If you’ve been on my list for awhile, then you’re probably aware that I stress the importance of following up with people you’re working with or trying to work with in the music business. In today’s post I want to follow up on the idea of following up. It never ceases to amaze me just how critical this idea is.
Here’s a recent example in my own experience…
I recently had several placements via a publishing company that I started a relationship with about ten years ago. At one point I was getting a lot of placements through this particular publisher, but a few years ago the original owner sold the company to someone else and I didn’t develop nearly as good of a relationship with the new owner as I had with the old one. I had songs in the catalog that we’re still earning myself and the new owner money, but in many ways it felt like I was starting over with this particular publisher.
I recently had a few new placements from this particular publishing company for a couple songs that I wrote before the new owner took over. Although I had submitted new music last year to this same publisher that I never heard back from, I thought this new success would be a good opportunity to follow up on the music I submitted but never heard back about last year.
So I sent the publisher a short note that said something to the effect of….
“Hey I was looking at my most recent ascap statement and noticed you secured the following placements…. Thanks so much! By the way, did you ever get a chance to check out the music I sent you a few months ago?”
It was something like that.
About a day later I get a message from her assistant saying she had been swamped and hadn’t had a chance to listen to it yet but that she would as soon as she had time. A couple weeks later she emailed back saying she and her team loved the music I sent and they get asked for things like this all the time and they’d love to add it to their catalog and they feel confident they can place it.
So, the moral of the story of course, is always follow up. Follow up even when you’ve already followed up. Follow up until you get either a no or a yes. If someone is clearly not interested in your music, obviously don’t be a pest. But often times you haven’t heard a response just because they haven’t heard your music yet. Running a publishing company involves a lot of work. This particular company probably has three or four people working there, yet they’re dealing with hundreds of artists, thousands of songs and many more artists knocking on their doors every day.
Don’t be offended if someone doesn’t respond to your music right away. Wait a few weeks and then follow up. If you don’t get an answer, wait a few more weeks and then follow up again. As my former songwriting teacher at Berklee used to always say, “the squeaky wheel gets the grease”.
In : February 2015
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