7 Lessons the Music Industry Taught Me that Business School Didn't : Under30CEO 7 Lessons the Music Industry Taught Me that Business School Didn't : Under30CEO
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7 Lessons the Music Industry Taught Me that Business School Didn’t

| March 5, 2011 | 7 Comments
music industry

For anyone wanting to learn about marketing their business understanding the industry is vital to your success. What follows are some examples of things my time in the music business has taught me. To be honest some of them relate even in non- musical business situations. What these instances have taught me is invaluable although many are basic common sense they are good to be reminded of. These are just the start of what you’ll learn but they are a good set of principles to hold onto.

1. Network

In any industry really the more you network the more opportunities you open yourself up to as well as potential customers. Also your network can help you big time with booking shows and finding promotional outlets.

2. Treat everyone the same

Don’t be afraid of someone’s fame, respect them but go approach them like any other person. If you can be assertive you won’t limit yourself in the field you want to conquer. Also do not underestimate someone’s worth you never know who could end up making the difference for you.

3. Use free resources

Any way you can create press is vital; submit music to be reviewed in magazines. Look for online directories, any place your company name can be seen is a potential sale you gain. Among my favorite places to look are E-zines.

4. Be selective about who you work and or partner with.

If you want to be taken seriously you must have an attitude of commitment but you must also demand this of your artists as well. Choose the right people to work with it will go a long way toward your success.

5. Building working relationships is more important than money

You will read that your business should be formed with the goal of turning a profit. The truth is it should still focus on building relationships your first couple of years you may not even make much. If you can build a name for yourself the money will follow.

6. Be wary of special services who say they have worked with big names

Especially when in a band still trying to build a name you will sometimes run into promotional services that claim they have worked with the next big thing or helped someone reach the big time. Especially early on you will be offered to pay huge fees in exchange for placement on a compilation or as part of a special promotional campaign avoid these services like the plague if they aren’t lying they are likely to have very little to brag about except that they profit from beginning musicians.

7. Never Give Up

No I’m not saying don’t plan and keep trying if something obviously isn’t working. What you should strive for is to never abandon your dream if your game plan is already laid out just go for it with your full heart and soul. Thomas Edison once said that failure is only realized when you give up.

Jason Baudendistel is a US Navy Veteran who runs his own indie label. Among my other projects were a web business and helping market a legacy startup. My Label Bored Student Records has worked with artists including Electric Valentine, Don’t Wake Aislin, The Dollyrots and Oh Hush (Atlantic Records)

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Category: Finding Customers, Startup Advice

  • http://www.online-business-virtual-assistant.com/ Virtual office assistant

    I really liked all the views and great comparing also. The most effective one from my point of view is “Be selective about who you work and or partner with”. We have to be careful in choosing our partners or co workers so that there is no misunderstanding at all in any stage.

  • http://www.promoteyourmusic.net Chris Rockett

    Totally agree that you can get started with Free resources.

    I’m amazed how much music marketing advice is posted online every day that can be implemented with not cost.

    If you are prepared to put in the time then you can build a following with no money at all.

    - Chris

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1326000136 Kegan Quimby

    What business school did you go to, that didn’t teach you to network? Or to give up? I feel like 5 out of 7 of those are like freshman business 101. No?

  • http://twitter.com/WSpivak Wayne Spivak

    Interesting that you put in “Treat everyone the same”. I’ve worked in the Entertainment representation business for 17 years. One thing that I told every new client is to always be friendly, say “hi” and don’t shrug off someone on the set.

    Today, that person who looks uninteresting, too old/young, dress hip/un-hip might just be the person that hired you. All it takes is a second to smile and say “hi” and less than that time to never work for them again by ignoring them.

    Wayne Spivak
    SBA * Consulting, LTD

  • Jbaud23

    I didn’t go to business school so I learned them on my own I guess you could say. Thank you for taking the time to share your thoughts.

  • Anonymous

    Great post. Sometimes it really takes one to experience the real thing to be able to learn the works of being in the world of music. Although it would be a plus to be able to have that solid evidence of having a formal training, it is still the hands-on experience that’s important to be able to survive the music business. That’s one lesson that business owners learn when starting a music school of their own.

  • Jason Baudendistel

    Here is my new website for those visiting this article later on best. Jason