Note: This post is adapted from an email I sent out today (3/7/18) so if you happened to have read that email, feel free to skip this…
Over 50% of new businesses fail in their first few years.
Do you know the #1 mistake most people make in business, which is usually the reason they fail❓
I bet it’s not what you think.
Oh…and by the way, music IS a business ?
As an artist, YOU are a business ?
So…this mistake applies to you and me (in the music industry) as much as it applies to any other business or industry.
I’ll tell you what that mistake is in a minute.
(By the way, if you're wondering why you should take any advice from me…Legion Beats has worked with a bunch of famous artists like Rick Ross, Kendrick, Snoop etc which is fun. But – more importantly – we're a successful business that generates 6 figures in revenue and allows most of our 10+ person team make a living from music alone. OK. I'm done bragging)
First, let me tell you a true story…
I was looking out over the coast and the city of LA from a multi-million dollar mansion in The Pacific Palisades ???
There were a dozen hot models there (like actual models from an expensive agency – not just “Instagram models”), cars that cost 6 figures in the driveway (rented for the weekend), and even some C-list celebrities hanging out.
It was the first time I had been to a music video shoot that had a HUGE budget.
…And the video was for a song I produced ?
I was living the life, loving every minute of it ?
But…in the back of mind I felt a little guilty.
Why did I feel guilty?
Well…remember the #1 business mistake I mentioned earlier?
I’m gonna tie all this stuff together in a minute. I promise.
Back to the story:
This artist had already spent 10’s of thousands of dollars on this song – buying the exclusive rights to the beat, doing the music video, paying a big time radio promoter, etc etc
The thing is, he did all this before really testing the market.
Don’t get me wrong, the song was ?
But it just hadn’t been tested.
If we made 5 more songs, maybe one of em would have been hotter. Maybe not.
But without testing that out, we were going full steam ahead, blowing the whole budget with our eyes closed, hoping that the one song we had would be a hit ?
Does that make sense?
The good news is the song actually did OK.
I don’t think the artist made back all the money they spent, but…they got some spins on the radio and I’m sure he got some new fans from it ?
I didn’t know then what I know now, but I think some part of me understood the problem. That’s why I had that tinge of guilt.
Now, the problem is crystal clear to me ?
He spent his whole budget on one shot, when the smarter thing would have been to slowly test out many songs, using a much smaller budget.
Then…once we got the reaction we wanted from one of the songs…
That’s when you put all your chips in ♠️♠️♠️
This is the #1 mistake that most new businesses make:
They put a ton of time, money and effort into what they think will sell, before even testing to see if people actually want the thing they’re selling.
So what should you do instead?
Test out your product before spending your whole budget.
If people love it, invest more time and money into it.
If you don’t get the reaction you hoped for – it’s not a big deal since you didn’t use up all your resources.
Just try again.
The same thing goes for music.
Before spending all your resources on one song, try a smaller push on several songs.
Then…whichever song gets the best reaction ? bam ?
…That’s the one to go all in on ♠️♠️♠️
Here’s the problem with doing this with beats from The Legion (and this part is my fault)…
Up until now, we’ve only had 2 categories of beat licenses:
Non-exclusive (with limitations on how many streams you can get, units you can sell, limits on radio play, licensing & monetization)
…And Exclusive. Which has no limitations.
But…our best and newest beats aren’t cheap for the exclusive rights.
They go for as much $2,500 ?
Some are much cheaper, but usually the most in demand ones
– the ones that are most likely to be a big single for you –
are up in the $2K price range.
So of course, the artist who paid for this music video and all this other stuff, also bought the exclusive rights.
And, since it was one of our best beats, it ran him $2,500.
I don’t blame him for buying the exclusive rights.
Since all the other licenses have limits on them, he couldn’t risk buying the non-exclusive license.
He would have gone over the limits of the non-exclusive licenses even if the song wasn’t a HUGE success.
But…now we’re changing things.
For the first time, we are officially offering non-exclusive UNLIMITED licenses ?
Have you ever wanted to get the exclusive rights to a beat, but just couldn’t afford the thousands it would cost?
Then this is for you.
Instead of having to pay thousands for the exclusive rights, we’re introducing Unlimited licenses for just $199 ?
Well, for me I’m a little nervous ?
I never wanted to offer unlimited licenses.
You see, a large percentage of my income comes from selling exclusive rights to beats.
And, I know that by offering unlimited licenses, some people who would have spent $2,000 on the exclusive rights – will now happily take the $199 unlimited license instead ?
So this does mean I’m going to make less money. At least in the short term.
But me and the rest of The Legion team take our responsibility seriously.
And our responsibility is to help remove the roadblocks to success in your music career.
And…can I be perfectly honest?
Even though we’ll lose some money upfront, I’m hoping that creating long term value to you will ultimately make you a client for life ?
Plus you’ll be more likely to recommend us to others and ultimately – our business will grow if we keep this long term philosophy of doing what’s best for you.
Now, here’s the part in a normal marketing blog where I tell you to go to our homepage and go buy unlimited rights to as many beats as possible!!!
But, I’m not gonna do that. You should wait. Don't spend any of your money.
You can go to legionbeats.com today and buy unlimited rights now, but then you’ll miss out on the sale that’s starting tomorrow.
He’s not talking about music in the video, but the idea applies to any business.
Music is magic ?
….At least that’s what I used to think. But it wasn’t until I changed the way I thought about music that I was able to make a living doing it.
I’ll tell you about that mindset shift that finally allowed me to make a living in the music industry in a post I’ll add tomorrow.
Oh, and I’ll tell you about that sale then too.