Networking seems to be a common struggle for songwriters. Many creative types are just not very social and we tend to be introverted. That can make it hard to really build the team you need to help you get your songs heard and placed. So, here are 4 ways this introvert has overcome some of his natural tendencies to just hang with my close inner circle:
1. Interact with people in SongTown’s forums or Facebook Member Page.
Reaching out virtually can feel safer than doing it in person. Many of our members interact with each other and find collaborators by simply giving feedback to each other in the forums or participating in discussions there. They find people whose work they like, they reach out with a “Hey I love what you write!” and the next thing you know, there’s an invitation to co-write. Simply interacting with people online in a kind, constructive way makes you an appealing collaborator or friend.
2. Get out.
I really enjoy a glass of wine on the couch at night. But, I miss lots of opportunities to connect with other writers or industry people when I stay in my cave. I have to force myself to get out. And almost every time I do go out, I run across someone that I might want to work with. Even if you don’t live in a music center, there are songwriters in your area and they are out playing their songs somewhere! Go find them!!! You can’t succeed from your couch!
3. Be a giver.
Many people who are trying to make it in the music business come across as energy vampires. They will take anything and everything you can give them until they leave your lifeless body in their wake and move on to the next victim. Do things to support other people and their musical goals. If you are wanting to meet with publisher X, don’t just call out of the blue and ask for a meeting. Pay attention and go support their company when they do shows. Buy their songplugger(s) a beer. Compliment their writers and their company. Follow them on social media. Comment and like their posts. People notice that kind of thing. It HELPS them when you do those things, so they are MUCH more likely to help you when the time comes.
4. Use YOUR social media wisely.
If you post all kinds of political things and argue with people online, guess what? When people check you out, they aren’t going to want to hang out with or work with you. Similarly, watch how often you are negative about ANYTHING online. Are you constantly bashing music that is out there? Do you trash other people in your posts? Don’t be surprised if no one wants to work with you. On the other hand, if you come across as a kind, interesting person and you seem like someone who is trying to make the world a better place, people WILL want to be around you. You can’t separate your social media from you. It directly reflects on what kind of person you would be to work with. Keep that in mind.
So, if you need a little nudge to put yourself out there, try some of these things and let me know what you discover!