Setting Effective Goals for Navigating the Music Industry in 2014

Girl before a labyrinth
It’s almost a new year and a clear slate is in front of all of us. The turning of the calendar from 2013 to 2014 is an ideal time to set your goals. I see a marked difference between artists who set finite goals and those who do not regardless of what is happening in the world and in the news.

Ask yourself: Is this the year I want to make a difference for my music career?

And if so – what difference and how?

Think of goal setting as if you were driving in a foreign place – You wouldn’t get where you expect to go without a clear set of directions. Goal setting is like drawing a map for yourself.
This article is designed to assist you in creating a personal roadmap for achieving what you would like with your musical career this year, whether you consider music your hobby or you are making a full-time living from it.

I have included a few links from some of the best musician related posts on how to think about and achieve goals as well.  So, bookmark this long article and refer to it throughout the year!

Mapping Out Your Goals

Many studies have proven that long-term perspective is the most accurate single predictor of upward social and economic mobility in America. And it has been proven that people who have goals written down are much more likely to achieve them.

Focus Areas – Creating Order

STEP 1: Write Down Your Focus Areas

Here is a list of some areas you may want to focus on. Skip the ones that are not for you and write out each focus area goal.

Branding – Your look and feel your image and health or your pitch and overall messaging.

Marketing – What will you do this year for your marketing plans.

Newsletter –  It’s still the #1 way to make money!  What will you do to create and send yours 12 – 24 times this year & how many people can you add to your e-mail list.

Website  – Building a new one or diversifying your online presence?

Social Networking  – How’s your Facebook Fan Page looking? How many tweets do you send each week?

PR – Getting covered on radio, print, or online.

Booking – Touring or local gigs this year or a combination?

New Music – How much will you release?

Money – How much money you would like to earn?

Film & TV Placements – Will you work towards them this year?

Expanding Your Fan Base – How will you do this?

Team – Will you be trying to get a manager or a booking agent?

Time – How will you manage to balance your time this year to make sure you can focus on your musical goals?

Songwriting – Recording an album or EP this year or just releasing singles as they come?

Instrument – Buying a new instrument or taking lessons?

Personal Health – So your performance is better – exercise, eating  etc.

STEP 2: Write Your Goals Down

  • Write each goal as if it is already happening – use the present tense
  • Give dates by when you want to achieve each one
  • Your goals should involve you and only you (they can’t be contingent on someone else)
  • Make them so they are realistically achievable
  • Start with small goals so I can get them checked off the list and get in momentum fast!
  • Make sure they make you FEEL MOTIVATED to complete!  Derek Sivers wrote great commentary on this: http://sivers.org/goals

STEP 3: Look At Them Everyday

I highly recommend writing your goals neatly on paper or creating a vision board that illustrates them. Use colored pens or make a collage that brings them to life and hang them in a place where you can see them everyday.

Keeping them within your sights will keep them in your mind.

Carla Lynne Hall at Rockstar Life Lessons has a fabulous guide on how to create a vision board on her blog: http://bit.ly/CarlasVisionBoard

Techniques For Achieving Goals

1. Start With An Easy Goal And Complete It

One of the main reasons people don’t end up achieving their goals / keeping their new years resolutions is they set themselves up for failure by choosing goals that take a lot of discipline and time to achieve. There is nothing wrong with having big goals however, here’s what I recommend to overcome this issue…

Choose a simple goal and get it achieved within the next two weeks. This will start your momentum and get you feeling like you are in full forward motion.

Think of a small, achievable goal that only takes four to five hours to complete.

Choose something like:

  • Organize cluttered studio
  • Clean off desk
  • Delete unwanted files & emails from computer
  • Recycle last years unwanted papers
  • Write one new song

Next, set a date when you will get your chosen goal done by and go for it.

Now that you have achieved a goal within the first two weeks of the new year, the rest of your goal setting will seem a lot easier to accomplish, and you will be able to get things off your plate.

