Tuesday, May 13, 2014

What Makes You So Special: How to Separate Your Brand from the Masses

Whether you are a music artist, a music manager, a studio owner, or any other type of business in the music industry, your uniqueness is critical to developing your brand. The process of setting yourself and your business apart from all the others is key to being successful. So how do you go about defining that separation and using it to your advantage? The following are some ideas that may prove useful on this journey:

  1. Find a need and fill it. If you see a need in your community or industry that is currently not being served by others, or if you have an idea for a certain type of music artistry that hasn't been explored by other artists, then you've found a need and can begin to take the steps to fill it. Being able to find your niche and then become the leader in that particular area will set you apart from the rest of the business or artists that are trying to do what you do. For example, as an artist manager, I don’t just address the business needs of the artists with whom I work. I also incorporate life coaching in my work with them so that their decisions about their life, their career, and how they will form their brand will put them on the right path for success. As Eric Thomas once said, “Your talent will take you places that your character can’t keep you.” Integrity and character go a long way towards being successful in any endeavor.
  2. Define your specialization. You want to make sure that you define what you do in a way that others can find you. When searching for business on the internet, keywords are a very important part of search engine optimization. If you have a niche market, how is that niche market defined? If you are a niche artist, how do you define your sound? The keywords you use to describe what you do will be the difference between being on the first page of search results and being on the other pages that get no views. One way to start brainstorming the best keywords to use is to ask the people closest to you what words they would use. The more people you ask, the better idea you will get of words that are common between several people. Using keywords that the majority of people would use allows you to optimize the ability for search engines to find you. You can read more about defining niche marketing here.
  3. Learn that less is more. When you are first starting out, you are best off if you focus on doing one thing exceptionally well. Don’t try to be everything for every market, because it just won’t work. You will get lost in the white noise of every other company or brand that is trying to do the same thing. Instead, consider being known for one or two phenomenal aspects. The marketing plan contained in your business plan should be as detailed as possible so you have a clear vision of how you are going to separate yourself from the competition. This will serve as your road map on the journey to becoming a successful brand. The clearer the vision, the easier the decisions will be that you must make in developing your brand. Keep it simple by focusing on doing one thing great instead of doing five things that are average.
This is just a start to get you thinking about the idea of separation and market differentiation. In this day and age, it is more important than ever before since we have become a global economy. Your competition is not just in your own back yard anymore. The competition is now anyone in the world who does what you do. It’s crowded on the bottom, because it’s easy to be average. It takes effort and focus to be phenomenal. In the end, however, it is definitely worth the effort. If your goal in life was to be average, you probably shouldn't have become an entrepreneur to being with. 

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