When planning a live entertainment event, you may be asked about something called “billing.” Contrary to how it may sound, it has nothing to do with a financial bill or the fee you are paying the artist, but instead it is actually referring to the way you are marketing your event.

“Billing” refers to the size, presence, and prominence of a performer’s name and image on any advertisements, in relation to other performers.

Top Billing

Your headliner, or the closing performer, or featured act on your line up, wants to be advertised as such, and therefore, you can consider them “top billing,” or “100% headliner.” Top billing means they are the largest and most prominent image and name on all marketing assets, and featured high up on any graphics. Consider the size of their name and image as “100%.”

Direct Support

Your direct support, or the person that performs directly prior to the headliner, is billed as “direct support.” Often direct support artists will ask that they receive 75% direct support billing, which means that their name (and sometimes image) should be just below the headliner, and approximately 75% the size of the headliner’s name.

50% Support Billing

Sometimes you may have additional openers, and they may ask for “50% support billing” which means their name (and sometimes image) is about 50% that of the headliner’s.

100% Festival Headliner Billing

If you are producing a festival, or special event, the name of your festival or special event may need to be the most prominent image or words on your graphics. If that’s the case, you can refer to your headliner as “100% festival headliner billing” which means although the name of the festival may be larger, your headliner will be the biggest of all the performer names on the page at least.

TOP BILLING

Top billing means they are the largest and most prominent image and name on all marketing assets, and featured high up on any graphics.

\

DIRECT SUPPORT

Often direct support artists will ask that they receive 75% direct support billing.

\

50% SUPPORT BILLING

Name and image is about 50% that of the headliner's.

\

As performers constantly battle for the attention of their fans, the billing of their name matters a lot to an artist’s image. It’s okay that this is a sensitive subject for performers, and it’s up to your marketing team to make sure everyone’s needs and desires are met. Being clear about how you intend to bill your performers from the beginning will help eliminate arguments later when you try to get your marketing assets approved. It’s best to know these terms and appreciate that artist’s care about your marketing.

If you need help putting together an offer, you might benefit from having a middle agent. Set up a free consultation to see how we can help!

Jolene Chevalier

Founder & Talent Buyer | How To Concerts

Jolene has been a middle buyer for over 15 years, helping colleges and others with their concerts, comedians, and speakers. (And, yes, she is named after the Dolly Parton song.) She would love to talk with you about helping to book, plan, and prepare for your event.

920.764.1200   |   jolene@howtoconcerts.com

Jolene Chevalier

Founder & Talent Buyer | How To Concerts

Jolene has been a middle buyer for over 15 years, helping colleges and others with their concerts, comedians, and speakers. (And, yes, she is named after the Dolly Parton song.) She would love to talk with you about helping to book, plan, and prepare for your event.

920.764.1200   |   jolene@howtoconcerts.com