Music Business Plan Tips – Use Everyone
When you’re in a band with multiple members, creating and executing a music business plan can’t fall upon one person alone. It’s way too time consuming – that’s why, one day, you’ll hopefully be in a position to hire a manager. But until then, you need to be able to answer “what’s our music business plan and how are we going to execute it?”
***But before we begin, these tips are free! I only ask for you to “follow” me on Twitter. That way I can keep you up to date on other useful tips. Did you do it? Okay, onward!***
1. Develop Goals
First and foremost, you need to have very specific goals, both short-term and long-term. You can read more about this step in “Setting Band Goals” by my friend, Scott Erickson. Essentially, the band needs to decide what dreams you have and the time frame in which to make them come true.
2. Divide and Conquer
Grab some beers, find a quiet spot and have a very important band meeting. Call it the Divide and Conquer meeting because you’re going to decide who will do what in conquering your goals. What do these tasks include? Booking (gigs, parties), marketing (social media, print, door-to-door), promoting, writing content, administrative upkeep (website, bios, EPK’s), networking, merchandise, photos, press. Those are the essentials of your music business plan. Add more as needed. Now, how do you go about deciding who get’s what?
3. Start with Strengths
By now, you’re two beers in and feeling a little freaked out with all the stuff you have to do. Let’s make it easier. Everyone in the band is good at something besides playing music. Who’s the best writer? Great – they create the social media and blog posts, bios and press kits. Who’s the best talker? Perfect – you just found your networker, fan manager and booking agent. Have a visual artist in the band? They can handle promo print material, photos, merch designs. Which of you understands numbers? Their job is administrative upkeep, financially planning for tours, and finding the best prices on merch. If you can’t find a member that can handle one of these tasks, surely you have a die-hard fan who can!
4. Schedule 20 mins. Per Day
Working on the music business plan does not need to be a huge time sucker. Now that everyone has their tasks, just spend 20 – 30 minutes per day working on them. It’s not difficult; it just takes persistence. I accomplish these tasks for the bands I manage first thing every morning. Then it’s onto other tasks.
5. Meet as a Business
Ideally, most of the time with your band is spent rehearsing, songwriting, recording, creating music videos and drinking. However, like any business, the band needs to make time to address the health of the enterprise it’s direction. This meeting should happen at least once a month. Because you don’t have hours to spend, create a game-plan where everyone knows what’s to be discussed. Perhaps you have a CD release party that needs marketing muscle; maybe it’s time to start planning that spring/summer tour you’ve wanted to do for eons. Whatever it is, know what you’ll be discussing and knock it out. (*Hint: Beer generally make these meeting far less tedious).
The Music Business Plan in Summary
What I’ve provided is a rough template. Now you just need to tweak it to work for your band. Another great resource for you is Loren Weisman’s book The Artist’s Guide to Success in the Music Business. Many of my thoughts are derived from his book.
If you have any ideas of your own or questions about creating a music business plan, leave them in the box below. I always answer! Cheers and see ya at the next jam!