Getting Your Foot In The Proverbial Door

Posted by Aaron Davison on Friday, October 4, 2013 Under: October 13

One of the hardest parts of entering into the music licensing business is getting started.  How do you get your first break if you don't have any credits, don't know anyone in the industry and so on?  Once you "get your foot in the door" things get easier.  But how do you break into a business if you're just starting out?

Today I'm going to share a few thoughts about how to break into the business of music licensing.  The music business is competitive. That by no means is an indication that you can't be successful. In fact, I think it's more effective to focus on ways you can improve your own craft and improve your own skills as opposed to worrying about the competition.  

Here are three areas you should focus on in order to improve your chances of being successful:

1) The Music You Make - It all starts and stops with your music.  This really is what it's all about.  If you're not writing and creating great music then all the advice in the world is not going to help you break into the licensing business.  Before you do anything else, make sure the music you are making is great.  Of course in the context of licensing, music needs to fit a certain mold.  But it still needs to be very strong.  

You should always be working to improve your craft.  Take songwriting courses, read books, write, re-write and re-write until your really confident in your music.  It's easy to be cynical about the music business but I really believe good music will find a home.  The musicians I see consistently licensing their music are really good at what they do.

2) Be Professional -  When you're approaching people about licensing your music, always put your best foot forward.  What does this mean?  Submit your best music in the most professional way possible.  Do you have a professionaly manufactured CD?  Then send that.  Do you have a one sheet that lists your career highlights?  Include that!   When you call someone or email someone present yourself professionally.  You'd be surprised how many people write me and don't even sign their email with their name.  Make sure you communicate in an articulate way.

Put yourself in the shoes of whoever your'e submitting your music to.  People like to work with people who are professional and who "get it".  If you're receiving dozens of submissions a week you are going to gravitate towards the artists who have great music, have a great presentation, are easy to contact and so on.   Put some thought and effort into what you're sending out.

3) Always Follow Up - This one is crucial.  I've seen so many cases personally and with others where nothing happens until a follow up email or call is made.  This isn't always the case, but often times it is.  No one cares more about your career than you do so make sure you always take charge and communicate that you're serious about moving your career forward.  If you take yourself seriously other people will as well.

In : October 13 

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