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Strategic Business Proposal
Guitar Center
Prepared On:
June 5, 2022
Prepared By:
Strategic Business Proposal 2
Executive Summary
To the Board of Directors,
After a tough year through the pan...
Strategic Business Proposal 3
1: Organizational Challenge & Solution
Organizational Challenges
The organizational challeng...
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  1. 1. Strategic Business Proposal For For: Guitar Center https://guitarcenter.com/ Prepared On: June 5, 2022 Prepared By: Edward Tangel Seth Gue’ Shane Mancuso Sandra Sipathoum Talissa Rodriguez-Ramos Carlos Parris Instructor Name: Steph “Pinky” Gordon
  2. 2. Strategic Business Proposal 2 Introduction Executive Summary To the Board of Directors, After a tough year through the pandemic, Guitar Center is ready to turn a profit and start earning again through podcasting. Guitar Center will make its debut in the podcasting industry by introducing a podcasting series for all new products, services, and amenities. By targeting our main instrument-sales audience and staying on budget, we will be able to turn a profit within the first year of implementing this podcast. Patreon memberships and tickets to live podcasting recordings will be available for purchase at no cost to us. There are only a few operational and employment additions/changes, as well as some others, that will be covered throughout this proposal.
  3. 3. Strategic Business Proposal 3 1: Organizational Challenge & Solution Organizational Challenges The organizational challenge that Guitar Center has been facing is bankruptcy and the current debt that has been accrued over the years. This doesn’t mean the company is shutting down which is a total misconception. “The voluntary filing was part of a process that will strengthen our company and allow us to serve our customers even better for the long term” (Hissong, S 2020). With this restructuring it allows room for new financial and promotional opportunities, and with that can come new hurdles for the company as well. The coronavirus pandemic has hit a lot of nonessential retailers very hard, and for Guitar Center “the purchase of musical instruments is highly discretionary” (Bloomberg News 2020). Proposed Solution With bankruptcy and the current debt, a podcast is a great solution. According to Forbes, podcasts are on the rise. “In 2020, an estimated 100 million people listened to a podcast each month and it’s expected to rise to 125 million in 2022” (Ibeh, 2021). Guitar Center’s podcast will discuss everything from the people that work within the company to how/where our products are made, with customer inputs on service and products. While there are other music podcasts, there are no podcasts that are specifically tailed to the unique mission Guitar Center has and are willing to break down their business in chapters or episodes. In the beginning, there will be a lot of advertising for the podcast. Selecting 2 days of the week to post podcasts, gives enough time to develop and edit a well-cut podcast that contains music and enough research to ensure that no false information is being put out into the world. The episodes should last anywhere from 20-30 minutes. Most of our youth today have a short attention span. Therefore 20-30 minutes is more than enough time to relay our information without having to rush or worry about dragging out some of the important information that can be seen as boring. Truthfully there is no one fits all rule here (Godoy, 2021) and the length of an episode should depend on the amount of information that is wished to be relayed. The topics of our podcast will be the determining factor of what products are endorsed and even the development of our relationship with our customers. Each episode will focus on one topic to be able to answer questions and stay within the time limit before it starts to feel like it's dragging on. Using a mockup schedule (see Appendix 1) for each podcast we can easily plan out our episode to ensure that nothing is repeated too often to feel repetitive to our listeners. See Appendix 1 for Visual Mock-Up
  4. 4. Strategic Business Proposal 4 2: Environmental Scan Internal Strengths & Weaknesses Strengths: Guitar Center is a well-known brand amongst music creators. We pride ourselves on being a brand that helps up and coming artists through our music programs. We also offer one of the largest musical instrument markets in stores and online. Not only does Guitar Center have a diverse selection of instruments, but they also offer competitive deals year-round to help with retaining customers/sales. Guitar Center is the highest followed musical instrument retail store, only Fender, an instrument manufacturer, has more followers in the music instrument industry (Craft Co, n.d.). These strengths can be used as topics in our podcast to let customers, new or old, learn more about their favorite music brand. Weaknesses: One area that Guitar Center lacks is a social media presence. Partnering with music brands and influencers could be one of the most effective marketing strategies for our current target market. Our brand is a retail chain, so creating memories online or in the store should be at the forefront of our identity. Guitar Center averages a 3.2 out of 5-star rating for their employees compared to competitor brands who are 3.8 out of 5-star or higher (Craft Co, n.d.). Target Market Our target market would consist of men and women, above the age of 24. According to the Fender Play App, 45% of those that started learning how to play guitar were female. This is an increase due to the history of guitar playing being dominated by men. Also, 70% of new registrations are in the 45+ age group and 20% are under 24 years of age. Also noted is that 46% of guitar sales in 2020 and 2021 have been from the Asia-Pacific region, followed then by North America, South America, Europe, Middle East and Africa (Poole, 2022). Psychographics would include aspiring musicians that have recently started spending more time with instruments due to the pandemic. Individuals who feel comfortable starting new hobbies and taking lessons online. Also, the young students who have grown up in the digital age and want to pursue online lessons. Behaviorally, our target market will be targeting those that are fans of podcasts and music, have subscriptions, and downloaded apps such as Fender Play App. Our best marketing practices would be digitally and on social media platforms. External Business Climate Political and Regulatory Podcast creators have seen trouble arise from Fair Use Laws. “Despite trying to avoid copyright issues, it happens regardless. I’ve found the fair use laws to be difficult to navigate” (Dunbar, 2021). There are loopholes that people go through to avoid these same issues. It might be difficult for a strictly music podcast to overcome it. Even snippets as short as 30 seconds can
