S.M.A.R.T. Goals: “One Step to Start A Music Career”

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Songhack.com recently broke down a S.M.A.R.T. list to help artists start a music career. Check out the first two letters below and visit Song Hack for  the full list.

S- Specific

This whole acronym is about setting very specific goals.

Your brain will motivate you to achieve your goals much better when you can visualize the end result more clearly.

“I want to DJ big clubs” or “I want to write a hit song” are difficult goals to achieve. It leads to the overwhelming feeling of “where do I even start?”

Start by setting as specific a goal as you can think of. Try this:

“I want to DJ the Sullivan Room in NYC with a progressive house set, opening for a more established DJ from NYC, with a new effects rig that really gets people to notice me.” You can almost see it happening in your head right now!

There’s a common misconception that if you visualize success it will come to you. Success doesn’t come to you, it is pursued. By visualizing success, you’re motivating yourself to pursue it.

Specific goals give you direction. Who books the Sullivan Room? Do I know any bands that have booked there before? Who can I open for? Who’s their booking agent? What effects rig should I buy? How am I going to afford it?

Congratulations, you’re now overwhelmed with work to do, instead of the feeling of not knowing what to do.

The truth is that many musicians hide behind their music, hide behind the fear that they don’t know what to do. It’s an excuse they tell themselves for not succeeding. If that feels like you, all you need to do is set a few specific goals and start doing the work! Each little success builds to the next.

M – Measurable
How will you know what success is or if you’ve achieved it unless your progress can be measured?

We measure success most often in money and personal fulfillment.

Money is easy to measure, and for better or worse, will be a common part of your goals. In the example above, many of the tasks are going to revolve around how much you can earn at your gig. “I’m going to ask for a $500 guarantee and accept no less than $300? sets in motion a whole other set of micro-goals:

How do I convey the value of my music and fan base to the booker and promoter? How can I self-promote to add value? How do I make a one-sheet to look professional? Who will take a professional-grade photo of me for free?

Money is helpful in goal setting, personal fulfillment is harder to define. This is where role models come in handy. Who are the people that have already accomplished similar goals? What did they do? How did they do it? When they were in my position, what was their next move?

Check out the full list – Via Song Hack

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