The altitude gave me vertigo in a few places but the view is beautiful right now because I’m celebrating my own, and my fellow songwriters’ many successes during The Canadian Songwriters Social Media Challenge! Look how far up the mountain we’ve climbed!
We started Week 1 by getting up close and personal with our goals and we committed to them in a way that packs a powerful punch – by writing them down in the present. We also implemented the daily “six action steps” exercise which has helped us feel like we’re progressing even when the mountain is steep! We then learned during Week 2 how to pitch ourselves in a way that won’t make people dash out of the elevator yawning. Then came designing, editing and tweaking our social media savvy artist websites during Week 3. In Week 4, we plunged into even more social media platforms, skyrocketing ourselves further into cyberspace, while maintaining a consistent look across all of them: think branding! Next we got hooked up on YouTube in Week 5 which was a first for me (check out my first Vlog!!) We then navigated the intensely large blogosphere in Week 6, aiming to stick like bubblegum to music bloggers. Week 7 guided us to get creatively serious about our newsletters and during Week 8 we planned strategic continuum programs to help us prosper as artists. Finally, we have now leaned into the last part of this climb….Week 9!
This week’s chapter in Music Success in Nine Weeks is entitled “The Real World”. Here we focus on networking and dealing with publicists. This week I worked on my one-page bio with a friend who’s written bios for bands in the past. It was great having outside perspective because wow, it’s tough to write about yourself! After my bio was written I put it up on my website (check it out if you like under the ABOUT section at www.AynsleySaxe.com). I also launched my first digital press kit in the drop down menu of the ABOUT section (thanks for making it easy Bandzoogle!). I will revise my press kit as my album is released – but for now, it’s up! My Bio and DPK were two items I’d been procrastinating doing for a while and it feels awesome having them done.
There were also three items that stood out for me in this chapter:
1. “Don’t read your press; weigh it.”
I love this Andy Warhol quote. I remember hearing a story about how Alice Cooper got signed. When he started performing in a club, a huge percentage of listeners immediately rushed out of the bar because they couldn’t stand his music. The label rep. said something along the lines of “since you had that big of a reaction, we’re signing you.” It didn’t matter that most of the bar loathed his music. He’d made an impact and I’m presuming the rep. thought that there would be a niche of people who would like his music. Needless to say he thought right!
2. Know your intention before starting out.
Ariel talks about this quote in terms of networking, but doesn’t it apply to everything in life? It seems like such simple advice but this statement is so powerful! It’s so easy to lose our lives to an unconscious default setting. For instance, how many of us get wrapped up in social media sites and there goes an hour or two of time? Yikes – so guilty here! I don’t usually consciously choose to browse my friends’ Facebook pages for 2 hours but it’s easy to get sucked into the vortex of energy that these sites are exuding. Knowing my intention before taking action helps me connect to what I want to do with my time. These intentions add up. Before long we’ll realize we are deeply rooted in the present, living consciously, filling our time with actions that we want to take. The opposite gives me a queasy stomach.
3. CD’s with Readable Backs Please
Knowing that publicists prefer CD’s with artwork and a readable spine is good to know! It’s easy to see how CD’s that are stacked would easily go amiss without a readable spine. There are actually 12 CD’s in this stack…!
The highlights of this challenge for me have been numerous. I’ve thought about my music (and myself really) as a business, and implemented many strategies I likely would have procrastinated doing without the time line of the challenge and the warm encouragement of the other participants. Being accountable to the deadlines has helped me stay focused and accomplish a lot more than I thought possible in a very short time period!
Another highlight has been connecting with other songwriters. I’ve been feeding off the positive vibes from all of the comments on everyone’s blogs and all of the golden nuggets of wisdom and advice that have been shared. Even though we each have a unique journey (like a “thumbprint” – according to Christie Grace’s beautiful Week 8 blog), all of us share the common thread of loving our music passionately and wanting to share it with the world. You have really inspired me! Thank you so much for sharing your journey with me and for being so enthusiastic, encouraging and supportive!
Let’s keep in touch. If you haven’t already, please sign up for my newsletter at www.aynsleysaxe.com or subscribe to my blog. Please send me your newsletter or blog subscription link too as I would love to continue to hear what you are up to.
Anyone for a group hug!?!?! Or maybe a group “WHOOOHOOOO!!!!” 😀