Episode #058: Things People Do To Ensure Failure!


What are some of the sure ways to fail? Now, this is not a question we hear very often, yet one that is very important to ask. We are so busy asking the feel-good questions about getting that big break or being successful, but we don’t confront ourselves often enough with the reverse – looking carefully at the real reasons why we are failing, reasons that are seldom related to the program, the coach or the economy! We love to make excuses, there’s something in us that wants to avoid responsibility, but if we ever want to be successful in the music industry, it’s going to cost a lot of straightforward sacrifice. Today on the podcast Leah and CJ talk about some of the mentalities that lurk behind unrealistic expectations and the mindsets that are guaranteed to make you fail. Sometimes we need to analyze our everyday habits to measure whether we are spending our time productively: Do you prefer staying in the comfortable safe zones and are you really willing to give up Netflix or whatever it is that is sucking up all your time? Are you truly willing to do what it takes? Join us for this episode for some more challenging, yet empowering thoughts! 

Key Points from This Episode:

  • Leah’s upcoming album and how her music business is the source for new curriculum ideas.
  • The different mentalities that lurk behind people’s unrealistic expectations.  
  • Avoiding the hard work by depending on everyone else to provide answers to simple things. 
  • The power that comes along with having to figure out something yourself. 
  • The importance of taking advantage of the student community and the FAQs. 
  • Bad daily habits and people not wanting to make the necessary sacrifices. 
  • Taking a log of your activities for three days to measure productive and unproductive time. 
  • Having a low tolerance for discomfort and pain as a reason for failure. 
  • The problem of not being fully committed and not willing to put in real hard work. 
  • Multitasking and skipping through course content that you think you know.  
  • Why you should not stray from the curriculum by consulting other sources of information. 
  • Remaining an optimist even in failure and why skepticism and perfectionism are the enemy. 
  • And much more!


“That’s what Savvy Musician Academy is all about because we want to be the trustworthy resource for you, whenever you’re trying to build your music career.” —@LEAHthemusic [0:06:28]

“There’s something magical that happens when you do have to figure it out for yourself. In that moment, you also create a sense of confidence in yourself.” — @LEAHthemusic [0:15:39]

“Would you rather watch TV and play video games and drink with your friends or would you rather build a successful music business? You can’t do both, that’s not going to happen, you will not get off the ground. You need to examine your daily habits.” — @LEAHthemusic [0:22:47]

Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:

Indiegogo — https://www.indiegogo.com/

Kickstarter — https://www.kickstarter.com/

Savvy Musician Academy — https://savvymusicianacademy.com/elite/call/

Click For Full Transcript

00:22 CJ: Welcome once again to the Savvy Musician Show podcast, this is CJ Ortiz and I am the mindset and branding coach here at the Savvy Musician Academy. Joined once again by her eminence, my favourite queen of the realm, Leah, how are you doing?

00:38 Leah: I’m doing fantastic, thank you, how are you?

00:41 CJ: Wonderful, you mind if I call you queen of the realm?

00:45 Leah: Sure.

00:47 CJ: People may be listening to you and maybe they don’t even know, they just got hooked on to the podcast and they don’t even listen to the music or know the culture of your particular musical genre and don’t know about Keltic Fantasy metal, Leah. And that you do represent that queen of the realm archetype out there but it makes for a great banter for me as a podcast host. 

To be able to call you cool stuff. Well again, always a pleasure to be with you and good things are happening on – I know you’ve been super busy lately with your upcoming album. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, she is practicing what she preaches and she’s in that phase of getting things ready for yet another album release. You want to give them just a quick note about that?

01:33 Leah: Yeah, I’ve been really busy and thank God so much for my staff here at Savvy Musician Academy because they really keep this whole ship running and doing excellent job at serving everyone. So that I can also go and keep doing what I do. You know, one of the things we figured out in the Savvy Musician Academy business is that, one of the most important things in figuring out where I can spend my time, where’s the most valuable place I can spend my time and there’s a few places.

One of the most important places is my own music business and the reason is because that’s my research and development. I get to be the lab rat, I’m the guinea pig, I get to try out all kinds of things and I’m doing it because I love it and I’m doing it because I have to and if Savvy Musician Academy didn’t exist, I’d be doing exactly what I’m doing right now with my music and making this current album and everything I have.

The way I get amazing ideas for curriculum, for courses, for coaching and all of that. That’s all coming from my music business. I have to have my hands dirty. Being in that position, always working on my music, finding new things that work and don’t work. I always tell my students, “Hey, you see me doing things, it doesn’t mean you should just copy it because I’m experimenting and not everything I do works. Be careful about going, assuming that just because they see me doing it that they should be doing it.”

