Music is a major industry, but the biggest players in this industry are not the artists themselves, but the music management companies, who earn far more 50% of music publishing revenue globally.
Music managers are part of the music scene and are responsible for what happens behind the scenes. Music management is an exciting activity involving organizing tours, negotiating with record companies and guiding artists’ careers.
If you want to start a music management company, make sure you have done proper research. Building your business as you go is a great idea, but you have to follow the ethos of starting your own music label or management company.
Music management comes with a lot of risks, especially if you want to stand out from the competition, but you can stand out from the pack if you follow a few practical tips.
Essentially, a manager takes care of the business side of an artist’s life.
But how to break into management for the first time? Here are a few tips:
1. Write a business plan
A quality business plan guarantees faster growth. You are 30% more likely to succeed with a good business plan. To run your music business, develop a clear business plan that forecasts revenue for the first year, the next five years, etc.
Proper planning will make your business look and feel different from others, a business that stands out from the status quo. If writing a business plan is difficult, hire a business plan writer. An expert writer can be expensive, but well worth hiring.
The first step in starting any business is to brainstorm and come up with an appropriate structure. Your music management company should have certain factors that give you a competitive edge.
Plan the basics first such as the type of services you will provide, the things you will need and the personnel you will need on board. Before jumping straight into starting a business, figure out the legalities.
You will need resources and investments to run the business in the first few months when it is not generating enough revenue. Working out finances should be an important part of your business plan.
2. Mastering the Music Industry
How do you deal with what you don’t understand? Learn everything you can about musicians and the music industry in general. For example, find out why music demand created a multi-billion dollar industry and learn more about production, distribution, publishing, and other music-related activities.
Mastering the music industry and knowing what your customers are up against will make you a more effective manager. Music management is not just about acquiring the title of “manager”. Choose a musical genre that resonates with you and ask your business to stick to that genre of music. You can use music streaming apps to do your research and determine what is best.
After setting up the core of your music management company, you can start by researching artists you’d like to work with and trying to set up meetings with them. You can start by promoting local talent and small artists, as they can help you build your portfolio. You can aim for larger releases once your business is up and running.
3. Find an office space
So you know the industry, but where will you hold client meetings? Find a convenient office space, a place where you can meet clients and other music industry professionals. Don’t go for a fancy office space just yet. A comfortable space – so all your team members can work and hold occasional meetings – will suffice (for now).
If you live in an expensive place like New York or California, you may need to get a small loan to pay for your business expenses before you start making money. You can apply for a short term loan to ease your burden. Use search terms like “best title lending” or “online title loansto find affordable loans. Title loans have quick approvals and do not require a credit score.
Before investing in an office or renting space, it is important to determine your finances. You can take out a loan to start, but you need to have a vision of how you are going to cover the loans. Don’t start your business entirely on your own; you will need some helping hands.
Before you start the business, make sure you have saved enough money to cover six months of your expenses, including the salary of your staff. You will be able to work with concentration in a dedicated office space.
4. Find customers
Identify the types of musicians you can handle best. Be selective, if possible. You want clients you’ll enjoy working with, so be choosy. Refine your choices to see what works well for you. The best way to find clients is to simply be part of the scene and keep an eye out for those who are doing well and matching your own tastes.
Potential clients will want to know about your past work before they trust you. So before you introduce clients, make sure you have a portfolio with your best work, even if it’s not management. You can also offer to work for free for a while to build trust.
5. Create connections and determine promotion
Meeting influencers in the music industry will require you to actively seek relationships and get your name out there. So attend as many concerts and industry functions as possible. Meeting people and being seen is the only way to give your customers a chance. If your client isn’t ready to take on the world, at least be sure to download and sell their music online.
As a manager, you’ll be responsible for promoting your client’s work, so you’ll need to consider whether to outsource the PR and marketing work or do it yourself. You can target social media, print, radio, and print ads for promotion.
Keep building connections and don’t forget to ask for referrals and recommendations after completing a project!
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