Posts Tagged ‘networking’

Why don’t you go on x-factor?

There’s something about that question that really irks every true musician. I don’t know how to describe that feeling and it isn’t pretty. So lets face it..you are going to be surrounded by people who really don’t “get” or understand what you are trying to do, this is because they probably don’t have regular hobbies or a passion that they follow and actually DO something about it. The lack of passion is a real killer, yet sadly most of the world is lacking it.

But that’s cool as long as you are aware of it and don’t let it bother you.

It is a problem though when it does bother you. So this article is about all the people you are surrounded with and who don’t have any real way of encouraging you, indeed painfully enough they might even make fun of you or just not take you seriously enough. This is even more painful with those that are closest to you as friends or/and family.

And to me the epitome of this situation is the very question “Why don’t you go on x-factor?”

Not the innocent version of the question but the “I don’t know what to suggest so I will suggest this instead” version of it. So any time someone asks this question, just give a smiling nod to yourself and answer something like…”Yup, I am going on x-factor soon, they have asked Simon Cowell to be at our gig at the preliminary round, why don’t YOU come along to the next show and see it yourself for real. And thanks for your idea too, I would have never thought of it myself”

And being objective about x-factor, well sure enough…the real winner of the show is Simon Cowell, he IS x-factor and through many of his early years failed to make a mark on anything. Just the fact that at his age and despite several setbacks, he now runs the biggest reality show in the UK (and it’s spin offs around the globe) is in itself inspiration that the real route of success is to keep going at it. Indeed Simon Cowell himself faced many “Simon Cowell’s” and he came through it.

What do you think? How do you answer this question yourself? I am really curious so please answer in the comments below!

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The real world is analogue. So what does this mean exactly?

It is one of my favourite quotes by Ariel Hyatt of Cyber PR marketing, she uses this quote at the end of her presentations. Quite ironic given that she is a digital marketing expert for musicians!

Chatting to someone via email, following them of myspace or even listening to your favourite band songs is a digital experience. But we humans don’t work like that…we are not digital at all! We want to be there with other people, our favourite artist, we want to see what they look like in the flesh, their voice tones, the way they blink their eyes…all the things that make us human. That’s why we go to such expenses to go see our favourite band live, even though they appear so small from the back.

Music…and indeed real life networking is about real, human connection. We are very much analogue creatures…and will remain so.

Before the Rock Bands in London meet-ups someone emails me and I get in touch with them. I have no idea who they are when they email me, it is impossible to even put a face to an email address. But everything changes when we meet for real in our meet-ups.

The rules of networking and meeting people never changed, they are still the same. Digital social networking like myspace, facebook and twitter may seem like tempting options to spend all the time on. But these are just means to an end. They are definitely powerful tools. But every now and then you just really need to meet people for real!

So, why am I rambling on this? Well, whatever it means to you and in whichever way you can do it with your music (or yourself) seek to make real human connection as much as you can.

And of course, you can always turn up to our meet-ups to practice that art if you don’t know where to start 🙂

Look at the CD inlays and band thank yous. These lists are long, really long sometimes. These are truly really passionate people who must have played a HUGE part in that particular band’s journey to success.

Where and how do you meet these people?

In Derek Sivers’ awesome awesome guide on Music Marketing he mentions how you need to meet at least 3 people every week in the music business (not just burnt out guitarists – and I’ve met a few of those already!).

Three new people a week that can help you directly with your music business will quickly multiply to 150 in *just* one year and 300 people in two.

This sounds promising but how do you achieve this in practice? As always I wish I had the full answers to this but here’s what I found sort of works.

First and foremost it comes from the mindset of being unselfish and genuine, giving more than you get (i.e help out someone sincerely) and to be interested in other people.

Keeping that in mind..

Go to other small band gigs, friends or friends of friends gigs. I find that it is much easier to meet musicians and music related people when I myself and am not playing a gig that night. When I am playing a gig I am way too stressed to look after too many other people to actually relax and chat randomly about music. But when I am at a friend’s gig I am a bit more chilled and more likely to make connections.

Go to networking meetings. A no brainer this one, I had no idea where else to meet people so I started this group for London, this is your chance to get involved 🙂 Don’t only go to musicians networking, go to photography meet-ups, film makers, fashion etc., The possibilities are endless.

Hit up some jam nights/open mic nights. There are hundreds of musicians performing and drinking somewhere in London every night of the week. They go on stage, get nervous first, do their 10mins and then go and drink with the rest of the musicians out on the night. This is just an amazing way of meeting new musicians who actually go out and do stuff (not the burnt out guitarist sitting at home).

Well this will get you started. A band is a huge team of passionate people who believe in your band’s cause, which is why they appear on the CD credits. Good luck with finding your team.