Guide to getting and playing better gigs


   

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Using a band mailing list can be an effective way of letting your fans know what's happening with your band at minimal cost to you.

The Basics:
If you're not collecting names and addresses of people who are at your gigs you should start immediately. All you need is a simple sign up sheet with name, address, phone and email address on it, and put copies of them on the tables at the club where you're performing before you go on stage. Get some type of box and label it with your band name. Have your singer announce from the stage a few times throughout your set that you have a mailing list and to sign up, fill out the form on their table and put it in the box. Make sure you have the box located somewhere that people can easily get to and see (the front door of the club?).

Using Your List:
You can immediately start using your list by sending monthly calenders with all of your upcoming gigs. This is very effective because you can promote all of your gigs in that month with only one mailing. Another idea is a newsletter. This can give fans some inside information about your act that they might not have know about. Some ideas might be background about band members, special parties or gigs. How about a special gig for a band member's birthday? I knew a band member who liked cooking and he had all kinds of special recipes that he put in the newsletter, sounds weird I know, but people liked it! Some other ideas might be, contests or a band crossword puzzle ( you can get software that will output a crossword puzzle with words you supply!). The newsletter is open to your imagination so the sky's the limit. Don't forget to include a coupon to order your CD or tape.

Swap Lists With Other Bands:
If there are other bands in your hometown that play a similar style of music, consider trading your list for theirs. This is a great way to build a large list quickly.

Discount Costs:
If you have a few hundred people on your mailing list, you can send out your mail using a bulk rate and have quite a cost reduction per piece mailed. If you contact the post office, they'll give you all the info you need on bulk mail.

Post Cards:
Instead of sending a letter, send a post card. The rate for a post card is cheaper and you can shrink a monthly calender down to post card size.

Email:
Of course email is becoming more and more popular and the cost of sending to an email list is very low. Definitely use email when you can, and for those people who don't have email addresses, use regular mail.

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