When is it Time to Invest in Music Marketing Services?

by Matt @ Kurb on June 4, 2009

Or . . . at what point are you ready to get involved with us.

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Now I can only come at this from a business angle because that’s what I do. You’ve got to see your music as business and there’s point getting involved with me if you haven’t already started to put together a business model, a plan to get paid for what you do.

And I don’t mean having a dream about being a big star; you need what I’ve called the “now” money because it’s the least you’re going to need to put back into building your enterprise to give yourself a chance.

There’s a relationship between your artist brand, which the experience you’re building for your fans, for consumers, for potential business partners, and the actual music monetization strategy to fund the brand building to a point you can cash in, cash out, sell out, whatever.

That’s unless you’ve got the money to spend of course and you just want to make it happen. I mean come on – you’re going to have to spend a lot of money building your brand anyway so you may as well get started . . .

But’s that’s not so many people. It’s more than you’d think though, because a lot of people do end up coming to me, paying me out and expecting to head back to the studio or practice room without giving it another thought, but that’s totally the wrong way to go about it.

Great songs are important, but your brand is now JUST as important. For every great artist you can name, I bet I can name an artist who used their brand, not their talent to get over the line. Take Lady Gaga or Marilyn Manson – they don’t exceptional talent or even good looks! They JUST have their brand.

Point being: If you want a career than you must take building your artist brand seriously.

So generally, musicians don’t have pots of money to back themselves so like any business, your first priority is to become profitable asap, so you can plow profit back into the business for the first few years and then start to ride, and I can tell you all about that.

Being shrewd in business as I am, I’m happy to talk to you about where the money will come from – aside from that crazy “leverage” stuff i’m always on about.

See when you do a lot gigs you do a lot of work and you put a lot on the line. You’ve got to take a good look at what you do best, where you’re providing the most value, where that intersects with the technology available to you, and how you can provide the most value at the least expense to meet a demand you know exists.

In other words, make it easy on yourself. I mention gig promotion because a lot of kids – just like me – get suckered into the idea putting on shows and playing lots of shows will make money WRONG you’ll be getting money and great branding opportunities when your very own brand is strong enough that promoters and venues will pay you to play, that’s when you’ve got a business model.

Put on shows by all means – I still do – but don’t expect it to be a money spinner.

So what can you do now? You can make up a post or a plan explicitly detailing the types of performances and services that you can provide for a cost.

How much for a wedding? I don’t care if you’re Satanic Gypsy Noisecore let’s start putting the proposition out there, what can you do and how much can you charge?

What if I want to commission a song, what about that? Soundtrack work? Licenses? What kind of sponsorship arrangements could be on the table? If you don’t frame this stuff how are you going to build an agenda that sees you getting paid what you’re worth for something that your fans truly value?

This is the value of this kind of exercise, it’s gets you thinking about building business propositions into what you’re doing in music. The you can take two step backs and suck it in.


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Is that going to fly? How can you sweeten the deal without making it an extra drag for you?

This is how I run my business. These are the questions I ask every ffffunkin day!

But that’s not the only business thinking you’re doing. Thinking like an entrepreneur is all about raising capital so you can expand.And by expand I mean, step up with more professional marketing to get work your proposition

You’re thinking like a capitalist: Why in the hell would you put all your money into CD duplication, when you’re sinking into an investment that sees your money stuck in these bits of plastic for the year and a half it takes to sell them all one by one making $5 a pop.

That means you have to sell 100 CD’s just to pay me and that’ll take you months.

So there’s two reason why I suggest the key tipping point to investing into music marketing services is that point where you actually have a proposition on which to build your music into a business that’s running.

1: You actually have the money to cover your ongoing investment in maintaining and building your brand

2: When you sit down with me (because lets face it getting one on one personal advice as well as an actual online music promotion campaign and management doesn’t come any cheaper than me) it’s best that we have something to talk about that is actually going somewhere, that is tested, something you’ve actually made sales with or showed serious potential for- that’s somethign we can work with.

That’s when you’re ready to take to the next level and use as the leverage you need to invest in to your music marketing, your music management, your music career.

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