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Building Contacts in the Music Business

Blog by Music Business School under Music Training & Careers

Building the right contacts in the music business is a great way to move your career ambitions forward swiftly. However the people who you need to meet are almost always very busy so knowing how to reach out to them in a way that gets a response and builds relationships is key to your success.
 
In this blog Music Business School tutor Steve Melhuish outlines strategies for connecting with top music business professionals such as those who take part in their Guest Speaker Programme.  The programme forms an exclusive part of the London version of the new accredited qualification called Managing a Music Business Enterprise (MMBE) developed by Generator.
 
Their next MMBE course starts soon and it’s a great way to get further your music business ambitions and make great connections. Apply Now.

To really connect, make your request clear; concise and specific
Executives in the music business receive many requests for help and information every day. Requests from within their own organisation and from people whom they already know easily take priority. This leaves them with limited time to respond to you so you need to tell them why you’ve approached them in particular and at this initial stage just ask for a single piece of advice.
 
We are a great new band but need [management or a live agent or a record label] to get to the next level, can you help us?

A message like this with a lengthy bio suggests that you’ve just sent a blanket email and that you’ve really not researched who you are sending it to. Many in the music business will just delete an approach like this because they know it’s probably a waste of their time – and yours.
 
Addressing  your message specifically to the person you are sending to and mentioning acts on their roster who are similar to you indicates that you’ve thought about who to approach.
 
Dear [Insert Name]
…We’ve noticed that you work with [name of artist] and so we think you will understand our approach to music and what we are trying to achieve…

Asking for a single and specific piece of advice allows the person to respond briefly, taking up the least amount of their time.
 
If you receive a reply, make sure you respond with a brief note of thanks. Let them know you’ll report back on how you’ve applied their advice and the results. This of course keeps the door open for further interaction and relationship building.
 
Being able to ask music business executives direct questions can really boost your career path. That’s part of the reason we created our Guest Speaker Programme as part of the MMBE in London.
 
Apply now for an interview for our course commencing soon. 
 
Making the most of those valuable Face to Face Opportunities
Networking events are hugely popular with those wanting to meet music business VIP’s. To stand out from the crowd and develop an on-going relationship you need my winning three step strategy.
 
Step 1 - Know who you want to approach and why.
First see the advice above. Many valuable networking opportunities will come at industry events such as those hosted by organisations such as AIM and the MMF - both of whom have speakers that participate in our Guest Speaker Programme by the way.
 
Know who you want to approach and why and include this info when you introduce yourself. This will tell the person that you are not just sweeping the room trying to make any contact you can. That you really think that they in particular can assist you.
 
Step 2 - Have your elevator pitch and question ready
No more than 30 to 60 seconds. What information specifically do you want from them? This gives them a chance to respond and offer you a solution.
 
Step 3 - Have a follow up and a connection request ready
Once you have the advice, thank the person even if the answer is not quite what you wanted to hear.
 
Then follow up by asking them if they mind you getting in contact at a later date to tell them about how you applied their advice and the results you got, just as in our first example above.
 
However ensure you ask how they would prefer to be contacted. Do they prefer you email or would a connection via a networking platform like Linkedin be more suitable? Give them options so that it’s easy and manageable for them to connect with you further.
 
Finally ask if there is anyone they can suggest who might also assist you. Chances are they will suggest someone else who would be a valuable contact and now you can reach out to this new person saying that “ Name Executive suggested that I contact you…”
Making contacts face to face and hearing advice direct from someone is really valuable. That’s why we created our Guest Speaker Programme as part of the MMBE in London.
 
Apply now for an interview for our course commencing soon. 
 

Tags

music business school, steve melhuish, music contacts, music training, music industry, music business, mmbe, managing a music business enterprise, music course

 

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