You may think that finding a music manager is the perfect solution for helping you succeed in music, but it’s actually a small part of the equation. Before you start working with a band manager or find artist management, you should be treating your musical career as a business.
Why Should You Think of Your Music as a Business?
The reason for treating your musical career as a business is simple. It helps you learn the ropes of promoting your own music. You’ll go through many of the same tasks that a manager deals with. By learning the basics of how the music industry works, you’ll be better prepared to eventually work with a manager.
How Can You Start Growing Your Music Business?
First, you’ll need to create a business plan. You should treat this as any entrepreneur would. Take your time and put real thought into your plan, with attention given to the following areas:
- Long-term and short-term goals
- Market analysis in your region
- Marketing and sales efforts
Long-term and Short-term Goals
The first part of creating a business plan is to set your long-term and short-term goals. Don’t write these out on a napkin. You should use a Word Processor and actually type out your business plan.
Decide on your long-term goals before setting your short-term goals. These long-term goals are goals that you want to accomplish over the coming years – such as getting a record contract or finding a music manager.
Short-term goals are goals that you plan on accomplishing within the next 12-months or less. This could include playing a specific number of shows, recording new music, or getting your music uploaded to a streaming site.
Market Analysis in Your Region
Next, you’ll want to do a little research. For the market analysis, you should make a list of the top venues, bars, and locations in your region where you may be able to book a gig. Write down the contact information for each location.
You should also learn more about the interests of music listeners in your region. Determine which venues attract an audience that is more likely to enjoy your music.
Other steps that you can take as a part of your market analysis include learning more about your competition, creating a profile of your average listener, and making a list of all the resources where people could discover your music.
When researching your competition, it helps to find out how often they play gigs, where they play, and how many followers they have on social media. This step could help you locate additional venues that you wouldn’t have thought of on your own.
Marketing and Sales Efforts
The next part of your business plan should include an overview of your marketing and sales efforts. Decide how you plan on promoting your music. Throughout this site, you will find a variety of articles on music promotion, including tips for promoting your music through online streaming services.
By taking the time to write out these plans, you’ll be prepared to take your musical career to the next level. In the video below, you’ll get a detailed look at some of the steps that you can take to market and sell your music online without needing a music manager:
Your Business Plan Will Go Through Changes
You should regularly update your business plan, as you discover new ways to promote your music. Make notes about which efforts work best and which ones don’t provide the results that you’d like. Keeping track of these details will help you learn more about the music industry and what it takes to promote your own music.
The purpose of creating this business plan is to give you an outline, with detailed steps, for growing your fan base and perfecting your craft. In the long run, these efforts will help you find a music manager.
Final Thoughts on Creating a Business Plan for Your Music
If you haven’t already, you should think of your musical career as a business. Even before you start working with a music manager, it’s important to have an outline of your goals and the steps that you’ll take to get there.
Establish a game plan for your career. Set your goals. Then, come up with strategies that will help you achieve these goals. It’s the same as any business.
Using a combination of online marketing and traditional marketing, you’ll be able to grow your fan base and make a name for yourself in your region. By treating your career more like a business, potential managers will see the efforts that you’ve taken. In the end, this will dramatically increase your chances of being able to work with the right manager.
For additional advice on finding a manager and promoting your music career, take a look at our in-depth guide – Music Management for the Indie Artist.