2. Make Lists To Stay On Track

  • Make daily lists of what you need to do to get your goals met – the night before! Do the hardest thing first in the morning – don’t procrastinate
  • Do something everyday that moves you towards your goals
  • Delegate the little activities that waste your valuable time to other people (you would be amazed what you could do with 4 hours it takes to clean your house).
  • Don’t overload yourself – studies show that 6 tasks is the maximum you can achieve in one day!

3.  Get Help

Build a TEAM to help you!! Get an intern or two – log on to http://www.entertainmentcareers.net and read http://www.internlikearockstar.com/ for inspiration and post as an employer seeking interns – you will be amazed at how many bright young people would like to get their feet wet in the business.

If you are not comfortable with the idea of an intern then ask a friend or a family member to help you.  Schedule just 2 hours a week with that person to attack the goals and get them in motion.

4. Structure Time to Achieve Goals

They won’t happen unless you have time to make sure they do!

Make sure you set aside time and stick to it with pigheaded diligence.

5. Remember You Can Change The Goals As You Go

Goals should be looked at as beacons and guiding points for you to keep yourself on track along your journey.  I would not recommend changing them every week but the music industry is changing so rapidly it’s hard to know what goals are reachable in this landscape. So if the course of the year your goals change its OK to cross one off or modify as you go.

6. Write Down 5 Successes Each Day

I’m inviting you to write down five little victories a day for this entire year.
I learned this powerful technique years ago from T. Harv Eker.  Once you start getting into this habit, you are training yourself to put the focus on the positive and get your brain to stop being so critical.

So put a notebook in your gig bag or next to your bed and each day write down 5 things. Make one or two of them music or band related.

Here are some examples:

1. Went to gym.

2. Wrote lyrics for a new song.

3. Called three clubs for potential booking.

4. Did the dishes.

5. Posted a blog.

7. My Final Piece of Advice – Go Easy On Yourself!

This is a process intended to take a whole year and you will have your days where you may get frustrated, and you will start to beat yourself up (sound familiar?).

Self-criticism will interfere directly with achieving your goals and dreams.  So, the next time you are making yourself wrong, take a step back and instead acknowledge the good, and celebrate your achievements.

Another thing that will stop you is not taking time for YOU so schedule time to reflect and take it all in.  Maybe that’s a walk in the woods, maybe that’s cooking yourself a decadent meal, or maybe it’s spending time with people you love and turning down your power for a few days without the pressure of a holiday or an event….

Here’s to your success in 2014!

Want a Step-By-Step Guide To Help You?

My third edition of Music Success in Nine Weeks is available to help
Order now: http://www.musicsuccessinnineweeks.com

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Is Blogging Your Ticket To Speedy Full-Time Musician Status?

This is a guest article by Ben Sword, head coach at Music Marketing Classroom. Go here for more free training http://www.musicmarketingclassroom.com

blogChances are that if you’ve ever dabbled in the wonderful world of online music marketing you might have set up a blog at some point.

After playing with the fonts and colours for 7 hours (or was that just me?) you got to work eagerly bashing away at the keyboard week after week until finally that sinking feeling hit you like a sucker punch from Grandma…

“Hot Dang’ …Nobody is reading my Shizzle!”

Kinda feels like playing the best show of your life with only the bar staff watching! Not Cool.

But why the radio silence?

Well recently I spent around 3 months talking to every smart and successful blogger I could find in an effort to try and CRACK THE CODE for my latest book.

(which you’re getting below)

But you wanna know the “Magical Formula” right now?

Ok here goes…

To run a world class blog you need to build a big enthusiastic audience who suck up your every word like I drink Oreo Milkshake…and the only way there is HARD WORK.

That ain’t a very sexy thing for me to tell you, and I’m sure I would shift a lot more Classroom memberships if I was peddling a “fast-forward button” that gave you a Bagillion fans overnight.

But it don’t exist…

Sure there are examples of fast success, but relying on that is like saying “one day I’ll win the lottery and everything will be cool” rather than designing a real career (and business) that will sustain your hunger for Apple macs even when the five minutes of fame are over. (or is that just me again?)

