Derek Sivers

Entrepreneur, programmer, avid student of life. I make useful things, and share what I learn.

Aiming to please big clients versus little clients

Thinking about the difference between aiming to please a few big clients versus aiming to please lots of little clients.

From a business point of view:
Many small entrepreneurs think, "If we could just land Apple, Google, or the government as a client, we'll be all set!"

Software companies often do this. They hope to make some technology that a huge company will want to build into every product, or install at every employee's desk.

But there are many problems with this:

Instead, imagine if you designed your business to have NO big clients - just lots of little clients.

Now, let's think of this from a music point of view:

Some musicians think, "If I could just land a deal with Interscope or Warner, I'll be all set!"

But look at the above lists again. It all applies.

The dangerous thing about the record deal mentality is you start changing what you do to please the one or two people at companies who have shown an interest in your music.It not only hurts your music, but puts you on shaky ground when (not if) that person leaves the company.

By making a plan to only please your fans, labels be damned, then not only do you stay in touch with what people love, but it puts your career on much steadier ground.

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