When we listen to our favorite musicians, we tend to think of them they are just that - artists. Yet, little is known what it’s like to be the one in 2019.
The truth is to succeed in the music business today, artists need to learn the new skills and do the things they would never do in the past. It is true that the Internet has allowed artists to connect with their fans in an intimate manner and made it much easier to make their music heard. However, there is one more question that needs to be answered. How easy is that for the artist to get rewarded for their music today and what is required of them apart from being just a creator?
As someone once said, “It is a lot easier to make your music heard than it was back in the 90s, but it is much harder to get paid for it”. In the streaming era, artists are compelled to sell music online for pennies or get other jobs that help them make a living. Maybe, it is not the case for every artist, but it is most certainly the case for most artists. While the financial struggles are just one part of the artist’s life story, it still does not tell us a full story.
Being an artist in 2019 requires from an artist much more than just making and performing music. The musician has to know how to sell music online, how to promote their music or speaking in business terms - how to market their music in the current digital era. You have to be an all-in-one music professional with deep knowledge of business strategies of how to market your music to the 21st - century fans. Regardless of the genre, the artist today has to be multi-faceted. So, the key skill every artist needs to master today is how to handle multiple roles artists are forced to fulfil.
Role 1: The Musician
This one is obvious, isn’t it? Whether you are a vocalist or play an instrument, developing this craft for any musician is essential to progressing music career. This aspect of being an artist surprisingly becomes overlooked as time moves on. Studio tricks and sound technologies allow artists to cut corners where talent lacks.
But over time, this will be exposed. Especially for those musicians who play live. True artists understand this. They constantly improve their skills and progress in innovating their sound.
Role 2: The Performer
The performing aspect does not apply to all artists. A certain subset of artists will only sell music online or digitally, without ever performing it live. The artists who do perform live must always focus on becoming better performers. Not only in the playing of their songs but also in making unforgettable shows. The best artists in the world are constantly trying to find ways to innovate their live performances since concerts are a very sufficient income stream and another point of music monetization for artists.
Role 3: The Entrepreneur
Regardless of whether we would like to accept it or not, all artists have to be entrepreneurs if they want to sell their music successfully. You as an artist create a product just like any business does. Your music is your product . What do you do after the product has been created? You sell it! That’s why you have to know the strategies of how to market your music to increase sales.
Of course, some artists are innately great entrepreneurs. Others are not. Most artists have to learn how to promote their music as they have no business education and even the slightest idea of how to do that. Similarly, artists have to either learn how to run their music business - learn about music distribution, promotion, public relationship, and marketing tools - or they can hire a manager to take care of the business aspects while artists continue delivering great music. Music is a business, and it has always been a business. The question is… Who is your music business owner and who is going to manage your music sales?
Role 4: The Marketer
Marketing is no doubt an incredibly important aspect of every artist’s career. Social media and various music platforms have allowed artists to market their music to their fans easily. It no longer requires hundreds of thousands of dollars to pull this off. It is enough for the artist to understand some fundamental aspects of how to market and sell music online. This knowledge is power. This is especially true for independent artists who handle their own marketing and music distribution. Artists must now make an investment into understanding marketing to successfully build their music careers.
Role 5: The Public Figure
Artists are public figures today. Fans respect the opinions of the artists they admire . In fact, many fans actually want to hear what artists have to say when it comes to hot topics such as politics, current social issues. The stances you take, the brands you partner with, the statements you make - all this has a massive impact on your followers and your career.
Clearly, being an artist goes far beyond music creation. It is a hard work of managing multiple roles while still finding time to create unforgettable music masterpieces. For all the fans out there, let this be a reason to continue to support the artists you love. And if you are an artist - don’t worry, you can do it!
To learn how Show4me has simplified all processes so artists can fulfil multiple roles, click here