After spending a great holiday, we have started 2015 with a bang! We're happy to announce that we will be providing support to aspiring talent within the site. We have created a 25k fund aimed at people who need music industry services, advice and part funding to help them move up the ladder and fully into the industry. With over 20,000 professionals now using our rapidly growing platform, our focus has always been on supporting talented people seeking to further their career on a global scale. Our CEO Jon Skinner explains further:
The Music Gateway ethos has always been to support professionals. Where did this stem from and how have you done this in the past?
There are people using the site that frankly don't need a helping hand, there's not much we are going to teach Dave Stewart that he doesn't already know, but not everyone is at that level yet. Being connected to the right people is key in this business and we make things easier for people.
My personal journey has been a mixture of highs and lows. I have faced so many barriers along the way and any help or support that I could get was much appreciated. It was absolutely vital on Music Gateway that from the very start, we had an open door policy of picking up the phone or jumping on a Skype call to speak to people. Whilst we have an online business and a way for individuals and companies to connect and conduct business, it’s important that there is a clear human connection to support our professionals. This is my personal stance, which is equally shared throughout the team.
What exactly is the £25k fund that you have announced is available to aspiring talent?
At the end of the day, not everyone needs money. Yes, it’s key to have funding, but in a lot of cases for young people with talent, the lack of experience and knowledge of what to do or how best to invest their time is an issue in moving forward. Everyone's circumstances are different so we decided to create a dedicated team to speak with people about their needs and their goals, both short term and long term in order to give free impartial advice.
One key word I would use is opportunity. Some of the opportunities that I had during my time as a label owner and producer could have been maximised had I had the right advice at the time. There is of course some great support for artists, bands and people coming out of education into the Music Industry already, but we simply want to align that advice with a pro-active attitude of achieving goals. It's a combination of the individual's attitude to their career and the use of the site, where they can reap the rewards.
Through this fund we offer our support in many guises from advice, part funding projects through the site, connections, introductions, and if I’m honest telling people things they might not want to hear! We’re honest and won't sugar coat anything if it’s not right for someone to spend money on certain things. Just get the basics right first and rock n roll from there.
What are the main things that you look for in aspiring talent that are on your platform and are interested in this opportunity?
The site has some diverse professionals and aspiring talent already from all walks of life, across a multitude of music genres, so the talent comes in various guises. There is of course common traits that most professionals adhere to and these are just as important as the talent.
So before we look at the talent, we want to ensure that the people we support match our passion for success and are looking to be pro-active. That's so key in the Music Business, talent will only get you so far. Once we get the right impression of someone then we discuss, listen as the team are musicians themselves, they know how to recognise quality from songwriters, composers, producers and performers.
Why is it important to you to give back?
I wish that I had Music Gateway back in the 90's / 00's, but then again without the Internet it just wouldn't have been possible, so the time is right for us as a company and a service to do it.
We've received some amazing support from our founding members, some of which came on board pre-launch in 2013 and are still using the site now and have been on the journey with us.
This isn't the first time that we have run project campaigns like this and it won't be the last, but it's a personal vision of mine to ensure that over time we can genuinely say that we have made a difference. We want to help people make the right connections on a global scale.
What plans does Music Gateway have for 2015?
How long have you got? It's just the first week of the year and already it’s mega exciting. There's a lot planned this year, from expanding the team to launching a new exciting tier to the Music Gateway platform. I have to say that the core priority of the business is the current launch of the Private Network solution, which you can review here in Music Week.
There's a roadmap but like everything in life and business we are looking to keep ourselves moving and reacting to changes in the market. So ask me again at the end of the year and I guarantee that there will be some exciting surprises along the way.
If you'd like to chat to us about creating a project just get in touch with us by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org