That’s not necessarily the case, I’m trying out all kinds of stuff, I’m experimenting, I’ll come back and tell you if it worked or not. I’ll tell you if it was successful or not. As an example of that, I’m planning my upcoming crowdfunding campaign that I’ll be doing which is basically a big preorder campaign, right? They preorder the album and it helps me cover all the cost that went into the album, helps me recoup some of that which is really nice to come out on the other end of that.

Already in a positive ROI before the album’s even released. It can’t get better than that, it really can’t. In doing that, I’m considering, this is just an example of I don’t know if it’s going to work or not. Of hosting the crowdfunding campaign on my Shopify store on basically a landing page that I completely control instead of using Indiegogo with Kickstarter. 

This could be a very bad idea. I have no idea if this is going to work but I’m going to try it because that’s what I get to do and then you don’t have to make the mistakes. That’s what I’m doing and I am very excited for this upcoming album, it’s maybe one of my favourites that I’ve done, it’s not a metal album, it’s actually and so people might be wondering what I’m doing with that as far as branding goes and it’s actually, if you hear it, it sounds exactly like all my other stuff, just take out the metal.

It’s very much on-brand, it’s just – it’s a Christmas kind of holiday, winter-themed style album but I’m making a little more accessible to a larger audience. That’s what I’m doing with that and I really like what I’m hearing so far with the mixes I’m getting and I can’t wait for everybody to hear it.

04:34 CJ: Leah, I have to take advantage of what you just said because I believe that this really exemplifies why SMA takes the approach that it does in terms of what we offer and the courses that you’ve presented before are all filled with things that you have done already.

You’ve already made the mistakes, you’ve already invested the time, you’ve already invested the money so that others don’t have to. It’s proven and that’s a really important point that this is not simply theory. You’ve purged everything out, you’re going to find out what works, what doesn’t work and so that you can continually offer the most relevant up to date information possible.

In fact, this is the – a good plug for the Inner Circle newsletter that was just recently released because we want to do everything that we can to keep our followers and listeners and readers up to date with everything that’s happening, the constant changes in technology so yeah, I mean, you’re updating the Tom to 3.0, you’re going to do some upgrades to the Elite, you’re constantly making these changes and adding things like the Spotify course and what have you.

Because it’s really important that everybody gets the most up to date information. I’m glad to hear about your fundraising, doing things a little bit differently. Like you said, it may or may not work out but this is how we’re going to find out and again, all to end up with the best solutions for those who are about to launch an album, right?

06:04 Leah: That’s right, yeah, that’s just it. We put in a lot of work and it’s funny how people think things should be free all the time and they have no idea how much goes into just figuring what’s even, you know, all the back end work and figure out what’s working, what’s not working, the time, money, energy spent, just to bring relevant content and information to everyone that we can trust that’s accurate. 

I think that’s what Savvy Musician Academy is all about because we want to be the trustworthy resource for you, whenever you’re trying to build your music career. Some of you aren’t even at the music business stage, you’re just at the music career stage and you want to get to the business stage and how can you do that with terrible information, how can you do that?

You can’t. The wrong information will sabotage your results, you’re going to go down completely the wrong path and waste your time, waste your money so that’s what we’re here for. To give you that shortcut and that’s what I’m doing, you know? I am the lab rat and I get to test all kinds of things out on myself and report those results to you guys and give some good advice and be like, that is – I tried this, here’s why, this is a really bad idea or here’s why this is a fantastic idea and this worked out so much better than I thought. 

I already got a few podcast episodes talking about some of the things I learned, even about like my – the way I launched my album last time, I wouldn’t do it again that way. I’m going to do it different this time. I get to learn from my own experiments as well and that’s what this is all about.

07:37 CJ: Very cool. Well, today, we’re talking about something really interesting and I love when we do particular podcast like this Leah, because they begin from conversations that we’ve had offline and typically when you come into a meeting, all amped up we’ll just say, about something that’s gotten under your crawl as of late but out of that comes some real insight I think and we’re going to talk about that today in relation to some of three things that people do to successfully fail at this thing.

Yes, that you can successfully fail, that you are your own worst enemy. That, instead of just blaming everything around you, you know? An entitled person, right, Leah? Blames everybody around them, they blame politics, they’ll blame this, blame that, never a problem with them necessarily. You’re going to put the blame elsewhere. That can happen here too. Leah’s going to share with us today some of the things that, and it’s actually kind of cool. 

She shared some of them with me. I think you’re really going to get a lot out of this. Anyway, today, in our student spotlight, we want to talk about one of the wins and this one is from Annalise Leshamanan and she says, I started my first ad today, yesterday I had 314 likes and as of now, about six hours after I turned the ad on, I have 711. I’m pretty stoked about that.