  5. 5. Strategic Business Proposal 5 interfere with podcasts. It is unfavorable to include music without knowing the effects of Copyright Infringement and what that can bring to any podcast. Economic “Besides being able to create a genuine relationship with your listeners, podcasts are a very cost-effective form of marketing” (Kareh, 2017). There is the ability to connect to an audience that can appreciate the products provided. This audience can bring in new sales for any brand, so there are ways to make money in this type of media. Social and Cultural More and more customers are getting their share of media consumption in different forms. This business proposal is favorable to those who consume audio media. “As a result, new podcast formats and platforms have emerged, offering podcasters and listeners unique techniques for interaction” (Spotti, 2021). With the growth of listeners, it will only keep increasing overtime. The effects of this are beneficial towards every company or influencer. Technological Podcasts are the next big thing. The advances made in technology range from phone use to media consumption. “People prefer audio content over video content because they can listen to podcasts and other audio content while doing exercise and house chores” (Guliyani, 2021). Being able to use technology in everyday life has become the norm. Podcasts have become a constant form of media people use. The number of listeners has grown over the years. There are also many different streaming services that come about listening to podcasts. The concept of podcasts are a new use of technology that keeps evolving. Competitors- Edward The High Gain Podcast Our closest competitor to our project idea would be the High Gain Podcast as they talk about specific instruments throughout history and the sounds they make (About, n.d.). Their episodes cover specific instruments, such as the 1955 Fender Precision bass and the famous Gibson Flying V (YouTube, The High Gain, 2022). This podcast offers listeners an opportunity to get to know an instrument that they may be interested in buying from people who have been playing guitar for over 40 years. They know about the sound and can offer unbiased advice about the specific instrument they are talking about. They do not, however, offer any information on newer products, instrument specs, and never-before seen equipment use. DIY Musician Podcast An indirect competitor of our project idea would be the DIY Musician Podcast. This podcast covers topics to help any emerging or underground artists take hold of and advance their music careers (Trakin, 2021). Kevin Breuner and Chris Robley host the 180+ episode podcast series that covers relevant topics, while having knowledgeable guests (YouTube, DIY Musician Podcast, 2017). This podcast is an indirect competitor because it covers topics relevant to the music industry; however, it does not talk about instruments. It is also not running anymore, so we would just be indirectly competing with their existing fanbase on YouTube and other streaming sites.
  6. 6. Strategic Business Proposal 6 Music Business Podcast Another indirect competitor to our project idea would be the Music Business Podcast. The Music Business Podcast is hosted by industry professionals, offering advice, news, trends, tactics, and insights to anyone interested (Music Business Podcast, 2022). They offer promotions and “VIP” treatments through their Patreon, so fans can feel closer and have an opportunity to get their name or question featured on the podcast (Music Business Podcast is creating an industry blueprint from the most innovative minds in music, 2022). They cover relevant, up-to-date topics in the industry; however, they still do not talk much about new products, equipment, or instruments coming to the world of music. See Appendix 3 for a display of competitor information visually.
  7. 7. Strategic Business Proposal 7 3: Strategy Implementation: Operations Organizational Structure To implement this project, the senior level executives will be responsible for overseeing the national brand and its subsidiaries (Guitar Center, n.d.). In terms of this proposal, they will be responsible for giving the green light and funding. Other than that, they will oversee the Project Manager, Producer, and Engineer. Chief HR Officer, Anne Buchanan, will be responsible for appointing or hiring these staff as well as the two hosts of the podcast. Staffing Needs Staff Average salary per year Host $75,000 (Podcast hosts…, 2022) Host $75,000 (Podcast hosts…, 2022) Producer $60,000 (Podcast producer…, 2022) Audio Engineer $60,000 ($40k-$108K…, 2022) Additional Operational Needs The equipment we will be using will be a part of Guitar Center’s collection of usable/rentable equipment, so there will be no cost associated with the equipment used to produce the podcast. We will be utilizing XSplit as a live recording software for our live-recorded events. It will cost about $60 per year if we go with the “Broadcaster Premium” plan. This allows multistreaming, unlimited scenes, the ability to remove their watermark, and VIP support (XSplit, n.d.). The only other cost associated with the operations of this project would be the cost of whatever product is being featured on that podcast episode. However, the cost will be unknown until the planning of the next podcast episode due to the variety of products sold at a music instrument/product retailer.