Right…so now we got the reality check out the way, the question remains…can you really use blogging as your path to speedy full time musician status?

And the answer to that question my Interweby friend is 100% YES, but a well thought out Guest Blogging strategy will get you there faster.

Guest Blogging? What The FUNK?

The big idea here is that rather than spending four hundred years posting on your own site trying to build an audience, you first find relevant websites who have already got a bunch of visitors and become a valued content provider for them.

So WELL DONE because you just got a promotion, and your new job title is “Creator of super-awesome interesting stuff to be posted wherever there is a crowd”.

I believe EPIC Stuff should be the focus with any kind of sensible online marketing right now, in fact it’s not really about using a Blog at all, or a YouTube channel or even a Twitter feed…it’s your commitment to consistently producing inspiring and share-worthy articles, videos and music that will put you on the yellow brick road to a thriving audience.

Just to be clear…this strategy is NOT about using other sites JUST for their crowd like some fun sucking mind leech, but asking yourself how you can become a trusted and valued content producer to those websites and their followers?

Once you have a crowd of interested people collected on an email list from your guest posting exploits you’re free to focus on your own website if you like, because now you have a captive audience ready and waiting for what you have coming out.

So that’s the snazzy intro in the can, but I made you the following video and action-plan to help you get to work:

Your Action Plan

  1. Pick a topic that gets you all hot under the collar, then read the top three articles on Google for inspiration.
  2. Set a timer for 25 minutes and write down everything you can think of based on your chosen topic. Don’t stop writing or edit anything yet.
  3. Leave it overnight and go bake a cake or something, then come back the next day to edit your masterpiece ready for posting.
  4. Make it easy for your promo partners by setting up the code in your own blog first so they can post instantly.
  5. Don’t forget to link back to a page on your site where you can collect new email subscribers by offering them something killer.
  6. Contact popular websites to pitch your guest content. Search tools: Follower Wonk, Similar Site Search and good ol’ Google.
  7. If you hear nothing follow-up with a friendly reminder.
  8. Use the feedback you get to improve your pitch and then rinse and repeat the process until you’ve gotten all the hits you can from the content you created.

If right now you’re pumped and feel confident that guest posting is going to be totally badass for you then I suggest you commit to it as your main promo method for at least three months and focus. (Six days a week if possible.)

Only then will you have a proper indication of your success.

Remember the words of Bruce Lee…

“I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times…and Ben Sword is totally AWESOME!”

OK I made up the last bit, but you get the idea :-)

A few more goodies…

When you’re on a guest blogging mission it’s all about “how much coolness can I put in my posts”… so with that in mind I decided to make you another video packed with all the little details you’re going to need to get started with your promotion:


johnny

…and if at this point you’re thinking “Oh yeah, like I’m really going to do my full time job and be a dedicated guest blogger as well”…

…then below is a little process I’ve been using to get up at 4.45am every morning giving me plenty of time to work before my two year old son stage dives out of the cot onto my head, while still swinging his guitar!

And Finally…

Whoa we made it, thanks for sticking with me!

You’ll remember that right at the start of this post I mentioned a book I’ve been working on to seek out smart bloggers and grill them for advice.

And just for kicks…you can download a full free copy of that below.

Click on the book to download:

Once you’re done with this lesson I’d love you to leave me a comment and let me know how you plan to use guest blogging in your marketing plan, or what you’ve been doing to build a buzz around your music recently.

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49 Female Music Entrepreneurs Share Their Best Advice (Part 2)

WomenEntrepreneurs

It’s been a minute since the first batch of fierce, fabulous, female music business entrepreneurs showed up on my blog, and as you can see it was worth the wait. I’m thrilled to be showcasing now over 100 women.

Please share this, retweet this and feel free to repost on your own blogs.