That’s pretty cool. Good job. I coached – I did this coaching session with her about a week or so ago and she’s got good things going on again, like a lot of the students, extremely talented people that I love getting to. That’s one of the benefits to be honest with you of getting to know these students is I’m getting turned on to so many talented people and the other thing that I like about the Elite group is the attitudes because these people have invested something, they’ve got skin in the game now and it’s just – They’re very teachable, very humble but yet at the same time, so hard working so that’s been great. Good for you Annalise.

Things that people do Leah, to ensure their failure, that’s a weird approach.

09:53 Leah: Yes, well, I just thought it would be helpful to talk about things that you know, habits, mentalities, things that I’ve noticed over the years where there’s a consistent pattern of failure or failing to succeed anyways, not getting to their goals and things that need to be addressed because they are widespread, they are prevalent. I also want to say as a precursor here, that I’m not above these things I’m about to say because we’ve all been there where once upon a time, we have had a loser mentality.

Or we weren’t getting the results we wanted and we’ve had to seriously look at ourselves and go okay, what’s actually going on here? Is it that you know, the program I’m in that that sucks, is that why I’m not getting the results that I want or is it me?

I think that it’s important to address this because you’re not going to see the progress that you want unless you are willing to actually look at these cold hard truths. If I seem mean or harsh today, just know that I do love you all, I really do and brace yourselves, brace for it, I’m just going to be blunt about it because I care for you all so much. If I didn’t care about you, I wouldn’t even do this episode.

11:20 CJ: Well there’s a proverb that says that you know, rebuke and correction to a wise person is like a cool drink of water. If you’re really wanting to bring about change in things, we’ve always got to be open to correction and I think you know, this is probably – like you said, it’s going to cover all of us. Except me. Never sinned, never made a mistake.

11:46 Leah: Yeah. I think, I have a number of points and all of this actually came about just very spontaneously and to get this going, I thought I would share as you guys know, I do a ton of studying, I do a lot of reading, I take other courses, I’m always, whatever, I’m always learning, it’s part of my daily routine and I came across this little quiz in a completely unrelated course, in a totally different market but I thought this was hilarious. Because it described a lot of what we come across and it was a little quiz that at the end of the module, they wanted you to take this thing.

Here’s what it said. It says, in order to get results with this course, I should – you have to pick one. A, skim around, take reckless action and rely on my gut instinct. B, treat it like a college class and study each video in the order it is presented and carefully, complete the entire course before expecting serious results. Correct.

C, not watch any videos, sit in the group, tagging coaches over and over until they do everything for me. Or D, watch 20 minutes of content, get mad because I’m not rich yet, throw a temper tantrum in the group and then take off my shirt, light it on fire and swing it around while screaming curse words. That just cracked me up. That made me laugh.

13:06 CJ: For anybody who has been in groups, you know exactly what that means.

13:10 Leah: Yeah, I mean, we’ve been blessed that for the most part, we have really amazing clients. But especially more you know, in free groups or especially if you have like a lot of students. At some point, you’re going to come across stuff like this and if you’re a business owner, probably come across customers at one point or another who kind of do something similar to this.

Maybe not in a virtual setting but the point is that there is clearly a mentality behind what people’s expectations are, you know, for example, the – I watch 20 minutes of content and I’m mad because I’m not rich yet, you know? That is a real mentality. There’s people who think, well, I went through this module, why am I not seeing results yet? They want to blame the content when the question is well, what did you do with that content, how long did you do it for, are you consistent?

How hard did you actually try? There’s a lot we can say about that but I wanted to share that because it was really funny to me and also because there’s some truth there. What you can come across. Yeah.

Okay, about things that people do to ensure failure, I thought about a couple other titles with this. Things losers do, we could be mean but it’s things that people are constantly doing habit wise, mentality wise, mindset wise, that are going to ensure that you do not succeed no matter how good your coaches are, no matter how good your courses, no matter how supported you are, these are the things that if you are doing them.

You will not succeed. There’s no way you have 100% failure rate at this rate. One is, dependency on others for answers constantly. Constant dependency, meaning, you’re not using your own brain, not using your brain for things that are obvious, for things that Google can completely answer for you and relying on coaches or other students around you or other people to give you the answer.

There’s a partial laziness there. You don’t want to do the hard work. You don’t want to go through – burn through the glucose in your brain to get to those answers. When I started out inside Savvy Musician Academy and in my own music business, I had nobody to turn to for answers. Nobody gave me a single answer for anything. 

