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Entertain, Educate, Encourage

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Book Review - Platform by Michael Hyatt, Part 1


Here's a new one for Singerreise: A book review!

Periodically, I will post reviews of books that I have been reading that may be of interest to singers. This one is called Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World, by Michael Hyatt. I "read" the audiobook, performed by the author.


It had been on my Amazon wishlist for maybe a year-and-a-half, probably since I heard an interview of Michael Hyatt on the Entreleadership Podcast in this episode last summer. My in-laws gifted it to me for Christmas, and once the memorization crunch for Winterreise finally subsided, I finally was able to dig in (while doing house chores, exercising, etc.).

The premise of the book is great. It is directed towards "anyone with something to say or sell." That very much applies to what I am attempting to do with Singerreise and as the performer Jonathan Silvia. It's a noisy world out there for sure, and getting noisier all the time. I mean, the Super Bowl barely made a dent in the political noise coming through facebook. If ever we needed to rise above the noise, this is the time.

I had high hopes for the book.

The book's concepts were exactly what I needed to hear. It starts off by talking about how to have something worth saying. I'm slightly amused by the title for Part One: Start with Wow, as it seems like a direct reference to Simon Sinek's Start with Why (which I also read in the least year). It then goes on to building a good homebase, engaging others more, using social media, and taking the show on the road.

This subjects matter right now for those of us in the singing profession. As singers, we must know how to market ourselves effectively. The old model where all we had to do was find a manager and then they would handle all of our marketing for us - that model's simply gone (or it never really was there to begin with - I defer to my older colleagues to comment on that one). Now, we have to optimize our presence on the web, and websites, video clips, available press materials, and social media are a huge part of that. It seems like you do not exist as a singer if you do not have an active online presence.

It is too easy for us, as singers, to think that our "job" only requires us to sing with excellence. That, by the mere merit of our talent alone, we should be granted success. The book goes out of its way, especially in Part Two, to say that while excellence is foundational, there's a lot more to it than that. We can't just sit back and wait for success to come our way.

Those are some broad, sweeping statements, and I am happy to say that so far I'm in total agreement. But the devil is in the details, as they say. I did wind up having some issues with the book... but I'll talk about that in another post! Come back in a couple days to hear more!

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