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Market Research: Studio owners share your advice Spatial Processor Plugins
Old 1st October 2011
  #1
Market Research: Studio owners share your advice

Long story short, I've been working towards owning my own studio since about 2007 when I started collecting gear and learning the art of recording. Now, in order to build the studio I need a small business loan and for that I need to write a business plan.

I'll be honest, the business side of this adventure is boring, albeit necessary. So I am looking for some advice to help me put together this business plan as well as to gain some insight into what I should be prepared for.

I have a couple of questions that I would really appreciate some answers to:

  • What reoccurring expenses, if any, do you face as a studio owner? Rent and utils are a given and I don't plan on hiring anyone. What I'm interested in is more about unforeseen expenses such as gear repair.
  • What other one time expenses might I want to factor in? (Note here: acoustic treatment is in the build budget.) I already have the equipment needed to facilitate my studio. So gear lust aside, should I be prepared for anything else?
  • How long was it until your studio became profitable?
  • What are the common studio rates in your area? Or if you care to, elaborate on how you break down studio time cost.
  • Do you experience busier times of the year? For example, do you get more work in the summer months than the winter months.
  • What sort of advertising or marketing effort do you put into your business?
These questions should hopefully help me advance on market research. However, I am also open to reading about success stories, trials and tribulations, and any other advice you might want to share.

Thank you so much for the help.
Old 1st October 2011
  #2
Gear Addict
I carried out a piece of research for my degree dissertation earlier this year, looking at the history of the studio sector in Glasgow, Scotland. So I have no idea whether this is remotely applicable to your city, but the findings were not positive...

Since the first studio opened its doors in 1952, there had been around 130 studios. The average studio lasted just 5.7 years. If you take out the handful that made it to 10 years of operation, that average dropped to just 4 years. There has been steady growth in the numbers of studios, and as you might expect, steady growth in the number of closures. Studios which had rehearsal facilities were more durable and lasted longer.

Given the level of the dissertation, there were limits to the scope of research, but I came away with the impression that looking at it further might have revealed a definite pattern. Studios have high capital requirements to get up and running, followed by a range of ongoing costs - heat/power; rent/mortgage; lending repayments; property taxes etc. Studios benefit initially from being new kid on the block, with up to date gear, but struggle to maintain a level of income which allows them to cover costs and reinvest / diversify / consolidate. New studios continually pop up, intensifying competition and driving down rates. Net result: most studios - even some which are apparently successful - do not provide a viable living income for their owners/operators.

Another thing which was notable by absence was hard data on the size of the market. Bands and artists make a pretty transient client group, and nobody appeared to know with any certainty how many there were, how much they might spend on recording and how often. Even high profile retailers I spoke to couldn't hazard a guess as to the market size. This means that studios enter the marketplace with a critical blind spot. Its a leap of faith, and as the stats showed, it is one that almost always ends in failure.

Personally, I wouldn't open a studio without at least two or more rehearsal rooms to ensure a steady cash flow. It also has the advantage of bringing potential recording clients to your facility and making it more likely they will choose your place to record. Another point I came across is that small music related businesses find accessing credit very difficult, so you might want to see if your bank has any history of lending to studios rather than put a lot of time and effort into something that will be turned down pretty much automatically.
Old 1st October 2011
  #3
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mightyfaulk View Post
Long story short, I've been working towards owning my own studio since about 2007 when I started collecting gear and learning the art of recording. Now, in order to build the studio I need a small business loan and for that I need to write a business plan.

I'll be honest, the business side of this adventure is boring, albeit necessary. So I am looking for some advice to help me put together this business plan as well as to gain some insight into what I should be prepared for.