  8. 8. Strategic Business Proposal 8 Operational Expenses Year 1 Expense Item Number Needed Cost Research Support and Citation Podcast Host 2 $150,000 (Podcast hosts…, 2022) Audio engineer 1 $60,000 ($40k-$108K…, 2022) Producer 1 $60,000 (Podcast producer…, 2022) XSplit 1 $60 (XSplit, n.d.) Year 2 Expense Item Number Needed Cost Research Support and Citation Podcast Host 2 $150,000 (Podcast hosts…, 2022) Audio engineer 1 $60,000 ($40k-$108K…, 2022) Producer 1 $60,000 (Podcast producer…, 2022) XSplit 1 $60 (XSplit, n.d.) Year 3 Expense Item Number Needed Cost Research Support and Citation Podcast Host 2 $150,000 (Podcast hosts…, 2022)
  9. 9. Strategic Business Proposal 9 Audio engineer 1 $60,000 ($40k-$108K…, 2022) Producer 1 $60,000 (Podcast producer…, 2022) XSplit 1 $60 (XSplit, n.d.)
  10. 10. Strategic Business Proposal 10 3: Strategy Implementation: Marketing Promotion Strategy Promotional Category 1: Online Online advertising is paid media and includes internet marketing. For our specific proposal, we will be utilizing an ad on Pandora, paid media (Facebook, Instagram, & YouTube), and web properties, such as our website and established social media platforms. Campaign Tactic 1: Audio Ad on Pandora, paid online advertisement This will be a 15 second ad that viewers are unable to skip on the Pandora app.The audio ad will provide time, place, featured guest and how to live stream the event. This ad is called an “Audio Everywhere Ad”. It will be audio only, no video, and will run 10 times a day for 2 weeks prior to the event. Users who are 25-34 make up 28%, followed by 55+ making up 22% of Pandora listeners. Age group 34-44 make up 21%. It costs approximately $12 per ad, and because we would run 10 a day, it would cost about $120 per day throughout the 2 weeks the ad is online (Gotter, A. 2022). Campaign Tactic 2: Paid Media Facebook, Instagram and Youtube ads that are paid messages by Guitar Center that will be targeted to audiences. Our ad will have our logo on the left and 2 sentences on the right with our website under it. Gear Up to GIG, Everything you need to get out and play. The second sentence will plug our event. We will run this ad 2 weeks before the event. (14 days) Campaign Tactic 3: Web Properties Utilizing our website, blog and social media platforms for a social media campaign for each event. Postings of the host, highlights and how to stream the event. Different postings daily on facebook and blog, will post 5 twitter posts daily and 3 instagram posts daily. We will run this campaign 2 weeks before the event. Promotional Category 2: Public Relations Public relations refers to the art and science of managing relationships and communicating with the public. There are many tactics that are possible to include; however we will be offering free VIP-like experiences and free meet & greets, i.e. the hosts will be hanging out after to converse with fans.
  11. 11. Strategic Business Proposal 11 Campaign Tactic 1: Free VIP experiences Guitar Center wants customers and fans of the podcast to feel appreciated. At each live event, the first 20 people to show up to the set will receive a free VIP experience to view the staging, production and filming of the podcast, as well as meet the podcast hosts. Campaign Tactic 2: Meet and Greets Meet and Greets with Guitar Center’s podcast hosts and production team will help build a personal connection with the audience. These experiences will differ from the VIP experiences, as the meet and greets are open to everyone at the live events who want to meet and chat with members of the show after the event is over. Promotional Category 3: Advertising Advertising covers most things; however, it specifically covers paid promotions: traditional or online. We will be utilizing a banner featuring a QR code with a direct link to the podcast. We will also be utilizing traditional radio ads during morning rush hour to spread the word to as many people as possible. Campaign Tactic 1: QR Codes Utilizing QR codes will benefit the podcast as all retail locations will be able to display this QR code to customers which could convert into more listeners. The QR code will be a direct link to the podcast where they can choose their favorite platform to listen on. Guitar Center will display this QR code on a vinyl banner in the windows at all retail stores. The cost associated with these banners is $39.65/unit at 294 locations across the US, in total the cost for displaying the QR code is $11,657.10. Campaign Tactic 2: Traditional Radio Ads Radio ads are one of the most specific ways to reach your target audience. Many variables play into ROI, such as the radio station, time slot, and ad frequency. Guitar Center is looking to run an ad on radio during Morning Rush Hour up to 3 times. This will be a 30-second advertisement to run in multiple cities (up to 10) across the US at $115/radio ad. The total costs for this ad will be around $3,450/day. Because this is so expensive we will only plan to run this one day per week.
