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#ActualM4uesviecr

Posted 27 October 2012 - 10:53 AM

A while ago, a CEO of a recently acknowledged game publishing company (not going to name), offered to have me as a ... composer-in-residence, if you will. If a particular game that he planned on publishing needed music, I would write music for the developers (with the developers), with a slight discount in prices. After talking with him, I ... semi-politely turned down his offer (okay, through text, it probably wasn't polite, *sigh*), because of how artificial and shallow he was making the whole business aspect off to be. There were some things I partially agreed with, and some that made me go... "Are you kidding me?". Our conversation was centered around the business aspect of presentation, and how to set yourself up visually to sell yourself well. I personally felt that, though the visual aspects are important, I do not think that it should be at the foreground for an audio composer. Here are some things he said during our discussion that either made me cringe, gave me a slightly wrenching feeling in my stomach, or made me nod and go "actually, I can understand that":

"If I were you I would work towards designing some form of business model where you can sell your work for a rate you feel comfortable. You may even have to charge less then comfort to get started and work up to comfort. But I would think design a business eseentially. So start with name, colors, and slogan, nothing has to be set in stone.Then design a model, so what you will sell, how much, how often you can take on clients etc." <- Name, colors, and slogan before designing how the business should be setup?

"I think the main thing you will need to focus on is marketing. You have talent, drive and youth. You just need appeal. So as you are working on your 'shop' I would start to think about what to call it. These names will suck, im bad on the cuff. But like 'Jazzy Coops Original Music' Then you have saxyphones as emblems." <- I know the example is cheesy, but does the title really have to "stand out"? Most composers just have their name. I actually overlook composers that have websites with sparkly titles. I think keeping it simple and to the point would be nice. I would see it being different with a group of composers, but besides that..

"I been on the indie scene for a while, I know what people generally post and how things are received. I believe if you design something impactful to present your music you can show up on every indie scene and have people be busting down your door for gigs. It's all about advertising. As sleasy as that sounds, it's true. If you go by your name you are just another one in the sea. If you work on 'selling' yourself you stand out.' It's small things that the average person doesn't realize. As an exampel, colors and fonts. As an artist you should try to pick 2 main colors as your colors you use in all advertising, websites and other media, same with fonts." <- I can see this. I would hope that most composers would keep the fonts and colors of their business cohesive and consistent.

"The key is to work backwards. That's why I started with asking where you wanted to end up. Thing long term, 20 years, where will you be ideally, but realistically? Then go back 15 years where will you have to be to be there in 20? Then 10, then 5. When you are at the 5 mark, go back to now and see what you will have to achieve to reach your 5 year mark and be on track" <- This one really made me think. Of everything he said, I could totally see how effective this would be.

"I would just take it slow, and research and learn, and lean on me as much as you need to. There are plenty of great resources out there, and it will really set you above everyone else. It's called the peasent barrier. If you can pass it, you will sell. It's the gap between crappy production quality, and excellent presention quality. It's when you see an indie production and think it's made by a pro studio, they have passed the peasent barrier. Us being the peasents lol... It's a reference to history, we used to be kept oppresed by the governing body hoarding modern technology, still happens but way less.
So now we can make things as good as people with millions for thousands. Anyhow, the point is, you should definitely work towards figuring out how to sell yourself. It's a hard feat, if I remember correctly you have dark skin and glasses, and a nice smile. To be honest I think you should be rather easy to market and pick a genre/niche etc. I would consider going gamer nerd, if I may be so bold, if can get the right outfit etc, you could totally pass as one of the hot nerdy chicks. A nerdy chick that makes music is totally a good sales pitch. It sucks to sell your music with sex, but that's marketing. Do that for X months until you get a fanbase then just shift gears, viewers are views. As long as you stay true to yourself there is no harm.
" <- So sell myself based on my gender. My gender?! I don't think he understood how big of an insult this was. Plus, a false persona. Gamer nerd? I mean, I compose for videogames. The game nerd aspect should be obvious. And how does one stay true to themselves by being fake to the public?

After that last paragraph, it just went downhill for me. My question for those out there is, when it comes to selling yourself as a composer, is this the route that many of you take? This artificial, falsified, hollywood version? Picking over fonts, over colors, because you want to be noticed by others, or because you want the colors and fonts to represent who you are. From what I have gathered, most composers focus on networking, building their portfolio, and being true from the beginning. A lot of what confused us was his idea of presentation was what I considered how professional something looks. I even offered a couple of personal websites from this forum, and he considered both of them to "suck" and lack the correct qualities to effectively pitch themselves out to the masses. Is what he speaking partly the truth? I know there are a bunch of guys on this forum that are waist deep in the audio world and probably have a lot of experience and can speak on this. Was I very naive in this conversation? Was he honestly speaking the truth?