I have a couple of questions that I would really appreciate some answers to:

  • What reoccurring expenses, if any, do you face as a studio owner? Rent and utils are a given and I don't plan on hiring anyone. What I'm interested in is more about unforeseen expenses such as gear repair.
  • What other one time expenses might I want to factor in? (Note here: acoustic treatment is in the build budget.) I already have the equipment needed to facilitate my studio. So gear lust aside, should I be prepared for anything else?
  • How long was it until your studio became profitable?
  • What are the common studio rates in your area? Or if you care to, elaborate on how you break down studio time cost.
  • Do you experience busier times of the year? For example, do you get more work in the summer months than the winter months.
  • What sort of advertising or marketing effort do you put into your business?
These questions should hopefully help me advance on market research. However, I am also open to reading about success stories, trials and tribulations, and any other advice you might want to share.

Thank you so much for the help.
lots of good books on that - how to setup/run a small biz

check out SBA for free pubs and guidance
IRS tax pubs will help a lo t

one of those how to inc in your state books might help too

should be plenty of payroll/tax record documents on the web that list most things you need to consider in a budget
Old 2nd October 2011
  #4
Thank you both for the replies, there is some vital information here.

The statistics against the success of a start up recording studio are alarming. I am aware of the cost, risk, and effort involved which is why I have tried to reduce those factors as much as possible. I've done this by reducing the start up cost having a decent sized inventory of equipment at my disposal. This is a fairly small project, I can cover the reoccurring expenses on my own dime. The business plan is to propose to different loan agencies until one of them believes in my project. The business loan is to cover the build-out cost.

What I am hoping for is to connect with people who have gone through this process and can share with me their experience first hand. I will see if I can hunt down any IRS tax publications; however, I may go crazy if I have to read through another book on small business
Old 2nd October 2011
  #5
Lives for gear
 

I'm about to open my third studio. The first one that is totally mine.
Too many mouths to feed with partners involved.
The thing that makes or breaks your studio is a combination of the facility, and your personality / skills. What I really mean by this, is how good are you at networking. Walking up to people cold and having them like, trust and believe in you. THAT is what gets clients through the door.
Constant eye contact in these situations is essential. Become a master of human nature and you will master getting more and more clients.
Also have another engineer / producer or three on rotation - 2thirds money to you, one third to them for a day.
Gives you a break to explore other avenues of revenue and have ideas to expand.
You are what will make or break this business NOT the Market
Old 2nd October 2011
  #6
Quote:
Originally Posted by DannyMac View Post
The thing that makes or breaks your studio is a combination of the facility, and your personality / skills. What I really mean by this, is how good are you at networking. Walking up to people cold and having them like, trust and believe in you. THAT is what gets clients through the door.
Constant eye contact in these situations is essential. Become a master of human nature and you will master getting more and more clients.
Also have another engineer / producer or three on rotation - 2thirds money to you, one third to them for a day.
Gives you a break to explore other avenues of revenue and have ideas to expand.
You are what will make or break this business NOT the Market
Man am I with you on this 100%. I've had a hard time writing this proposal because those are the principals I take with me into every project. That ability to network, to walk up to someone and have them trust you means so much more than any bull **** "Pro Forma Income" spreadsheet ever will in this field of work.

The problem is that I need to pitch this to a bank and I need them to believe I can do this. So I can't explain the value of trust to them and expect to be walking out of there with a big old check -- just isn't how it works with them so it seems. What I am searching for is purely to satisfy the requirements.

You make a good point with the second engineer. I've toyed with that idea and it is still a huge debate for me. This is literally my life investment so to let someone else in on that... well you already understand the value of trust.
Old 2nd October 2011
  #7
Gear Addict
Quote:
Originally Posted by mightyfaulk View Post
The problem is that I need to pitch this to a bank and I need them to believe I can do this. So I can't explain the value of trust to them and expect to be walking out of there with a big old check -- just isn't how it works with them so it seems. What I am searching for is purely to satisfy the requirements.
I'd suggest you might need to do some actual market research...

Who are your competitors?
How much do they charge and are they busy?
Who are your clients and how will you attract them?
What is the size of the marketplace for your service?
What makes your studio different - why will clients choose you?