  12. 12. Strategic Business Proposal 12 Marketing Expenses Year 1 Expense Item Frequency, Size, Etc. Cost Research Support and Citation Audio Ad- Pandora 15 second audio ad, 10 times daily for 2 weeks prior to event $12 p/ad $120 p/day= $1,680 for 2 weeks (Gotter, A. 2020) Paid media Facebook + Instagram Youtube $5 p/day for clicks, likes, or views = $70 for 2 weeks = $140 for both platforms $10 p/day=$140 for 2 weeks (WebMX) Web Properties Website, blog, social media channels- mentions, shares, reposts, retweets Earned audience- no charges except $40 monthly fee to manage website QR Banners One-Time, 294 units, 2.5 x 6 ft size $39.65/unit x 294 (locations) = $11,657.10 (Vistaprint, n.d.) Radio Ads 30 second time slot, 3 times/day, 10 cities $3,450/day (Haskell, L. 2021) Year 2 Expense Item Frequency, Size, Etc. Cost Research Support and Citation Audio Ad- Pandora 15 second audio ad, 10 times daily for 2 weeks prior to event $12 p/ad $120 p/day=$1,680 for 2 weeks (Gotter, A. 2020)
  13. 13. Strategic Business Proposal 13 Paid media Facebook + Instagram Youtube $5 p/day for clicks, likes, or views = $70 for 2 weeks = $140 for both platforms $10 p/day=$140 for 2 weeks (WebMX) Web Properties Website, blog, social media channels- mentions, shares, reposts, retweets Earned audience- no charges except $40 monthly fee to manage website Radio Ads 30 second time slot, 3 times/day, 10 cities $3,450/day (Haskell, L. 2021) Year 3 Expense Item Frequency, Size, Etc. Cost Research Support and Citation Audio Ad- Pandora 15 second audio ad, 10 times daily for 2 weeks prior to event $12 p/ad $120 p/day=$1,680 for 2 weeks (Gotter, A. 2020) Paid media Facebook + Instagram Youtube $5 p/day for clicks, likes, or views = $70 for 2 weeks = $140 for both platforms $10 p/day=$140 for 2 weeks (WebMX) Web Properties Website, blog, social media channels- mentions, shares, reposts, retweets Earned audience- no charges except $40 monthly fee to manage website Radio Ads 30 second time slot, 3 times/day, 10 cities $3,450/day (Haskell, L. 2021)
  14. 14. Strategic Business Proposal 14 3: Strategy Implementation: Legal Risks & Liabilities There are not many general risks when running a podcast; however, it is always a good idea to go over general safety concerns or hazards, such as voltage and working with live sound equipment. Wearing eye protection, ear protection, gloves (when loading and unloading), and close-toed shoes, can be vital in the safety and comfortability of the job. It is also important to disconnect or turn off power before connecting any high power or feeder cables. Lifting with your legs is also an important piece of advice when lifting anything heavy (Leeman, 2013). We will always make sure to have a first aid kit on hand, and we will make sure the fire exits are not being blocked in case of any emergency. We will purchase our first aid kit from My Medic, and it will be a one-time cost of around $100 (Myfak, n.d.). Regulations Along with safety concerns, there are some legal concerns as well. It is always a good idea to be aware of music and art laws, as well as the laws involved in the usage of that usage art or music. Ownership rights will be important to establish in Guitar Center’s name. For any guests or vendors, they will have to sign an agreement with the people working with the podcast not employed by Guitar Center, such as guest musicians or hosts (Simplecast, 2019). Because Guitar Center is an established company, they will not need to worry about establishing a new LLC for the podcast; however, they will have to provide the podcast revenue and other tax information as soon as the podcast starts generating any sort of revenue. Contracts For this specific podcast, there are a few contracts and agreements needed, so everyone is paid and treated fairly. The Podcast Collaboration Agreement covers everything from partner’s ownership to revenue splits and more. A sponsorship agreement will be needed for any sponsors of the podcast. This is going to be one way we make money, by having sponsors, so the sponsorship agreement will be important. The podcast host agreement will include all terms and conditions for the hosts. A podcast guest release will be needed if there are any guest hosts or celebrity guest stars. This document will include compensation of the guest star/host (if any). An editor and audio engineer agreement will be needed for the audio engineer. A marketing agreement will be needed for any marketing agent or agency. In our case, we will be utilizing Guitar Center’s marketing team, so this will not be an expense other than the contract itself. The final license that may be needed will be for any audio clips used during production or editing: an audio clip license (Creators Legal, n.d.). Thankfully, there are companies, such as Creators Legal, that offer a “Professional Podcast Package” that includes the necessary contracts and agreements. This comes for the low price of $39; if the package were to be purchased
