A problem that a lot of hip-hop artists have is that they focus solely on the music side of their career and forget about everything else that matters for becoming a successful hip-hop artist. They focus so much on going to the studio, and writing a new track or getting beats that they forget that there's a whole other world out there. The world that you're going to use to monetize and create a career out of music.
A lot of artists, nowadays especially, think that everything should be given to them if their skills are up to par. That's just not true, man. Nobody is going to come down, hear your music, swoop you up and then make you rich or anything like that. So, in this post, I'm going to give you a few tips to help you think like an entrepreneur, not a rapper.
If you're an upcoming artist and you're trying to become successful – you should be reading books. Not books like "Moby Dick" or anything like that, but books that actually correlate to real-life success, for musicians.
For example, books that involve learning people or learning how to communicate would be good choices. A sales book would also be good, because, at the end of the day, you're still selling yourself.
I’d also recommend that rappers learn a little bit about copywriting. Copywriting is the art of selling things with words. Not only will it help you sell your brand online, but when you're writing songs, being skilled in copywriting can help you structure them better.
Use Google….. A Lot
I don’t think enough artists are using Google. I know this sounds cliché, but everything you want to know is on Google. If I was an artist today, I would look up how to become a rapper and I read every page on Google. You'll start to see similarities. They might not use the exact same wording or anything like that, but they'll say the same thing over and over again.
Anything you’re unfamiliar of when you're reading, just research it. If they’re talking about licensing and you're like, “what the hell is licensing?” – open up a new tab in Google and type in something like "What is licensing for musicians?" and read about that. Continue this process until you feel well informed and knowledgeable enough to move on.
Go To Every Event
If you're sitting at home right now and you want to become a hip-hop artist but you don't have a big budget & don't know what to do – Google or go on twitter and look for every hip-hop personality or influencer in your city. Then, I want you to basically stalk them. Not stalk them as in like contact them and follow them home, but:
- See what they're doing
- See where they're going
- What events are they throwing?
- What events are they endorsing?
- Who are they endorsing?
Just like on Google, you'll start to see a lot of similarities. And, when you go to these events, you're going to see a lot of the same people. Because, although your local area may seem big, there's actually a small number of people that are actually putting in the work.
By going to every single event, you'll start to see that same faces over and over again. Then that's how you can start to build that relationship. They'll be like, "Who is this guy and why does he keep coming here?"
You don't even have to promote your music. The more people like you, the more curious they’ll become, and look you up. They're going to be like, "Who the hell is so-and-so? What have they done? What are they doing? I want to know more about this person." You've piqued their interest.
So, be patient and think like an entrepreneur. Entrepreneurs solve problems. That's it. That's all we do is solve problems. If we don't know how to do something, we Google it. We figure it out, we watch YouTube videos, or we ask people who have done it already.