Banks will expect to see that you understand your market and the positioning of your service within it. If you go in without this kind of data, they'd probably be right in thinking you are working on a hunch.

Just my 0.02c
Old 2nd October 2011
  #8
Lives for gear
 
cdog's Avatar
Most small businesses fail in the first 2 years, 90% fail within 5.

The failure rate for music studios is higher Im sure.

Honestly, its an awful investment unless you already have a large client base. Starting from scratch is nearly impossible.

If you have money to burn, its something to consider. Taking out a small business loan to do it is frankly...ahem.....how do I put this.... inadvisable.
Old 2nd October 2011
  #9
Thanks for your help guys unfortunately this isn't a matter of whether or not to build a studio. I'm building the studio. It's my dream and I would much rather fail at it than to have never tried. Crazy or not, I am at an age and time in my life where this slim window of opportunity is available with the least amount of risk.

These questions were to support a portion of my market research. My hopes were to reach out to independent studio owners who built their studio from the ground up (or similar) and could share some answers/experience for this business plan.
Old 2nd October 2011
  #10
Gear Addict
 
MTStudios's Avatar
Most of the answers you get will be irrelevant to you unless they're in your area. Go talk to people who are actually affected by the same factors you are - studio owners in your area!

A lot of this stuff depends on the culture of the scene in which you're trying to conduct your business. Have you rung up owners in the area, gone around for a coffee and talked sound/business with them?
Old 2nd October 2011
  #11
Quote:
Originally Posted by MTStudios View Post
Most of the answers you get will be irrelevant to you unless they're in your area. Go talk to people who are actually affected by the same factors you are - studio owners in your area!

A lot of this stuff depends on the culture of the scene in which you're trying to conduct your business. Have you rung up owners in the area, gone around for a coffee and talked sound/business with them?
That's a great idea thank you. I've been pulling off as much information as I can from the websites of local studios but I think getting in touch with the owners would be a lot more helpful.
Old 3rd October 2011
  #12
Lives for gear
Soundseed gives good advice.

Above and beyond that, when I look at business plans, I look for five things -

1. What can I make?

What do similar businesses earn in the same area and with the same level of know-how and investment. Is this business scalable?

2. What can I loose?

Interest costs, opportunity cost, depreciation, etc.

3. What is the USP?

Why would customers come to you and not the other guy?

4. What is plan B?

Exactly how do you propose to pull the business around, if the customers stay away in droves? You will have to have this safety net, to lessen the risk.

5. Says who?

Expert opinions are an absolute MUST on the viability of your plans from such people as market researchers, industry insiders, economists and experienced business people.

So, bearing the five points above in mind, that any investor will look for in a new business, how does this 'template' work for a recording studio?

1. To quote the owner of Air Lindhurst "The trouble with this place is, I can only sell it 365 days a year!" A studio is not scaleable. You cannot cut your rates to $10 a day and sell one million days! That makes it an intrinsically bad business!

2. As Soundseed points out, you need to re-equip about every ten years, so you will need to budget for replacing the desk, recorder, effects etc., that will be worthless and unusable in ten years.

3. You must have a USP. Do something the others don't or can't do. Video, mobile, something.

4. Your plan B, your fall-back position could be those rehearsal rooms that Soundseed was talking about. The one fall-back for all studios that nobody talks about, is the value of your property. If you buy the building, you can always sell it.

5. Hard figures on the size of your market! Soundseed's leap of faith is never a good idea for any business!
Old 7th October 2011
  #13
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quantumpsych's Avatar
 

wow, glad to have wondered into this sub forum, excellent conversation.

what do you guys do for real market research? do you call the owners, as someone here said? if so, what do you say? how do you convince them you're not trying to undercut them?

thanks ahead of time and keep the ideas flowing!
Old 7th October 2011
  #14
Gear Addict
 
MTStudios's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by quantumpsych
what do you guys do for real market research? do you call the owners, as someone here said? if so, what do you say? how do you convince them you're not trying to undercut them?

thanks ahead of time and keep the ideas flowing!
For real market research you should be asking questions of your market - the people that you hope to sell your services to. Obviously getting a perspective on the market from the competition is still helpful.