I had to figure it out. There’s something magical that happens when you do have to figure it out for yourself. In that moment, you also create a sense of confidence in yourself. When you become so dependent on everybody else to constantly give you answers, you have no confidence that you can do anything. Because if they’re just constantly – 

That would be like me, homeschooling my kid, giving them every single answer they need for every math question. How is that accomplishing anything?

16:09 CJ: Right.

16:10 Leah: It’s not. I am actually debilitating their ability to solve problems on their own. This is something we see a lot out there. That’s some big things. What’s the answer for that? Use your damn brain.

16:24 CJ: My god, it’s so true Leah, as both as homeschooling parents, the both of us here. We are developing our children to be self-taught. That doesn’t mean that they’re learning everything from scratch without the help of textbooks and recorded lectures or what have you. It’s all there. But the objective is to get them learning on their own.

You raise a child to be mature and mature means responsible, right? Otherwise, you have a dependent for the rest of their life. You know, it’s funny to have that sort of mentality to develop in adult education for what I understand that your course can sometimes be challenging because you go so deep into these different aspects and there’s a lot to learn, a lot of software and all of that sort of stuff.

We understand the idea of being overwhelmed and in the other side, we don’t want to discourage good questions. However, what it turns into just asking for everything from how to turn on my computer to you know –

17:35 Leah: Right, especially things that are already in the course and they’re in, this goes into my next point is not taking – people who fail, do not take advantage of the current community, the current frequently asked questions type documents that are out there that you know, whether you’re in somebody else’s course, or you’re in our course, whatever.

Most companies have frequently asked questions. Not taking advantage of those things, not using – this is an amazing feature inside of Facebook groups called a search bar. You can look up any keyword in there and see all the past things that have already been answered. Your question, I guarantee has already been answered a hundred times and so taking advantage of that and then also taking advantage of if you were in a course like our Elite program or we have live coaching. Not showing up to that is a sure way to fail.

Not showing up live and being engaged, asking your questions then, especially if they haven’t been answered yet and you went through the course material and you know that your question has been answered, that is the place you need to be to get that, especially if you have a unique situation, unique circumstance, that’s – sometimes it can be difficult to know how to apply something to you and that’s where you should be.

We don’t want to discourage good questions, we don’t want to discourage people from getting help, absolutely not. It’s more the people who have become, it’s a mentality where they are dependent on everybody to do something for them and the very simple obvious things that have already been answered, they’ve already been addressed a hundred times, they’re not taking advantage of those things and that mentality, if you just look at the path that where that leads.

Do I see that kind of person making 10 grand a month with their music? No, I don’t. You have to have a bootstrap mentality. You have to have the mentality that nothing will get in my way, no tech problem is going to get in my way, no Facebook pixel issue is going to get to figure out no matter what. Those people are the ones that are going to make $10,000 a month with their music. That’s why I need to bring this up.

19:45 CJ: I think what also happens and we posted this in the Elite group recently about all questions are ultimately important, right? It’s just how you get those questions answered and what it shows sometimes when you see the same students, for example, asking the same sort of questions on an ongoing basis, you realize they’re not necessarily thinking about the most important questions, which is going to be about, how can I sell my music in the most cost-effective way. What’s the best way for me to sell my music?

Even though there are so many things in the Savvy Musician courses that are technical, software-oriented, you got to learn about copyright, all of that stuff, it’s still going to come down to this simple thing of who is your target audience and who do you need to market to and what do you need to say and what do you need to offer.

Those are things that are not necessarily technical. Those things are about understanding who you are, what your genre is, what your niche is, who your target audience is and really soak in your head in that culture. I wish sometimes the student spent more time studying their respective listener and the culture involved. Because that would answer so many things with them.

20:57 Leah: Yes, absolutely. Another one is bad daily habits. People who they say, I want to build an online music career, I want to make two, $3,000 a month with my music, I want to be able to live off of my music and quit my day job and yet, they’re spending three, four hours a day, watching TV, playing video games, drinking, out with their friends, doing this, that and the other thing, they have absolutely no concept of what sacrifice means, no concept at all. If they saw – 

You know, people want to know how I do it all and how I do – I don’t’ do it all, that’s the whole point, I don’t do it all. I sacrificed very much in order to do what I do because unless you are willing to give up some of those things and I’m talking to myself here too. I’ve decided, I’m going to be doing a lot more reading than I have been, that’s one thing that I’ve dropped is reading physical books. I’m talking to myself here too.

But, if you are not at the income level you want to be, I guarantee you, if you were to cut out all that – how many hours per day watching TV, even if it’s one hour and you watch one hour a day of whatever show, Netflix, seven days a week, that’s seven hours that you could have put in to building your online career. You know, if I took that seven hours, I guarantee you, I would have 5,000 more people on my list by the end of that week. 

