A plan can be a simple one-page sheet with a few notes to a full-fledged business plan with amendments, agreements and budget. The key is to have one if you want to take charge of your own music journey. You need to plan as a musician.
A lot of musicians say, “the plan is not to have a plan.” Fair enough, but I guarantee that there is someone calling the shots, if not the musician then someone for them.
One of the coolest form of a plan I’ve seen was on a garage door in Portland. Black Wedding, converted their studio garage into an art gallery. When I was speaking with the bass player I asked him what was with all the papers on the garage door. It was covered with names, places, songs, dates, ideas and many other things. He said it was the plan for their West Coast tour in the summer. It was pretty extensive and after I knew what it was about the wording on the papers made sense. I remember when I was into documentary filming that this was a preferred method for some producers and directors I worked with. Sticky notes all over the wall, with scenes and ideas that where rearranged and positioned where they belonged.
Some people like to plan in front of the computer. I like to use Google Documents to collaborate on a variety of things that involves input and documentation. You simply start up a Google account and great a document under Drive. You can then share the spreadsheet or word document with your team and collaborate live with each other.
A good idea, if there are multiple people, is to select a color of font so people can quickly identify who is saying what.
Those are a couple ideas that are free (provided you’ve got a computer and Internet connection or a bunch of paper/sticky notes). You can download or purchase a music business plan template also or find an online business plan service.
If you are a solo musician like me having a plan is very important. Likewise, if you are in a band without a manager and you want to keep everyone on the same page get a plan. It will save time, keep frustration at bay and steer you towards success.