Female Boss Music Indie Basics
Guest Blog by Danelle Harvey of Female MusicPreneur
Female Boss Music Indie Basics
Hello, female musicpreneur! I hope you don’t mind me calling you that, but I see you. You’re doing everything you’re supposed to — or at least you try to. You create great music and want to make moulah from it instead of a J.O.B., but the hustle is exhausting. You promote nonstop, you use those oft touted ‘expert’ strategies, but they aren’t working for you. We’re constantly bombarded with hacks about what we should do and tools we should use. It gets confusing and overwhelming. You want be a full-time or semi-professional musician but aren’t entirely clear on how to without compromising your creative time. I get it. I’m in your corner.
Whether you’re building your fanbase and presence, trying to make more income but don’t know how, unsure of which online or offline platforms to use, perhaps you’ve launched a crowdfunding campaign — or want to, wherever you are on your musicpreneur journey, it’s important to keep in mind that there is no point going any further in pursuing your dreams if you’re not correctly set up for success. We hold ourselves back with what we don’t know or don’t do which results in reduced access to funds, resources, networks, creative opportunities and progress that we’d like. With a clear plan, focus, and set-up to facilitate our success, we can progress from an informed and powerful place. So, it’s best to first set the foundations for success, only then should we be concerned about the methods and tools to use to help us achieve our dreams. And yes, you can live the dream. Don’t believe any negative hype!
Before we move onto foundation checking and setting, let’s talk business for a mo.
Although many musicians freak out about business, I think that becoming a proficient musician is harder. This, my love, means that you’ve already nailed the hard part — the biz part is easy! You see, in business, you sell x amount of something. If you can pay for the costs and expenses for making that product and have money left over, you’ve succeeded. Basically, business means making more money as profit than you spend on creating music products and services. Good business practices can be learnt and improved upon. Now, compare that to what we have to do regularly to become and stay good at our craft.
Let’s talk about your personal aims. What do you define as success? Whether it’s a set income, regular paying gigs, paid sponsorships, a supportive fanbase, or purchasers/licensees of your music, merchandise, or services, or enough income so you can give up the day job, figure it out and state it. Your acknowledgement of who you are and what will make you feel successful is necessary. You must know what you want, commit to it, and do all it takes to remind yourself that you are the bees knees. Building a sustainable business takes time, but if done correctly, you will get there. And how will you know if you’re doing it correctly? By measuring your progress. What is great is that doing so often will demonstrate whether you are succeeding and/or that something needs to be fixed. No more guess work! This ends blind panic moments as your results will show you that you are the boss I see! *Hurrah!* So own it, female musicpreneur, and the rest (income, recognition, achievements and more) will follow in a correct and manageable way. Also, if you’re already receiving income, great! Perhaps you want to make more, spend less, or manage it better. Whatever your wish, money management can be learnt too. Take a deep breath. Know that you can do this.
Clarity, focused action and the right mind-set get results! Otherwise, we’re wasting time, money, and effort.
Let’s do a quick audit and inspect your foundation to ensure you’re set up like a boss. Take a long look at yourself. Decide what you want to do (in your heart) and how you want to make your way in music right now.
Do you want to:
a.Offer a service or product in exchange for money at some stage, or
b.Play and create music just for fun right now?
Remember, you can have both, but you need to be sure about what you truly want to do right now. If b, then there is no point focusing on business right now. Take your time with that side of things, STOP putting pressure on yourself, and just have fun with what you are doing. You can move into money making mode whenever you like. Just own your choices right now and enjoy. If you choose a, then you’d most likely need to set up and act like you’re in business. Below are some tips to get you ready for it from our mini course Get Started Right Basics. I’ll share a handy PDF checklist from the course for you to use at the end of this post!
1.Determine where you are and where you want to be
Make an honest assessment of your current situation and decide what you really want and where you’d like to be. Doing this helps you to realistically determine whether your aim is realistic or what you need to do to make it happen.
2.Define your goal
Know your overall, long, and short term goals; e.g., do you want to be signed eventually or do you want to go it alone? Adopt or work on the correct mind-set to get you there. This takes focus and discipline. You may need to remind yourself NON STOP that you’ve got this. This may entail affirmations (positive, relevant phrases repeated often) or just going for it and proving it!
