This blog post is actually pulled as-is from a page from our website, but we thought this information should get out there more aggressively and be found more easily, so it was re-purposed as a blog post! Hope you enjoy it, and email your comments about booking systems or other model/talent agency issues to us at firstname.lastname@example.org…
Functionality: as you may know (if you’re from an agency or another part of the industry), a booking system is multifaceted software, critical to sales, marketing and revenue generation in a model/talent agency. Generally, a booking system is:
- the “front-office” marketing/operations manager
- the contact manager (CRM) for models, clients, prospects and mother agencies
- the model/talent portfolio manager
- the schedule/calendar manager
- the sales manager – negotiating, setting rates, selling, closing, booking, revenue-generating, tracking, reporting!
Infrastructure: the booking system is either local/on-premise/network software, or a cloud/hosted/SAAS/browser-based application; some booking systems offer both options. Several booking systems offer extended functionality, such as: online portfolio presentation, web site/CMS, iPad/tablet clients, and many other special options.
AgencyManager: after the booking system closes a sale, it generates a booking transaction, which is then fed into AgencyMGR, to be tracked and processed in our world-class, agency-specific (model accounting, charge-backs, mother agencies, etc.), country-localized (taxes, etc.), multi-currency (F/X invoice/correction), highly-efficient, labor/money-saving, management/operations and accounting system. The basic data flow from Booking System–>AgencyMGR is shown on the Booking Interface page and below:
Booking Evolution: from the beginning of model/talent representation through agencies, there was always business managenent and accounting; first on paper, then on “big iron” mini-mainframe and finally personal computers. In fact, AgencyMGR’s roots go all way back to the first agencies in Paris – managing and accounting on mainframes! Similarly, booking systems began as photographs, portfolios, paper files, and calendar/schedules, evolving quickly as the the industry grew, pace and demands increased, and technology offered new ways to make sales and close bookings.
The Players: today, there are between 5-10 significant booking systems out there, but, of course, some are more well-known than others, and one or two are dominant. We have seen several booking systems appear, and fade away over the years, and we have found some (larger) agencies using their own, internally-developed, custom booking system solutions. Several of the well-known booking systems have already been integrated or linked to AgencyMGR in some fashion, some more automated than others. The others could be easily integrated, using on our Model Agency Management Architecture (“MAMA”) and our Booking Transaction Data Requirements as described on this site. Below, as a customer service, AgencyMGR has assembled an unofficial, partial list of The Booking System Players we know of, and/or have worked with, but first a disclaimer:
Agnostic/Impartial: our business model is to be friendly, and to integrate with any and all booking systems–whatever our agency clients have installed, or plan to install. This model allows AgencyMGR to serve the best interests and business requirements of our clients, by being “booking-system-agnostic”, without bias or preference, to facilitate their business and financial operations. AgencyMGR is focused completely on agency management, operations and accounting, with an architecture designed to easily receive and process transactions from any existing or future booking system!
So, with our disclaimer proclaimed, AgencyMGR is pleased to present a short (and no doubt incomplete), list of booking system providers. This list is intended solely as an information resource for our agency clients, to help them find, investigate and review viable booking system providers, listed here with website links.
Finally…Our Unofficial, Impartial, Incomplete List of Booking Systems:
- CDS Booking
- RB Agency (WordPress-based)
- Creandi Casting Manager or “CCM”
***We know there are other booking systems out there, but searching online to add others to this list proved daunting and inconclusive–in the end, we had insufficient knowledge of and/or experience with the other (unlisted) systems, so we limited our list to the ones we know something about. You might discover several more booking systems through the search engines on your own, but beware: some very good-looking booking system websites seem broken or incomplete, and some less good-looking websites, actually seem promising and/or viable from the text or other content they provide! Honestly, your agency could very likely be satisfied, productive, and happy with any one of the booking systems listed above, but if you know of (or develop/sell/support) another booking system we should know about, please let us know, using the email links below!
If you are a model/talent Agency: Email AgencyMGR to tell us you are using, and/or know of a booking system not included on our list above, which is worth adding to the list, and integrating to AgencyMGR to save your agency money!
If you are a Booking System provider: Email AgencyMGR to tell us you develop/sell and support a booking system not included in our list above, which should be added to the list and integrated to AgencyMGR to save your agency clients money!
See you at the agency…
– the AgencyManager Team