NOTE FROM NATE: I wrote this nearly a year before Savor the Sound (the 'other mother' of Small Biz Triage) became non-profit youth music education social enterprise.  Revealing.

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I was invited to a "Town Hall" style meeting last week with Tim Westergren, the founder of Pandora ... for a music junkie, that's the equivalent of an Apple fanatic meeting Steve Jobs.  10 points for whoever can find my bald ass head in that crowd.

Some highlights / insights:

NOTE FROM NATE: another blog from the archives before Savor the Sound evolved into a successful non-profit, and its growing "marketing department" became Small Biz Triage.

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So I've spent an unholy amount of time defining Savor the Sound. For what seems like the hundredth time, I encountered an inflamed case of 'category block' when filling out an on-line listing (in this Google Local Business Center).

Is it an entertainment company?
Marketing consulting?
Artist Management?
Advertising?
Promotions?
Social network marketing consultant extraordinaire?
Is it destined to be a non-profit 'artists collective'?

So what is Savor the Sound? I know it's become a lot more than the "Taste the Music" concept that Eric Fridrich and I came up with in a Greenwood coffee shop. And I know it's a lot less than a record label or all-in-one entertainment company.

Here's what I came up with:

3 Major Categories

Niche Marketing

I came into this project/business with an intent to supplement the marketing efforts of entertainers (starting with local musicians). Small businesses and organizations suffer from the same problem that working musicians do: they lack the resources (time, money, knowledge, tools) to bring in more business, whether it be paying gigs or memberships or paying customers. They don't need a turn-key, all-in-wonder solution - they just need some extra help, someone to plug in the gaps with services that dovetail and complement their current efforts.

Two of my current clients fall squarely into this category - Washington Kayak Club (website overhaul, basic search engine optimization) and Renton Computers (grand opening marketing and event production).

Event Production

I came into Savor the Sound with only one bit of entertainment-related experience. While at college at the USAF Academy, I threw swing dances at a bunch of venues. My time spent producing those events generated some of the happiest memories and glorious experiences of my life. "Experience Management" is a term birthed from those halcyon days.

Taste the Music and my recently started Garifuna dance project (details coming soon) represent my efforts to recreate that feeling.

Artist Development

I was only recently introduced to this term (from a fantastic book: Starting and Running Your Own Record Label). Artist Development specifically refers to career development for artists.  Should a musician focus more time on the recording studio, or going on tour? How many gigs should they play per month?  Percentage of the door, guarantee or a combination? I try to focus most of my efforts working with musicians who make performing their full-time job. They already have a fan base, an album, a band (or four!) and a reputation. All of my musical friends (I try to avoid calling them clients, as all of them have become my friends) have business and marketing skills. Some are amazing at postering, or Facebook fan development, or effective texting blasts.

The Essential Ingredient(s)

In summary, Savor the Sound exists to:

That's it for now. I'll be keeping you all up-to-date with each evolution of Savor the Sound.

- Nate -

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