I’m contacted daily by people asking how to get funding for a music project. They have music projects they want to make happen and feel they just need the money from grants to make it happen. They feel like they have it all planned out, they’ve discussed it as a band and they are ready to go and start applying for funding.
They reach out to me with this incredible and exciting project idea, saying we just need the money to make it happen.
And then we get to talking about their touring or recording project and I ask for some finer details….
Who, What, Where, When, Why and How. And if not all of these can be answered, it becomes apparent to me they are not music project grant ready just yet and there is no solid in place for this project.
As a grant writer, my job is to present your project in a clear and succinct manner. I have to ensure guidelines are being met and present the project as a great investment opportunity for the funding body. However, I also need to show how this is building the market reach of your music, while raising the profile of quality and creative Australian music.
This is not a criticism, purely just wanting to help you become grant ready - because if you don’t know, you don’t know!
Most artists are either wanting to fund recording and release or touring projects, so here are some questions you should be asking yourself to ensure your project is grant ready.
Keep in mind that with grants application round dates, you may have to be 6 months out from even starting your project. Early and good music project planning is key.
National and International Touring:
Do you have a tour schedule mapped out and any venue confirmations?
Do you have a solid timeline?
Do you plan to engage PR to promote the tour?
Is there a marketing plan?
Will the shows be ticketed or guarantees?
Do you have stats from previous shows of audience sizes or ticket sales?
Can you show music streaming data as evidence of why playing in a certain town or city makes sense?
Do you plan to engage with local communities?
What are the outcomes and impact this tour will have on your career, both short and long term.
Recording and release:
Who do you plan to work with and why?
What point of difference do they bring to the project?
What is the creative process of your new work development?
What is the marketing strategy to broaden your market reach?
What are the outcomes and impact this new work project will have on your career?
Can you show evidence of demand, such as music streaming or sales data?
Do you have a solid timeline?
Responding to the application criteria within the application responses will require you to address the Who, What, Where, When, Why and How in a way that you are also addressing Quality, Reach, Impact, Viability.
Support material for your music project grant
Gathering the required support material can often be the most time consuming part of the grant application process and not something you should leave until the last minute. Just because the Letters of Support are your priority, doesn’t mean they are the priority of the person you are requesting to supply one.
The most standard support materials you will need to supply are:
CVs of all involved
Letters of Support
Letters of Confirmation
Quotes for major budget items
Examples of previous work
Each funding program will have page, file size and URL limits so be sure to follow these.
Read the guideline and FAQ documents that the funding program provides to ensure you are eligible and your project fits the criteria.
And lastly, call the funding program contact. Introduce yourself, explain your project and seek any advice the program officer has to provide.
What if I’m not music project grant ready yet?
If after reading this post you realise you’re a long way from having your music project grant ready, then all is not lost.
Your first step is to ensure you develop your own music business plan. This will put your music business in a much stronger position to apply for funding. Many who have previously been unsuccessful in gaining funding, have worked through a music action plan with me and ended up securing thousands of dollars worth of funding because of putting in a little work upfront.
To help complete your own music action plan, you can download my free music action plan here https://kadencegroup.com.au/music-action-plan-guide