If I took those hours out of your schedule and put them in my schedule. I would probably make an extra $5,000 in that time because I know what to do with it and I will make sure that I’m productive with that time. You know, people who say that they’re serious aren’t actually that serious because they’re not willing to give it up so I think you need to pick and choose.

Would you rather watch TV and play video games and drink with your friends or would you rather build a successful music business? You can’t do both, that’s not going to happen, you will not get off the ground. You need to examine your daily habits.

I’m as spontaneous as they come out there. Don’t think for a second that it’s easy for Leah, you know, she runs Savvy Musician Academy, she does this that and the other thing and she’s really disciplined, I’m not. I have to work very hard to be disciplined. I am as artsy-fartsy as they get. I don’t like schedules, I don’t like routine, I like to wake up and decide what I feel like doing, that’s my nature and I have to dial that – I have to reel that in, I have to reign it in and cut out those things that are not going to make me money.

I want you to – if you could get one take away from here, I would say, you should take a log of all your activities for like three days straight and just count up how many activities in your day are income-producing and how many activities in your day are sucking up productivity, sucking up income?

Your eyes will be opened as to how much time you waste, you waste so much time that you could be 10 times further than you are right now but you decided to waste it away, I want to say Netflix because that’s probably the biggest one but you know, fill in the blank with whatever it is you’re doing. I think that would be very eye-opening exercise if you did that.

24:22 CJ: Yeah, a friend of mine used to always say that the secret of your future is found in your daily routine and like Leah said, sacrifice is the keyword here because it means, giving yourself for yourself, right? You’re giving up something, that’s for sure. But you’re not giving it up for somebody else, you’re not giving it up for something that you don’t really care. This is your own interest.

You’re giving yourself for yourself, sacrificing what you were or are in order to become what you can be. Be willing to throw yourself on that fiery altar and be consumed in the flames of personal commitment. You can do it, you can check like Leah said, as you know she’s artsy-fartsy, she wants to be able to just go do but she can’t. If you are going to run a successful business these are the things you’ve got to do especially at the outset and everybody that we are talking to is at the outset, right? It takes more fuel to get the rocket off the ground. It can coast later so let’s pay our dues now. 

25:25 Leah: That’s right and I am going off of that point. I would say people who fail have a very, very low tolerance for being uncomfortable or low pain tolerance. So they only want to feel good, they only want to feel comfortable and anything that takes them outside of that, they just want to go back into that zone of comfort once again and so again, there is going to be – and nobody told me this but it was something I just wanted to do. 

And I have said this in past episodes where people have heard me say, you know my current discomfort is irrelevant and that has to become your motto that it is going to be uncomfortable to spend so much time studying. It is going to be uncomfortable to take risks. It is going to be uncomfortable to put yourself out there and try and build a fan base and build an email list and do Facebook ads and none of it feels good, there are things you need to do in order to get to that end goal. So people who fail, who have a habit of failing they don’t want to cause themselves discomfort. 

26:31 CJ: Yeah, I like to say when you are discomfort is comfortable enough that’s when you’ll settle and that’s very easy for people to get into and it’s funny if you have somebody who has a passion Leah for music and because of the amount of work that may be involved in getting things underway that they will literally sign a contract with mediocrity, settle for where they are because even though it is uncomfortable to be there and not have their dream, it’s still comfortable enough for them to tolerate. 

So they’re willing to tolerate the fact that they put their dream on hold and settle for where it is right now knowing they could have been ten times further down the road, ten times more the output. They have this much capacity as anybody else does and don’t sign that contract with mediocrity. Don’t do that. 

27:21 Leah: That’s right. Another one to ensure failure is basically having your foot half in and half out the door whenever you are in a program or you’re trying to learn something, again, this is a commitment issue. You are not all in, you are not fully committed, you haven’t dove into the water you just are dangling your toes in there, you are guaranteed to fail. You cannot approach any of this stuff with a half-ass mentality. 

If you do, yeah just expect to fail, expect to not succeed ever. It is guaranteed you’re going to fail. You know when I say go all in, I mean I have faced these things. I am all in all the time but for example my upcoming crowdfunding campaign, it’s scary before you go to launch. It’s like “Ooh” it is like there’s a switch that I have to flip again where it’s just like this is do or die. It’s like, “I am going to raise this amount and I’ve got to go all in.” 

All in and so it is going to take up a lot of my time and don’t think for a second that when I go to launch something like that for example, I just launch it and then it will happen all by itself. No, I am working it. I am earning every single dollar that comes in. I am working it as though none of it is going to come in on its own. That’s how I approach it. I don’t think for a second that any of it is going to happen like I am just going to push a button and then it is all going to come to me because I built this fan base. 

