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The Five Things You Should Ask If You Want To Build A Music Career
By Tom Hess - 02/02/2016 - 02:13 PM EST

Many amateur musicians try to get the answers to incorrect questions. These questions are often based on myths, assumptions and ignorance about how the music business truly works. Looking for the correct answers to these types of questions is a guaranteed way to sabotage your attempts at starting and building a successful career in music.

If you want to become a successful professional musician, you’re going to have to learn how the music business really works. This means asking the right questions based on the truth about the business (not just assumptions that non-professionals make). When you ask 100% success-minded questions based on this (and get them answered by someone who already has succeeded in the business), you will quickly achieve your music career goals.

Here are 5 questions about the music industry that most musicians never ask (but should!):

Question #1: Why Do Record Companies & Bands Collaborate With Some Musicians But Not Others?

A lot of musicians believe that people in the music industry only work with those who are musically gifted and just so happen to be in the right place at the right time. Wrong!

Bands, record companies and others in the industry are looking for specific traits in people they work with. They want a person who has a positive mindset, great skills, and the right attitude. As soon as you develop all these things (and take action to use these traits), you’ll be much more likely to succeed as a pro musician.

Watch this video to learn more details about what music companies and bands look for in you:

(Now that you’ve seen the video, you are ready to take this music industry assessment. Do this before you read the remainder of this page.)

Question #2: How Can I Transform Everyday Fans Into Fanatics?

The majority of musicians out there are trying to find out how they can get more fans, and don't understand that simply having a lot of fans is not very important if they are all casual fans. These kinds of fans may like listening to your music, but they do not have any loyalty to you or your band. On the other hand, fanatical fans are those who will purchase all your albums, wear your merch, show up at every show and (sometimes) even get tattoos of your band’s logo.

Once you gain a loyal following of fanatical fans, you gain a following of people who will help promote your band via word of mouth, and your career will grow exponentially.

To see how effective you are at music promotion, complete this free music promotion test.

Question #3: How Can I Seamlessly Transition From My Day Job To A Career In Music?

Chances are, your family has told you to get a backup plan just in case your music career doesn’t work out.

Fact: this is one of the most common ways that musicians end up stuck at jobs they hate rather than fulfilling their dreams in the music industry. Just imagine as months, years and decades go by, watching your musical dreams go unrealized...

Good news: It is totally possible for any person to go from a day job to a massively successful music career (I know, because I’ve helped countless musicians with this). First, you just need to ask the right questions that focus your mind on the result you truly want.

Next you need to learn how to raise your income as a musician and create an exit strategy for permanently leaving your non-music job (in other words: completely replacing your job’s salary with income from your music career). Working with a music career trainer will help you achieve this goal much faster.

Question #4: What Do I Need To Do To Opportunities From Those In The Music Industry?

A lot of people get into the music business expecting companies to fall all over them will opportunities, contracts or deals because they simply exist... Of course, this is not the case, and only a tiny group of musicians ever bother asking what THEY should do in order to deserve such opportunities.

If you want to get opportunities in the music industry, you MUST learn how to make yourself the most valuable and least risky option available to any music company, band, etc.

For example: think about the challenge of getting new gigs. Frequently, musicians only think about what is in it for them (gaining a new venue to perform in) and never even contemplate what bookers and venue owners want (which is to get more people into the venue). As a result, these musicians don’t get many gigs and never figure out why.

To find out more about this topic, read this column about how to get more music gigs.

How To Get More Gigs

Question #5: How Can I Gain Total Financial Security With My Music Career?

It is common for most musicians to be so scared of not making enough money through music, that they never even attempt to start their careers. Actually, the music business is highly stable and you can make tons of money in it. There are really only 3 reasons why musicians struggle to earn a great living:

1. They believe that all musicians are starving artists. This kills all motivation for you to become financially well-off.

2. They actively try to find a job in the music industry rather than thinking of themselves as entrepreneurs.

3. They haven’t developed multiple streams of musical income, which are:

-Independent: if something happens to cause you to lose one of your income streams, the other sources of income can support you.

-Congruent: all of your income streams are be aligned together with your primary goals in the music business.

-Residual: your get paid from your income streams time and time again (perpetually).

-Passive: your income streams create money continuously after you’ve already done all the work (when you are not doing work on them every day).

Once you run your music career as an entrepreneur and create many streams of income, it will be very realistic to expect to earn 6-figures (or more) per year. Most importantly, being a professional musician is way more secure than working at a regular job.

Now you are aware of some of the most critical questions you should ask yourself when it comes to becoming a successful pro musician, but this is just the beginning! To discover more about other elements you must focus on as you enter the music business, take this test about becoming a highly successful professional musician.

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