⬆️Free Business Training for Audio Engineers⬆️
How to relocate to the hottest music hubs in the world and get your first gigs before you even land.
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#0 – I’m moving…again
- #0 – I’m moving…again
- #1 – Introduction
- #2 – Commit to Your Goals
- #3 – Your financial and time needs
- #4 – Who is your ideal client?
- #5 – What makes you valuable?
- #6 – What makes you special?
- #7 – Your positioning statement
- #8 – Why is this important?
- #8 – How do you get it?
- #9 – Who should I build relationships with?
- #11 – How do you make friends as an adult?
- #12 – Reaching out to colleagues
- #13 – Reaching out to potential clients
- Bonus – How to speed up your growth?
In one month I will be arriving in Minneapolis with my wife and a moving truck. I’ll have nothing but my wits and a Leatherman to build a new career, from the ground up. I’ve moved 7 times before, but starting over is never easy. Being a sound engineer is not a portable career and I’ll have to build my network all over again.
One thing does get easier, though, and that’s my strategy. At this point I’ve made enough wrong turns that I’m pretty familiar with the path to getting set up again quickly with new gigs, clients, and opportunities.
If you’re like me and have recently moved or are considering a move that will take you out of your comfort zone and away from your established network, sign up for this free two-week course where you will discover:
- How to position yourself for maximum impact
- How to grow your network exponentially and attract your ideal clients
- How to get your first gig before you even roll into town
Why is it free?
This is the knowledge that I want to share before I die. If I get hit by a bus tomorrow, I don’t want these lessons to be lost that could save you some time and pain.
#1 – Introduction
Welcome to your first lesson for From the Sound Up ✈️!
Watch the lesson and do the homework.
- What normally happens is that you naturally build a local network over your lifetime. The audio industry is based on referrals from that network.
- When you move, it disappears.
- This course has two parts: 1. What do you want? 2. How do you get it?
- What I need from you: Take action on every lesson. Give me lots of feedback.
- I’m going to be sending you a lesson every day for the next two weeks, so right now, open up your calendar and find 15 minutes every day where you will plan to work on it.
- Email 5 friends. Tell them that you are working on this and ask them to check in on you in 1 week. (This is where is starts to get uncomfortable. Push through!)
- What do you want? If you could just wave a magic wand and create your ideal in the new city that you’re moving to, what would you create? Email me right now and be as specific as possible.
Great job on completing your first lesson and I’ll see you tomorrow!
#2 – Commit to Your Goals
- Be intentional about what you are creating in your new city.
- Don’t just tell people that you are looking for work. What kind of work?
- Up until now, you may have created a career on accident. That won’t work fast enough in your new city. Luck is not a strategy.
- Look at what you’ve created in your life. What’s in your life now that was once a dream? Write down a list of 5.
- Now look at what you wrote for the last homework assignment and commit to creating it in the new city that you’re moving to. Email your new commitment to the 5 people you selected in the last lesson.
- What are your financial and time needs in this new city? Said another way, how much money do you need to pay the bills and survive? And how often do you want to work? Email me right now with your estimate.
#3 – Your financial and time needs
- Clarifying your financial and time needs is important in guiding you towards the opportunities that are the best fit in your new city.
- Example: If I need $3500/month, then I need $875/week, then I need to shoot for a day rate of $438, but I can go as low as $175.
- Estimate how much your life will cost in your new city per month. I know this kind of research could take a long time, but just come up with a reliable number as quickly as possible. You can refine it later.
- Estimate how many days/month you want to work, minimum and maximum. Use that to calculate a range for your day rate or hourly rate, as you prefer.
- Who is your ideal client? Who do you enjoy working with? Who are you most skilled at serving? Hit reply and let me know.
#4 – Who is your ideal client?
- The more clear you are about what you want, the easier your marketing will be and the easier will be for people to help you.
