On the comments on a separate thread I shared this story:

One of my clients recorded an orchestral demo (for around $10k) for an animated film knowing there were already at least two dozen other composers submitting.

He did this because:

1. He had never composed for an animated feature and this demo gave him an opportunity to do so.

2. If he didn’t get the job, he would now have a great orchestral animation demo to use to pursue other projects.

3. All things bring equal, his odds of landing the job were 1-in-24. And the potential pay off would be much greater than 24x his investment. (Fees, PRO income, new relationships with filmmakers, new career in animation scoring, etc.).

4. He believed his odds were much better than that since he believed in the strength of his music and because he was impressively presenting that music with an orchestra and custom video.

5. He is, by nature, a risk-taker who likes to gamble on himself.

6. If he didn’t get the job, it would still have been fun trying.

p.s. He got the job and is already doing the filmmaker’s next animated feature.

To elaborate further:

My friends in other industries build into their business plans the expenses of running those businesses (rent, equipment, supplies, inventory, labor, advertising, promotion, marketing and customer acquisition).

My friend who is a brilliant graphic designer is not just talented at graphic designs. She is running a graphic design BUSINESSES. When she started out she needed to raise money to finance everything involved in launching her company. She continues to need to invest in updated marketing materials to promote her company to attract new customers.

If you watch shows like THE PROFIT or SHARK TANK you will discover lots of hard working folks with great ideas seeking capital and business guidance to move their dreams forward.

The topic of customer acquisition is almost always a major factor.

Just baking great pies is not the same as running a successful bakery. Simply growing beautiful roses does not equate to running a successful nursery. Just designing great buildings is not the same as running a successful architectural firm.

Media composers need customers to provide them the films, tv shows and games to work on.

Acquiring those customers typically requires A LOT of thought, focus, risk, time, savvy and investment.

Life isn’t a “fair” completion where every shoemaker gets an equal shot at presenting their designs to the buyers at Bloomingdales.

Pause to think about what you would think a fashion designer (or almost anyone running a business) would really need to do to acquire customers.

Now think about what you would need to do.