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Being Your Own Artist Manager

August 6, 2009

Are you steering everything you do in terms of getting a record deal?  I don’t blame if you are still. It’s been ingrained into our heads that a record label is the mighty savior.

I just read a post by George Howard on what an Artist Manager should be doing in today’s environment and he brought up an important reality check.

To summarize, his point is that the major role for a manager in the old days was to secure a record deal. In today’s world, it’s about generating revenue from as many sources as you can.

So with that in mind, how do you approach things if you’re acting like your own manager.

Today you can make and stay connected with fans without spending much money, you can release music relatively cheap (if you don’t opt for making an album without having any fans and record 3ps instead), you can reach music supervisors without a publisher, you can book your own tour if you put in the work.  Everything is at your fingertips to really make a go of things on your own.  It may take a little more time and effort, but that’s the price of not having a lot of dough to really expose an artist

So where do you start?? Here are few ideas to help you out.

1. Define Success

Know what you want to achieve with your music. Be honest with yourself

2. Have money goals

You need to know how much you need to make to keep the band going. You need to save money and keep track of your spending.

3. Continuously learn about the internet, internet marketing, social media, music related technology updates, etcc…

Let’s face it. The internet is the distribution vehicle of today and the future.  Physical music will always hold a place in the world, but it will be only for die-hards.

4. Don’t emphasize the album!

Focus on songs and releasing music constantly in little chunks (3ps). You build fans through songs. The hardcores will buy albums down the road, but you gotta make fans first.

5. Emphasize direct contact

E-mail, twitter, facebook, etc.. are all ways to keep people updated.  Be active and engage your audience.

6. Work to build a solid live show

Play a lot and build that live show out as that’s what people will pay good money for (if you’re good).

7. Focus on Merch early on

Find a way to get killer shirt designs, bring them to every show, and sell them online. You can make more on a shirt than a CD if the design is stellar and you don’t need to spend as much upfront.

Remember, it’s all about building something from the ground-up. It doesn’t happen over night.

If you love what you do, you’ll put in the effort.

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. dvd permalink
    August 6, 2009 11:17 pm

    i know it’s still early, but have you guys heard any artist testimonials from those who’ve adopted your 3p strategy?

  2. August 7, 2009 11:06 am

    I completely agree that with the emergence of social media, now is a better time than any for artists to try to be their own managers. I write about how they can do that on my blog, I’d be interested to hear what you think!

  3. August 8, 2009 1:29 pm


    We’ve heard of artists trying it out, but we’re waiting to see some artists do more than one- like 3 or 4 in a year.


  1. Grindstop » Blog Archive » Being Your Own Artist Manager

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