- Your ideal clients are current clients who are receiving the most benefit from working with you, or previous clients who loved working with you — and you with them. Or they could be friends or acquaintances who aren’t clients yet but you believe would gain a lot from your services. -George Kao
- It’s your responsibility to find your ideal client.
- Brainstorm a list of qualities and characteristics based on people you know already: Who drains the life out of you? Who do you enjoy spending time with in general? Which of your current clients do you look forward to seeing? Pick the top 5 qualities that define your ideal client.
- Who are you? Do you consider yourself an audio engineer, AV technician, business owner, freelancer, all around badass? Hit reply and let me know.
#5 – What makes you valuable?
- The better we understand how we fit into our client’s business, the easier it will be for us to explain that to potential clients in the future.
- This can seem very abstract for sound engineers. Do you create an amazing show? Provide risk mitigation? Bring in new fans?
- The best verification would be to have conversations with our clients about this.
- If the question seems too obtuse, just tell me what you like doing the most.
- What is the valuable outcome or result or solution that comes from your work? BONUS: Talk about this with 5 clients.
- Tell me something unique about yourself. What makes you special?
#6 – What makes you special?
- Sometimes it can be easier to describe what you do by talking about how you are different.
- Come up with 5 things that make you unique and memorable. Research this by looking at colleague’s LinkedIn pages, websites, and talking to your clients.
- Who are you? Do you consider yourself a sound engineer, sound guy, A1, or something different? What do your clients call you when they talk about you with other people?
#7 – Your positioning statement
- I help [ideal client] [create valuable outcome or solve primary expensive problem]. Unlike other [job title], [unique].
- Schedule a check-in call with me to make sure your positioning statement is solid.
#8 – Why is this important?
- At this point, you should have scheduled a check-in call with me to verify your position statement and make sure you are on track for the rest of the course. If you haven’t done that, yet, please go back to lesson 7 and schedule that call before going any further.
- At the beginning of this course, we talked about what you want and you told me that you wanted to tour with rock bands and start your own studio and grow your rental business. We all want to get lots of new clients, work on fun projects, and make lots of money. Now I want to know why? Why this? Why now? Because if we can connect with a greater purpose in our life, then we can move from ambition to meaning. And when we are deeply connected to the meaning our work has for us, we become unstoppable.
- Lots of things are going to change in this new city. Maybe you were planning on starting a business renting high-end wireless mic kits, but then find out that there’s no demand for it. I’m planning on teaching about sound system tuning and business in Minneapolis, but maybe after a while, I’ll discover that there is a greater need on another subject. Anything could change, but because I’m deeply connected to the meaning of my work to pursue learning, I stay flexible and committed every day, not matter what.
- Write out these statements in order and put them near your computer or wherever you will see them daily. Read them every day before you start work.
- Goal from Lesson 2: I am creating…
- Financial and time needs from Lesson 3: I am earning…
- Position Lesson 7: I help…
- Purpose: Above all else…
- Where does the money come from? Who is going to hire you? For the job or business that you want to create in this new city, who is going to pay you for it, or who makes the decision to hire you?
#8 – How do you get it?
- So you’ve made it through the first half of this course. You’ve verified your positioning statement with me, you have a solid vision of what you want, and now we’re ready to talk about how to get it.
- You need to know where the money comes from so you can clearly direct your efforts. Who is signing the checks and why?
- Identify the key people who will do the hiring for the kinds of work that you are interested it.
- Figure out, through 6 degrees of Kevin Bacon, how you’re connected to those people.
#9 – Who should I build relationships with?
- The audio industry is built on personal referral.
- To use the spreadsheet:
- Open this link
- File > Make a copy
- Bookmark it
- Open Contacts tab
- Put anyone on here that is important to us and the growth of our business who requires regular one-on-one communication.
- Start with the people that love and care about you. Those who lift you up and energize you.
