How To Start a Music Teaching Business

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Teaching music lessons can be a great gig for musicians who want to translate their craft into an income. If you have already established a regular clientele of students and have money saved up, you should definitely consider working as a full time music teacher and starting your own business. There are several great advantages in doing this. You get to create your own hours, choose the amount of students you teach, and most of all you get to be your own boss. Teaching full time would also give you more flexibility with accommodating students because you will be available throughout the entire week.

Like any other business, music teaching requires a great strategy and the proper approach in order to succeed. Here are 8 important factors to keep in mind when setting up your music teaching business:

  1. Create a Business Plan

Before doing anything, you must take the first step of creating a business plan. You will need to define your goals, create a marketing strategy, and provide financial and funding requirements. It is very important that you are well aware of the market that you are in and keep in mind of factors that can have a great impact on your business.

  1. Set Up Your Studio Correctly

Whether you are renting a business space or teaching out of your home, it is very important that you always teach in a neat and tidy workplace. This makes a good impression with your students and shows that you are professional and serious about your teaching.

  1. Make Sure You Have the Proper Equipment

Make sure that you have a god computer or tablet with fast internet access to stream videos on YouTube. Also have a good sound system, music stands, and equipment specific to the instrument that you’re teaching.

  1. Create Your Payment Terms

The best way to do this is to have students pay for lessons in advance instead of paying lesson by lesson. You can have them pay in advance for each month or have them pay for lessons in blocks of 5 or 10. It just depends on your personal preference.

  1. Create a Cancellation Policy

Make a well- constructed cancellation policy and stick to it. This can save a lot of problems down the line if a student becomes unreliable. Give your cancellation policy to your student before or at their first lesson and have them to sign it. This will ensure that you are protected for any cancelled lessons given at short notice.

  1. Promote Your Business

Create a website for your business, print business cards, flyers, and posters. Network with local music stores to get referrals. You can also use social media to promote and film a few YouTube videos of your playing to showcase your talents.

  1. Avoid Teaching Lessons in a Student’s Home (if possible)

Time is money. Spending too much time driving to student’s homes and being stuck in traffic can offset income. If possible it is best to have students come to you for lessons.

  1. Book Lessons Back to Back

Booking lessons back to back shows yours student that you are busy and creates the impression that you are a well- respected and sought after teacher.

For more detailed information on setting up a music teaching business, check out this great article Start Your Teaching Business in 30 Days.  Again, if you are a music teacher that already has an established roster of students and money saved up, I highly encourage you to consider teaching full time. This is a great gig to turn your music skills into income. These 8 Factors in starting your music teaching business will definitely help your business grow and become successful.

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Google Launches YouTube for Artists

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Google’s latest launch “YouTube for Artists”, is a new video sharing website that’s specifically designed for DIY musicians. YouTube for Artists gives musicians access to several resources to help them promote their work and allows them connect with fans by using insight tools. It also includes tips on how to engage fans, how to gain revenue, and how to get discovered. If you are a self- promoted DIY artist, this is definitely for you. Here are some of the main features that it offers:

  • Tips, Tricks, and Tools– This is an expanded “how to” section that offers users a variety of guides including a “Master the Basics” guide for beginners and sections on video optimization and algorithms. It offers tips on how to engage your fans and a guide to YouTube Analytics so you can use your video stats to better understand your fans.
  • Music Insights- Launching soon, music insights is a new feature that provides analytic tools to help artists track results. This will allow artists to find fan-uploaded videos of performances and track where their videos are being watched.
  • Fan Funding- This allows fans to show support by donating any amount of their choice to help fund you as an artists, whether it be funding to support an upcoming tour or to finish a new EP.
  • Grow On and Off YouTube- Google offers users many other opportunities including free studio space at the YouTube studios and a chance to be a part of the annual YouTube Awards. They have also partnered with SiriusXM radio which will allow music from YouTube’s emerging artists to be featured on air.

Overall, I think YouTube for Artists is a great tool. Whether you’re looking to further engage your fans, gain a bigger following, or a better way to gain revenue, YouTube for Artists has several resources that will help you accomplish these goals. If you are a DIY artists, you should definitely take advantage of this new site. To check out the new site for yourself, click on the link below: http://www.youtube.com/yt/artists/

8 Essential Elements to Include In Your Artist EPK

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In our age of digital media, it is essential for all artist to have an Electronic Press Kit. As the social following and fan base of an artist builds, more people will begin visiting your website for different reasons. Fans and potential fans might be visiting your website to watch your music videos or download your latest single. Whereas industry people might be looking to read your artist bio or view photos. Creating an EPK is the best way to easily showcase all of this content at once. An EPK basically serves as an artist portfolio or resume because it shows who you are and what you have done in your musical career.

