226 – What to do with Your Music in 2021 Part 4

by | Mar 4, 2021 | Podcast

Trying to figure out how to nurture your fan base? Looking for music business models that work better than Spotify algorithm exploits?

That’s what we’re going to be looking at in this episode of The New Music Industry Podcast.

Podcast Highlights:

  • 00:26 – What to do with your music in 2021 summary
  • 00:49 – Interview with Vasja Veber correction
  • 01:04 – Connect with everyone who comes through your doors
  • 01:48 – Network far and wide
  • 03:11 – Pursue sync licensing and placements
  • 04:22 – Set up a fan club or membership site
  • 05:24 – Stop whining
  • 06:13 – Episode summary
  • 06:54 – New exciting course


Hey, it’s David Andrew Wiebe.

I’m back with part 4 of what to do with your music in 2021.

In part 1, I talked about strategy and mindset.

In part 2, I talked about tools to help you set up your website, promote your music, and do competitive analysis with.

In part 3, we looked at analytics, cryptocurrency, and growing your list.

Part 4 is where you’ll start to see a lot of it come together.

Now, before I get to that, I made a bit of an error in the last episode. I said that my interview with Vasja Veber was 198 when it was actually 180. Not sure what I was thinking there, but there you go. Either way, we made sure to correct it in the show notes.

Let’s get into part 4.

1. Connect with Everyone Who Come Through Your Doors

In the past, you may have let your welcome series do the work for you. Or maybe you waited for new fans to comment on a Facebook post to engage with them.

But let’s be more proactive about connecting with people in 2021. They aren’t a number, nor are they an email address.

When someone joins your list, celebrate them! If they buy something from you, send them a personal thanks and maybe even send them a “thank-you” note via snail mail.

We’re basically talking about customer service here. And when people have a good experience with you, they tend to think of you when they need something, and even tell their friends.

We can’t just hope and pray that people are going to stay engaged with us after they’ve joined our community. We’ve got to be proactive about learning more about them and interacting with them.

You’ve got to love on your fans.

2. Network Far & Wide

Did you know that employee referrals are the top source for hires?

What that means is that knowing the right people makes all the difference. People do business with those they know, like, and trust.

So many people want to work their way straight to the top, and unfortunately, it generally doesn’t work that way.

You need to start with your local scene and get to know the movers and shakers.

Even in a city like Calgary, where I used to live, there were successful songwriters who I ended up connecting with.

Might they know a thing or two about writing great songs? Would they know some people of influence? Could they co-write with me or introduce me to a manager, producer, or label?

You bet they could!

But I’m not counting on that. My prerogative is to build an authentic friendship with them.

And maybe next time they need an opening act or need a lead guitarist to play on their project, they’ll think of me.

But I need to stay top of mind with them if I have any hope of getting the call. So, whether it’s sending “thank-you” notes, sharing an interesting article with them, going to their workshops, or otherwise, I’d better show up when I can.

Despite lockdowns, now is the best time to expand your network, and it doesn’t matter what platforms you’re using to do it.

I like Twitter a lot. It’s instant and easy, and there are so many smart people on the platform. But you pick what works for you.

If you’d like to go deeper into networking, have a listen to:

3. Pursue Sync Licensing & Placements

In part 1 of this series, I talked about making more music.

Well, if you want to pursue sync licensing and placement opportunities, then you’re going to need to get used to cranking out the tunes.

The upside potential of getting your music into media is amazing, and you don’t even need a fan base to make an independent income at it.

Now, you might read something online about how to get into this part of the industry, and come away feeling like it’s much too complex, nerve wracking, or high stakes.

Look, I need you to focus. Get started, get going, and adjust as you go. Don’t worry about the details so much. That’s going to paralyze you.

If you want to earn a real independent income in music, get off Spotify and give this area of your career some serious attention.

Create accounts with ReverbNation, Musicxray, SonicBids, and Rumblefish. You’re going to figure out whether those platforms work for you relatively quickly.

And to be honest, licensing and placements largely comes down to relationship, which goes back to my last point.

If you’d like to learn more about licensing and placements, have a listen to:

4. Set Up a Fan Club or Membership Site

There has never been a better time to set up a fan club or membership site. The technology is better and easier than it’s ever been.

Look, chances are, you’re not going to make thousands of dollars on Spotify. And it’s so much easier to do with a membership site.

If you had 30 people paying you $100 per month, just like that, you’d be making $3,000 per month.

If that seems out of reach for you, then get 300 people paying you $10 per month. The economics of it still make more sense than Spotify!

If you’re not tech savvy and you’re just getting started, then take advantage of a free platform like Patreon to set up your membership.

If you’re looking for a flexible platform you can do just about anything with, check out 10XPro. Go to davidandrewwiebe.com/10XPro to learn more.

We are an affiliate of 10XPro, and if you purchase through our link, we may earn a small commission at no additional cost to you.

If you’d like to learn more about membership sites, check out:

5. Stop Whining

Look, we all get rejected. We will all go through tough times. I understand this as well as anyone.

But don’t let your emotions spiral into prolonged pity parties.

Some people won’t answer your emails. Some people will say “no.” Others will berate you for daring to email them.

It’s just how it is. It’s not your fault, you’re doing the best you can with what you’ve got. Mistakes will be made.

Don’t expect others to do what you aren’t willing to do for yourself. Anything you can do yourself you should do yourself, or you will feel disempowered in your music career.

Making it in music has never been easy, and it will require a tough mindset.

If you need more help in this regard, have a listen to:

Episode Summary

So, here’s today’s episode summary:

  1. Be more proactive in connecting with your fans. Make a lasting impression on them.
  2. Network far and wide. Show up, show your face, and get in front of the people who can open doors. Stop hiding behind your computer screen.
  3. Look into licensing and placement opportunities. Begin submitting your music to relevant projects.
  4. Set up a fan club or membership site. It might not work, but you won’t know unless you give it a try, and recurring income is amazing when you can get it going.
  5. Stop whining. We all experience rejection. We all go through tough times. It’s about what you do with those experience that counts. Learn from your mistakes and fail forward.

So, if you’re tired of doing dozens of things that don’t grow your music career… If you’re fed up with a stagnant, dwindling, or disengaged fan base… If you’re sick of not earning the income you deserve from your music… Head on over to davidandrewwiebe.com/Masterclass to learn all about how my latest course can help you. That’s davidandrewwiebe.com/Masterclass.

This has been episode 226 of The New Music Industry Podcast. I’m David Andrew Wiebe, and I look forward to seeing you on the stages of the world.