In regard to the 2nd part of your question: The reason I think this worked for me was because I've done enough to be at least a step above a kid with an mbox. I'd already booked a few sessions in studios around my town and taken bands in there to record with me. I wasn't just a competitor I'm also a potential client, an opportunity for them to get paid for a day off

But I think if you've done a bit, proven you've got balls you're not just hopeful then you get a bit of respect. Depends a bit on the town you're in. If there's 100 young guys hanging around studios trying to get work/info/opportunities from them then maybe it's a little harder to get that foot in the door.

Of course, if people already realise you're not charging bands $20 for several hours work they're more likely to be helpful too. Every day here a new bargain basement studio opens up charging either miniscule amounts of money or nothing at all. Some of them foolishly clearly in debt and ran by someone no one has ever heard of before. They tend to just get ignored by the studio guys until they go away.
Old 8th October 2011
  #15
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quantumpsych's Avatar
 

@MTstudios: excellent points.

the idea of paying to rent a studio is good. the only reason I've not done it already was a lack of equipment on my part and the unsustainability of the model. I would need to be backed by a label to afford the studio time. though, to build a portfolio, it would make sense to take the hit.

as far as my rates:
hourly rate -$50. four hour minimum
day rate - $400. for 10hrs.
weekly rate - $2000 for 60hrs.

the only way I would budge on these rates is for returning customers, artists I fell in love with or points backed by a label.
Old 8th October 2011
  #16
Lives for gear
 

Just want to give my own advice. Make a business plan, do REAL market research, and do your cash flow forecasts and P&L based on conservative figures....

.... if the result is a profit, then divide the profit in half :-P

I'm not exaggerating - most startup studio businesses finish at a loss, in fact I don't know any from my network that are operating profitably at the moment. The types of studio that do manage to make a profit do so by diversifying into areas that most people who want to have a studio do not want to do!

I think soundseed is absolutely spot on and should be listened to with more sincerity. It is genuine market research that tells you whether or not ANY business is a good idea, and the studio business at the moment is not sensible from a business point of view in most areas and scenarios.

As you say, even though it is very, very, very difficult to make any kind of living from a new studio, it is passion that lends rational minds to bad ideas :-P. I know you say you are young etc., but living with the weight of a loan repayment you're struggling to meet is not something you want to do at a young age - trust me, I've been there, and it's more of a nightmare than you think and can prevent you from working effectively further down the line.

A studio buildout costs an absolute fortune (for a smallish but 'pro' quality studio, properly designed, in London, about £200,000 with the gear). Even a small loan - say of about £10,000 - will equal around £220 repayment every month on a 5 year repayment plan and low interest.

Then you have rent - and a massive stumbling block for anyone who doesn't own their studio. You've spent a fortune on a buildout, agreed a lease. All fine and dandy. When the lease is about to end, everything you have spent is in the hands of your landlord. They have a huge amount of leverage to be able to raise the rent to extortionate amounts, as quite simply you have invested a small fortune on something that cannot be moved.



To answer your specific questions:

1. Gear repair is quite frequent and depends a lot on your setup. Desks need a lot of maintenance, for example. Expensive stuff in general, even a lead can cost you £100. Website costs. Marketing costs. Rent and utilities (including internet / phone). Tax. Loan repayments. Don't forget to factor in your own cost of transport to the studio .

2. There are a huge amount of one time build costs but I couldn't really help without knowing what you've already factored in. It always goes over budget.