I don’t approach it like that. No, I like to approach things as though nothing is guaranteed at all and that pretend like nobody is going to contribute. What would I do? And then I continue to work it until I can squeeze out every last drop when people are totally sick of me and they never are but that’s how I approach it. So when I say all in, I mean you need to work it. You need to actually try and that’s the other thing. I think people don’t actually try very hard. 

They think that they do but they don’t. It’s just like someone who went for a walk around the block saying that, “Oh I did such a hard workout” no you didn’t. You did whatever you know, no you didn’t. That is not a difficult workout. That is how I think most people are viewing what I’m doing. It’s so much work that I would have to actually learn all of this and yeah, it is not that you have to, you get to. You get to learn all of this and the fact that there is Internet is amazing.

The fact that you no longer need to go through a label or executives for anybody to hear your music that is amazing. The fact that you get to actually control of what happens or doesn’t happen that’s amazing. You get to do this and if you have that mentality of I have to do this and it is so much work, guaranteed failure. 

30:15 CJ: Yep. 

30:18 Leah: I guarantee you will never make any money. 

30:20 CJ: No. I often tell people how hard do I work, like it all depends on me. That is how hard I work because it does and yes, there are resources, yes there’s help but ladies and gentleman you are not going to get anywhere without the sweat equity. I know work is another four-letter word but you know you’re designed for it. On the other side of all of the struggle that you believe is in front of you, the effort that it is going to take to create your dream is a stronger better version of you. 

One that doesn’t have regret, one that feels satisfied because you can pat yourself on the back. You can high five yourself that you did this. You did this and it got to be better than just settling for where you are just because of something like work. 

31:08 Leah: Yeah, exactly and on that note. I was going to the next one here. I think that we’ve all probably done this but I want to really drill this in that this will cause failure and that is skipping through content and I am talking about in a course situation, in a course setting, skipping through the content and skipping over to what you think applies to you. There’s so many things that are said and taught in these other lessons that you think I’m passed and I’m passed that but they are little nuances. 

They’re details of things that matter greatly as they say, small hinges swing big doors and some of these small little tips, this little principles, these little instructions make or break what you are doing and if you think I already know that, I am passed that, I am more advanced and you are skipping over to the parts that you think apply, I guarantee you, you are missing it and there’s probably some huge things that could be so much better for you but they aren’t because you just skipped right over it. 

And then you want to ask questions about it later and you’re in some stuff. It’s like, “Well did you actually go and watch it?” and I will say another funny thing is when people watch videos and they say they watched it and then they asked a question about that was totally answered in that video and it’s like, “Did you watch it?” “Yeah I watched it and it wasn’t answered” and then you go to that exact spot and yeah, it’s right there. 

So I don’t know what happens in people’s brains where there is selective hearing going on or I am not sure what happens there but that’s the sure way to fail as well and so not paying attention, thinking you are above it and then not paying attention when you are consuming it. Maybe you got your phone on beside you, maybe you’re browsing around in the internet why you’re going through it. I guarantee you are not taking in the content and you are not absorbing it if you are multitasking. 

So that is another huge problem. I mean I understand like we have a major attention deficit problem right now with social media and I struggle with this too, context switching. It is like I am trying to listen to something and do something else and do something else and then my phone is dinging and people are messaging me and I am trying to listen to a podcast at the same time, your brain is not designed to function that way and take in information in that fashion. 

It can’t process it. You can only do one thing at a time successfully. So yeah, I am killing a few birds with one stone there. Skipping through content. You are skipping right over stuff that could completely change your music business and then contact switching ADD situation, multitasking and you are not absorbing even what you are going through so. 

34:02 CJ: I am willing to bet, Leah that besides not finishing a course that that’s probably a big thing. It is like a lot of people are trying to kill two birds with one stone in the sense of multitasking and doing, thinking that by listening to it not for example watching one of your modules where you are light boarding things and bullet points and whatnot, seeing it as well as hearing it that sort of stuff then there’s not the focus. 

There is not the attention and there is just way too much at stake for you to I mean a professional sports team will never allow its players to do that. You have to learn everything and if you’re going to invest in a course or some sort of self-education program and then by all means devote yourself to it. So it’s a battle, like you said it is something that we all face. When you were saying that your phone going off and this going off and you are trying to listen, I know exactly what you are talking about, it is. It is a very tough thing but when you consider the price of what’s at stake, yeah we can do it. 

35:09 Leah: Totally, yeah I had a couple other thoughts occur to me as you were saying that but I think along those lines, another one would be straying from the curriculum itself if you are going through your program. We have a lot of programs but if you are going through something, one great way to fail is to dilute what you’re learning and confuse yourself with alternate sources of information. So when you are going through a course and then you’re also doing YouTube. 

