30 Pieces of Advice From Music Entrepreneurs

By Marcus Taylor, Founder of Venture Harbor

Over the past few weeks I’ve asked 30 extraordinary people in the music industry for their most valuable words of advice for aspiring entrepreneurs. Without further ado, here are 30 pieces of advice from 30 music industry entrepreneurs.

“Less than 1% of ideas last more than a few years, so don’t take a single failure as a sign that you aren’t a capable entrepreneur. Numbers don’t mean much to an entrepreneur. It’s about your unshakeable will and your unusual vision. You have to out-hustle and out-think everyone else. You have to predict where your market is going based on a multitude of factors that others simply aren’t seeing because they are blinded by some other false truth. You are the new truth. Believe that, and your chances of succeeding are 50/50!”
– Robb McDaniels, CEO, INgrooves

“If you launch a startup and think the only way to grow is by getting outside investment from venture capitalist or angel investors, you’re like a band that thinks they need to get signed by a major to have a chance at success. Focus on on building a product or service that has real value for the users and they will pay for it.”
– David Dufresne, CEO, Bandzoogle

“You have to give to get. Establish a networking group, and help others advance their careers, and yours will advance.”
– Dick Huey, Founder, Toolshed

“You don’t ask, you don’t get, and you don’t learn.”
– Steve Rennie, Manager of Incubus, Founder of Renman Music & Business

Curiosity is the most important skill an entrepreneur can have. No matter where you are in a business you have to constantly challenge your assumptions and ask questions of your customers, your team, your partners, and most importantly yourself. Question your wins, losses, and everything in between.

– Joe Conyers, Product Manager, Songtrust

“Think strategically and lead by providing value. Being an entrepreneur is an honor that carries with it a major responsibility to create opportunities for others. Trust your instincts, go with what feels right, and MAKE IT HAPPEN!”

– Ben Maitland-Lewis, CEO, Presskit.to

“Don’t overplan. Things don’t always come together exactly as anticipated, and the most successful entrepreneurs are those who know how to pivot and readjust their business as things develop.”

– Allen Bargrede, Executive Director Rethink Music at Berklee College of Music

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