Interview with a model booker {Jo Serratore}

Interview with a model booker {Jo Serratore}

I first met model booker Jo Serratore back in 2010 as one of my bookers at MOT models. Jo is an amazing booker from a models view-point as she can book you on the most incredible big jobs that you never thought you would get. I am not quite sure what she does to book models these fantastic jobs but I am pretty sure Jo is pretty determined and cut throat to get what she wants, when she wants, which in turn benefits us models hugely.
Even after watching many episodes of Next Top Model you are bound to be left with lots of questions. Even for the more seasoned model there are questions that you may be too scared to ask. Jo has been very open and kind enough to answer some very intriguing questions. After speaking to a few of model friends and non-model friends I had compiled a lot more questions than I had anticipated, so you are in for a long but very interesting read.

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What is a model booker?
A model booker works with models to help them get bookings and ensure they get where they are supposed to be at the right time. Essentially we act as a major player in a model’s career, scheduling appointments with those who may want to hire them and helping ensure that the model arrives when they are expected with the correct wardrobe & information. And then on top of this you have to be a diplomat / mother / social worker / travel agent and a best friend to all your talent whilst maintaining your cool.

What does an average day consist of?
This can range from dealing with walk ins, sourcing new models, placing existing models on projects, negotiating fees with clients, putting together model packages for future campaigns, sales calling to potential new clients, reading and signing contracts, updating portfolios, overseeing website changes, calling out to models to confirm times, job details, wardrobe and locations to name a few. Finishing off with a few vinos or bottle depending on the day Smileys

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What do you look for in new models?
Natural beauties with great personalities and open to all shapes and sizes. If you come in to the agency as a new model wear an outfit that shows off your figure, natural make up with hair down (if applicable). If you are a lingerie model bring swimsuit and heels.

Are there ideal body measurements that make for a successful model?
No, every campaign is different. One brief may be for a petite model, the next a curve size. Size really does not matter.

Do you think there is a possible modelling career for everyone out there and is there an age cap?
The industry changes on a daily basis and can be subjective and who knows what the next fad will be. Who would have thought big beards would ever have made a comeback! I am not sure that it is a career for everyone but if you want something bad enough you can make it happen.There is definitely not an age limit on modelling work, for example inspirational models like Daphne Selfe have proved that.

S Moda Magazine
{Daphne Selfe for S Moda Magazine}

What do you think makes a successful model?
Being a model is a business and having a good work ethic is imperative. You need to be up early every working day and ready for that last minute casting or booking. You must be a strong communicator and have skills in networking. You need to be disciplined, hard working, have a positive attitude and a desire to succeed even after frequent setbacks.

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Do you get irritated or inspired by the models that are constantly hounding you for castings and work?
I like that models feel they can approach me when things are quiet for them. Not every month is the same and there will always be slow times in any models career. When this happens I like to work with the model to improve their chances of being booked. Together we can make a list of potential clients they could be working with arranging meetings with potential go sees and updating their portfolio.

What secrets do your most busy models have that get them constantly booked?
No real secrets its more about who shines on the day of the casting. Although I would say a positive sunny attitude goes a long way.

What do you think it takes to be a hugely successful model like Cara, Kate, Rosie, Naomi etc.?
Being in the right place at the right time. Also having the right look of that particular era. Along with a strong personality and a passion to succeed.

Should a model have a part time job? If so, are there any you can suggest that won’t conflict with their castings?
Yes it’s always good to have regular income in an industry that is so unpredictable. Evening work is always advisable as this fits around castings and jobs.

How often should a model get test shoots done?
It’s a good idea to refresh your portfolio at least once a year, or if there is something specific like sporty images then more.

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What lengths have you seen girls and guys go to book a job or get taken on by an agency?
I once had a model assure me that they could swim to win a campaign. Once they were on the shoot it swiftly became apparent that they could not!

Have you got any diva model stories to share?
Whilst being picked to walk for a huge designer one of the models was so annoyed that she was not walking out first she hid the other models shoes so she had to be the first out …..Now that’s a Diva moment!

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Do model bookers have favourite models?
All of my models are my favourite. The model and booker relationship has to be strong and is imperative to succeed.

How do bookers choose which models they put forward for each job?
As long as they fit the client criteria and are available on the set days they are automatically added to the suggestions.

Some models send bookers gifts. Does this bribery help models get more work?
It will not increase a models work, however all gifts are truly appreciated Smileys

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Are you finding that with the increase of “Instafamous Models” the stereotypical modeling body and image ideals are changing?
The industry changes so much & social media is certainly having an impact on that.

Are these Instafame models getting booked simply for their social media presence?
Not solely on their social media following as they need to be a suitable for the brand.

Are these models able to command a higher fee for jobs?
Not a higher fee for the actual booking but there can be additional fees for posting on their own social media sites.

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Comment down below if there are any other questions you would like me to ask Jo. Maybe there will be interview number 2 Smileys

Follow Jo for more behind the scenes pictures of what a model booker gets up to
Jo Serratore: Instagram : @joserratore Twitter: @joserratore
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{Image UKmodels}

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9 Comments

  1. September 13, 2016 / 11:04 am

    Very informative.

  2. September 13, 2016 / 11:03 am

    Great article

    • October 4, 2016 / 6:39 pm

      Thank you Tim 🙂

  3. Tessa Hood
    September 6, 2016 / 10:00 pm

    lve been modelling since 1969. Theres a demand for every stage of a woman’s life. Jo is an unusual booker she really cares about the people she represents.

    • September 8, 2016 / 12:26 pm

      Hi Tessa,
      Thank you for your comment 🙂
      Jo really is wonderful isn’t she!
      Huge congrats on modelling successfully for many years X

  4. Nadine Brower
    April 20, 2016 / 4:56 pm

    Really enjoyed the article it was very pricise and interesting! I have 2 sons modelling and I have been modelling since the age of 17 I’m now nearly 40 Jo,s interview is exactly how the modelling industry is! Great read X

    • April 20, 2016 / 5:58 pm

      Thank you very much Nadine. I am glad you enjoyed it 🙂

  5. Glenda Taylor
    April 19, 2016 / 9:17 pm

    Love it! Very interesting and inspiring.

    • April 20, 2016 / 5:56 pm

      Thank you Glenda 🙂

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