  15. 15. Strategic Business Proposal 15 separately, the total would come out to $95 (Creators Legal, n.d.). To save money, it would be vital to the company to purchase the package, even if some of the contracts included will not be used. It is also never a bad idea to have them around just in case. Insurance Podcast insurance will be one that is needed to be added to Guitar Center’s list of insurance costs. Podcast insurance will protect the podcast in case of copyright infringement, inaccuracy of information on the podcast, and/or the podcast is classed as defamation with awarded damages. In other words, it covers if the podcast is being accused of copyright, action is being taken against the podcast around misinformation and misrepresentation, and any concern about privacy risks. The specific insurance that covers these areas is called errors & omissions (E&O) insurance. At La Playa, they are a company dedicated to specialist insurance regarding digital and media. They are there for 24/7 help with independent, expert advice (La Playa, 2022). Although we would need a quote and exact numbers, the average price of E&O insurance is around $65 per month, or $780 per year (Insureon, n.d.). Intellectual Property Intellectual property (IP) may not be something that is always associated with podcasting; however, there are a few aspects of a podcast that can be trademarked. Domain names, podcast names, individual episode titles, and even live-streaming events can be trademarked as IP. Copyright protection can be added to cover any episode titles, live streams, or “jingles” associated with the podcast (intro jingle of each podcast). Once the creative work is “tangible”, it is considered to be copyrighted; however, it may be wise to register the popular episodes for extra protection. There is one trade secret that is important to note in the podcast industry, and that is email lists. Creating and keeping a list of emails can be very helpful in times of need and are highly valuable to the brand (The Michelson Institute for Intellectual Property, 2021). In general, once the work is tangible it is covered under copyright protection, so there is no cost associated with that. Registering a trademark cost around $49 from an online source called TrademarkPlus; that does not include a government fee that would be added when paying (TrademarkPlus, n.d.). Thankfully, Guitar Center already has an established website and domain name, so they can just add this to their website somewhere easily accessible and noticeable.
  16. 16. Strategic Business Proposal 16 Legal Expenses Year 1 Expense Item Frequency or Quantity Cost Research Support and Citation First aid kit 1 $129.95 (on sale for $97.46) (Myfak, n.d.) Podcast insurance Monthly $65/month $780/year (Insureon, n.d.) “Professional Podcast Package” (contracts/agreements) single-use $39 ($95 if purchased separately; $19 per contract) (Creators Legal, n.d.) Year 2 Expense Item Frequency or Quantity Cost Research Support and Citation Podcast insurance Monthly $65/month $780/year (Insureon, n.d.) Year 3 Expense Item Frequency or Quantity Cost Research Support and Citation Podcast insurance Monthly $65/month $780/year (Insureon, n.d.)
  17. 17. Strategic Business Proposal 17 4: Strategy Implementation: Sales Projections Tickets Tickets to a live podcast recording is the service that is being sold. Unit Volume Explanation Our total expenses for the year add up to $270,060. With a unit volume of 10,000 being sold annually, this would be $27.00 per unit. 270,060/10,000= $27.00. The unit volume is set to accommodate the yearly expenses of the podcast crew. Unit Price Explanation Our annual total expenses to implement podcast recordings is $270,060. Our goal would be to sell 10,000 tickets per podcast at the unit cost of $32.27. We would also charge a service fee to make a profit on each ticket sold. A 19.5% profit on each ticket sold for $27.00. The tickets would sell for $32.27 and Guitar Center would make a profit of $52,590 for $10,000 tickets sold.on each podcast. Moment House has been live-streaming podcast recordings, called “Moments,” since March 2021. This company has sold 140,000 tickets over the course of the 56 that it has hosted since then. These streams are averaging payouts as high as $500,000. Creators keep all gross revenue. Moment House makes money from a 10% percent service fee on the customer. These huge payouts come from a combination of tickets, merchandise and meet and greets. (Bracci, A. 2022) This is comparable to the idea that Guitar Center is presenting. Selling tickets to our live-streaming podcast recordings, offer meet and greets and performances. Unit Cost Explanation There is no unit cost because tickets will be for purchase online. Patreon The Patreon for Guitar Center would be one-tier. This membership would include exclusive behind the scenes content from the podcast and a branded Guitar Center sticker. At the end of every episode, subscribers will be able to access the content from that specific episode. Unit Volume Explanation In the first year for Guitar Center, there would be around 50,000 Patreon members. The process will be to gain more followers in the following years. The volume of each unit would increase in
  18. 18. Strategic Business Proposal 18 150,000-unit increments. There are more than 1 million followers on Guitar Center's Instagram and YouTube (Guitar Center, n.d.). And Guitar Center's capability to meet this many members on Patreon is due to the high numbers shown on the other social media sites. Unit Price Explanation When subscribing to Guitar Centers' Patreon, the price would be $10 for every unit since the average price to subscribe to other Patreons is $5 (Campbell, 2018). After filing for bankruptcy in 2020 and finding a new surge of business in 2021 (Paul 2021). Due to the nature of the membership, this price point works in favor of bringing a steady income. It also ensures that the members get exclusive goods in exchange.The Pro Plan from Patreon has an 8% cut, but it is the most reasonable to choose this plan as it includes all that is helpful for this podcast on Patreon (Patreon, 2022). Unit Cost Explanation There is no unit cost for this because it does not cost anything to open a Patreon account. See Appendix 5 for Sales Projections.
