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Fashion and entertainment industry always need new faces and the demand is increasing day by day.
From runway walks to traditional TV and print media or online ads, brands need new models on a regular basis.
Moreover, the rise of digital marketing has opened several new avenues for aspiring models.
This increasing demand has a huge business potential. It is safe to say, with proper planning and arrangement, opening a modeling agency to promote talented new models can be great business model.
By connecting brands with your models, you can make a financially rewarding business in no time. You just have to have impeccable communication skills and prior knowledge about the industry. As the number of model agencies are booming, you also need to have a solid business plan.
Before starting your own modeling agency, it is recommended that you work in an existing agency for few months to get hands-on experience. This will help you to minimize error and get access to the inner network of the entertainment industry.
Choosing a Niche
Modeling industry has several niches based on gender, age group and physic. As a start-up you can focus on 1-2 specializations as it will be lot easier to manage contacts.
The most popular and demanding niche is 15-30 years female models. However, this is also quite saturated niche. It’s also a good idea to focus and specialize in several small niches like toddler models, older models, twin models, ethnic models, plus-size models etc.
Do your research on your competitors and see what they are offering.
Register Your Business
First thing first, get all the legal things done before your start any actual operation. In this stage, you have to decide about your agency’s legal structure.
You can either choose a sole proprietorship/partnership company or you can register your business as an LLC. I would recommend you go with LLC if there are more than two founders.
I’m not going to discuss in detail about this step here. Check out this article for more information.
Develop a Professional Website
Now a days, any business starts with registering the domain name first.
It’s important that you launch your website as soon as possible as it will be your agency’s primary contact point. You can hire a professional web development company to design and develop your website.
Alternatively, if you have basic knowledge of WordPress and some spare time, find a suitable model agency WordPress theme for your site and develop the website by yourself.
The next step is finding models. There are different ways of finding new faces. If your target niche market is young female model, you can run ads on Facebook or Instagram as most of the young girls are on social media.
You can also leverage traditional advertisements in fashion/lifestyle magazines, newspaper, or even in craigslist. Direct scouting is another popular way to find a pool of talented models.
When you find a model, the next thing you need to do is preparing a modeling portfolio. Casting agents ask for portfolio before they pick a model for audition.
Professional models usually have their portfolios ready, otherwise, you need to arrange a photo shoot. Then you can upload those pictures in you website where casting agents can access them online.
This is probably the most important part of this business model. As you already have few models in your hand, the next step is finding jobs for them.
Having access to the right contact is key to establish a successful mode agency. That’s why I always recommend getting some prior experience by working in a model agency before starting your own.
To build network and get in touch with the right person you need to outreach casting agents, event management companies, PR agencies, advertisement and marketing agencies and large brands. Contact them via personalized email asking for a meeting.
You can also participate in big fashion events and meet casting agents and event managers in person. This is the most difficult part yet most rewarding. Try to contact with as many options as possible as it will increase the chance of your models getting hired and making money from the business.
Once you make partnership with both models and different casting agents, now its time to make the connection when needed and earn service charge for any successful hiring.
Make sure you take care of all the legal contracts to protect both your models and your company.
As your business grow, you need to keep adding new models in your portfolio and get in touch with more casting agents.