7 Essential Tips For Finding Success In Your Music Career
Becoming a famous and successful musician doesn’t happen overnight. It can be a long process, requiring patience, constant improvement, ambition, drive, and willingness to listen to critiques. If you’re interested in learning how to find success in this career, you’ve come to the right place. The music industry is extremely lucrative, and the total revenue of the global music industry is expected to pass $65 billion in 2023! The music industry landscape is rapidly evolving, with new technological advances available for you to take advantage of. But first, you must understand how the industry works and pay your dues. If you don’t, you will find it difficult to have a sustainable and fruitful career. Below are some essential tips on how to have a successful music career.
- Map it out
So, you want to become a successful musician? What’s your plan? While you probably have the dream to become a music star, it will only come to fruition if you have a plan. Of course, just because you have a plan doesn’t mean everything will be perfect, and you don’t always necessarily have to follow a strict path. But a plan gives you direction and puts things into perspective for you.
Creating a plan will also help you identify which of your dreams are realistic and attainable. This helps you create effective strategies to fulfill your goals and makes it easier to focus on a project one step at a time. You must also make sure that your goals are measurable to track your process. Doing this serves as motivation and helps you improve various strategies and determine which ones are effective.
The truth is, you might deviate from time to time, especially because there’s not one straight path to follow to find success in the music industry. However, be more intentional about your deviations. There may be instances where your creativity may lead you in another direction, and in such cases, you should be flexible enough to test out the waters. Your plan should give you an idea of where you want to be and how to get there.
- Networking is key!
When you’re starting a music career, you’ll need all the support you can get. Throughout your journey, you must take advantage of every opportunity to network and meet new people who can push you further along. Creating healthy, mutually beneficial relationships can go a long way in building your career and developing your skills. You might be asking why it matters to network. This is because the music industry is a people-based industry that thrives on networking. So, where do you get started?
First, you need to get out of the studio or wherever you like to play your music and look out for events that encourage physical interactions with other musicians and professionals in the industry. You can attend festivals, industry conferences, and trade shows or take advantage of social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn, which make networking much easier. If you don’t have a social media account on any of these platforms, be sure to create one and start connecting with like-minded people.
You should also have a clear strategy on how you intend to network and build new contacts. Once you do, always make sure that you are in regular contact with the person and maintain a healthy relationship. Keep a positive attitude in your relationships.
- Build your experience
In the music industry, the more experience you have, the better! While you might not be dreaming of becoming a pop star, there are several career options in the industry that you might be eyeing. Perhaps you are looking to become a composer or a sound engineer for a major music company. When you’re starting a career in the music industry, internships should be a starting point. These job opportunities provide you with insights into how the industry works and help you develop your skills and adjust to the lifestyle. You must also be prepared to travel, as most job opportunities tend to be based in music hubs like Nashville, Los Angeles, and New York City.
Internships present the perfect opportunities for you to show future employers what you can offer. Employers put you to the test during such programs, discover your skills, and train you.
If you are dedicated to your craft and impress them, they will be more open to making an offer.
- Build your portfolio and distribute your music
People will only support your career as a musician if you have proof of your talent and skills. You must develop your portfolio to showcase your skills. Your portfolio can include songs you have recorded and videos of gigs you have played. This way, you show people why you are worth supporting.
It would help if you also had a distribution plan for the music you make. Even the latest upcoming artists ensure that their music is uploaded on streaming platforms like Spotify, Apple Music, and Soundcloud. Streaming has grown incredibly popular. In 2020, physical album sales dropped by 30%, while paid subscriptions to streaming apps grew by 12%. Your music needs to be online. Therefore, be sure to make your music easily accessible to your audience.
- Market your music
You now know the importance of building your portfolio and distributing your music. But how are you going to let people know who you are and what music you have out there? Marketing plays a crucial role in your music career. Poor marketing strategies and plans can make your music career short-lived. It’s easy to think that your song is so good that you will get high streams and get more followers. That’s not true, especially when you overlook the power of music marketing. It goes beyond cool artwork or your talent. A good marketing strategy outlines who to target to make you become a household name and how to do so successfully.
When starting your music career, you might not have the funds for a whole team of experienced marketers. Social media is a budget-friendly option. Learn how to create content around your music. You could even share videos or samples of your songs and pay to boost your post. You can also curate special playlists on streaming services. Spotify, for example, provides you with the opportunity to submit your music for consideration. You can start building your fanbase with your awesome playlists.
On the other hand, if you want to invest in marketing and can afford to, you can work with a digital marketing agency. The best way to go is digital, especially if you want to expand your fanbase and followers. These agencies can help you with social media, video marketing, branding, etc.
- Build a solid team
One of the most important things to do when building your music career is to have a solid and trustworthy team behind you. As you grow and become more established, you will find that you cannot do everything alone. Successful musicians these days have a team of people doing behind-the-scenes jobs for them, from booking agents to public relations agents. When building your team, ensure that they are people you enjoy working with and can trust. They are extremely important to your success as a musician.
- Be open to learning
To be successful in the music industry, you must be ready to learn from others. So many people have been successful because they were open to feedback, but there have also been many people that have crashed and burned because they were unwilling to improve their craft. While your creative process is very important, it is also necessary for you to be agile and flexible. The music industry is very dynamic, so you must learn to keep up with the changes. It doesn’t mean you are losing your voice; it only means you are willing to learn. The best teacher, however, is yourself. You will make mistakes, but those would also present opportunities for you to learn from them.
Feedback is very crucial to your growth as a musician. Ask for honest opinions of your work. If you are now starting, ask your friends and family for their feedback on your songs. You can also send your music to trusted peers and other industry people for their expert opinion. That’s the only way you can continue growing and developing your craft. It might be hard to hear criticism, especially in the early days. Some may like your work, and others, not so much. Nonetheless, ensure that you get a broad range of opinions to help you make changes or improve your craft. In the music industry, you cannot operate as an island.
Starting a music career is no small task. It requires a lot of passion and dedication to your craft, and it also requires a lot of support. It doesn’t mean it is impossible. Once you achieve your dreams, you will see that it is completely worth pursuing your dream.