Dylan Berry tells us about challenges in the music industry and how SmashHaus provides innovative solutions.
Tell us about you, your career, and how you founded SmashHaus.
Dylan Berry: Thank you for this interview. I feel honored.
I started out in bands in Seattle on a small Sony label imprint at 19, then moved to LA and got a gig in Film and TV in the Art department while fueling my obsession to make my mark in the music biz. I got a crack at doing a documentary score and brought in my good buddy Noah Lifschey. That led to many more. I quit my day job and started a company with Noah (Hollowstone), which led to the development of SmashHaus, which was a larger community of creators, the first of its kind, tech-driven, and efficient. We then did most of the big shows on TV, from the Oscars to American Idol, branded over 30+ TV Networks, and tons of media work with the team.
I wound up SmashHaus down as a middleman company about 6 years ago because there were so many popping up, taking my business model and abusing artists, and I wanted not to be part of it, so I went and did other things. I helped the rebirth of the Nordic.LA, the top art and culture export in Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Iceland, and Norway, invested in a few things, including concert series.. but when the pandemic hit, I realized so many of my friends were struggling to make ends meet. No tours, no income soooooo I rebuilt SmashHaus but this time with the mission of removing the need for middlemen in the music and content industry. And that’s what we did with a community of the best creators from around the globe, superstars to those producing music at that level.
Do you have small habits that made a meaningful impact on your life and business?
Dylan Berry: Yes. I leave more than I take, and I listen to everyone. I can’t do any of this without the power of our community, so I tilt the hat to them, and they help me lead. #Th3Syndicate
How does SmashHaus market its product/services online?
Dylan Berry: We are partnered with communities that access a. Talent, b. Media conglomerates. As a result, we serve both in a far better, more transparent way, so they find us. It’s a word-of-mouth thing.
What specific tools, software, and management skills are you using to manage your online marketing?
Dylan Berry: We don’t do a lot of online marketing. We are community-based, so our members are invite-only or submit and go through an approval process. As such, we use LeadDyno and manage our internal operations with Trello, both very helpful tools, but mostly, our members invite their friends. We are very focused on quality, so it’s not about having a massive community of creators for us; it’s about having the right creators, so that is often by referral.
What is your hiring policy/process, and how do you retain your employees?
Dylan Berry: I tend to hire from within and our intern program. Big love to Ohio University and Coop for producing some of the best new music industry folks. Outside of that. I hire from LinkedIn.
How are you funding your growth?
Dylan Berry: I am self-funding it and or allocating revenue to support it.
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Dylan Berry: Envato, Getty…The problem with these companies is they are middlemen and control all content and talent and never let them work directly, so companies spend money with no relationship or assets. It’s just a waste of money, and creators make far less because of middlemen fees and can’t build clients because they hide them. Frankly, we are a better, more transparent, direct B2B business. Using SmashHaus allows creators to build clients and get paid more, while companies can build talent teams and valuable assets. I mean, why spend money on another person’s company to get talent when you can work direct? We allow people to work direct.
Tell us a customer success story of yours.
Dylan Berry: We have put hundreds of creators on TV, Film, Advertisements, and Radio. In the last month alone, we featured 150 new indie artists on the radio from 7 continents and got artists featured on Riot Games Valorant event, reaching 40M viewers. This is just a snapshot of some of the opportunities creators have executed on. We have earned millions for creators over the years, and now they can work directly with companies.
Also, we have the only pre-cleared music catalog that passes 100% of all income earned to creators. The only of its kind.
We are also pioneering NFTs and web three to empower audio and visual content creators to earn income without labels, publishers, agents, etc. They can build their own business on SmashHaus without spending all their time wining and dining clients. We already know them, and all they want is the best talent and content. Easy work.
Your final thoughts.
Dylan Berry: I firmly believe that removing middlemen who control 99% of the music, video, and image-based business and allowing these creators to build their own clients and income is the only way that we remove the abuse we see across the board in the industry. I am working with my community to solve this with SmashHaus. We are music and audio focused today but soon will be launching images, video, and even code-based content. WHERE ARE MY ARTISTS AT?