With Love,

Ariel

Artists/Producers/Composers

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The Three Ps

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Christine Ben Ameh
“The 3 PS- 1. Patience. 2. Perseverance. 3.Practice (Makes perfect).”
Recording Artist/Songwriter
@CHRISTINE_AMEH



Be Bold

CarsieBlanton







Carsie Blanton
“Be excellent, be committed, be bold.”
Indie Singer/ Songwriter
@carsieblanton










Don’t Fear Failure


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Roswitha Bartussek
“Envision your destiny and take small daily steps towards it. Don’t be afraid to fail, the more often you fail the more likely you will succeed. Be your authentic self, don’t try to fit in, carve out your niche.”

Artist, CEO of Queen Rose, Inc.
@queenrose







Be Present


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Ann Klein
“Make the very best of where you are; it’ll take you where you want to go.”
Artist (singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist)
@redcharvel1







The Truth Will Set You Free


ErinDickens
Erin Dickins
“ Tell the truth – in music and life – never sing a lyric that you wouldn’t have as an epithet. Never do anything artistically to please anyone else. It’s all you – be authentically you – in your passion, your joy and your dreams. Shine your light big and bright no matter how big the challenges. Love every minute of the journey.”
(not just a) Jazz VOCALIST – Recording artist on Dot Time Records
@erindickins


Dream Bigger

aoede
Aoede
“Dream BIG and often! Never let a little thing called life get in the way of your grandest dreams! If you dream it, put it out into the Universe, truly believe and work crazy hard to make it happen, your dreams can come true. Listen to your muse, believe in yourself, and don’t be afraid to be a pioneer; if it hasn’t been done before, pave your own path!”
Award-Winning Pop and Children’s Musical Stories, Singer-Songwriter, Recording Artist
@aoedemuse



Find Your Tribe

Barb Morrison
Barb Morrison
“Work with people (whether it be a manager, a producer, an agent, a publicist or a record label) who GET you. Having someone fully understand what you’re trying to say with your music is crucial. It’s much more important than how connected they are in the industry.”
Record producer & film score composer
@barbmorrison


It’s Not All About You

CherylEngelhardt




Cheryl Engelhardt
“Your results are not about you- they show up when you create an opportunity of value for someone else. I use this nugget when pitching music-to-music supervisors, getting a film-scoring gig, when talking with a potential coaching client, or even when inviting a friend to a movie. “What’s in it for them?” is the phrase I have running through my head before making a request of anyone.”
Songwriter / Composer / Creative Career Coach
@CBE





Don’t Let Your Ego Control You

Trudee Lunden
Trudee Lunden
“ Don’t let your own ego supersede your humanity while building relationships or promoting your business. Although music is global, people in this industry travel in a small circular world. Music and creativity in general holds a valuable place in society, however, we’re not saving lives, feeding the poor or sheltering the homeless (unless donating our time, resources or earnings for these purposes).”
Singer/Songwriter/Music Publisher
@GreenMusicLady


DO Your Dream

BettieRoss

Bettie Ross
“Do your dream:  Know what your dream is, and work hard at achieving it.  DO it, don’t just dream it.  Get really good at your craft, whether it’s playing an instrument or songwriting or singing, being a manager or an attorney, whatever it is.  And I mean, get REALLY good at it. Learn from each opportunity, even if it is not exactly what your dream is.”
Composer, Keyboardist, Songwriter, and Music Engraver
Bettie [AT] BettieRoss [DOT] com


Anything Could Happen

SarahPatrella
Sarah Petrella
“If it can happen to someone, it can happen to you. We are all talented beings, and the winners win because they don’t give up.”
Singer/Songwriter
@smpetrella


Do What You Love

JeannaMurphey
Jeanna Isham
“The thing that filters out the good from the great is stamina, persistence, and an undying faith in yourself that this will happen for you.  If this is what you’ve been put on this earth to do then do it and never stop.  After all, if you truly love it then it shouldn’t be about money or fame.  If you love it then you’re successful just by being one of the few that is living their love every single day.”
Dreamr Productions


Keep Growing

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Chaise Candie
“Never Stop Growing – Developing your skills and talents should be an ongoing process. Immerse yourself in the industry and gain as much knowledge as possible. Be confident and proud of what you’ve accomplished yet avoid becoming complacent.”
Singer, Songwriter & Performer
@chaisecandie


