'll have periods where you book absolutely NOTHING. It happens. That's where a great talent manager comes in.

Talent Managers
Talent Managers
 are the "meat and potatoes"of your entertainment career. We handle the overall direction and make decisions in the best interest of furthering your career.  Unlike Talent Agents, Talent Managers are not regulated by the state. On a typical day, Talent Managers do all of the following:

  • Handle business matters and negotiate contracts.

  • Arrange auditions with notable contacts, agents, and casting directors.

  • Submit you for roles that fit your typecast or character background.

  • Advise you on your casting material, providing references to industry professionals.

  • Give stellar advice on personal career tips, as well as build a personal relationship with you.

  • Public Relations -- Your image is everything in show business.

  • Provide Career Advice and direction at all times -- You should never feel stuck if you have a talent manager.

  • Create side jobs and produce branding project to help further you in your career.

The list of work goes on! Generally, a personal talent manager can carry as low as 5-20 clients on their roster. There is a lot that goes into an entertainment career, and the more clients we have means less time for you. Talent Managers are the extra pull when an agent is having a hard time selling you. Most reputable talent managers take anywhere from 10-15% of your entertainment income and contracts can range between 1-3 years. Talent Managers have the ability to take your career to the next level.

Which one is right for me?
Most of my applicants are just starting out and the idea of having a talent agent and/or talent manager is beautiful.  Often times, they have no idea the difference of either.

The answer depends on where you're at currently in your career. 

Most talent managers and talent agents will not invest in beginning talent, that's just facts. Unless you're the next Leonardo Di Caprio with amazing talent, we're not interested.

Both can have outstanding effects on your career and it's really a personal decision. If you have any further questions, feel free to comment or email me personally (contact@chrisgiovanni.com)!