And your other Facebook groups and you’re going to another course and you are just hop, skipping, jumping all over the place, I guarantee you this person is broke and they’re not making any money and they are not going to. They can’t focus. They can’t actually commit to one program and that is the worst thing you could do. It does not help you get to your end goal. So the lack of focus there is really going to inhibit your results. So don’t stray from the curriculum. 

If you’re going through a program commit, go all the way through it. Block out everything else. I will guarantee you, you will get so much better results. The program isn’t the problem. You’re the problem. 

36:21 CJ: Yep, an old friend of mine used to say people fail because of broken focus and you know like we have said before and I know I have said this that you could probably do very well with half the stuff that you teach, Leah if you just understood the basics and you got the important aspects about culture and targeting and niche and all of that good stuff, you could probably go further than people who know everything there is to know simply because you’re willing to stay focused. 

And do the work and the follow-through. It is always a failure, Leah in fundamentals. It is not because you don’t know a particular new secret. There is no secret here it’s all fundamentals and either fail in them or the failure is because you didn’t consistently apply them and so again, it leads to you being dependent upon others, playing the blame game, you know blame the course, blame other people, blame your background, all of these other things. 

Blame the economy, everything. You are going to blame everything else simply but you are going to find that your problems were basic, laziness, procrastination, lack of focus, not listening, skipping through courses, skipping through the modules of the course what have you. 

37:44 Leah: Exactly. My last couple ones here, ways to ensure you’re going to fail is continue to be skeptical. Skeptical of yourself, skeptical that it is not going to work for you, it is not going to work for me, skeptical of your coaches, mentors, people around you, skeptical that people like us that we actually want to help you. Skepticism is not your friend when you’re trying to make money, especially in the music industry. It is not going to help you. 

Now I would be skeptical of contracts if someone is like throwing there’s a place here for that but I am not talking about that. I am talking about your educational journey to success that is what we’re talking about in this frame. So by all means, continue to be skeptical but also continue to be broke. I think there is going to be a hand – something goes hand in hand there. You have to become an optimist and in the face of failing a lot. Be prepared to make all kinds of mistakes and have things fail. 

Now I am talking about a different kind of failure. I am talking about the kind that you actually learn from and the kind that actually moves you forward. The kind that will eventually make you money and you have to be willing to put Facebook ads out there that flop and write another one. Write a hundred more. You know when you’ve written 200 different Facebook ads, you eventually start to figure out a few things. You eventually start to realize, “Oh, okay I get this now.”

Don’t think that you are going to put one thing out there and then it is going to work. So I am going to add to this list aside from continuing to be skeptical, perfectionism. That is another sure way to fail. Failure to launch is the number one reason people fail at all is because they don’t actually get anything out there. They are too stuck in their perfectionism and I know musicians struggle with this specifically. We want everything to be perfect. 

We are creators of art and art we want it just right and so we end up applying that to our funnels and email marketing and all of this. We want to be just right and if it is not, we freak out. Sometimes we are a little bit emotional. We are a little bit control freaks in that way but I am telling you, you cannot be a perfectionist when it comes to getting this stuff out online. I learned very early in the game it is better to put out something, just get it out there and then fix it later and make it better. 

And tweak it later than to not get it out at all. If I am not going to get it out at all that means I can’t learn anything. There is no data for me to gather. So perfectionism is another sure way to fail. Get it out there, whatever it is you’re working on, if it is a landing page, a Facebook ad, email, you need to send it. Yes, there is going to be a typo, yeah, you probably forgot to put in a link somewhere. You probably spelled something wrong. I mean trust me, I make all these mistakes every single week. 

Do you think anybody cares? No at the end of the day, no. Now I am all for high standards. I am for excellence but I do my best and I just make a lot of mistakes on the way and then I go and fix them so that’s it. If you can have that mentality, you will – your chances of success are so much higher than everybody else’s.

40:57 CJ: Yeah, it really is. This is something we see a lot especially in the Elite group is they want to do right. They want to do well but then we see that maybe after a couple of months they’re still taking laps around the same mountain over and over and over again. When you just want to tell them, “Okay well, let’s put that aside for just a little bit and focus on running this kind of ad.” Just get some brand awareness. You need data. 

One thing I have said to so many students in the elite group, you need data. You got to get data. Put something out there. I know you got music, you got something we can target an audience. It may not be perfect but let us find out. We’ll never know. We can sit here and talk about all the different scenarios and write all of the interesting categories down and all the layering and such in the ad manager but nothing is going to happen until you put an ad out there and see if it does well or not. So you know let’s take some action. It is just so much easier to steer a car that is moving. 

