Hello fellow struggling indie artist! I know it’s tough out there but sometimes reaching success in the music business means changing more than just your sound. Your overall mentality and mood play crucial part in how you take on the industry, so I’ve whipped up 5 mental moves that will help you change your mindset!
1. Stop thinking you are different
Like every artists in the world, you probably think you’re different. The truth is, you are not so different. I’m not saying that your talent isn’t unique or that your skill-set isn’t special – this could all be the case. But if we are talking about your position in the market as a artist, you are pretty much on the same level as your fellow indies, at least for right now. That being said, you will need to work a bit harder than you peers and make the changes that they are not willing to make.
2. Stop trying to do everything yourself
The DYI artist, we can fall into this category at some point. But the most successful people are the people that know that can’t do it all themselves and appreciate the value of collabs and partnerships. Eventually you will need a team to support your efforts! Your career life is like your social life – you need different things from different people. When you want tough love you may seek out a certain friend, when you want to party you may seek out another friend, etc. The rule applies int he music business, there is never one person who is good at everything. But they each play their role and provide a much needed balance. Your team can be made up of people you already know like friends and family, or you can build your own team from your fan base. I think a combination of both tends to bring the best results.
3. Get off social media and get social
Surfing on Instagram or posting on Twitter all day is not a way to make things happen in your career. Don’t get me wrong, social media is extremely important to an artist and it is a necessary part of your marketing strategy. But never forget that the most important social media platform for an artist is THE STAGE. You need to actually get of there and perform live music for real people – not just singing clips on YouTube or Vine. When people see you perform live, they are able to make an emotional connection to your music – and to you! Performing live and interacting with people is how you create loyalty and turn “people” into hard core fans who will spread and share your music for you. Remember social media and the internet are here to supplement the live music industry, not replace it!
4. Make plans, be heard
It’s important to have a plan these days, especially if you want your songs to be heard. Thanks to the internet, industry people have indie artist just like you blindly bombarding there inbox with their music – which has now become just noise. Unless you have a solid plan to get yourself heard, you are part of that noise. To be different, you need to plan a different approach. Try setting actual goals for getting heard outside of the Internet and figure out the steps you need to take to meet these goals. What shows do you want to play? What projects do you want to finish? Who do you want to collab with? Who do you need to meet with? All these are things that are going to push you to the next level of development. Get organized with it and write it down, make deadlines and give assignments to your team.
5. Start sacrificing
If you haven’t been sacrificing already, the time is now. You should never dedicated your life to something you are not willing to give up things for, especially music! When people say they want to career in the music business, more often than not they mean they want to be a super rich, successful, famous artist – that is a totally different thing from a career in music, and it usually takes a long time to get there! Many people fail to think about what you have to give up to get success, but if you don’t invest in yourself don’t expect anyone else to. Extras like weed, booze, vacations, time with your boyfriend – are all things you will likely have to sacrifice in order to have a successful career in music. There are artists out there who love music enough to give those things up, and there are those artists who only love music because they want to get those things. The difference is crucial, so if you haven’t thought about it, this is a good time to figure out which side you are on!
Good luck! 🙂