I still remember the day that I thought of pursuing music as a fulltime career. At first, it was a very hard thing to do because there wasn’t anyone who is like a role model to follow or to even have a conversation. It took me one year to dabble through all the income streams available. Mastering each income stream and making it either passive is another part of the struggle.
There are 12 easy steps to develop a career as a music producer,
Don’t restrict yourself
Don’t set time limits
Go all in
Track your progress
Reflect and analyze
Try to add income streams
Make them passive
Connect with people
Grow your social media
All these steps mentioned are things that I did to earn a full-time income from doing what I love which is music production.
1. Learn continuously
It’s very important to understand that learning is a crucial part of starting a career as a music producer. The learning process never ends just like other careers you have to put your head down and learn continuously and have an accepting mindset without being a twat about it.keeping up with the industry and learning what is going on is another factor as well. you cannot put yourself in a better position to achieve if you are not keeping up with the industry.
The important lesson I learned while starting music production and being a music producer is that it’s not going to be a walk in the park and I have to put in a ton of effort to catch up with people who are already pro’s in the game.
Yes it might get overwhelming of how much should I learn isn’t this enough or sometimes questions, like am I not working hard, will bring self-doubt. I always remind myself that nothing is going to happen in the next 10 years I just have to learn now.thats how I can move the needle one step at a time.so try to learn each day within a year you would achieve mastery in most of the things.
2. Don’t restrict yourself
Have you heard this statement anywhere before?
That’s the same mentality you have to start this journey of pursuing a career as tough as music production as well. people usually restrict them to a certain genre stating that I am only good at this or like I am only good at that.
Never restrict yourself to try something that feels interesting even not interesting at all.its all about the process of learning that is going to make a big change when it comes to being a music producer.
Restricting yourself and not learning every aspect of music production is also a big problem I see among people who are serious about music production. They start learning and at a certain point, they don’t make the effort to even learn the nuances associated with it.
When you are jumping headfirst make sure that you are making sure you cover all bases.if your mind is restricting you from doing something re-evaluate and work on it. I was weak at mixing vocals and I didn’t address it at all, I lost a lot of jobs because of it.
I am stressing this because you won’t know what is going to be your breaking point. when you are given an opportunity you have to perform.
3. Don’t set time limits
The worst thing that you can do for yourself is putting a time limit on everything you are doing. having goals like I want to make a million within next year is a realistic goal but don’t allow the goal to drive you instead allow the process to take control.
It’s a fine line between how you are setting limits and working towards your goal.always understand that everybody starts somewhere .setting limits on yourself will slowly pull you down from the results you should be achieving.
When you run against a time limit it depletes the energy to learn and to experience things to become a routine .most music producers give up not because they dint win its because they forget to enjoy the process which is supposed to be exciting and rejuvenating every single day.if it becomes a routine in your life soon it will feel like a frustration rather than your passion.
You won’t give slack for yourself if you are running against a timeline. you won’t take a break when you hit a small wall of creativity block.these are things that add up, in the end, to cause trouble to a person’s career.
Realize that it’s going to be a long journey and understand that it’s not a sprint it’s a marathon.you have to persevere to keep your head up even if you hit roadblocks.
4. Go all in
A piece of advice that is ignored a lot. nobody understands how much influence this has on the decisions you take on your journey.going all in just means that you are prone to take more risks and give your time properly in working on all aspects of your music production .dont pigeonholed yourself to something and be like I am going to do this for six months if it is not making money I will do something else.
The funny thing is you cant even master the skill needed to produce proper music within six months how would you even make money with your music when your skills are still mediocre.people tend to make assumptions and forget the variables that play in each person’s life that change the result of their actions.
Not putting your 100% into something is going to make you have regrets. yes, it happened to me I wasn’t sure if I will be able to learn music production.after 6 months I regretted that I should have gone all-in .its because of the results I saw In myself.
I think making a career out of music production is possible if you are going all in, otherwise, it’s going to be an uphill battle.