3.Make a plan to get you there
Think of the steps you must make to get to your long and short term goals. Set a timeframe for your goals and steps. Figure out what it would take to achieve them. Jot the steps, goals, and dates down and into your calendar. Doing this shows you a realistic path to your dreams. Our mini course shows and walks you through putting together a realistic plan so that you’ll have clarity on what you are doing so you can plan your income.
4.Fine tune your brand
Understand what you are offering and how it will be offered. Know your genre/micro genre. Go through a strong branding exercise that will have you carrying out the right consistent actions to attract the right fans, exposure, venues, partnerships, sponsorships and more — to help you substantially boost your income.
5.Set up your business foundation
If you haven’t yet, set up business correctly to prevent personal, business, or financial headaches. Join industry organisations relevant to your needs. Learn how to get the best professional advice. Understand how setting up right can help you and understand aspects of music business to get ahead. In short, set yourself up to manage and grow your income the right way.
6.Set up to handle your business finances correctly
A general good rule of thumb is to keep your personal and business finances separate. Decide how you’ll accept and spend business related money and set up to prepare for it. Music money management really isn’t hard. Our Get Started Right Basics course shows you ways to manage your money correctly without it taking up too much of your time. If you know your money, you can easily grow your money!
7.Create promotional, marketing and sales strategies to find and target to (your) ideal market and get the income flowing.
This may involve outreach to your connections and networks, promotions, blogging, vlogging to promote your demo for bookings or music training, placing free/paid ads, leafleting, social media strategies, or contacting venues. Make an action step plan, add those actions into your diary, set reminders and regular checks to analyse your progress and revise.
8.Create post sales and customer relations strategies.
Decide on your after sales process (how you will follow-up and engage with your fans and customers after you’ve made a sale). Put together a system and follow it.
9.Commit to improving yourself and your products through learning and maintaining whatever actions necessary to continue and build upon your success.
You’ll need to keep learning new skills and ways to improve your mind-set. It is a process, but worth it if you really want to succeed. Review your actions and results and tweak accordingly. One thing to always keep in mind is to keep your existing fans and audience happy — look after them whilst you are finding new ones. Good systems help you to do this. They also help you to own your time and be a kick derriere creative (what you signed up for) as well as an assured business woman who makes profits and can be a full-time music professional.
How this helps you
If done correctly, you will feel loads better and in control of your career progress and income. You will get rid of overwhelm as the clarity you will have will ensure this. For example, you’ll know with certainty that unless incoming advice/tools or strategy relate to your immediate needs, you can take it or leave it — just take note and file it somewhere useful, perhaps for your long term goals or for reference and move on. Mainly, you won’t feel as if you’re missing out as you’ll know it’s not for you. The point is, if you’re clear on your immediate goal and question the relevance of everything at all times you’ll stay on-track.
Once you know who you are, what you have to offer, who to offer it to, and how to get it to them, the rest is magic. Good systems make it achievable and manageable. Overall, just be yourself and know that musicpreneurship can be less of a chore when you have a handle on it all! Remember that focus and clarity help to make a massive difference to your income and success. So, whether you aim to be a full or part-time pro, know that doing so requires repetitive, consistent and appropriate action and you will get there! Click here to sign up for my free checklist — one of the resources from our Get Started Right ~ Basics Course.
If you’d like help with this or to delve in deeper and get your stuff together, Female MusicPreneur’s Get Started Right Basics course may be ideal for you. It covers all of the above areas and more besides; it gives you a solid start or boost to get you to where you need to go, smoothly and with confidence. Our other online trainings cover various areas to get you up to speed too.
As a professional musician (25+ years), speaker, consultant and coach, I help female musicians become successful entrepreneurs and own their careers. We are giving away 3 free consultation packages with me to get you correctly on track to building or growing your own empire. It involves assessment of your current work, helps you to: get laser focused about what you want, set up a plan, find the right marketing and money making methods for you, encourages you to implement that plan, and monitor and tweak accordingly. Also, I will work with you as a coach for a set period. Empowerment and relevant knowledge are key. You will learn how to utilise tools, but not rely on them solely. You will know what’s required to make it. Requirements are that you are ready to move forward and attain your dream to be a successful female musician and that you fill out a survey and evaluations giving your honest feedback. Click here to apply.
Sign up to hear our news, trainings, discounts, giveaways, podcasts, and in depth tips and tricks to help you increase your bottom line and blaze your own trails.
Here’s to owning your career and blazing your own trail!