Based on your experience and observation, which of the following would be your advice to a new author?
a) Cast a big net and upload tracks in as many categories as you can to improve visibility (provided that you are proficient in those genres, of course)
b) Find your niche and keep digging until you hit the gold.
I know that ideally a portfolio should have both depth and width, but I’m very new as an author here in AJ (only 1 track as of this moment). I made a resolution to upload one track each week, so if all goes well I’ll be looking at around 50 tracks within a year. Not an extensive portfolio by any measure, so I have to make every track count.
Hence the question: Diversify or specialize? If you were starting today what would your strategy be?
Hi there -
I would suggest to have an initial diverse portfolio across several genres to gain initial interest to begin with and then focus on a niche which should be your strongest style. Be warned - Audio Jungle is packed full of top quality content and authors but do persevere and I am sure you will enjoy success.
I would like to add the fact that if you’re ultra good at a specific genre that has potential commercial value you could work on your niche and the results may be surprising; instead of having mediocre tracks in as many genres as you can handle. But of course, all is relative so there is no specific recipe for a successful journey on AJ.
They way they’ve been handing out rejections lately… I wouldn’t worry about casting a wide net, you’re gonna hafta go with your strongest stuff whatever it is if you even want to get accepted
@gballx I’ve been listening to/studying/analyzing a lot of music here on AJ for the last couple of days, and I totally agree with you on top quality content and authors. That’s what’s great about being here. It’s the type of challenge that motivates.
@MARiAN My thoughts exactly. Can’t wait to see how my journey will unfold
@orbiterred Ah yes, the infamous hard rejection! Here I am contemplating building a portfolio as if that didn’t exist
If you can make music in different styles with good commercial quality do so. If not make what you’re doing best.
I think it’s better not to listen all these tracks that other authors submitting. You will end up copying others works, that’s why there are thousands of same tunes in the market. Produce what you have in mind and surely some people will follow you. Good luck!
Thank you everyone for sharing your thoughts. There’s great wisdom in these comments!
I wouldn’t really bothered with making tunes that you don’t feel “comfortable” with. What I mean by that is pleasure when creating, composing, mixing. And of course skills that will allow you to create really good production.
I see a lot of new and old authors with only one speciality and they doing really good. So if you have a specific genre that you are good at start with that.
Upload your best tunes.
Thank you @MusicMode, this is great advice!
Great advice so far. I’d like to point out that going for a coherent portfolio (branding) and going for a “wide net” (exposure) are two different games, with two different sets of rewards.
Some successful authors who have specialised in one particular field will now enjoy recurrent purchases from loyal fans. That’s a really nice thing to accomplish. I’m quite sure that’s not something that will happen spontaneously with any and all portfolios, so there’s your main case for branding. Plus, you’re adding selection value for your customers - if they like your style, they will have a lot of options to choose from before they go to the next shop.
On the other side of the spectrum, if you continuously deliver tracks in a wide array of popular genres, while you may not gather as many “genre specific fans” per se, you’ll still have decent traffic coming in to your new tracks. Also, you will spread your market risk, and be quicker to jump on new trends. Good things! The downside is that no one will really care about your portfolio as such, it will simply be too diversified to sift through looking for something specific. Just take a look at mine
In the long run you’ll need to find a way to stay inspired and have some fun, and if that means diving deep or splashing shallow is only up to you.
keep digging, improve your work and all the best that you can do with your skills and your specialty, sometimes explore and learn.
@Stockwaves, as I read the great advice here in this thread and get acclimated to AJ, I realise that I could not very well articulate my question in the OP. Your remarks are right to the point. What I really wanted to know was whether there was such a thing as repeat business or loyal fans in this area. I’m still trying to figure out the nature of actors in this market place. I understand there are people/companies who purchase music regularly, but it was unclear to me how much they specialize in certain categories. Thanks for clarifying this.
So for a new author like me, who’s starting from zero and uploading once a week or so, the specialization route makes much more sense. The front page exposure granted to a new track is far too short (in popular categories) and I run the risk of spreading myself too thin while trying to cast a big net by uploading in several categories.
BTW I did check out your portfolio. Wow, great stuff, and very diverse indeed!
@Kannonh, will do! Thanks for the advice
I’ve been thinking about this subject for a long time. If sales success is the goal, do we create a diverse or niche portfolio? Do we, as artists (or authors, or creators) try to ride the wave of an existing successful style? Do we try and create a portfolio of that covers a wide range of top selling styles? Which would be more profitable? Which will get us to the Elite status sooner?
It may not be for everyone, but I take an approach that helps me continue to be proficient. The most frustrating thing for me is having writer’s block. I enjoy making pieces that I like listening to. That’s why I make music. I focus on writing material that inspires me in the styles that are my strengths. There are so many talented authors on audio jungle (Evanto) and I feel I could never recreate someone else’s style better than they can. But, only I can do “my” style the best. I think you have to be in it for the long haul, but I believe this attitude serves me best. I do realize that creating obscure type pieces probably won’t sell too well. I say write from the heart, emote with melody, and tell your own story with music. Use all of your favorite influences and feed your own satisfying style. Yours may be the next new style that others try to imitate. I know I’m not (yet) an elite author but this is my philosophy and I wanted to share.
This sounds like an excellent balance between the artistic and business side of things. Keep this up, and soon enough you will be an elite author. A happy elite author
My cure for writer’s block is to do things that bore me to death. Things that need to be done but have been put off while creative juices were flowing, like filling out tax forms, updating website, backing up files, etc. The mind follows a path of least resistance, and when presented with a choice between doing chores that it doesn’t like and creating music, writer’s block suddenly becomes too much of a luxury. It will prefer to do what it enjoys doing, so the block will be removed before you know it
I believe that most successful authors here are “T” people, where vertical line is your deep specialization and horizontal line is you generalist side. You need to be master of at least one genre and become a go to person in that niche and than you can brunch out to other niches.
I think no matter what you choose, it’s a gamble. No matter how good tunes you produce, nothing will guarantee good sales. If you take a look at the top selling portfolios, they tend to have spikey sales on a few items and 0-10 sales on some items. What caused the spikey sales? Nobody knows. Some good tunes get massive visibility / trending success, but same authors rarely hit those gold mines steadily. Of course the minimum quality requirement is hard, but very few good enough tunes “make it”.
Hence my point is this - find a way to produce music that feels the most enjoyable and relaxing for you so that you enjoy the process. If you try to aim for something the chances are you won’t get there if without luck. It’s the journey that counts.
@CustomMelody, that’s an excellent metaphor!
@OuranioRecordings: I totally agree. Enjoying the process adds a secret ingredient to music that can not be defined or measured, but you definitely know it when it’s there. This could even be the secret behind the elusive formula for success, here in AJ as well as in every other aspect of life.