Hard Work Pays Off


Anne Laverty







Anna Laverty
“Work hard and ALWAYS be the last one standing.”
Producer/Sound Engineer
@annalaverty










Never Give Up


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Tania Stavreva
“Never give up. In the music industry I find that there is always a path toward success that is not always easy. Facing difficulties and barriers is often disappointing but they make you stronger. Being able to remain motivated, inspired, passionate, creative and stubborn about your art and about your goal, that is what I consider the right path to victory and success.”
Concert Pianist
@taniastavreva


Give & Take

HollyBrewer




Holly Brewer
“There is a difference between giving and being taken advantage of. Find and define the line between both and keep it balanced.”
Composer, singer, multi-instrumentalist and I co-own the record label Nervous Relatives Records (since 2002)
@TheFolksBelow





Be Patient

LeanneRegalle







Leanne Regalle
“There’s no such thing as overnight success. Slow, steady progress over time adds up. Craft your vision and keep working towards it every single day. You will make mistakes. Leave your ego at the door, be flexible, and keep moving forward. Your contribution matters.”
Songwriter and Owner at Livin’ Out Loud Music, Blogger at Make Creativity Pay
@leregalla





Be Your Own Friend

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Marcomé
“Your best investment is in a solid self-esteem and a goal that evolves you and others.
You’re the first person you get up with and the last you go to bed with for the rest of your life so better learn to become your own best friend. Without inner peace, money does not bring true lasting happiness.”
Canadian new age music vocalist, songwriter, music producer
@Marcome




Hit a Wall? Wait.

DeeHandyside




Dee Handyside
“It’s damn tough.  But when I hit a wall, I no longer continue to bash it.  I take a step back and wait.  A person, opportunity or event will come along and open a door so that I go through the wall unscathed.  I call them my ‘wall-angels’.”
Owner, Performer
@DeeHandyside








Create A New Way

ZoeBoekbinder
Zoe Boekbinder
“Sure, sure, heed good advice… but also find a way of doing it that is different than the way its been done before.”
Artist
@zoeboekbinder




Cultivate the Powerful Women in your Life

NormandieWilson




Normandie Wilson
“Make sure to surround yourself with other women! Seek out women’s groups and the advice of women who are kicking ass and taking names. Remember that you are a reflection of the 5 people that you spend the most time around. Make sure those people are the top of the top.”
Entertainer
@normandiewilson








Listen

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Madalyn Sklar
“Passion and persistence will get you far. Don’t be afraid to go big. Surround yourself with smart, motivated, like-minded people (join or start a mastermind group). Listen. Listening will get you further than anything else.”
Founder, GoGirlsMusic
@madalynsklar






Artist Management/Agents/Publicists

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Trust Your Instincts

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Carla Sacks
“Don’t look sideways. Summon your gut and trust your instincts. Try to always do right, it will make you happy and happiness is contagious.”
Founder, Sacks & Co. media relations
@sacksco



Fame Isn’t Everything

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Hilde Spille
“In the rock-music business, every artist wants to become famous, it seems. I
can assure you that success is not dependent on fame. Every step counts. Too
many people in the business still believe the myth that fame will solve all
your problems. Don’t believe that, it adds more problems than you can
imagine.”
European booking agent, entrepreneur, personal e-coach for artists, and
 blogger
@HildeSpille




Stay Focused

SusanGodwin



Susan Fontaine Godwin
“Nurture your vision. Know that it will take longer to realize your vision than you expect, and it will look different than you thought. Know that you will encounter criticism, naysayers, roadblocks and delays, but it’s part of the process that will help form and fashion your vision into reality.”
Founder/President of CCS
@copyright_queen and @doingmusicright






Respect Everyone

Laura McKinley





Lauren McKinley
“Realize that this industry is ever changing and relatively small.  Not only should you respect everyone you meet and/or work with, but also you should always offer help where you can.  The people you help today will be the ones helping you tomorrow.”
Owner, Clover Marketing & Management
@CloverMktg or @LFMcKinley








