Nick Klimenko is a highly successful electronic musician and sound designer from Russia. His journey began at the age of 13 when he first discovered his love for music through his brother. As he grew older, he released a few albums and, eventually, created a studio and music production school with his team members.
Aside from the school and studio, Nick and his team also make YouTube videos featuring instrument tutorials as well as special music and sound techniques that aren’t covered by other musicians. Thanks to that, they’ve been able to gain significant international recognition.
At some point, Nick realized that he needed a platform for selling his sound designs to a growing YouTube audience. When he came across Sellfy, he liked it so much that he didn’t look for any other options—Sellfy had everything he needed. Now, Nick and his team enjoy a lifestyle and a business they had dreamed of.
Read on to learn more about Nick’s journey, Sellfy’s impact on his business, and how he followed his goal against all odds.
What’s your background?
Greetings from the headquarters of our LFO Store in Moscow! My name is Nick, and I got into music when I was 13 years old. My older brother was a musician in an electronica group called Virtual Mode. That’s how I got interested in making electronic music.
Around the age of 15, I released my first album in Russia. And then, a few years later, I released another one with a worldwide label. Eventually, I created a studio called Chronos, which is ancient Greek for “time”. I learned a little ancient Greek and Latin back in my college days, so I also picked the names for my tracks and projects from these languages.
After 10 years of making music under this project, I felt that I had grown enough to be able to teach others to achieve their dreams and use their musical creativity. So, in 2010, we opened the Stereo School. We give private lessons for all kinds of musical productions like arrangement, mixing, mastering, sound design with synthesizers, music-making, soundtrack scoring, and so on.
Aside from that, I also work with sound, kind of like a DJ on radio shows. And then, as a consultant and artist for Yamaha, Steinberg, Arturia, and other brands. For now, we’ve also teamed up with friends to make music for motion pictures like films and such.
How did you decide to create digital products? What was your first product?
In 2017, I realized that I can share my knowledge and make individual sounds for different genres as well as show how different instruments work. So, I created preset packs that included sound design for synthesizers.
My first sound set had 50 different sounds. It became very popular. We have earned thousands of dollars with this product.
And, at what point did you find Sellfy?
Me and my team members realized that we needed a platform for selling our products; a platform that could cover all our needs and the needs of our clients. Since we’re musicians and not IT guys, we wanted something with an easy learning curve.
Some of our colleagues who already had stores recommended Sellfy. We tried it and liked it so much that we didn’t try anything else. We had all the functions we needed.
How do you use Sellfy?
We upload videos to our Sellfy store and then add Sellfy’s Buy Now buttons to our main site. We mainly promote our site via YouTube and other partners such as news portals, advertisers, etc.
What are your favorite Sellfy features?
First of all, Sellfy is easy to use. You can learn how it works in just two or three days. Secondly, it’s very easy to manage and launch your own products. I usually spend maybe 15–20 minutes on launching a product. It’s fast, and the marketing features are very good.
Besides email marketing and upselling, coupons also work very well. And, the fact that Sellfy works with credit cards in Russia and other countries is a huge thing. It helps people from foreign countries be a part of our family.
How did you build your audience?
We made YouTube videos featuring special music and sound techniques that are not covered by other bloggers. Some of these videos got the public’s attention and gave us 50,000 views. We also made lots of instrument tutorials.
We sell sound designs for different types of synthesizers from three separate Sellfy accounts. All of these accounts are owned by our team members and they’re connected to our main site. And, each account targets a different audience looking for specific synth sounds.
Also, each member of the team has a specific role and expertise. For example, one member makes tutorials, another one makes great presentable videos, and I make videos for vintage instruments.
So, we’ve gained also our followers’ trust by utilizing the skill and specialty of every team member. That way, we ensure that people don’t just buy a single product from us, but they also become a part of our LFO Store family.
What have been the most helpful marketing strategies for you?
For us, YouTube was the main marketing platform for a while. In the beginning, we saw that many of our competitors got loads of views on YouTube, especially after launching a new product. They got thousands of views in just 2 hours because they boosted their videos. But then, we also saw that those who boosted their videos had less than 1000 subscribers. We realized that organic traffic works better.
Now, email marketing works best for us. We use it to give our clients updates and helpful tips. We have a schedule—we pick certain dates for promoting different products.
Another marketing strategy we use is making videos with tips and tricks for all sorts of instruments. Promoting this way works well. Also, Facebook groups are great for building trust and doing free giveaways. It builds loyalty.
We also make sales quite often using Sellfy’s marketing features like upselling. I spent some time trying to understand how it works, and I found that it works really well. It’s a good way to promote complementary or related products.
How has Sellfy impacted your business and personal life?
Sellfy helps our dreams come true. For example, my team member, Anton (artist name Sacral Reason), dreamt of living in the southern capital of Russia. And, that’s where he lives now. My dream was to have my own house and land. Now, I have that too. So, Sellfy has helped achieve our dreams.
What do you love most about having an online business?
The greatest thing about this is our collaborative teamwork—working on projects together is a lot of fun. There’s a lot of energy. It’s also very nice to get feedback from our audience. They’re always writing nice things to us and showing support. It truly boosts your mood.
And, when it comes to our school, we’re very proud of the success of our graduates. For example, we had a recent graduate who made his first release in Mexico. His track, which we helped finish, has been in the Top 100 Tracks in the genre for two weeks. It was a great moment for all of us and we are very proud.
What do you think has been the key to your success?
My father was a military guy who raised me and my siblings with a lot of discipline. We learned independence and self-reliance. I think that’s what helps a man succeed in life.
Another thing that gave me the push was that my father wasn’t very supportive of my musical interest. He didn’t think it was possible to earn an income as a musician. So, I decided to show him that I can, and it took 10 years for me to prove that. When he saw that I was making money from music, he realized that it is indeed possible.
So, my piece of advice is that first, you need to pursue your goal. And discipline is my second advice.
Aside from that, it’s also very important to stay healthy when you sit long hours working with electronics. So, our team member, Anton Anru, likes martial arts, and then Anton Sacral Reason likes hitting the gym. And, I do yoga.
Another thing to consider is that when you grow as a professional business, you will always have critics. We get a lot of critics, but we’ve learned to see the difference between objective and subjective critics.
The objective critics help us grow a lot, and the subjective critics give us a good chuckle or smile. We’re always checking the feedback from our clients. It also helps to have a team so you don’t take criticism too personally.
So, to sum it all up, success is a combination of having goals, good discipline as well as physical and mental health, and not taking criticism personally.
What are your ambitions for the future? What do you see yourself doing next?
Besides owning a house, I also dreamt of creating a studio for people who are interested in sound design and synthesizers. So, we made this studio here. I always try to expand the team by finding new talented people and inviting them to the studio so they can work with instruments for free.
I just want to spread the vibe of working with synthesizers. So, my dream for the future is to have a big team working on making money from music. And, for the products, we’re thinking of conquering the world with good sounds.
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In the spotlight