Reggae the music business is a strategy that you can use as the foundation for all that you do as an indie artist in the music business. Refer to this strategy with every action that you take during your career in music.
Although the 21st-century music business brings many opportunities for anyone looking to build a career in music, there are also many challenges. But there are THREE key challenges to overcome and if you master these, then your music career is being built on solid ground.
If you can overcome these three challenges then you have a great chance to build a vibrant and sustainable career in music. You will have a foundation that you can build on and the means to grow and progress.
It helps by applying a little reggae culture to your growth strategy. Reggae culture is vibrant, positive and full of messages of change. The colours associated with reggae are RED, GOLD and GREEN and each colour represents fundamental values of significance.
But for the purpose of building a music career, I have respectfully re-assigned each colour a foundation principle that you must build on to succeed. How intense and vibrant you make these colours are up to you. However, the more intense the colour the more notice you will attract.
FIRE UP YOUR PROFILE
Remember the first challenge that needed to be overcome visibility and discovery. This always needs to be tended to.
The fire and heat you generate around yourself, your music and your brand is what will get you noticed. The hotter and brighter your fire burns the more people will see it and the more attention you receive.
In practical terms this means having a unique and focused proposition that appeals to the audience you have identified.
You must then catch their attention, burn bright. This will often mean investing in yourself which is the fuel for your fire. If you don't invest in yourself your fire starts to go out.
So, constantly think of ways to keep the fire burning. With music promotion hacks it is easier to keep your fire going than to keep trying to start new fires.
Whatever action you take ask yourself, 'Does this add fuel to my fire or dampen it'. When you get into this habit you will start to see opportunities for fueling your profile you may not have thought of before and also stop doing things that are detrimental.
Small twigs added to a fire can turn it into a blazing inferno.
CLAIM ALL YOUR REVENUES
For the indie artist, the new music business is more accessible and many barriers to entry have been removed. However, along with this comes more responsibility. If you have a team around you, then great, many tasks can be re-assigned.
If however, you are pretty much a one-person team, then, understanding where there are income-earning opportunities and what revenues you are entitled to will fall on your shoulders.
Remember the second challenge I referred to relating to the business side of things. Well, this is an area where many artists do not focus enough attention and often leads them to give up because they can't sustain a career or are not seeing any progress.
So, although the financial side of the music business may seem tedious, taking care of it is essential.
This doesn't just affect current revenue but future revenue. Signing the wrong type of contract may result in lost or reduced revenue for years.
However, focus on the fact that we are talking about revenue here. If you put in the work to identify revenue streams and you take action to claim or generate this revenue you will end up smiling rather than scowling.
Here are some revenue streams to look into:
|Performing Rights Royalty||Due as a result of registering your music work with a performing rights organisation.|
|Mechanical License Royalty||Due as a result of the physical reproduction of your musical work.|
|Synchronization Licensing||Due as a result of using your work to be synched with visual images, film or video.|
Digital performance of your sound recording
|Sound Exchange collects royalties for the digital performance of your sound recording.|
|Sales of merchandise that you source and sell e.g. t-shirts.|
|Own Sales of sound recording||Selling copies whether digital or physical of your sound recording. For example via Bandcamp oron your own website.|
|YouTube||Royalties due as a result of the use of your sound recording on Youtube by third parties|
|Royalties due as result of the use of your sound recording on Facebook by third parties|
These are just some of the revenue streams but you can see that lack of awareness could mean leaving revenue you are due on the table and could mean the difference in attaining a full-time career in the music business or not.
So take care of the revenues. The journey to success is a lot easier when you see progress, it is a great motivator. The more accessible funds you have the more you can fuel your fire and the brighter you will burn.
BUILD A LOYAL COMMUNITY OF FANS
The third challenge was sustainability. You may have brilliant music and great promotion ideas but you need engagement.
Many of the revenue streams depend on an audience taking some action and engaging, like going to your gigs, buying merch and music or subscribing to your YouTube channel. Only real fans will take this action.
These aficionado fans are the ones that will support your crowdfunding project or sign up to your Patreon account stream and buy your music. They are the secret to a sustainable career in music.
This is why when you look at the world of music and wonder why artists that seem to have less talent than you have become so successful. The answer is they have fans, lots of them. Some may just be curious but many will be aficionados.
Focus and build your fanbase no matter how small your starting point they are your future and the secret to sustainability.
These three principles, Fire, Revenues and Fanbase underpin the Red, Gold and Green strategy. The more effort you put into each principle the more vibrant and intense will be your progress.
Make this the foundation of everything you do in your music career and this reggae strategy will see you through.