It’s Ok to Say No

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Leanne de Souza
“Never feel the need to apologize for life balance choices.  If you can’t take that Skype call at particular time because you are doing the school run, that’s okay! Just reschedule, don’t feel the need to justify and explain every reason and decision. Be vigilant.”
Artist Manager
@rebelbuzz












Be True To Yourself

Lori Bumgarner of paNASH Style





Lori Bumgarner
“Never try to do things exactly the way others tell you to do it or exactly the same way they did it. Promotion of your brand has to be done in a way that is true to you. Not every species of flower blooms at the same rate or under the same conditions!”
Image Consultant/owner of paNASH Style LLC
@panashstyle








Kindness is Strength

Natasha Bent





Natasha Bent
“Stay positive, work hard, don’t expect it to be easy, and always treat everyone with respect, fairness and kindness, even those that may not show it in return; that shows true strength.”
Booking Agent at The Agency Group London office ( VP)
@Agent_Tasha










Take Care of Yourself

Jessica De Wal
Jessica De Wal
“Work hard to build your business but always make time to work on your personal growth and well-being. When I just started my own company I felt I had to put in many hours and had to be available at all times because my dream of running my own PR company was finally coming true. I never made time to take good care of myself and eventually became ill. Over recent times I have cut back my working hours drastically and am planning ‘me time’ again. When you’re feeling well, you’re company will do a lot better too.”
Music publicist and owner at It’s All Happening
@ItsAllHappening




Pay Attention

Blair Clark


Blair Clark
“Pay attention ALL the time. The next big thing in social media, distribution, touring, etc could be right in front of you. Take time to keep up with what’s going on.”
Artist Manager & Owner, Dance Panda Entertainment
@dancepanda








Break The Stereotype

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Cameo Carlson
“Don’t allow yourself to fall into stereotypes. The music business tends to sideline women that are too aggressive in the “bitch” category and women that are too passive in the “doormat” category. Break the glass ceiling by being the most prepared in the room. Speak up and defend your positions passionately.”
Head of Digital Business Development, Borman Entertainment (artist management company)
@DigiMusicBitch








Find Another Door

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Laurence Muller
“When a door closes, never stand there like a dummy, find another door!”
Label Manager / Manager







Educators

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Set Goals

Kristin Yost



Kristin Yost
“Someone once told me that goals without deadlines are only dreams…dreams are important, but goals are what propel us to dream even bigger.”
Author of “How I Made a $100,000 My First Year as a Piano Teacher”
@musicalminds



Be Grateful

Adja Snyder




Ajda Snyder
“ Be true to your vision.  Have gratitude for all your blessings and let your defeats humble you and help you grow.”
Voice Teacher
@ajdatq







Embrace Uncertainty

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Dr. Jill Timmons
“Enjoy the process and remember, sometimes you build the road as you go!”
PRINCIPAL: ARTSMENTOR, LLC (www.artsmentor.com)
@artsmentor



Don’t Take It Personal

ceciliaslattery
Celia Slattery
“Don’t take rejection personally. Keep working on improving your craft and persevere.  Sooner or later the doors that are closed to you now will begin to open — or you’ll find other doors, or maybe crawl in through a window.  Persist because you love music and you have a mission; not for any imagined pot of gold you think you’ll find at the end of the rainbow.”
Voice and Performance Studio
@celiaslattery



Music Biz Professionals

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Fans First

Louise Dodgeson
Louise Dodgson
“Always put your fans first. Too many bands & artists are concerned with attracting the interest of the music industry. But the best way to do so is usually to forget all about it! Concentrate on your fans. Communicating with them and working hard to expand your fan base. Making the music and sharing it with people who really appreciate what you do is the enjoyable part. Your fans will help create the buzz for you and if you’re doing your own thing with a keen and constantly growing following, the music industry will no doubt catch up to you in due course.”
Editor, The Unsigned Guide
@editorunsigned




