10 Questions to Build Your Career

July 28, 2019

Building a music career requires being able to take a step back, in order to move forward.

Growing musicians need to learn to evaluate themselves to identify what's going on and what is not, and to become aware of the current state of their careers.

The better you know yourself, the easier you'll build and promote your brand!

The right answers come when you're asking to yourself the right questions. 

Here they are.

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1. Is your music attractive enough?

You can set up the best promotion campaigns, you can have the best possible team behind your project, if the music itself isn't OK, then you'll just... FAIL.

Before even thinking about anything else, you have to make sure that your sound is up to your ambitions.

Because your music, that you can also call your "product", is your 1st marketing tool to get fans, live from your passion and make you known.

Therefore, before going further, practice, compose, repeat, and be sure you can captivate your potential fans with your lyrics, melodies and harmonies.

2. Who is your fanbase made of?

You made  beautiful music, that's cool! Congrats! But now, you have to understand who it was made for.

Of course, it can't suit to everyone. So, don't promote your music to everyone! It's a loss of time, and a lot of money.

The more you can precisely target your promotion campaign, the more effective it will be.

To be short, define what your average fan looks like : What sex? How old ? Which socials? Which passions? 

You must be aware of these things. If you don't, your campaigns will turn to a huge loss of time and money...

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3. What's your brand?

Too many artists believe that their music will define their branding. No. You will define your branding. Your music won't.

But it's only a tiny part of your musical project's identity.

Think about how you look like, about your visual identity, about your universe, about the message you want to deliver...

Which emotions do you want to give through your music? How do you want to be remembered?

All of these things matter in your branding.

4. Are you promoting your music in the right way?

Unfortunately nowadays, many musicians and even labels promote their sound in an inappropriate way.

It may be for example to use methods not recommended such as spamming blogs, or purchasing fake fans...

Never forget that your main goal is to bring potential fans to your music and your brand. Nothing else.

You only have to remember 3 words : exchanging, listening, sharing.

This means that you have to choose the right communication tunnels to reach your potential fans.

Not sure a hard rock band has a lot to gain on Soundcloud. Will a country band make it on Bandcamp?

That means you have to be proactive, go out, and expand your network.

You must give your fans, bloggers, and radio stations what they want.

5. What is your content strategy?

Let's talk about what you create and release.

Did you ever think about a strategy for that? Or do you just let chance decide?

You need to set a content strategy up, which will be consistent and tailored to your market, by defining your editorial line and your content schedule.

What are you going to share? When will you do it? How will you do it? Which target ? Why are you doing it ?

You need to regularly create and share new sounds as well as new posts, so don't miss this.

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6. What are your strengths and weaknesses?

As we already said, be honest with yourself. Nobody's perfect. But knowing you better, you can go further.

If you want to become the best version of yourself, you need to be aware of your assets, and be aware of what are the elements to work on.

Maybe you're better than some other people when you're on stage? Maybe you're a good composer? Maybe you're better at writing? Maybe you have some troubles dealing with socials, or booking?

Discover your weaknesses, and then decide about them : seperate them and place them in 3 columns : weaknesses you need to train, weaknesses you need to delegate, weaknesses you need to forget. Eveything is a matter of importance. According to you, which weakness is more important to work on? Which weakness should you forget about?

Well, as you'll see, you'll be much more confident in your project, if you know yourself better than you thought.

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7. What are your short-term and long-term goals?

If you don't even have goals, and just think your luck will make the job, hoping something amazing is going to happen for your career, then your results will disappoint you.

You need realistic and precise goals to move forward.

You need goals short-term goals (amount of YT views, subscribers, amont of downloads, sales) as well as long-term goals (over a year), which are more ambitious.

8. How do you measure your success?

At first, to achieve your goals, you need to know exactly where you are.

You must be able to measure and understand what's happening right now, around your musical project.

And you should keep an eye, especially on of your email list's size, because it's the most important information about your career development.

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9. Are you surrounded by the right people?

Even though you're a solo artist, you need to be surrounded by people who can give you feedback and help you. That's what we're doing daily on Submithub, helping artists to know what's right and what's wrong about their tracks. If you currently have a team, is everyone sharing your goals? Are you working with people who motivate you and inspire you? Are you working with honest people, who could make everything to achieve your goals? If a member of your team (or band) is currently slowing down your project, then it's an emergency : you have to make a decision right now.

10. Do you invest in the right things?

As you must have realized, starting a musical project requires a certain amount of money.

Knowing that, you can't use external funds, it's up to you to finance the most important things.

And so far as we know, an artist or a band doesn't have millions to spend.

So here are the most important investments : you have to invest in your music, to get a professional sound. Invest in your brand, to be sure it's catchy. Invest in your promotion (for your merch, your PR...). But don't invest in CDs, for example.

To be short, you must invest in all the things that will provide you a result.

Buying a seventh guitar, a new fashionable plug-in, or thousands of fake likes, are not things that will bring you closer to your ultimate goal.

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To sum up

We strongly recommend that you ask yourself these questions, several times a year, to make sure your project is moving in the right direction.

Being able to identify what's going wrong, to identify opportunities, will definitely help you out to define your musical strategy and reach more people. 

And of course, if you're afraid to do that, just ask us. We're here to help you out.

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