  19. 19. Strategic Business Proposal 19 4: Strategy Implementation: Income Statement Assuming everything goes as planned, we will be making money every year, with increasing profits. In year one, we are expecting to make approximately $206K. In year two, we are expecting to make approximately $2million. In year three, we are expecting to make approximately $3.75million. Fortunately, nothing will be hindering profit, as we are trying to make this a solid revenue stream for the company overall. With the recent file for bankruptcy, the implementation of a costless Patreon will only turn profit. Our biggest expense will be marketing the podcast for the first three years; however, by keeping other prices down, we are able to expand the marketing budget, so we are sure to turn a profit. See Appendix 7 for a visualized mock income statement.
  20. 20. Strategic Business Proposal 20 5: Strategy Implementation: Project Timeline Pre-Launch Pre-Launch includes everything from obtaining all the legal obligations to actually creating and posting the first podcast. With a start date of August 1, 2022, we are able to assume that the pre-launch process will take roughly 6 months. Thus, meaning the first episode of the podcast will air on February 1, 2023. Month 1 is the first significant milestone. It will consist of completing all legal obligations including contracts, insurances, and any other legal finances that should be attended to before anything is recorded or released to the public. This month will also consist of creating content plans for at least 3 episodes excluding the actual launch episode. Month 2 will consist of hiring the appropriate number of staff. This will consist of 2 hosts, an audio engineer, and a producer. At the same time, this month will be used to find any guests for the podcast for the next few episodes. Months 3 and 4 are the second significant milestone. It will consist of purchasing all of the necessary podcast equipment. This includes microphones, any furniture for the room in which the podcast will be recorded, and any equipment needed for editing. This month will also include rough recordings of the first few episodes of the podcast as well as a small trailer to use when advertising the podcast online. Months 5 and 6 will consist of marketing, final editing, and advertising techniques. During this time, social media accounts will be made specifically for the podcast using Guitar Centers already established themes and colors. Final editing will be done to the Intro episode as well as three more episodes to have them ready in advance. Year 1 The first significant milestone that will take place during Year 1 is updating all the legal obligations. By keeping up to date with all our licenses, there is no worry about any of them expiring while podcast episodes are being made. The second significant milestone will be completing all of the episode planning within the first 2 months of the year. By having a rough draft of the topics that are wished to be talked about, the process of finding guests can begin and tailoring the guests to specific topics and episodes. Year 2 & 3 While the beginning of Years 2 & 3 will be like Year 1, the first significant milestone will be updating all equipment and social media pages. Having updated equipment will allow for recording to run smoothly without having to worry about any old equipment malfunctioning. The second significant milestone will be creating a new kind of buzz around the podcast. After already been around for a year, there will be more that needs to go into keeping up with trends to allow for the podcast to stay relevant and entertaining to the listeners. See Appendix 8 for Project Timeline.
  21. 21. Strategic Business Proposal 21 References $40k-$108K Podcast Audio Engineer Jobs (now hiring) - ziprecruiter. ZipRecruiter. (2022). Retrieved June 10, 2022, from https://www.ziprecruiter.com/Jobs/Podcast-Audio- Engineer About. DIY Musician Podcast. (2022). Retrieved June 3, 2022, from https://podcast.cdbaby.com/who-we-are/ About. The High Gain. (n.d.). Retrieved June 5, 2022, from https://www.thehighgain.com/about Bloomberg News and IBJ Staff (2020). https://www.ibj.com/articles/guitar-center-declares- bankruptcy-seeks-to-restructure Bracci, A. (2022, March 15). Virtual podcast events are bringing in six-figure earnings. The Verge. Retrieved June 12, 2022, from https://www.theverge.com/2022/3/15/22979006/moment-house-virtual-events-gumball- host-read-marketplace-podcast Campbell, P. (2018). Tearing down Patreon's pricing. Subscription business financial metrics. Absolutely free. Retrieved June 12, 2022, from https://www.profitwell.com/recur/all/patreon-pricing-page-teardown Coleman, C. (2021, November 1). What podcasters need to know about fair use. Forbes. Retrieved June 4, 2022, from