Publicists, Managers & Agents: Roles Explained
In the entertainment industry, a publicist's role is to represent a client, manage their image, and serve as a media liaison under any and all circumstances. This can include the promotion of a new role in a film or the release of an album or handling crisis management.
Historically, advance agents and publicists were hired exclusively by established influencers, celebrities, and other public figures. Since the advent of the digital age, infinite media opportunities have become available to emerging artists and athletes as well as subject experts.
In the case of experienced and credentialed subject experts, there is a need for commentary and consultation. Digital media coverage is particularly coveted because it boosts SEO and establishes someone as an authority.
“Digital media coverage is particularly coveted because it boosts SEO and establishes someone as an authority.”
Publicists often work in conjunction with talent managers and agents. A manager typically develops and curates the career of the client and an agent is tasked with the responsibility of securing work for the client. However, both managers and agents can connect actors directly to casting directors for auditions through breakdown services.
The breakdown services list synopses of treatments or scripts associated with available roles. Casting breakdowns are posted daily and accessible exclusively to industry professionals.
As talent reps, managers and agents receive a percentage of their client's earnings whereas a publicist receives a monthly retainer. While emerging talent may be represented by both a manager and agent, publicists typically work with more established performing artists.
The client base for publicists has grown significantly. This is because the internet has changed the media landscape. You don’t need a film or album release to secure publicity; You just need expertise whether it is as a divorce coach or a makeup artist.
“You don’t need a film or album release to secure publicity; You just need expertise whether it is as a divorce coach or a makeup artist.”