So what exactly do you include in an EPK? Here are 8 essential elements that should be included in every artists’ EPK:

  1. Bio

Your bio should include an overview of your career as an artist, a brief description of your sound and style music, and any significant achievements that you’ve made in your musical career. You also should include some of your background history of how you got started as an artist. It is important not to make your bio very long and bore your readers with irrelevant details.

  1. Photos

Include downloadable, professional photos. You can include black and white photos, both horizontal and vertical photo options, as well as your most recent album artwork cover. Make sure that some of your photos are high resolution in case a media person needs to print them

  1. Music

You are definitely going to want to include some of your music available to listen to on the EPK. Also have music that’s available to download or links to iTunes.

  1. Videos

Embed a few of your best videos. They can be videos from recent performances, music videos, artist interview videos, etc. Make sure you only upload good quality videos.

  1. Press Articles/ Reviews

Post links to some of your best articles, reviews, or interviews. 

  1. Notable Achievements

Include awards won, nominations for awards, radio charts success, performances at noteworthy festivals or conferences, etc.

  1. Contact Info

Make sure to have contact information posted including an email address and phone number for booking and media inquiries.

  1. Social Media

Include your artist social media profile links for fans or media persons to quickly access.

Here’s an example of a great EPK in the link below:

www.briaghamctavish.com/epk

There are several easy to use websites that allow you to create your own EPK for free such as Artistecard, Epresskitz, and Reverbnation. You can check them out in the links listed below:

http://artistecard.com/epk

http://epresskitz.com/sales.php?u=kitnotexist

http://www.reverbnation.com/band-promotion/epk-electronic-press-kits

If you are an artist and don’t already have one, it is very important that you create an EPK. An EPK serves as a home base to access any content on you as an artist and is the best way to make it easier for people to find information about your music. By including these 8 essential elements in your EPK, you will most definitely successfully present your brand as an artist to your fans, potential fans, media, and industry people.

Videos That Will Create Fan Engagement

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     Social media is now an essential element of marketing in the music industry whether you’re a DIY artist, an artist with a small independent label, or an artist at a huge major label like Sony.  No matter the status of an artist, it is very important to constantly engage with your fans on social media in order to create a strong base of super fans.

So once you’ve got all of your social profiles created, what do you do next? How exactly do you effectively engage with your followers? According to Ben Sword, the author of “Superfan Building”, engaging with your fans is all about creating “check moves.” The concept of the check move theory is that positive interactions with fans will lead to a stronger connection between the artist and fans which will ultimately result in an active support system of super fans.

Videos are one of the best ways to create “check moves” or positive interactions with your fans. Here are 5 of my favorite forms of video content that will allow you to engage with your fans on a more personal level:

  1. Fan Q&A

Host an online Q&A event with fans where they can ask you anything or answer questions from Twitter or Facebook on video.

  1. Tour Diary

Make a video diary when you’re on tour. Include backstage footage, let fans see what it’s like in the tour bus or van, interesting sightseeing or activities done on off days, and personal thoughts from the artist.

  1. Throwback Music

Make a video of some of your favorite songs from the past. Fans would love to see your musical influences as an artist.

  1. Covers

Make videos performing cover versions of your favorite songs.

  1. “Cribs” Tour

Like MTV Cribs, make a video that shows your fans around your house or home town. You can show fans important places in your career such as where your band got together or where you performed your first gig.

In addition to these, there are several different ways to create video content that will lead to more positive engagement with your fans. For more ideas, click here on the link below:

http://blog.discmakers.com/2014/03/build-a-superfan-base-with-videos/

Whether you’re a brand new artist trying to build a fan base or an established artist that already has a fan base, it is very important to constantly engage with your fans in order to keep them interested and create super fans. Videos are such a great way to initiate positive interactions with your fans. In order to see results, you must consistently interact with your fans and create new posts. If you start by at least posting a new video once a week, you will gradually see results of growth of positive fan interaction.