Don’t Do It!
I just can’t for the life of me understand why anyone would choose to pay a commission. To book us through an entertainment agency and not make direct contact with us.
Don’t get me wrong, our fees are the same no matter how we’re booked or what the function might be. For example we all hear stories of prices escalating once the word “wedding” is mentioned.
We’ve had an occasion where we have played for a 21st birthday, then engagement party, then her wedding, and all the way through our fees remained unchanged for that season no matter what the function. In fact we introduce a discount for repeat bookings to acknowledge loyalty. So my point is our fees do not differ whether we are booked directly or through an agent.
The difference is the dreaded agent’s fee. Most recently we were engaged through an agent, and I can tell you the agent’s commission was $300. For this commission the agent sends us an email with the booking details eg. date, time, address etc. That’s it!
The annoying thing is, if a potential client books through an agent, it will cost them a hefty commission; make direct contact with us and NO AGENT COMMISSION!
An agent will tell you that if there’s a problem, then the client has the agent as back up, but the fact is as they don’t go to the bookings, they don’t meet us, they don’t know who we are.
Four Seasons String Quartet has been providing beautiful and engaging live string music for 18 years and we have NEVER failed to deliver on time, every time. We wouldn’t be the benchmark for so long if this wasn’t the case.
We have, however, had to overcome the dangers of being engaged through agents. For example we have been sent to the wrong address, been given such poor venue details we’ve been left guessing our way, been given the wrong date…yes the wrong date, been given no info on the type of function we’re playing for ( this helps us develop a suitable playlist), been left unpaid for more than 6 months, been sent to less than desirable locations, the list goes on. On several occasions we’ve been requested to use a pseudonym by the agent so we don’t get any recognition.
There are so many benefits by simply making direct contact with myself instead of an agent. I have touched on this topic in an earlier blog “Communication Is The Key”.
In summary, who you make first contact with will make so much difference to you.