42:02 Leah: That is right and speaking of data, let me give you a quick example of that since we’re talking a little bit about my crowdfunding thing that I am doing, I am getting ready for it not launching it quite yet but I am preparing it in the process of preparing. I’ve done something where I sent my fans, I asked them to opt into a specific email campaign that tells me that they want to know when my campaign goes live. 

They wanted the information and I am basically asking them for a little pre-commitment that they want in on this and of course, you know I got a track record so they know what my music sounds like. They know what they can expect from me. I haven’t even released a teaser yet. Nobody has heard a clip of music except for a couple 15 second things on Instagram stories but something I did was I sent them in the first email that they get. 

So they opt in to this. I send them automatically a first email and I asked them to answer three questions in this little Google form quiz thing just a little survey, three questions. One is “are you planning on pledging in this campaign?” Yes, no, maybe. The second the one was “If provided there is going to be some awesome pre-order bundles, how much of a co-creator would you like to be?” and then I give dollar ranges in there and then at the end, I just ask “Are there any specific items you like to see?”  

This is data collection right? And I do not worry about perfection. I just want to collect some data and you know what’s so cool? I haven’t even launched this campaign yet and last time I add it up, I try to lowball. I always try to go extremely conservative on the conservative end of the spectrum. So I gave all of these different dollar range options. So I add it all up on the low end of it and I am currently sitting somewhere around $54,000 in pre-pledged commitments, conservatively, before I even have launched this thing at all. 

That data is so valuable to me. I mean, that gives me the confidence that I need to go forward with this and make it really amazing. You know, you cannot be a perfectionist, you can’t be skeptical, you can’t be un-coachable, you can’t have all these other things that we talked about here to get to the place where you can do things like this. You know, that data is invaluable and yeah, I just wanted to share that to encourage you guys that I too think about what if it fails, what if this doesn’t work? The answered solution to that is get the data.

Then, have a positive mindset, don’t be skeptical and you have to see the glass half full when you’re doing all of this and it’s always about what can I learn. Even if it fails and it falls on its face, what did I learn from that? That’s what’s going to really help you.

44:51 CJ: That’s awesome. Ladies and gentlemen, these are some very powerful keys to how to fail. How to successfully fail, how to ensure your failure. Great ways to fail. Sometimes you got to kind of address it from that standpoint for people to know because sometimes it really is, we can learn all the great principles of success and we can, as you said earlier, it almost deceives ourselves into thinking, we are working hard, we did go through the course. You can’t figure out – 

What am I doing wrong because I followed all the keys to success so to speak.

45:27 Leah: No you didn’t. I guarantee you.

45:30 CJ: One way to find out is to talk about the steps to failure and by understanding the things that make up for failure, it gives you a better understanding that you weren’t necessarily following the steps to success if that makes any sense but Leah, what would you like to have everybody do today?

45:45 Leah: I’d like you to follow the damn course.

45:48 CJ: There it is, we’ll see you guys later.

45:49 Leah: Yeah. One last thing, probably my number one pet peeve, this is my last thing to say. My number one pet peeve is when people ask me a question and it reveals to me that you didn’t watch the course, you didn’t watch the lessons thoroughly and you weren’t paying attention and you’re skipping it and you’re being lazy and now you just want me to tell you the answer.

I mean, that really gets under my skin. That’s because I’ve already done this for you, I’ve already put in all those time and effort, all I ask is that you put in the effort too. That way, we can work together. That’s pretty much what I have to say on that.

46:27 CJ: Yeah, well, ladies and gentlemen, if you’d like to go a little bit further, a little bit deeper into this and you’re interested in finding out about the Elite course that we talk about so many times here on the podcast. I would encourage you to book a call with the coaches today. 

You can go to callsma.com and find out more about what’s involved in the elite program and you get to be in the company of the lovely Leah McHenry and learn firsthand all the wonderful things that you need to have a successful career in music and if you’d like to do is a solid, you can review this podcast.

We’ve got some great reviews lately from people. Thank you to all of you out here who have reviewed the podcast but go to your favorite player, Spotify, stitcher, iTunes, whatever you’re listening to and leave some stars, five preferably and say good things about us, it helps us in the rankings and some other wonderful creative people like yourself to discover.

The most awesome music marketing podcast on the planet, Savvy Musician Show. I’m a tad biased.

47:40 Leah: Thanks for listening everybody. By the way, we read every single review so thank you.

47:44 CJ: That’s right, we’ll see you guys next time.

Leah McHenry

It's become my absolute obsession to find out what will make musicians successful today. In the face of many obstacles, and in the vast sea of the internet, we have an opportunity that has NEVER been available to us in the history of the music business.