https://www.forbes.com/sites/colettecoleman/2021/11/01/what-podcasters-need-to- know-about-fair-use/?sh=19bf0c454b35 Craft.Co. (May, 2022). Guitar Center Competitors. Retrieved June 3, 2022, from https://craft.co/guitar-center/competitors Creators Legal. (n.d.). Podcast contracts. Creators Legal. Retrieved June 11, 2022, from https://creatorslegal.com/product-category/podcast/ Godoy, C. (2021, January 23). Can a podcast be too short? analyzing podcast length preferences. Improve Podcast. Retrieved June 5, 2022, from https://improvepodcast.com/can-podcast-be-too-short-podcast-length-preferences/ Gotter, A. June, 2020. Pandora Advertising101: Is it Right For You? Disruptive https://disruptiveadvertising.com/marketing/pandora-advertising-101/ Guitar Center [@Guitarcenter]. (n.d.). Posts [Instagram Profile]. Retrieved June 12, 2022, from https://www.instagram.com/guitarcenter/?hl=en
  22. 22. Strategic Business Proposal 22 Guitar Center. (n.d.). Our leadership. Our Team | Guitar Center. Retrieved June 11, 2022, from https://www.guitarcenter.com/pages/our-team Guitar center: Music instruments, accessories and equipment. Guitar Center: Music Instruments, Accessories and Equipment. (2022). Retrieved June 3, 2022, from https://www.guitarcenter.com/ Guliyani, M. (2022, April 5). Are podcasts the next big thing in technology? SaaS Industry. Retrieved June 5, 2022, from https://saasindustry.com/emerging-tech/are-podcasts-the- next-big-thing-in-technology/ Haskell, L. (2021, November 24). Radio advertising costs: How much is it? (and how to get the best price). Fast Capital 360. Retrieved June 12, 2022, from https://www.fastcapital360.com/blog/radio-advertising-costs/ The high gain podcast is creating a funny, profane, historical podcast about guitars. Patreon. (2022). Retrieved June 3, 2022, from https://www.patreon.com/thehighgain How Much Does Social Media Cost in 2022? WebFX. Retrieved June 11, 2022 https://www.webfx.com/social-media/pricing/how-much-does-social-media-advertising- cost/ Ibeh, C. (2021, November 29). The evolution of podcasting may continue to its own demise. The DePaulia. Retrieved June 5, 2022, from https://depauliaonline.com/55999/artslife/the-evolution-of-podcasting-may-continue-to- its-own- demise/#:~:text=According%20to%20Forbes%2C%2037%20percent,to%20125%20milli on%20in%202022. Insureon. (n.d.). Errors and omissions (E&O) insurance cost. Insureon. Retrieved June 11, 2022, from https://www.insureon.com/small-business-insurance/errors-omissions/cost Kareh, A. (2017, August 25). Council post: How podcasts can lead to better connections with your audience. Forbes. Retrieved June 5, 2022, from https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbesagencycouncil/2017/04/11/establish-goodwill-and- credibility-for-a-better-connection-with-your-audiences-by-using- podcasts/?sh=3ac78a7829d4 Karneva, S. (2021, September 8). The era of audio: The rise of podcasts. Diggit Magazine. Retrieved June 5, 2022, from https://www.diggitmagazine.com/articles/era-audio-rise- podcasts Leerman, C. (2013, February 13). Putting safety first in live sound. ProSoundWeb. Retrieved June 11, 2022, from https://www.prosoundweb.com/putting-safety-first-in-live-sound/ The Michelson Institute for Intellectual Property. (2021, March 25). Intellectual property podcast rights and basics. Michelson IP. Retrieved June 11, 2022, from https://michelsonip.com/intellectual-property-podcast-rights/
  23. 23. Strategic Business Proposal 23 Monllos, K. (April 2022). Why Guitar Center is focusing its marketing efforts on “inspiration for new musicians’ : DIGIDAY. https://digiday.com/marketing/why-guitar-center-is-focusing- its-marketing-efforts-on-inspiration-for-new-musicians/ Music Business Podcast is creating an industry blueprint from the most innovative minds in music. Patreon. (2022). Retrieved June 3, 2022, from https://www.patreon.com/musicbusinesspodcast Music Business Podcast. (2022). Retrieved June 3, 2022, from https://www.musicbusinesspodcast.com/#home-section Myfak. My Medic. (n.d.). Retrieved June 11, 2022, from https://mymedic.com/products/myfak- firstaidkit?currency=USD&variant=39348827521120&utm_medium=cpc&utm_source=g oogle&utm_campaign=Google+Shopping&gclid=Cj0KCQjw- pCVBhCFARIsAGMxhAf_55A51nc3ipx4K2cnVGQHicfGB1_al- feWPTkqnp4s_hN1w_Ur80aAqdSEALw_wcB Paul, A. (2021, October 28). The covid-19 pandemic saved guitar center from bankruptcy. The A.V. Club. Retrieved June 12, 2022, from https://www.avclub.com/the-covid-19- pandemic-saved-guitar-center-from-bankrupt-1847956699 Podcast host annual salary ($75,931 avg | jun 2022) - ziprecruiter. ZipRecruiter. (2022). Retrieved June 10, 2022, from https://www.ziprecruiter.com/Salaries/Podcast-Host- Salary Podcast producer annual salary ($47,041 avg - ziprecruiter. Ziprecruiter. (2022). Retrieved June 11, 2022, from https://www.ziprecruiter.com/Salaries/Podcast-Producer-Salary Poole, S. (Jan 2022). Guitar Sales Statistics (2022)- Most Recent Guitar Industry Data: Music Strive https://musicstrive.com/guitar-sales-statistics/ Pricing. Patreon. (2022). Retrieved June 12, 2022, from https://www.patreon.com/pricing Simplecast. (2019, November 26). 