I could’ve titled this post in a number of ways and actually deleted and changed he title a few times.
I don’t normally do that, but I hoped to attract attention and make people take the time to read the article it links to, because it encapsulates the whole truth about what being a musician is all about today….and it’s written in business management speak by a non-music industry writer!
Smart managers realize every artist is a standalone business that generates income from multiple revenue streams. A manager’s job is to create those businesses and run them well. This requires thinking globally and being agnostic about which revenue stream or territory is the most important. As long as those channels can deliver the aesthetic the artist wants and make a profit, the business is a success.
But the business of relationship building is not a quick one. Artists have to earn the respect of fans, convert that respect into trust, and, eventually, convert that trust into faith. Building communities takes time, and it can only be achieved over the long-term. In this model, artists can no longer be treated as interchangeable hit makers.
This writer understands the turning point we are at.
Make your music, work hard to be as good as you can be, put it out there and grow and develop in sight of and with help from your fans. They will come along with you.
The second KEY lesson in this article is:
Value the artist-fan relationship as highly as traditional rights.
i.e. don’t just make music and try to sell records. The value is in the long-term relationship with your fans – and that’s not just a monetary value, it’s artistic, cultural and emotional as well.
Those fans will sustain you for a far longer period (including fiancially) if you treat them properly and maintain that relationship.