Are you a music lover and want to start a business in the niche? If you are a person who understand the music, the in and out that happens in the music industry, then you can become a music entrepreneur.
A music entrepreneur can start the business from the prospect of a music publisher, as an artist, manager or label. If you are a newbie to the musical business, you may find it difficult to arrange a business plan which demonstrates the rights, revenue deals, royalties, etc.
How to Become a Music Entrepreneur
Whether starting out as manager, artist or a publisher, the music industry has three components that you need to understand well to succeed. These includes;
- Various rights which prevail in the music industry.
- How to acquire those rights.
- How to commercially exploit those rights.
If you must succeed as a music entrepreneur, you must be ready to work hard, continuously be putting out good and engaging content and outlive your competitors.
Various Copyrights That Exist in the Music Industry
Music lovers can enjoy music in lots of ways; through a radio, CD player, download soundtracks, YouTube, etc. From the aspect of a music fan, they are merely downloading or buying CDs of their favorite artist or song.
However, from the music entrepreneur’s prospect, the actual thing proceeding is that the music rights and copyrights that these entrepreneurs own or control are consumed in such a way that generates income for them.
The main aim of a music entrepreneur should be how to create revenue from all these activities and maximize this income by developing various strategies. They can focus on generating revenue from any of these;
- Composition Copyrights
Composition has two main copyrights, they are: lyrics that are protected by the copyright law known as a “literary work” and music that is protected by the copyright law known as a “musical work.” The two however can be referred to as joint copyright and can be held by the music publisher as one copyright.
- Recording Rights
These are usually held by the recording company.
- Performer’s Rights
These rights allow performers to control who can commercially exploit their performance. The two fundamental rights are property rights and non-property rights. These are usually assigned to a recording company. It is worth noting that companies receive some form of remuneration whenever their records are played whether they have property or non-property rights.
How to Get These Rights?
The copyright comes into perseverance whenever an original work is created such as composition, sound recording, etc. and is reduced to a physical form. In this phase, the work will naturally qualify for the copyright protection law. The producer of the work is considered to be the first proprietor of the copyright.
The copyright once created will last for the specified period:
- Musical Works or Music
It will continue till the life of the composer, additional 70 years. In case of the tasks that are co-written, it remains till the last composer or author with 70 years besides.
- Literary or Lyric Works
It will last till the life of the author with additional 70 years.
- Sound Recordings
Last for a period of 70 years.
Copyrights like any other property rights can be sold or licensed in accordance with the copyright owner to any other party. Therefore, publishers can acquire copyrights either by
- Licensing or assigning content from any third-party company or individual.
- Signing deals with performers, songwriters, and artist to create confined content for them.
How to Commercially Use These Rights
As an entrepreneur, making money from copyrights is by going back to where your consumers interact with your music. This involves tracking the systems in place that allow them to access your music such as the radio, downloading online, shows, liver performances and CDs. This will enable you to get your share on the profit being made when your music is consumed.
Although this is realistic, it might not be achieved practically as their might be many agencies that you need to monitor. Here is where societies that license your work comes in. These societies are businesses that ensure they track the consumption of your recording, tracking all the amount of money generated. This makes it easy to benefit from copyrights.
Entrepreneurs can also seek to reduce the middle man in the chain and provide the recordings to the direct consumers. This might be more expensive in the long term.
Marketing Your Music
Every release of your music needs proper marketing to reach the targeted audience. Understanding of various channels of marketing, promotion, and distribution is required to evolve and explore. Like any other commerce, the business of music also needs a proper platform to showcase. Good promotional efforts are made so that the music of the artist can be played on the radio or secure a television appearance.
Collaborating with other players is very ideal when starting out in music. This is because it gives you the exposure you need and the market base you did not have. Creating a collaboration also needs careful selection as this is the foundation you are building upon.
Using industry key players such as popular musicians and recording companies can really help spread the word out. Creating collaborations also ensures you gain a little feedback and experience on what will work and what will not. This calls for selection of good and well experienced partners.
To become an entrepreneur in the music industry, like any other business owner, proper knowledge of the industry is the key to success. The points mentioned above will guide you to know the facts that prevail in the music industry. There may be numerous reasons that why you want to be a music entrepreneur, so don’t let a single failure stop you from succeeding.