7 laws every podcast creator needs to know. The Simplecast Blog. Retrieved June 11, 2022, from https://blog.simplecast.com/7- podcasting-laws/ Support us. The High Gain. (2022). Retrieved June 3, 2022, from https://www.thehighgain.com/support TrademarkPlus. (n.d.). Register a trademark name, logo or phrase. Retrieved June 12, 2022, from https://www.trademarkplus.com/special-offer/trademarks/trademark- registration.asp?afid=g2481&refid=dwjhgh87ghrwmn9i&A=2&SubAffiliateID=g2481&key
  24. 24. Strategic Business Proposal 24 wordid=trademark+registration+price&gclid=CjwKCAjwnZaVBhA6EiwAVVyv9Bb_SX17 1ak2lbwiE6R8c8a-IC1a5EJUesCJyWOhF8wrJ9rSuTXUNxoCiXkQAvD_BwE Trakin, R. (2021, September 24). 13 essential music industry podcasts, from 'Song Exploder' to 'mogul'. Variety. Retrieved June 3, 2022, from https://variety.com/2021/music/news/best-music-industry-podcasts-1235065961/ YouTube. (2017). DIYMusicianPodcast. YouTube. Retrieved June 3, 2022, from https://www.youtube.com/user/DIYMusicianPodcast YouTube. (2022). Music Business Podcast. YouTube. Retrieved June 3, 2022, from https://www.youtube.com/c/MusicBusinessPodcast YouTube. (2022). The high gain. YouTube. Retrieved June 3, 2022, from https://www.youtube.com/c/TheHighGain XSplit. (n.d.). Upgrade xsplit and unlock new features. Upgrade XSplit and Unlock New Features | XSplit Premium. Retrieved June 11, 2022, from https://www.xsplit.com/buy?pp=www_navbar Vistaprint. (n.d.). Vinyl banners. VistaPrint. Retrieved June 12, 2022, from https://www.vistaprint.com/signs-posters/vinyl-banners
  25. 25. Strategic Business Proposal 25 Appendices Appendix 1: Idea Mock-Up
  26. 26. Strategic Business Proposal 26 The two images above are mockups of the podcast cover and schedule. The second image provides all the data that is needed to successfully create the podcast. This includes the hosts and any guests, the date that has been selected for recording the podcast, the date the podcast will be posted, and most important, a bullet point list of the different sections within the episode.
  27. 27. Strategic Business Proposal 27 Appendix 2: Target Market Michael Smith, a 35-year-old teacher from Pittsburgh, history of music lessons in his youth. Michael is a music lover and spends time on his laptop and social media platform, Tiktok. Michael does listen to podcasts and enjoys streaming live performances. Michael became more involved in social media platforms during the pandemic, started watching dad TikTok videos and thinks he could learn to play guitar online. Michael downloaded the Fender Play App.
  28. 28. Strategic Business Proposal 28 Appendix 3: Competitive Analysis Guitar Center DIY Musician Podcast Music Business Podcast The High Gain Podcast Direct or Indirect Competition X Indirect Indirect Direct Competitive Product/Service Music instrument podcast Musician podcast Music industry podcast Music instrument podcast Featured products/service s Variety of new instruments/equipmen t Tips & tricks on gaining traction in the industry, gains advice/talks with industry professional s (2021) Industry professional s speaking on relevant topics (2022) Famous guitars & historic instrument s (2022) YouTube subscribers 1.03M (2022) 3.74K (2022) 2.54K (2022) 207 (2022)
  29. 29. Strategic Business Proposal 29 Perks Seeing & learning about unreleased products; gaining a knowledgeable edge on competitors (2022) Industry specific news/tips from leading industry professional s (2021) As a Patreon subscriber: Discord access Networking opportunities Weekly newsletter Ask questions that will be answered on the show Monthly VIP happy hour Zoom call with hosts (2022) As a Patreon subscriber: Exclusive Discord access Exclusive sticker Exclusive “bonus content” (2022)
  30. 30. Strategic Business Proposal 30 Appendix 4: Marketing Sample
  31. 31. Strategic Business Proposal 31 Appendix 5: Sales Projections
  32. 32. Strategic Business Proposal 32 Appendix 6: Expense Budget
  33. 33. Strategic Business Proposal 33 Appendix 7: Income Statement Either insert screen captures of your Income Statement tab of your financial workbook or PDF both documents and combine files accordingly.
  34. 34. Strategic Business Proposal 34 Appendix 8: Project Timeline-Talissa The images below show the projected timeline of Guitar Center’s podcast. Image 1 is a brief display of the headlining tasks and when they should be done for Pre-Launch. Image 2 is a detailed schedule of the subtasks and the days that they should be completed by for Pre- Launch.