5. Take Risks
Taking action on something always means that there are risks associated with it if you are not ready to manage the risks then you should be doing music production at all.already people despise music producers as if they are not successful at all.if you are really In the game to make a career out of music production take massive risks.
Massive risks will increase your chances of learning further and make your seasoned for music production.
I took a massive risk of quitting my job to go all-in on music production and I think it’s the best risk that I have taken in all my life.its terrifying now to look back be like wow I was so bold then. i don’t think I would take the same intensity of risk now.when you take massive risks there is no excuse for you to postpone things and there is no excuse for you to quit as well because you are neck-deep on this one.
6. Be productive
I can’t stress this enough .when I started I would waste time on random things thinking in my head that I am working on my skills in music production.in reality, it wasn’t the case at all. I wasn’t being productive with my time in terms of learning skills, coning them, building marketing strategies. I would have saved so much time in the journey of music production.
Some of the strategies that I developed are creating more than what I consume.it helps a lot .when we indulge in creating more than we consume it puts us In this weird place where we can find the things that we are weak at and work on them properly.
This simple trick changed a lot for me as well. its nothing but using to-do lists. they help in organizing your life in and around music production.l
Using apps like the notion, Evernote,roam has changed the way I learn and even create beats. make sure you make use of every single minute you have when you are going headfirst into music production so you can have tolerance for your mistakes in the journey of being a music producer.
7. Track your progress
Making a career in music production is a marathon and you have to track your progress every single month or else you would never advance your career.the first and foremost thing to do is to start writing down what you are learning every single week if its possible track it every single day.it’s going to show you how far you have come and how much you have lagged.
We all start somewhere in music production based on our prior knowledge in music production.its all in our hands-on how far we can with music production. people who learn continuously and adapt according to the industry have a high chance of winning rather than people who idle.
The learning and tracking process should be a continuous process in music production since music always evolves. establishing yourself as an authority requires you to establish your skills as a music producer.
Install notion or Evernote and track your progress and make adjustments to it based on how you are performing.
8. Reflect and Analyse
I never tell people to quit but if something is making them unhappy or if they aren’t seeing any results then its time to back up little and analyze whether what you are doing is perfectly right for your business or not.
Music production has to be treated as a business at some point because of the time and money that’s involved in it. everybody strives to provide good things for their family and wasting time on something that is not yielding any results is not a good spot to be in.
Take time to analyze and if you think this career that you are going after is worth it to you then as I said in the second point go all in.
9. Try to add income streams.
The best way to stay in the game of having a career in music production is to diversify your income in music .you can develop multiple streams of income through various platforms available to sell your music and have a bit of control over every work that you are putting in.
Adding an income stream will help you to motivate yourself to push further in times of distress or frustration.out of all the revenue streams that you can build through music production if you master one thing and become master at it you can pretty easily earn a million bucks without any issues.
Diversifying income streams also adds security in terms like you don’t have to depend on one thing to make money for you .you can always branch out.
10. Make them passive
Once you have set up your income streams its now time to make them passive. If you have grown to a spot where you can hire people to do awesome work. But the best way to do is to change your systems to be passive. The first thing you can do is to automate your emails.
Invest in courses to even learn about how to make your revenue passive and places to invest your money as well.
The more diversified and optimized you are the more you can grow and provide for your family.
11. Connect with people
This is one skill that’s hard to develop if you are an introvert like me .sometimes connections will bring you opportunities that change the way you look at things.
Try to connect with one person a week and build your contact list.
It’s going to change your life forever.
12. Build social media
The one last thing that you can do to develop your career as a music producer is to grow that online audience.
Sometimes it will seem a little overwhelming at the first but you will get a hang of it pretty soon.
Experiment and find your audience.
Your journey is going to be extremely unique and you can pick up things from others but it’s hard to replicate someone else’s success.
Run-on your path and never give up.
Check our article on the music studio desk if you are interested.
Maslin JE is a Music Producer/Composer Who has been working in the Music Industry for over 10 years. Having an evolution from being a church keyboardist to becoming a full-time entrepreneur he has gained an abundance of experience in music production and entrepreneurship.