The Number-One Reason You’re Not Getting a 'Yes'

Posted by Suzanne Paulinski on Nov 15, 2017 06:00 AM

shutterstock_561622342.jpgImage via Shutterstock

A big part of being a musician is pitching your message and your music to countless tastemakers. Whether the goal is to book a show, land a sync deal, or secure an album review, a large part of your time is spent pushing your music on others and hoping to hear "yes."

It can get extremely frustrating and exhausting to put in all of that effort and not only not get a “yes,” but get nothing at all in response. Your music may be on point. Your brand may be tight and polished. You may have the large following and/or an impressive touring resume.

However, if your message is filled with everything about you and what you want from this exchange, you’re missing out on a huge opportunity: forming a connection with the person you’re hoping says “yes.”

When you make your request about you (even though that sounds like the obvious thing to do), you cause the person on the other side of the screen to tune out. After all, musicians aren’t the only ones who enjoy the spotlight now and again.

Booking agents, music supervisors, and bloggers are inundated with requests from people who want something from them. No one feels open to connect with someone who starts talking before they finish their first sentence.

If you want to keep the conversation going (read: avoid ending up in the Trash folder), warm up your audience by acknowledging you’re aware of their contributions and accomplishments and have something to offer them, rather than asking something of them.

Show them they’re more than just another name on a long list of people you’re hoping take notice of what you’re selling. Building your network is not a numbers game, it’s a game of human connection and relationship building.

Will spending time researching each person you reach out to slow you down? Yes. And that’s a great thing! When you slow down, you force yourself to choose more carefully who you reach out to, as you now have less time to send out each request.

Being more focused with your requests will also improve your chances of getting a positive response, as you’ll be ensuring you’re only reaching out to contacts relevant to your goal.

[8 Steps to Getting a 'Yes': The Perfect Pitch]

As you flush out your message, see to it that your email reads more like an offer of value and less like a diatribe of your accomplishments and links to check out each one of them.

With showing some attention to those whose attention you seek, you’ll be setting the stage for an authentic connection that demands a response. Should that response happen to be, “No,” remember that is simply an answer to the specific situation and not a reflection on you or the connection that can be built for future opportunities.


Have you recently enjoyed getting a “yes” from a request you sent? Be sure to tell us about it in the comments and let us know what you think made the difference!


Suzanne Paulinski is a mindset coach and founder of The Rock/Star Advocate. She helps music industry professionals gain confidence and clarity in their goals with a healthy work/life balance. Her book,The Rock/Star Life Planner is now available on Amazon.

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Topics: Musician Success Guide, Strategies for Success


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