The MusicBiz Madness Conference 2015 started up to ist name: Madness presented itself with a false fire alarm five minutes prior to the official welcoming. Thus we got set back for an hour and had to re-schedule all speakers to make sure they would still catch their trains back home. Quite “the Punk of all music conferences”.
After the reception creator Julian Angel started with a thorough explanation of the music licensing and sync business. Sync can be a chance for many unknown musicians as an alternative to extremely cost-effective licenses for hit songs. After the 45 minute seminar everybody understood the various deals, needle-drops, master licenses and potential income opportunities and should be able to distinguish good publishers from cheap online libraries.
A real highlight was the speech of Rapper Richter who provided the backgrounds for hundreds of thousands of views and tens of thousands of independent sales: meticulously thought up Facebook activities, consequent branding, fan affinity without penetrance, cross-links and the figurative stairway built with single bricks one at a time. At the end he made clear that all this serves to direct his fans to his paying sites such as his own web store or his monetized Youtube channel.
iMusician COO Tobi Wirz from Switzerland picked up on Youtube with a monetization workshop and showed ways of making money through Youtube videos. Content ID and product placements were addressed as well as algorithms, meta data, tags and legal aspects. In a following talk with Rapper Richter the two presented a few best practices for Youtube success.
The fact that physical product is still hip in a digital world got due evidence by punk rocker Robert Drakogiannakis of former major band Angelika Express. Robert explained his special edition box set which includes CD, vinyl disc, cassette tape and copies of self-painted pictures all from which he made a good living for a full year. Robert also provided advice about profit maximation, manufacturers and what he calls “direct crowdfunding”.
Marcus Rüssel, CEO of gigmit.com, pointed towards the challenges on the live sector where an increasing number of good bands are competing for an ever smaller number of gig opportunities. The state of the industry requires creativity and distinctive branding as well as an overly professional presentation.
After both Sentric Music representatives had cancelled their participation two days prior to the conference Oliver Sittl, senior A&R at Believe Digital jumped in at short notice and delivered a presentation theorugh the BD backend that gave an overview of digital distribution with professional marketing and analysis tools for musicians and labels. His presentation made clear that even digital distribution comes with a number of additional tasks if done right.
Finally guitarist Martin Schmidt of The Razorblades shared his experience of more than 20 professional years and discussed topics such as niche markets, distribution, international touring with booking and financing, columns in magazines and teaching.
After a full day packed with information, tips, tricks and networking we parted ways with musicians, managers, label reps and producers who have joined us from all over Germany, Austria and Switzerland. Feedback has been overwhelming so far and we all say “Thank You” to those who attended MusicBiz Madness 2015 – and to those who will join Germany’s first and only music business conference for musicians next time.
The same “Thank You!” goes to all partners, sponsors and helpers for their continued support and Goethe University Frankfurt for the easy-gong continued relationship.
See you all (!) next time…
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