How does a booking agent negotiate model rates?

it’s our job to offer our models the best paid work around!

Everyone needs a helping hand. And not many people like talking about money. If you’re one of the few that likes to “go it alone” or revels in discussing financial matters, then you’ll certainly be in the minority!

Fortunately, an agent loves talking about money! Not because they are pin-striped, cigar-munching fat cats with a ruthless streak not usually observed outside the Square Mile. Quite the opposite, in fact. A respectable model agency genuinely cares for its models and clients, and they go overboard to make sure all parties are comfortable with booking rates and working conditions. A booking agent covers all bases, from looking at the client’s brief and setting up the initial booking, to looking for the right models and sending out the crucial booking and travel details. In short, a booking agent is a model’s and client’s friend...

An important part of a booking agent’s responsibility is discussing money. As much as the commercial modelling industry is exciting, fun, it requires hard work and dedication – and ultimately benefits all three parties (clients, agency and models) – all industries are businesses. And all businesses depend on the financial cycle of spending to accumulate, with the goal of achieving gross profits. 

So, some clients don’t like to spend lots of money on campaigns, whether it be advertising or hiring models. That’s ok – not all businesses are the same, and not all businesses have the same budgets.

When models are signed with Models Direct, it’s worth looking at our extensive client list – that’s the range of businesses we’ve worked with during the past 30 or so years. You’ll find global enterprises sitting alongside local start-ups. This means that our models are not restricted to the same booking fee; our professional booking agents negotiate the best rates for our models.

We do this by looking at each assignment – by client, location and specific requirements. Fees are largely dependent on the client – e.g. if the client is a global banking corporation, their campaign is likely to be on a larger scale than a small, local brand, and their budgets will be bigger…hence larger fees for the model. Because we’ve been in the industry for decades, we know the “expected” going rates, and we’re not shy when it comes to negotiations.

Having an agent is critical for models wishing to be paid the best rates in the industry. Individual models won’t know the best rates, and often these rates will fluctuate depending on the time of year, and the economy. Agents keep a close eye on industry trends, and they know their clients, too.

Whilst models should excel in their work, they can simply be too shy or naïve to achieve the best outcomes by themselves. Models also won’t know the strategies and procedures of securing work at the best rates, and that’s why having a top agency like us is critical – it’s our job to offer our models the best paid work around!

What’s to stop a company stalling when it comes to paying models after a job well done? Well, nothing, really. No doubt there have been plenty of models, actors, musicians and entertainers who have experienced annoying gaps between completing a job and getting paid. Not with us! When we’ve settled on the best modelling fees, we ask for the fee from the client before the job, and put it safely in a separate account. This is why we pay our models within the statutory five working days from the end of a model’s assignment – another good reason why it pays to have a booking agent!

Leave the business side of negotiation to us, and concentrate on what you do best – using your talents in photo shoots and in front of the camera. It’s a winning formula!