How to Book an Artist to Perform at a Nightclub

By Lori Bosworth ; Updated September 15, 2017
Talent buyers need to book artists whom their clientele will pay to see.

While smaller clubs may use a talent agency to book artists, larger clubs can often justify hiring their own talent buyers to secure acts. Talent buyers organize a club's music calendar, analyze a club's artist budget, track ticket sales and attend every performance. Due to their role as negotiators, talent buyers require excellent people skills to deal with booking agents and artists. Talent buyers coordinate with an artist's agent to select the appearance dates and negotiate the price of the gig.

Understand your venue's brand. Ask questions, such as does it focus only on emerging artists or on big name talent, is the club targeted to a specific age group or does it attract a wide variety of clientele. The more you know about your clientele, the better you are able to match artists to suit their tastes.

Learn what type of band and size crowd are necessary for the venue space to succeed financially. Determine how many tickets you have to sell to make a profit.

Develop knowledge of the music industry, including bands and artists, current trends and the club scene that your club would be interested in hiring.

Network with booking agents, artists and music industry executives to create strong relationships and to learn about new or established artists who would be suitable for your club.

Negotiate with an artist's agent the price of the gig, as well as other costs such as hotel rooms and food and beverages the artist may incur while performing at your club. Remember to factor in the number of tickets you need to sell to create a profit.

Make artists whom you hire for your club feel important when they play at your venue by addressing their concerns and providing them with first-class treatment.

Follow-up with the artist's booking agent after the show to evaluate the success of the performance. Make note of any areas needing improvement.

About the Author

Based in Toronto, Canada, Lori Bosworth has been writing professionally for over 10 years in corporate communications, as well as for traditional and online media. Bosworth has been published in "Animal News" and has an honors Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Toronto and a Public Relations Certificate from Ryerson University.