Slow Down

IsabellaAcker
Isabella Acker
“We live in an era where everyone’s constantly bombarded with the invasive nature of technology and its demand for us to always stay up to speed. This constant connectivity can affect your ability to nurture your creativity. We must allocate time, even if it’s 15 minutes a day to stop, slow down, and get inspired.”
The Black Key Group
@BlackKeyGroup





Make It a Win-Win

KerryFiero




Kerry Fiero
“Strive to create win-win situations. That means every relationship is about finding a happy medium so everyone involved had something to gain. It is not about today…. but about tomorrow and the years to come when building a career. The win-win builds lasting relationships. Interns become bosses. Colleagues become friends. Strangers become allies. Every door that opens to your next great opportunity will be from someone you know.”
Event Planner, Music Business Professional
@KalwaysSTRIVING





Be Positive

LynnSpin


Lynn Spin
“Never get sucked into negativity.  Even though the music industry is predominately men, never believe yourself unworthy to be on the same level.”
Vice President of JaHMa Music
@jahmarecords







Female Power

KimCameron









Kim Cameron
“Never underestimate the power of female colleagues. They can be your most valuable allies.”
Label Owner
@Sidefxband









Know Your Data

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Velda Garcia Fayz
“Come armed with a strategy based on data. Know how to collect it, how to analyze it and how to use it so you can make informed decisions about what fans want and how they discover/buy new music.”
President & Artist Manager Battlecross
@GoVelda





Have Faith

JenniferAllison






Jennifer Allison
“With faith passion & action, all things are possible.
Love changes things.”
Founder & CEO of EXE Media Group
Co-Founder of Love The Little Ones
PR for Transcendental Music


@exemediagroup







Believe

Melanie Ismail




Melani Ismail
“Remember, it’s not about how you feel, it’s about how you believe. Keep going.”
President of MAI Productions
@melaniismail









Creative Entrepreneurs

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Listen to that Gut Feeling

Farideh


Farideh
“Your business decisions need to feed your passion.  Everyone has ideas about what you “HAVE” to do to make it. If you do everything they tell you to do, you’ll end up hating what you used to love. Take their advice but listen to your own gut feelings.”
Founder & CEO, Sceneplay
Business Strategist for Creative Entrepreneurs
@faridehceaser









Persevere

GloryReinstein


Glory Reinstein
“While you’re building relationships with industry folks, remember they are normal people with families and lives just like you and I.  Get educated, treat them with kindness and respect, don’t take “no thank you” personally, and above all, persevere!”
Creative Liaison
Bluebird (Music) Promotions

@BluebirdGlory







Keep It Real

JenniferSellers


Jennifer Sellers
“Be sincere. Man or woman, your integrity in this business makes you stand out. Your enthusiasm mixed with a determined sensibility helps you tread through all kinds of obstacles and allows room for great success.
”
Talent Buyer, Booker, Marketing Director, Social Media Director, Street Team Organizer, Personal Shopper, Office Manager, Event Staff Coordinator
@rocnopal






Be Fair

LaurieJakobsen




Laurie Jakobsen
““Fight fair” – today’s seeming adversary could be your colleague tomorrow; you never know who you will encounter again in your life’s journey.”
President, Jaybird Communications
@jaybirdcom














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Find Your Niche: Go Deep – What Makes You, You?

Today I urge you to dig a little deeper and focus. For example: A niche is not, “travel.” Instead it’s “European backpacking”, or “shamanistic journey.” Get granular within your niche. We’ve run entire content marketing campaigns around this concept and I wanted to share it with you because I think it will get your mind going about what your niche (or niches) could be.

Dive deeper into exploring your niche by reading my latest article on the CyberPR.com blog – click the link below:

Does Your Business Niche Attract Your Ideal Customer

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5 Ways to Activate and Engage Your Fan Base for the Holiday Season

Image Credit: http://bit.ly/17uD4jh

Image Credit: http://bit.ly/17uD4jh

This article was originally published in 2012 but has been updated for the 2013 holiday season. Happy Holidays from Team Cyber PR®!

