Himalaya: Listen. Learn. Grow.
The New Music Industry Podcast | MusicEntrepreneurHQ.com | with David Andrew Wiebe
Not making any money with your music? Not selling as much as you think you should? Is it possible you aren’t attracting the right kind of buyers (audience)? Do you suspect your “fans” might be mooching off you?
That’s what we’re going to be looking at in this episode of The New Music Industry Podcast.
Download the PDF transcription
* 00:33 – Repairing the foundation of your business
* 01:10 – Tip #1: Say “no” to pro bono work
* 03:29 – Tip #2: Get your fans acclimated to spending money with you
* 04:57 – Tip #3: Add a price tag to more of your work
* 06:31 – Don’t steal from the people you want to impact with your music
* 07:01 – The Music Entrepreneur Code with two bonuses
Hey, it’s David Andrew Wiebe.
So, this is something I’ve been giving more and more thought to as of late. Even with Music Entrepreneur HQ, I’ve had that experience of building a lot of traffic and growing my list, only to discover that most of the people I was connecting with just came for the free stuff, did a hit and run, and quickly ran the other way.
And, as painful as it was, I had to go and repair the foundation of the business. Because that’s where the problem lived. And I’m telling you that’s really the hardest thing to do once your business is up and running.
So, here are a few tips to help you begin appealing to buyers rather than just sponges.
Tip #1 – Stop Doing Pro Bono Work
I used to do a lot of pro bono work for people.
We used to accept guest posts from anyone on Music Entrepreneur HQ. Until I realized just how much work it was to edit, format, and schedule their content to reflect the standards and quality of the brand I was looking for.
Then we started charging because it was just taking up too much time. Then, I had to effectively double the rate because we kept getting low quality submissions that required a lot of work on our part to edit.
Some people complained our rates were too high, but that’s how I knew I had hit the sweet spot. It repelled the tire kickers and link buyers and started bringing in clients who were serious.
By the way, we’re not accepting guest posts on the site anymore. But the point is, I’m a sensitive, creative soul. And I’ve done all kinds of free, volunteer, pro bono work to help people. Whether it was answering questions in my inbox, agreeing to meet with people who wanted to pick my brain, or giving away my products for free.
There was a rather awkward situation only two years ago where I was asked to promote someone’s new release in exchange for performance. Which meant I was not going to paid for any of the work until I started delivering on the results. Good for him. Horrible for me.
I know it can be hard when you care about others, but I would suggest just giving up pro bono work.
These days, I’m quick to ask people if they want me to be involved as a consultant or coach. Because let’s face it, I can reach far more people with a podcast episode like this, and it’s a better use of my time than jumping on a Skype call with another random person I don’t even know.
This doesn’t mean I’m not conscious about adding some value upfront. I always try to do that. But I want to move the relationship as quickly as possible from like a pro bono, “I’ll ask you whatever I want, whenever I want” relationship to a paid relationship where my time is valued.
Otherwise, people could do whatever they want with my advice and it makes no difference in their lives. So, it’s not the greatest value for me, and it’s not the greatest value for them either.