Have you ever felt alone in this industry?
Like no matter what you did you couldn’t seem to work your way out of the struggles you were having and into the thriving career you wanted for yourself?
You’re not alone. In fact, every artist I’ve spoken to over the last 10 years of my career has felt this way at one time or another. The frustration of feeling like there’s nowhere you can turn and that no one can help with your unique situation is enough to make you wonder what you’re doing.
But imagine if I could wave a magic wand and suddenly, you’d never have to feel that sense of overwhelm again. You’d know that as soon as you had a question, you could get it answered. As soon as you begin to feel that stress, you’d have someone to turn to.
What would that feel like?
January was National Mentor Month—but if you ask me, we should be celebrating mentors every month, keeping it at the forefront of our minds. After all, mentorships are crucial to the success of not only emerging artists but established ones. Take a look at some of your favorite artists, and search their name alongside “mentor”—not only do they have mentors of their own that helped them grow to super-star status but now that they’re superstars themselves, they give back through their own mentorships.
Because the truth is, they know they wouldn’t be where they are, if someone (or many someones) hadn’t helped them along the way.
When it comes to having a mentor, it really is a total gamechanger. It’s the difference between “I’m surviving” and “I’m thriving.” Between feeling overwhelmed and feeling invigorated. Between making waves and wondering what happened.
In short, it’s the difference between success and staying stuck.
Having a mentor means never feeling alone
First and foremost, when you have a mentor, you have a safe space to turn. You never have to worry about going through all of the trials and tribulations of the industry alone, because you’ll always know you have someone to turn to in the thick of it.
Want to book more shows? Ask your mentor how they’ve done it.
Want to get more Spotify plays? Ask your mentor for their strategies.
Not sure where to start? Ask your mentor what they recommend.
While each mentor will specialize in a different area, most are going to have a general working knowledge of the industry by simply having been in it so long—and not only that, but they’ll be able to connect you to those that do specialize in areas they don’t (more on that below.)
Wouldn’t it be a relief to have someone to advise you on next steps when the going gets tough? To have someone to celebrate with when you have a win? Or what about simply having someone who can empathize with you when you’re going through something difficult? Someone to remind you that it’s all going to be ok—and then show you how to get back on track?
It means having a proven roadmap
How much easier would your life be if you simply knew what to do next, and how to do it?
In my opinion, this is one of the number one reasons to have a mentor. You’re getting instant access to the tools and information you need to get where you’re going, and fast. You know it works because your mentor has been there and done that, and if you get stuck, you know exactly who to turn to.
In this fast-paced industry, having a roadmap that tells you what to do and when to do it can put you lightyears ahead of the rest.
It will expand your connections
I’ll let you in on a little secret—most of us in this industry, we talk to each other. It’s pretty tight knit and it’s true that everyone knows everyone. So that means if you have a mentor that’s helping you with booking shows right now, but you get to the point of needing a manager, odds are, your current mentor is going to be able to hook you up with the right person to handle your management. So yeah, another perk of having a mentor? You don’t just get access to them—you get access to all their connections too.
I don’t have to tell you that is a powerful advantage. Having someone who can recommend and facilitate those introductions with ease is going to be hugely beneficial in moving your career forward.
Having a mentor increases your opportunities
And we could all do with more of those, right?
With connections comes opportunities. When you know that your mentor will be able to hook you up to new connections and opportunities as you grow, that can be a game-changer. Because all of a sudden you aren’t just working hard in the hopes someone notices—you know someone will notice, and you know you’ll have a trusted person to facilitate those introductions and opportunities.
So yeah—never feeling alone, a personalized roadmap that saves you YEARS of time and frustration, and the chance for new connections and life-changing opportunities? Why wouldn’t you want a mentor?
Angela Mastrogiacomo is the founder and CEO of Muddy Paw PR and the THRIVE Mentorship program. She loves baked goods, a good book, and hanging with her dog Sawyer.