Recording a song or an entire album can take weeks, months, even years depending on lots of variables. While it is true that some bands can go into a studio and do 1-2 takes to capture the various instrumentation and vocals that go into a final recording, the production typically takes much longer.

Then there are the bands that rehearse and record over and over, recording dozens of versions of a song’s elements before the producer goes away and orchestrates the best pieces into the finished product.

Some producers and bands prefer to record a live version of a song as a base track, then go back and layer in refined sessions of the various instruments to replace their live version. Some start with drums and bass and build from there.

One of my favorite documentaries is Jean-Luc Godard’s Sympathy for the Devil, which among other politically charged themes, intersperses raw footage of the Rolling Stones recording the song by the same name in 1968. It both demystified, but at the same time illustrated, the concept of musical genius.

In the movie you can see how the seemingly simple song was actually a series of complex layers of audio built on top of each other for a final mix that became of the most noticeable hit songs from a band with an endless list of such. As much as it shows you how to record a song, it also illustrates how it takes a special kind of mind (and ear) to do it well.

Regardless of how the producer or band approaches recording, the finished product is typically the result of hours and hours of work, writing, rewriting, editing, changing, polishing, starting over and so on. It takes a lot of trial and error to get the mix just right. Even then you can only hope the audience agrees the final product is right.

This is also true of the perfect marketing mix. We’ve begun a path of revisiting some important basic topics in digital marketing for small businesses here. Defining a brand for your small business is the first, and often most important step. Small business success starts with your website. You need to present a digital value proposition there.

These are all important layers of recording going into the mix of the song that is your small business success. And there are dozens more.

Rome wasn’t built in a day. Sympathy for the Devil wasn’t one live take. Your perfect marketing mix won’t happen overnight, either.

In order to build what we ultimately hope to achieve, we need to ready for a long haul. We’ll take it one step at a time and I’ll be here the whole journey to help. But let’s make 2017 the year we all produce that perfect mix and make great music together, shall we?

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