Hard work, hard work, hard work…….did I say hard work? Hard work is what it takes to put fans through the door at your show. But first things first. Make sure your songs are as tight as they can be. Rehearse the set so it becomes part of muscle memory…no thought involved so one can just sink their entire heart and soul into the emotion of the song being played. Remember: it’s a performance that folks are paying for, and there are a million live music choices out there. So it’s important you give them a concert that is worth their money. Once the songs and the set are up to par, the mundane and not so sexy work of promoting the show begins.
1) Create a flyer. Make sure you list all the important information: band name, venue, time, etc. And don’t forget to mention if the show is 18+ or 21+. You don’t want someone getting denied entry at the door because they are not of age.
2) Send digital copies of the flyer to friends, family, friends of friends, fans etc. Send them via email and the usual social outlets. Also send paper copies to the venue for them to hang up. Send them at least a month before the show.
3) Bring flyers and hang them in music stores, coffee shops, restaurants, bakeries, any place that will let you. Don’t staple to public poles. The flyers will not last because of weather and some cities will fine the venue listed on your flyer, which is bad news even before the show begins.
4) Five weeks before the show, we started to reach out to local media. Newspapers, blogs, radio stations and local TV shows. We kindly asked these press folks to write about our show, and in the case of TV and radio asked to come in to perform before our concert. We made sure to tell all the outlets why our band was unique, and we spoke briefly about the new album in our emails. If you want someone to write about you it’s your job to give them a good story. Always provide good press photos for the media to use. No photos usually equals no story with most newspapers and blogs.
We had some great interest generated from all our hard work. A couple of newspapers wrote about us, and we landed a few TV appearances in New Orleans. A radio station has us in for an interview as well.
5) It’s important that every member of the band is responsible to participate in ALL of these steps. More hands make light work! It flat out just takes a lot of time to get this stuff done, hitting the pavement, sending emails, scheduling interviews etc. The more help you have the less stressful it will be, because no one wants their band to feel like a job. That’s why we all got into music in the first place!
If you’re lucky and the stars line up in the sky……because it takes a little luck to get people out as well….your band will have a night like this:
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