From management to A&R, publishing, marketing, and more. Algorithm wiz Tyler Tasson has garnered years of wisdom and experience as a working professional in the music industry.
Although it hasn’t always been a smooth ride, Tasson’s success story shows that with the right amount of determination, bravery, and hard work, you can achieve all of your dreams as a female entrepreneur.
In this interview Tyler shares how she became involved in the industry, her advice for female entrepreneurs, and how she launched her own music marketing company: Endemic Music Marketing!
Upon witnessing the unfair financial cuts and budgeting mishaps from major labels, Tyler Tasson came up with an idea that led to her own boutique marketing firm. Endemic Marketing offers label-like services without taking a cut from the profits of your release. Endemic Marketing prides themselves in using full transparency when budgeting for your music releases! Learn more about their unique and useful services here: http://endemicmarketing.com/
The WiMN: First of all, please introduce yourself to our network!
Tyler: Hey!!! My name is Tyler, I own and run Endemic Marketing – a boutique music marketing and project management company. Our aim is basically to help artists stay or become as independent as they’d like, while still having a team run services that a typical label would offer, without taking percentages of your earnings. Think of it somewhat like an anti-label, where you can get marketing help, digital advertising, help pulling in a publicist, help finding the best radio tracker, graphic designers, etc. all from one source, with full transparency on where your dollars are spent.
The WiMN: What initially attracted you to work within the music industry?
Tyler: I’ve worked in the music industry since I was 18, and had also been the singer of various pop/punk bands since I was 15. I originally thought I’d get into working at a label in order to learn the necessary skills for pushing my music career forward with my band, and then ended up fully transitioning to the dark side instead hahaha
The WiMN: What was your first job/internship? Did you learn any important lessons that got you to where you are now?
Tyler: So, my first job ever was working at Sporting Life when I was 16 as a salesperson on the floor. I definitely learned how to handle people, especially angry people who are looking for a fight for absolutely no reason, and how to find a middle ground where possible. My first music industry internship/job was at Anthem Entertainment/SRO Management where I started working for free for a while, and then minimum wage for years. I worked super hard to claw my way up from receptionist to day-to-day management and project manager/release marketing manager, and worked there for about 7 years! I have had all the weirdest odd jobs in between, too.
The WiMN: What is your favorite part about working in the music business?
Tyler: Honestly, I love the variety of artists I get to work with on a daily basis, and the passion I get to work alongside in the process. I get to work with all genres at this stage in my business which is amazing, so I get to watch impassioned pop singers absolutely crush on social media, or cry watching a heartfelt music video from the classical/opera singer I work with, help a crushing rock band create the coolest music video ever, or listen to an impromptu fiddle playing jam until 2 AM at a folk festival I work on. I feel a little spoiled, getting to constantly be around people who are so passionate about what they do. It’s the best!
The WiMN: There are many scenarios women working in the music business encounter throughout their careers in regards to sexual harassment and discrimination. Have you personally experienced this yourself? If so, how have you triumphed past it?
Tyler: Yes absolutely. I struggled with this a lot early on in my career, and even early on as a musician. I feel like there aren’t a lot of resources available in terms of when you first
get into the industry as a woman, and how to prepare yourself against some of the unfortunate things that you’re bound to encounter along the way. I first dealt with it by getting really angry, mostly at myself. Then, I got angry at most of the men I encountered in the industry, and either felt the need to posture and be aggressive towards them, or tried to shrink into the background or bail from meetings, to avoid the potential of it happening again. Both of those were the wrong method. I learned through a lot of self-reflection, as well as through support from various women’s groups online, that the feelings and some of my reactions were totally justified, and that it was okay to feel those ways and vent about them. I still experience discrimination often, and I actually feel fortunate I have a typically “male” name, since most people think they are dealing with a male until we meet in person! It’s usually a big shock and I can tell a lot about a person by their first reaction when finding out hahaha. I am so happy that there have been so many movements geared towards empowering women to speak up about harassment and discrimination, and support available for them too. Enough is enough.
The WiMN: Congrats on launching your own marketing company! What inspired you to run your own business? What were some of the difficulties you had to face in the initial stages?
Tyler: Oh man. Terrifying right off the hop, especially for someone who has spent their adult life so far in an office environment. I was inspired from watching certain labels and companies be so driven by profit that they ignore the artist’s wishes artistically, and in some cases, undercut them financially for the sake of their “bottom line”. I always hear from artists that they don’t know what’s going on with a release, or where their money is spent on the backend, or that they don’t know how to read their statements, etc. and that there is just no transparency with WHY they aren’t seeing a dollar in their pocket from the music they make. I am super artist driven and want people to have power over their own careers. In terms of my own business, I just couldn’t see a better way to help the artist than just trying to roll up my sleeves and start by doing it myself! A big pro was also being able to control my own hours, and even though I often find myself working more hours, I also feel it’s for the right reasons. It was horribly difficult at first, and never knowing when the next paycheque was going to come was scary too, but luckily I had a bunch of fantastic artists jump on board right from the beginning and I actually surpassed my 5 year goal in 9 months! One big con for me was having to learn the ins and outs of taxes and finances and payroll remittances and all those horrible things hahaha. It’s overwhelming, and my brain definitely leans more towards the creative side than it does towards the math side.
The WiMN: If you could give one piece of advice to up and coming female entrepreneurs, what would it be?
Tyler: You don’t always have to “hustle” – I feel like that’s a weird buzzword that gets thrown around all the time and tends to make people feel guilty about somehow not working hard enough, if they aren’t crazy successful really quickly. Work at your own pace, grow things organically, and do a REALLY good job with the few projects you have first – don’t stretch yourself too thin for the sake of the hustle. And don’t be afraid to ask for help!!
The WiMN: As a successful female entrepreneur, what are your favorite words to live by?
Tyler: Trust your gut, and only argue if you are 100% sure you are right!