3. Not profitable overall - an important thing to remember is that builds do tend to take longer than you initially thought too. First monthly profit took a good few months due to build and awareness campaign. And be wary of paying too much attention to people's figures, not a lot of creative people are too good with the old spreadsheet.. or will quote you turnover rather than profit, or profit figures without any personal drawings.. etc.

4. Rates are very area specific and price elasticity is unusual for this type of business. You should estimate as low as 10% recording studio occupancy (paid, normal rate) over a week of whatever normal time slots you are planning to split. Occupancy rates when using it as a rehearsal studio are higher.

5. It's actually not that seasonal, quite constant over the year, but weekday is very hard to occupy, with most of the work on Sat / Sun.

6. Marketing and advertising effort is huge. A comprehensive leafleting campaign, hell even business cards, can add up to a fair amount. Advertising online and in magazines. Networking and getting clients takes a lot of time and effort.



I hope you don't get too disheartened by what I've said. I've given you a completely frank picture and I hope you appreciate the candid answer. I have a lot of friends who are studio owners, and being open with each other makes you more open to sharing specifics with others and more aware that you're in the same boat as everyone else.

My genuine advice is to start again with your plans. There is not much money in music recording nowadays especially at startup level. But there are ways to be clever about it and have a good place to work without the huge downsides. I don't want to give you anything more specific than that, but it is self evident that if this was all I did I would be losing a fair whack of money. ;-)

A lot of people with savings start studios knowing they will be a money drain, and accept this as a fact because it will be THEIR place to work and THEIR place to try and be successful through a project. This is fine but is not the same for those requiring loans!



If you go ahead with the studio anyway, at least focus on things that will make you money - rehearsal spaces, for one.


Final thoughts:

1. A business is something that provides a service or product that is in demand and brings in more than it costs to make or provide. If it can't, it isn't a business. The studio business often fails in both these areas and a business loan for this purpose is therefore hard to attain in the first place.

2. Starting a business with a high cost to market such as a studio is a bad idea if you are basing it on passion and determination rather than market research. It is akin to jumping off a cliff because you've 'always wanted to do it' - fine, but a bad idea.

3. You can make a business plan and cash flow / P&L forecasts show whatever you want them to; don't kid yourself.

Everyone knows someone who will record them for free.
Old 8th October 2011
  #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quantumpsych View Post
wow, glad to have wondered into this sub forum, excellent conversation.

what do you guys do for real market research? do you call the owners, as someone here said? if so, what do you say? how do you convince them you're not trying to undercut them?

thanks ahead of time and keep the ideas flowing!


Being frank and honest works. I called up a lot of places from my own hometown where I'd recorded in the past or rehearsed. I think it's important to approach facilities far away from where you are planning to set up, else you are not likely to get a useful response and rightly so. It's not about convincing them you're not a threat, it's about not actually being a threat in the first place and asking nicely.
Old 8th October 2011
  #18
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiopo View Post
I think soundseed is absolutely spot on and should be listened to with more sincerity. It is genuine market research that tells you whether or not ANY business is a good idea, and the studio business at the moment is not sensible from a business point of view in most areas and scenarios.
I hope my replies haven't been taken insincerely, if so let me assure everyone that has replied that their time and contribution is greatly appreciated. I have taken all of this advice and tried to apply it to my effort. I can also assure you that when it comes to the business side of recording I am very naive and so the hard truth is very grounding and appropriate.

The business plan is moving forward with very conservative figures. I have reached out to studio owners and evaluated eight different studios in my area. A lot of them do offer services outside of recording and mixing be it rehearsal rooms, music lessons, studio training, etc. I'm not in a position where I can afford extra space for rooms so I am still working towards an idea that could pull in more business.

Thank you again to everyone
Old 8th October 2011
  #19
Also to kiopo a HUGE thank you for the information you have shared. Incredibly informative.
Old 8th October 2011
  #20
Lives for gear
 

No worries, sounds like by thinking outside the box about diversifying you're in the right place to approach it. If you think from the point of view that you will at least for quite a while lose money on the music recording side of things but can fund that by using the space for other clever means, then I think that's a good way to be protect yourself as much as possible.

I always like this quote from George Lucas: 'Stay small, be the best, and don't lose any money'.
Old 9th October 2011
  #21
Lives for gear
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiopo View Post
If you think from the point of view that you will at least for quite a while lose money on the music recording side of things but can fund that by using the space for other clever means, then I think that's a good way to be protect yourself as much as possible.
This reminds me of a conversation that I had with my wife a couple of years ago. We were going through our businesses and totting up what is performing and what is failing and needs our attention.

Then she sighed deeply and said "And now we come to the studio!"

"Ah!" I said and tried to steer the conversation around to the price of fuel, or investing in renewable energy or something.

"The studio!" she said in a no-nonsense voice, cutting me dead.

"Ah yes, the studio." I said, shifting a little in my seat.

"Exactly when is it going to make any kind of profit - even if it is only an operative profit?"

"You really don't understand the music business, do you!" I cried out, laughing.
Old 9th October 2011
  #22
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Tarekith's Avatar
LOL.
Old 10th October 2011
  #23
Quote:
Originally Posted by kiopo View Post
If you think from the point of view that you will at least for quite a while lose money on the music recording side of things but can fund that by using the space for other clever means, then I think that's a good way to be protect yourself as much as possible.
Very good point
Old 23rd January 2019
  #24
Here for the gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Soundseed View Post
I carried out a piece of research for my degree dissertation earlier this year, looking at the history of the studio sector in Glasgow, Scotland. So I have no idea whether this is remotely applicable to your city, but the findings were not positive...

Since the first studio opened its doors in 1952, there had been around 130 studios. The average studio lasted just 5.7 years. If you take out the handful that made it to 10 years of operation, that average dropped to just 4 years. There has been steady growth in the numbers of studios, and as you might expect, steady growth in the number of closures. Studios which had rehearsal facilities were more durable and lasted longer.

Given the level of the dissertation, there were limits to the scope of research, but I came away with the impression that looking at it further might have revealed a definite pattern. Studios have high capital requirements to get up and running, followed by a range of ongoing costs - heat/power; rent/mortgage; lending repayments; property taxes etc. Studios benefit initially from being new kid on the block, with up to date gear, but struggle to maintain a level of income which allows them to cover costs and reinvest / diversify / consolidate. New studios continually pop up, intensifying competition and driving down rates. Net result: most studios - even some which are apparently successful - do not provide a viable living income for their owners/operators.

Another thing which was notable by absence was hard data on the size of the market. Bands and artists make a pretty transient client group, and nobody appeared to know with any certainty how many there were, how much they might spend on recording and how often. Even high profile retailers I spoke to couldn't hazard a guess as to the market size. This means that studios enter the marketplace with a critical blind spot. Its a leap of faith, and as the stats showed, it is one that almost always ends in failure.

Personally, I wouldn't open a studio without at least two or more rehearsal rooms to ensure a steady cash flow. It also has the advantage of bringing potential recording clients to your facility and making it more likely they will choose your place to record. Another point I came across is that small music related businesses find accessing credit very difficult, so you might want to see if your bank has any history of lending to studios rather than put a lot of time and effort into something that will be turned down pretty much automatically.
Thanks for this post, all that time ago. I found it really useful in my research fo rmy studio build.
Old 2nd February 2019
  #25
Gear Addict
 

Additional operational cost to be considered.

3% a year of the gear value in maintenance per year
2% a year in insurance of your build cost and gear value.
Per year.

Studios do not make money. They cost money against what you make as an engineer/ producer.

I’d recommend someone only to open a studio if over a 1 year period they they spent MORE renting studios than
It would cost for them to operate their own space.

My current studio has existed continuously for 17 years in the same spot.
Old 2nd February 2019
  #26
Gear Addict
 
biksonije's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mightyfaulk View Post
Long story short, I've been working towards owning my own studio since about 2007 when I started collecting gear and learning the art of recording. Now, in order to build the studio I need a small business loan and for that I need to write a business plan.

I'll be honest, the business side of this adventure is boring, albeit necessary. So I am looking for some advice to help me put together this business plan as well as to gain some insight into what I should be prepared for.

I have a couple of questions that I would really appreciate some answers to:

  • What reoccurring expenses, if any, do you face as a studio owner? Rent and utils are a given and I don't plan on hiring anyone. What I'm interested in is more about unforeseen expenses such as gear repair.
  • What other one time expenses might I want to factor in? (Note here: acoustic treatment is in the build budget.) I already have the equipment needed to facilitate my studio. So gear lust aside, should I be prepared for anything else?
  • How long was it until your studio became profitable?
  • What are the common studio rates in your area? Or if you care to, elaborate on how you break down studio time cost.
  • Do you experience busier times of the year? For example, do you get more work in the summer months than the winter months.
  • What sort of advertising or marketing effort do you put into your business?
These questions should hopefully help me advance on market research. However, I am also open to reading about success stories, trials and tribulations, and any other advice you might want to share.

Thank you so much for the help.
1) Are U doing this (music, studio owner) because you want to make relatively quick cash (return loan first) by owning some fancy sh***t gear or you're ready to learn and earn for the next 20-40 years...
2) See under 1)

I mean, have you udergo all steps in any studio like from cleaning toilets, wrapping mic/line cables, fetching stuff, odong actual session notations etc... And all the way up until the first assisting real engineer?

Nor trying to put you down. Just asking... It is so easy to buy gear. To operate under any and every situation (each different) is some other space. Really man, got any experience? If the answer is yes how do you think running it when you ask here these questions? On the other hand, if you don't have any experience who will work if you're saying you're the only one who's gonna be working there.

I wish you all the best man. Really.

Keep in mind that being and audio eng., mixing eng., whatever eng. in audio world takes A LOT of real world practice. Not a bisiness plan to smear bank's face to get some cash. And you're going to need a pile of it if you want to build something that will have real fundament in audio world. Uhhh....

Sorry, don't want to be negative and all but I see a lot of nonsense in this forum.

Those questions would be some I'd consider asking myself or thinking of before taking this leap...

Best!

Krešo
Old 3rd February 2019
  #27
Gear Addict
 
biksonije's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by mightyfaulk View Post
Long story short, I've been working towards owning my own studio since about 2007 when I started collecting gear and learning the art of recording. Now, in order to build the studio I need a small business loan and for that I need to write a business plan.

I'll be honest, the business side of this adventure is boring, albeit necessary. So I am looking for some advice to help me put together this business plan as well as to gain some insight into what I should be prepared for.

I have a couple of questions that I would really appreciate some answers to:

  • What reoccurring expenses, if any, do you face as a studio owner? Rent and utils are a given and I don't plan on hiring anyone. What I'm interested in is more about unforeseen expenses such as gear repair.
  • What other one time expenses might I want to factor in? (Note here: acoustic treatment is in the build budget.) I already have the equipment needed to facilitate my studio. So gear lust aside, should I be prepared for anything else?
  • How long was it until your studio became profitable?
  • What are the common studio rates in your area? Or if you care to, elaborate on how you break down studio time cost.
  • Do you experience busier times of the year? For example, do you get more work in the summer months than the winter months.
  • What sort of advertising or marketing effort do you put into your business?
These questions should hopefully help me advance on market research. However, I am also open to reading about success stories, trials and tribulations, and any other advice you might want to share.

Thank you so much for the help.
Hey there Mightyfaulk,

I am so sorry but I just realized that this Thread is so old that you might end up having the best and (still) wotking studio or switched to another career many times over.

I apologize for not being careluf regarding that!

Krešo
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