#1M4uesviecr

Posted 27 October 2012 - 10:47 AM

A while ago, a CEO of a recently acknowledged game publishing company (not going to name), offered to have me as a ... composer-in-residence, if you will. If a particular game that he planned on publishing needed music, I would write music for the developers (with the developers), with a slight discount in prices. After talking with him, I ... semi-politely turned down his offer (okay, through text, it probably wasn't polite, *sigh*), because of how artificial and shallow he was making the whole business aspect off to be. There were some things I partially agreed with, and some that made me go... "Are you kidding me?". Our conversation was centered around the business aspect of presentation, and how to set yourself up visually to sell yourself well. I personally felt that, though the visual aspects are important, I do not think that it should be at the foreground for an audio composer. Here are some things he said during our discussion that either made me cringe, gave me a slightly wrenching feeling in my stomach, or made me nod and go "actually, I can understand that":

"If I were you I would work towards designing some form of business model where you can sell your work for a rate you feel comfortable. You may even have to charge less then comfort to get started and work up to comfort. But I would think design a business eseentially. So start with name, colors, and slogan, nothing has to be set in stone.Then design a model, so what you will sell, how much, how often you can take on clients etc."

"I think the main thing you will need to focus on is marketing. You have talent, drive and youth. You just need appeal. So as you are working on your 'shop' I would start to think about what to call it. These names will suck, im bad on the cuff. But like 'Jazzy Coops Original Music' Then you have saxyphones as emblems."

"I been on the indie scene for a while, I know what people generally post and how things are received. I believe if you design something impactful to present your music you can show up on every indie scene and have people be busting down your door for gigs. It's all about advertising. As sleasy as that sounds, it's true. If you go by your name you are just another one in the sea. If you work on 'selling' yourself you stand out.' It's small things that the average person doesn't realize. As an exampel, colors and fonts. As an artist you should try to pick 2 main colors as your colors you use in all advertising, websites and other media, same with fonts."

"The key is to work backwards. That's why I started with asking where you wanted to end up. Thing long term, 20 years, where will you be ideally, but realistically? Then go back 15 years where will you have to be to be there in 20? Then 10, then 5. When you are at the 5 mark, go back to now and see what you will have to achieve to reach your 5 year mark and be on track" <- This one really made me think. Of everything he said, I could totally see how effective this would be.

"I would just take it slow, and research and learn, and lean on me as much as you need to. There are plenty of great resources out there, and it will really set you above everyone else. It's called the peasent barrier. If you can pass it, you will sell. It's the gap between crappy production quality, and excellent presention quality. It's when you see an indie production and think it's made by a pro studio, they have passed the peasent barrier. Us being the peasents lol... It's a reference to history, we used to be kept oppresed by the governing body hoarding modern technology, still happens but way less.
So now we can make things as good as people with millions for thousands. Anyhow, the point is, you should definitely work towards figuring out how to sell yourself. It's a hard feat, if I remember correctly you have dark skin and glasses, and a nice smile. To be honest I think you should be rather easy to market and pick a genre/niche etc. I would consider going gamer nerd, if I may be so bold, if can get the right outfit etc, you could totally pass as one of the hot nerdy chicks. A nerdy chick that makes music is totally a good sales pitch. It sucks to sell your music with sex, but that's marketing.
Do that for X months until you get a fanbase then just shift gears, viewers are views. As long as you stay true to yourself there is no harm.
"

After that last paragraph, it just went downhill for me. My question for those out there is, when it comes to selling yourself as a composer, is this the route that many of you take? This artificial, falsified, hollywood version? Picking over fonts, over colors, because you want to be noticed by others, or because you want the colors and fonts to represent who you are. From what I have gathered, most composers focus on networking, building their portfolio, and being true from the beginning. A lot of what confused us was his idea of presentation was what I considered how professional something looks. I even offered a couple of personal websites from this forum, and he considered both of them to "suck" and lack the correct qualities to effectively pitch themselves out to the masses. Is what he speaking partly the truth? I know there are a bunch of guys on this forum that are waist deep in the audio world and probably have a lot of experience and can speak on this. Was I very naive in this conversation? Was he honestly speaking the truth?

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