How would you like to be a musician? You get to travel to exotic places! Thousands of screaming fans greet you everywhere you go! Your band is great, and you have a few hit songs. Everyone loves your band, and you play to packed houses. Young people throw themselves at your feet.
What? You can't sing? OK, hire a singer then. You play the lead guitar. And you still play to packed houses, each and every night.
Oh, you can't play a musical instrument either? OK so you hire those who can. And now you can concentrate on the music. "Writing the songs that make the whole world sing," so to speak. Other bands want rights to reproduce you words.
What? You can't write music either? Don't know a half note from a whole note? Can't hum a tune on a kazoo? What can you do?
You're good at promotion huh? Great, then you set up the distribution and marketing of all the records that are produced. You then stand in the sidelines and watch the magic take place. The thrill of opening night. The fan mail and the revenue generated from the tours you produce.
Sound familiar? Does this sound like your business? A group of people getting together to make and produce beautiful arrangements, so great - that millions of people lay down cash just to get a small piece of it?
No huh? Why?
Could it be that you want the glory and the accolades that your business can give you but you are trying to be a one-person band?
ou're the lead guitar . trying to stir up the market, the lead singer, promoting the services at each performance, the drummer, making sure that the rhythm is maintained, and the promotion agent, constantly marketing to maintain future gigs.
Now who does your promotion while you're on stage?
We all start out this way. It seems so simple. It all starts with a dream of "I just want to sing" that can quickly turn into a nightmare of endless nights, late openings, constant missing the mark, and in the end, getting out of rhythm with what we originally dreamt of.
Eventually you end up as the backup singer for another band. In other words, you give up your dream and settle for employment.
You cannot be a one-man band in today's market. If this is your goal and ambition, get out now. Stop. Find a job, working for a company that will let you do exactly what you love to do. Produce the results for them, but don't go into self-employment until you accept the fact that you need a support team. I tell you this, having 25 years of experience of being self-employed, in which 15 of those years were spent trying to be the Arlo Guthrie of marketing.
At best, your support team can be small. You do the work, which is what you get paid to do best. Marketing will be done in the background while you are working. Accounting and collections will also be done in the background, so that Uncle Sam gets paid, as do all your creditors, and all the collections are done for you. Now in the beginning, contract these services out (outsourcing), as you need them. You do not want to handle payroll yet. Remember, you are doing the contracts, and bookkeeping is the last thing you want to do late at night.
As to the marketing, hire a marketing and promotion services. Let them market the heck out of your business, through every search engine, and promotional spot that was available.
So far, your business is up and running and you are following your dream. With one big exception! You are now paying yourself what you are worth, instead of someone else paying you what they can get by with, and making money off your efforts.
Get the picture? How well you take this advice, depends on how much you think your time is worth. You are writing the music to this one.
Gary Clark is a Copywriter and Web Content writer who for 25 years has been both a Consultant and instructor of Small Business Entrepreneurship. He can be reached by e-mail at clarkga1@q... or by phone at 719-209-1239 Mon thru Fri / 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM