Creatives No. 4 – The Real Story

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My Posts
Tebow Music

What Tim Tebow Taught Me About Playing Music

We’re all working towards goals. But what happens when things go wrong? What happens when you zig instead of zag? Perhaps surprisingly, I think there’s a lot to learn from Tim Tebow.

Hypebot: 8 Steps to A Million YouTube Channel Views

My guest post for Hypebot last week. Hopefully the first of many.

Creatives Posts
blind_and_def_tape

1. The Legend of the Blind MC (Ben Horowitz)

I’m admittedly a Ben Horowitz fanboy. He’s a venture capitalist at Andreessen Horowitz, successful entrepreneur, rap enthusiast, and genuinely good dude (from the very few interactions I’ve had with him).

Ben typically writes about the real stories behind building companies. the good, the bad, and the ugly. But this post is a little different. He shares an incredible story about the power of music.

2. Zoe Keating Shares Digital Music Revenue Report (Hypebot)

3. How I’m Marketing My Self-Published Book (Charlie Hoehn)

4. Book Launch Breakdown: Play It Away’s First Month of Sales (Charlie Hoehn)

Few creatives ever reveal real numbers that drive their career. We all talk in generalities about revenue, strategies, and benchmarks. That’s why I really dug these posts from Zoe and Charlie.

Zoe is an indie musician, popular for her work mixing cello and electronic music. Charlie is a writer and marketing strategist for best-selling authors such as Tim Ferriss, Ramit Sethi, Tucker Max, and Seth Godin. And they both released fantastic posts on how they’re building their business.

If you’re not a writer, still read Charlie’s posts. If you’re not a musician, still look through Zoe’s breakdown. There’s gold for creatives of any kind.

Three common themes emerged from reading these posts:

- As an independent creative, you need to make your own opportunities. You cannot wait for others to come to you with dollars. Usually that means diversifying your distribution and revenue paths until you find what really works.

- Free is an option, but understand what free gets you. Is it an email address? Promotion? Social cred?

- When looking at distribution, broad social paths are usually too busy to make a difference to your bottom line. Look for smaller, engaged communities – blogs, email lists, etc – they’ll pay bigger dividends.

5. 48 Hours Offline (Hong Quan)

“Family first” is a great motto, but sometimes we forget to live it.

6. Spotify’s Artist-In-Residence Explains His Vision (Digital Music News)

The man, the myth, the legend DA Wallach talks about artist perception and longer-term vision of Spotify. This piece provides additional context to Zoe Keating’s figures above and more.

7. How I Get Ideas (Steven Pressfield)

Ideas are the first step. But don’t fool yourself – it’s not about ideas. It’s about making ideas happen.

8. Jam of the Week (Facebook)

Jam of the week is a budding Facebook community for musicians. Great examples of simple, weekly videos made by musicians like you. Similarly, Chromatik is pretty cool too.

9. Jimmy Fallon, Idina Menzel, and The Roots Sing “Let It Go” with Classroom Instruments (YouTube)

I’m a sucker for any video that Jimmy Fallon and The Roots put out with classroom instruments. Especially when it features Adele Dazeem singing “Let It Go.”

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