How To Use Your Music To Earn Money Beyond Selling Songs

batch_of_dollars© 2009 Russell Riendeau, PhD

We all need to earn money, agreed? Here are some ideas related to our music world and income potentials.

I’m a guitarist/vocalist/composer like most of you–although not as good for sure. I love to play and write, yet realize the chances of making enough money to buy a nice pup tent and cooler to live in is not gonna happen from selling my tunes and playing gigs in coffee houses and cocktail parties. I do executive search and professional speaking 80% of the time to earn a living, pay for kids in college and support my habit of buying cool guitars. So having resolved this reality in my mind years ago, I’ve continued to seek ways to add music to my professional business model.[private_freebie]

This approach has resulted in earning more money by having corporate dollars pay me to play, as well as more opportunity to play music to broader audiences. I do speaking programs on best practices in business, sales training, leadership development and interview training for hiring managers. When I do these programs I use my guitar as a tool to deliver information that is retained longer by the audience and they remember me longer than the dude with the PowerPoint slide program that they slept through last week.

What can you do? Think about what other skills, insights and ideas you have that would be interesting to an audience of professionals. What can you say or show an audience that you can also incorporate your music into the learning? I have no doubt you have talents and ideas beyond the notes of music and these talents could be the catalyst for you to gain more business as a result.

For an example of what I’m talking about, my website or has a short video of samples of programs I’ve done over the years. YouTube has more. This could give you some ideas on how to create your own promotional video for your business. Video marketing is here to stay, inexpensive and a fast way to get yourself in the media. Here are some quick ideas that I used to use my music for profit and fun beyond selling CDs:

1. Use my tunes as background music on tapes and videos I’ve recorded

2. Send demos out to business showing I can do keynote programs with good content and fun audience participation.

3. Photos of me performing lends “rock star status” in a celeb-oriented world and this gives me more credibility and curious calls back to me.

4. Writing articles for publication on my expertise, and in the bio say you that Iam a musician/performer.

5. Create a 3 minute demo video of yourself delivering content to an audience, some music, and bio info about what you know that is of interest.

6. Have a 4-color, sharp business card with your info with you at all times.

7. Have easy access wave files of your tunes and speeches on your website or burned on a CD.

8. Is your physical image matching the corporate audience close enough to be of interest and acceptance and not too far out? The people paying you a speaking fee are afraid of looking bad if you don’t look good.

9. Call your local newspaper writer that does features on local people and pitch your unique story. They love to hear from you and will take your picture and tell your story for free!

10. Do something to market yourself every day. Starving artists syndrome is not the answer for us creative types. People forget what I do all the time. Remind them all the time.

Anybody else have some ideas on this topic? Love to hear them.[/private_freebie]

About The Author

Vinny Ribas

Vinny Ribas is the founder and CEO of Indie Connect, an artist management, consulting and training company. The company also hosts networking and educational events and has published an app that connects people to the Nashville Music Industry. During his 40+ year career, Vinny has been a full time musician, artist manager, booking agent, songwriter, studio owner, producer and the Entertainment Director for the NV State Fair. He has also coached over 1000 artists and songwriters. He is a sought after speaker and has authored over 400 music industry articles. Vinny is also the CEO of Top 4M Entertainment, an independent film and television production company.