How Musicians Can Plan for Their Futures

Unexpected things can happen. That’s why you need a plan for your music career. One that can stand on its own during challenging times. So here are four ways you can plan for your future:

Diversify Your Income Sources

You may not be playing as many live shows right now and some opportunities may come and go, but music is still a part of all of our daily lives. That means, somehow, music is still being made, transmitted, and received. And there are so many more ways to engage with music beyond recording and selling it. Instead of relying on just one income stream, it’s smarter to have multiple just in case one dries up. Here are just a few different ways you can diversify your income sources with your creative talents: 

  • Do session musician work remotely
  • Mix music for other artists
  • Offer online instrument lessons
  • Write music advice content for blogs
  • Play live-streamed concerts and ask for donations
  • Grow your YouTube channel and monetize your videos with ads
  • Launch a blog and get some affiliate marketing agreements
  • Write and produce jingles for companies
  • Pursue sync licensing opportunities

It may be tempting to put a finger in all of these pies, but just start by pursuing two or three of these income streams, and see where it takes you. 

Keep Educating Yourself

You may be spending more time at home, but that doesn’t mean you have nothing to do. There’s always something you can do to add value to your musical endeavors, and one such career-boosting activity could be to take an online course. 

Join ReverbNation for Free

It’s easier today than it’s ever been to learn anything you want, and learning online is so much cheaper than enrolling in music school. Whether you’re a songwriter, producer, beatmaker, or performer, you can find an online course that will make you better at what you do. 

And while there are tons of places you can go on the internet to build new sets of skills, one such site is Soundfly. 

Find Passive Income Streams

As you consider different avenues of income, look for ways to make passive income. And let me be clear: having passive income doesn’t mean you earn money for doing nothing. Passive income is when you do work once but continue to get paid for it on an ongoing basis.

For example, let’s say you planned, shot, and edited an online video. If you monetize the video, you’ll make money every time someone watches it. Other examples of passive income include music streaming, launching an online course, and sync licensing.

Seek out these types of income streams. It will free up some time for you to make money elsewhere. Passive income can continue to make you money. 

Create a Career Plan

To avoid getting discouraged and overwhelmed, you need a plan for your music career. A plan can keep you moving toward your goals. If you don’t have a plan, you could easily find yourself meandering through your music career. You won’t have direction. You’ll lack focus. You’ll never get to where you want to go. 

So figure out where you want to end up and what you need to do to get there. Then write down your end goal, your big picture. Track your goals. Give yourself deadlines. Plan out where you want to be next year, three years from now, five years from now, etc.

Creating a career plan is the best way to solidify your future in the music industry!

Jeremy Young is a Montreal-based musician, composer, and writer, and the Editor-in-Chief of Soundfly.

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