If you can believe it, Thanksgiving is only two short weeks away!

While for many that means enough turkey, stuffing and gravy to induce the dreaded ‘food coma’, but it also signifies the beginning of the holiday season.

Ah, the holiday spirit.

This time of year, people of all ages and religions come together to bask in a feeling of unity and… well, presents.

For you, this means two things:

1. There is no better time to work on building engagement within your fan base
2. There is no better time to sell (what you sell will be up to you, more on that later)

Unfortunately, this also means one last thing; you have exactly two weeks to create a strategy for the holiday season if you hope to take full advantage of this opportunity.

But not to worry, the following are several tactics that you can use to first activate your fan base in order to build engagement or sales (or possibly even both!):
(more…)

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6 Steps to Start Building Your Brand on Pinterest

Image Credit (CC): http://mkhmarketing.wordpress.com/

Image Credit (CC): http://mkhmarketing.wordpress.com/

This article was written by Corie Kellman (@coralman808), Cyber PR®’s Director of New Artist Relations.

Your goal is to be a full time musician, right? Or maybe you already quit your day job and this is all you do. Guess what– you’re not just a musician, you’re a business, so start acting like one. It’s time to convert your Pinterest account to a business account, if you haven’t already. There are perks to having a business account over a personal account, like analytics tools and coming soon, promoted pins.

Why Pinterest? Pinterest gives you an opportunity to further build your brand image, show your fans what inspires you or what you find interesting, and helps drive traffic back to your other sites, like your webstore, newsletter signup, or other socials (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, blog etc.) It’s a great place to build your lifestyle branding.

Here are 6 steps to get you started:

1. Pinterest for Business

Sign up for a Pinterest for business account or convert your current account to one at http://business.pinterest.com and create a profile. Be sure to use an image or photo people will recognize you – remember you are building your brand!

2. Themed Boards

Create a few themed boards – shoot for 8-10 boards. Start with things you are most interested in (this will help keep the ‘work’ ‘fun’ so that you don’t quit using the network after the first few days.
Keep your boards’ titles easy to understand, you want to choose words that your fans will search for or understand. For example, if your lyrics are heavily influenced by Classic Rock, title one of your boards that. Or perhaps you inspired by traveling, title one of your boards ‘Travel’. One of my favorite things to search for are clothes inspired by my favorite rock stars. If you have a fan base whose wardrobe or culture is inspired by your music or your brand, make a board to share where your fans can get that shirt you wore on tour.

Ellen Degeneres has a great example: Ellen’s style is a huge part of her brand and she has created a board with over 220,000 followers.

Ellen

3. Start Pinning!

Search for posts to pin that align with your board theme. Caution: This part is addicting! You may find yourself with lost hours of your life. Aim to have at no less than 5 pins per board. And remember when you pin, to edit the caption to be search-friendly and personal.

4. Add pins that link back to your sites

You can add a content to the site by clicking the “+” icon in the upper right-hand area of the Pinterest homepage. This is a prime opportunity for you to link it back to where you want to see traffic increase (your blog, webstore or newsletter signup for example.) It will become a pin that other users can share with their followers – remember to make the content pin-teresting.

Whole Foods Market does a great job of making thier content pin-teresting and linking it back to their site. Take a look at their Thanksgiving board:

Thanksgiving

You will notice if you click through the Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake pin, it will take you to their site. On the website, you can see they have the Pin-it button for others to pin directly from their site.

5. Follow Users That Interest You

Friends, family, fans, other brands and celebrities will help fill your feed and inspire you, too.

Here are a few boards you may like:

The Rolling Stones
Paste Magazine
Ariel Hyatt
NPR Music
CMT
Fender

6. Don’t forget to engage with fans that comment on your posts!

It’s an opportunity to build a relationship.

Are you on Pinterest? What do you use it to search for? Who are your favorite pinners to follow? Share your experience below!

How Do YOU Use Pinterest to Build Your Brand?

Share your experiences and successes with Pinterest in the form of a comment below!

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