I have a couple of ideas for performers specifically and creative players in general.
Reusing Performances / Extending the Lifespan of Creative Content
A significant amount of effort goes into creating a performance. I have never seen a single song performed that did not also include emotes, poses, etc. In fact, I personally, OOCly have never left a performance and thought anything less than "Wow, that took a lot of work and creativity. Hats off to that person (player). I certainly don't have the creative vision or willingness to dedicate that much time into producing that kind of content."
@TalonCzar's comment comparing the economic disparity between paying a creative player tens of thousands of chyen for clothing, versus paying a creative player a few hundred chyen for a live performance got me thinking.
At first glance, the clothing is "obviously" more valuable because it is durable. A single performance is just that. It happens in real time and it's over. Unfortunately the scarcity of the event does not drive up it's value. (It's kind of ironic that performers are short changed by a theme that places so much emphasis on possessions for status. That's a philosophical discussion for later.)
Touring and Cultivating a Fan Base
That got me to thinking that performers should plan to tour whenever they put out a new song. I was reminded of fans who follow a band on tour, even if it is just for a few stops in cities close to their own. They aren't following the band because of the song. They can listen to the song on their personal devices any time they want. They are following the band because live shows are an experience.
I think (total conjecture here) that performers might be suffering some collateral damage to the "club conflict". When I started nearly four years ago, the club conflict was pretty visceral. Firebombings. Social shaming / clique type behaviors around who went to which club. etc. That type of conflict has been significantly toned down, and I do see performers doing their routines in multiple clubs more so than in the past.
I feel like the game community would be enhanced overall if EVERY club supported a performer and booked them when they put out new material. Of course there can be competition over where the song gets performed first. And performers should charge a premium for their debut show.
By hitting all of the clubs, not only will performers have more opportunities to earn chyen, and more opportunities to get more mileage out of their content, but they will also enable the creation of a fan base. As much as possible, they can try to find different time slots to give more of the player base opportunities. Maybe a player usually only logs on after work US time during the weeks. But then they could do a morning show, or late night show to align with "day time" in other parts of the world.
The fan base is also an opportunity for roleplay. Traditionally, KMB has been the "ultimate destination" for performers to perform at. Imagine the fun to be had when a performer with a small army of shabby Mixers brings that fanbase to the KMB. How does NLM walk the tightrope between wanting to be associated with the hottest up and coming performer, while distancing the performer from the very fans that enabled their rise to the top? Let the Mixers in and hope they don't trash the place? Lock the Mixers out and hope they don't riot on New Light Avenue?
Keep in mind that performances are RP opportunities for EVERYONE. If you can't find ways to use a big group of people to Do Crime in, maybe seek out a mentor? Watch a couple videos about agitators leveraging otherwise peaceful protestors as a starting point.
Open Source Creative Content
A few months (years?) ago, there was a great effort to open source the creation of emotes for drugs. It was successful and allowed people to contribute to the game at their leisure.
A couple of people have discussed how the pressure / expectation to continue creating content month after month, year after year as a "performer" or artist burns them out.
It seems like there might be an opportunity to allow creative people to contribute creative content without needing to be performers.
This is NOT a suggestion meant to address the lack of compensation for performers.
This IS a suggestion to generate a slow flow of new content into the game.
What if there was a system like the one that was used for drugs, or other script development, that was used for creative content?
I am thinking about things like two or three emote holo-ads in the subways. Emotes from the ever present blimps and televisions.
Obviously, NLM characters are "supposed to" be the main source of that. And I'm by no means suggesting taking food off of their plates.
But why not tap into people, players, who are feeling creative?
It might even be possible to blend the two. Create a player generated pool of creative content. Have NLM Senior management pick one or two of them a few times a year. Then assign those picks to Juniors for further refinement or enhancement?
I know it's my own idea, but now that I think about it, I really like this last one. It eases the burden of full time creative characters. (I don't know about the rest of you, but the biggest challenge for me is "getting started". Once I get started and have the basic idea, the rest of the creative process flows fairly freely from there.) It also gives performers a light at the end of the tunnel. While they are starting, they have to create their own content. But they know, if they "make it", they'll have support of huge megacorp with a steady stream of ideas for them to build off of / rip off / rebrand as their own.