MixMaster2016 Music Conference is tomorrow! As well as an opportunity to take copious notes and jot down essential information, MixMaster is also a chance to meet key music industry people one-on-one. Here’s a couple of tips from our panelists and contributors to get the most out of the networking that can happen at #MXM2016
Don’t be shy! Be excited!
Erin McGrane, Victor & Penny, Artist INC
This is an industry event and networking is a big part of why we’re there. The industry experts (DJs, press, etc.) will be expecting to meet you – don’t be shy. But make it easy for people to remember you: have a card with your name and contact info on it, and if you’ve got a big event coming up (like a CD release) you might add that info to your business card via a sticker or something too. Have fun – the more excited you are about your project, the more excited others will be when you tell them about it.
Tell a story
Michelle Bacon, 90.9 The Bridge, The Philistines, Chris Meck and the Guilty Birds
You put a lot of time, effort, money, blood, sweat and tears into the music you create, but it doesn’t stop there. Your music tells a story that only you can tell, and it’s your duty to make sure other people know it—whether that’s through writing an intriguing bio or posting on social media or curating cool, unique events for your audience. The story of your craft will give something for press outlets to grab onto, and something for potential new audience members to be inspired by.
Don’t be a punk
Chris Haghirian, Ink Magazine, Middle of the Map, eight one sixty (909 The Bridge)
The KC/LFK music community is a small world, we all know each other. Introduce yourself and don’t be a punk. Kindness goes a long way. and also, when you have a gig the first thing you should do at the venue is introduce yourself to the staff: sound person, door person, bartenders, again, kindness goes a long way.
Follow up, and never give up!
Steve Ozark, Ozark Talent
I like when artists give me their newest material with very little written hype. Tell me who referred you or how you heard about us, or why you are asking me in particular. At least address your inquiry to my name, and don’t make it a one-of-many approach. Then call me the next day to ask if I received it, and tell me something short and juicy about you/your music so I might get interested. For me it’s really about connecting with the music. Best tip – NEVER give up, NEVER stop calling and politely asking people to listen. As a music agent and manager, that’s how I succeed every day.
Have an elevator speech prepared
Don Simon, Mudstomp Records, KCVLAA
An elevator pitch is a brief, persuasive speech that you use to spark interest in what you do. You can also use them to create interest in a project, idea, or in yourself. A good elevator pitch should last no longer than a short elevator ride 30 seconds to two minutes–hence the name. They should be interesting, memorable, and succinct. They also need to explain what makes you or project unique.
Get Your Contracts in Writing!
Danielle Merrick, Kansas City Volunteer Lawyers and Accountants for the Arts [the lawyer!]
Remember, even an email exchange can constitute a written contract. So, after an informal conversation, memorialize it in an email to the other party. Bang. Written contract.