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A Few Things To Consider Before Exporting Your Music

Linus Lassus

Danish band Mont Oliver benefited hugely from their performance at the Ja Ja Ja showcase in London, since the timing was perfectly matched with ongoing negotiations with local London-based labels.

A successful music export venture takes a lot of preparation and know-how. As a musician or industry professional with export ambitions, it is important to understand this and to take an active role in learning about the industry itself and other markets.

In order to make sure artists succeed abroad, MXD recommends all export strategies should include momentum, a vision, objectives, collaborators and several other things. The full list can be found here: Sådan vurderer MXD ansøgningerne.

In order to help musicians prepare for exporting their music, Sound and Music, a British music export organization, listed a few tools and activities that can be very useful. Below is a selection of tools that Sound and Music suggests. The full list can be found here: Sound and Music: Export Toolkit.

Plan – and Research
Obviously you need a plan for how to export your music, but the more research, knowledge, facts and correct analysis that plan is based on, the better. Find out where and in which markets people tend to listen to music similar to yours. Compare yourself to similar artists that are a few steps ahead of you – how did they do it? Also look at your own online data and see what you can find out about your own listeners and fans. For more examples on this topic, check out Online Music Marketing: How You Can Use Big Data.

Business Planning
It’s called ”music business” for a reason. Through thoroughly thinking through the business side of things – like finances, marketing, branding and partnerships – you will not only discover and work on issues you might not have been aware of before, but you will also get a framework for how to look at your export project and present it to other people.

Having a big and versatile network is essential to export success. It is very hard – if not impossible – to achieve very much all on your own. Therefore, attend as many performances, events, showcases and conferences as possible, both at home and abroad. This requires investment in terms of time and money, but being present in many different places pays off. Most likely the people you will meet are there for similar reasons. Read more about networking efficiently here (10 Tips To Better Networking From Simon Tam) and also check out the upcoming Ja Ja Ja showcase dates in Berlin and Hamburg. Even if your band isn’t playing, you can still find interesting people in the audience.

These things are by no means everything you need for a successful export project – great music and artists are essential of course. Some money to spend and a little luck isn’t too bad either. However, these headlines contain a lot of the key elements and are a good place to start building your strategy.