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Record Label Business Plan Start a Record Label Indie Record Label Plan
Songwriter's Guide to the Music Business
If you want to start your own record label then you'll need financing from somewhere. The first thing any investor or bank will ask is "can I see your business plan?". We've got it covered with this detailed, industry standard record label business plan template that can be easily customized for your own needs.
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How to start a record label: where to start?

If you're interested in learning everything there is to know how to start your own music record label, look no further. In the music industry, starting a record label is a business where you will need to learn new skills like the work expectations required of you, as well as help make sales and think about money and other issues such as digital costs, and music share distribution. When starting your own record label you'll want to make sure that you are choosing to trust just the people that will help your company and those that will really know what is best for your sales market.

Watch, listen and learn

The first thing you should do if you are interested in starting a record label is spend time watching and reading any audio and video available of another company and their business model. Choose a model to base yourself after, something that you can follow in terms of getting good advice and finding a good company profile. Don't feel limited, though, by what's out there. Just because a few labels do things a certain way does not always mean that you have to get the sales that way too. Some record labels and publishing companies go after independent artists or an indie band with a specific following that they hope to expand upon. Other labels look for the hard product sell and marketing of an artist that may not have already been in the news, and would therefore require a major press and market run plan.

Will I need a dedicated office?

Beginning your own record label isn't necessarily something you can start at home, just by doing a little PR and media consulting here and there. It's something that you want to delve into with the right skills. Gone are the days of radio domination - you need to be able to use and work digital technology, know a lot about what is going on with the latest recording music artists, you have to always be reading and listening for the next sound, the next look that will become the best selling album of 2013. You can certainly start small, but you have to dream of selling big.

If you are interested in promoting your own newly founded recording label, you have got to find a good way to do just that- often when you are just starting out and in the early years, it can be easy if you know the right people. A great deal of business contracts can be made through a list of personal connections. A single, well connected contact in the music industry, offering the right services - at the right price - can make a huge difference to your prospects by helping you to push your product in an efficient, cost effective way.

Who to hire to help me?

Like studio time, music promotion is incredibly expensive and wasteful without good connections in the music business. The artist, studio engineer, manufacturing company, music store manager and music promoter all want their pay at the end of the day, and the music product you produce and sell is the (direct and indirect) source of that running, recurring revenue.

But as a policy, should you consider using small contract job methods as well so that you are hiring people who are truly professional to do your music marketing and PR for your small business firm. And if you're joining a larger firm, before you sign any deal and get started in your new position, make sure that you will learn what you want to learn and that you include in your contract everything that you can do to protect your own privacy and rights release should you ever decide to branch out on your own.

Utilize existing resources

In order to succeed at starting your own record label, use your business smarts. Find a guide that can help build and promote your local and world PR. Not much is free in this business, but records can be obtained as music demos, so you should also be trying to promote the careers of budding musicians in addition to the popular ones that you also have on your roster. Consider including a set day per month or a number of days per year to search for new talent. You'll find that sometimes a great article about a new musician isn't just it's own read, but also a good read for the comments about how the crowd liked the music performer. It's this feedback that you should be including in your decisions to sign contracts with new bands or performers or not. The media is directly related to your daily workings.

Finally, you should remember that there is no one set path to becoming a professional record label company.

It is something that is usually achieved step by step. Some begin with business contacts, some begin with the one great band that they like and want to promote. But all have to have moxie, a go-getter attitude, and the passion for wanting to succeed and make money in the music industry.