- 3-4 family
- 3-4 close friends
- coach, mentor
- Then we’ll move onto the people directly connected with our business:
- Current (ideal) clients
- Past clients
- Then we can start adding the people that we want to build relationships with in our new city:
- Other local sound engineers and related techs (lighting/video, designers)
- Potential future clients and those who are connected to them. We started identifying them in the last lesson.
- This is also your chance to build a direct to client business that will give you more autonomy over your work and pay higher fees.
- Add 20 contacts to this list using the criteria that we went over.
- How do you make friends as an adult? Hit reply on this email and tell me some of your thoughts on the subject.
#11 – How do you make friends as an adult?
- When you’re young, making friends is easy, more natural. But when you are an adult, it’s harder.
- Here’s why this is important: every time I have moved I have been focused on finding work and a place to live. Because I feel like if I can get that taken care of, I’ll be set. But the thing that always creeps up on me, which I always forget about, is my network, because at home, it’s something I always took for granted. So then what happens 3 or 4 months down the road is I end up getting depressed. And this is a killer. It will stop all work.
- So here’s my new plan for my move to Minneapolis: Instead of focusing on work and housing, I’m going to flip the script and focus on making friends. Crazy, right? Because here’s the thing, if I have a supportive network of people that care for me, I can weather any storm. If my business tanks or I can’t find an apartment, I might feel bad for a bit, but through the support of my network, I’ll dust myself off and get back up again.
- So my agenda for building relationships in Minneapolis is not to have an agenda. Now, I am going to try to intentionally meet the right people, but after I meet them, there’s no plan, except to be as curious about them as possible and listen to what they have to say.
- I’ll tell them what I’m about, which is going to be super clear and easy because of all of the work at did at the beginning of this course. Then I’ll just let the the relationship develop naturally and see how we can support each other.
- So what I’m going to do, to get that started, is contact everyone on my list, tell them that I’m moving, and ask them if they can connect me to one new person in my new city. If they work in pro audio, or the performing arts, or event production, great, but at this point, I’m just looking for friends.
- Contact the first 10 people on your list. Ask them for a contact in your new city. Maybe explain to them how to search LinkedIn or FB to make it easier on them. Hopefully, these are people that you’ve been in contact with regularly already, but if they’re not, you might need to reconnect first before making that request.
- What is the best way to build relationships with colleagues and ask for their help?
#12 – Reaching out to colleagues
- The audio industry is a little like the mafia. In each country and city there is a circle of trust and to get inside, you need a sponsor. I have found that the quickest way in, is to build relationships with colleagues because they are the most sympathetic to your situation. They’ve been there and they want to help you.
- We should always go for the most effective form of communication, in person.
- Our first priority is to get them into a 1-on-1 meeting.
- Don’t give up.
- Tell them what you want and ask them what they think the best way to go about getting it would be.
- Before you leave always ask: Can you introduce me to one other person? Is it ok if I follow up with you if I have any more questions later?
- A week later, close the loop.
- Update their record in your spreadsheet with every interaction.
- Reach out to 3 new colleagues.
- What is the best way to reach out to new potential clients?
#13 – Reaching out to potential clients
- Build your list with leads from colleagues in your new city and research by job title and company. Here’s the Chrome extension that I used in the video.
- Use the same guidelines as in the previous lesson.
- Reach out to 3 potential clients.
- How do you ask for referrals?
#14 – Turning it all into a system
- Build your list to 150 contacts.
- Schedule time to work on it regularly.
- Every 5-6 times that you reach out, ask for a recommendation or referral.
- Schedule time in the calendar to work on this every day.
- Add 10 more people to your list.
Bonus – How to speed up your growth?
- Most people don’t finish online courses, but you did.
- Hit reply and tell me one thing you would change about the course.
- Get an accountability partner.
- Get a coach or mentor. You can read more about my coaching program here: Success in Sound
Congratulations on completing the course. Feel free to email me with any questions in the future and I hope you’ll keep me updated on your progress.
All the best,