Guide for Musicians & Bands
You can build your fan base by playing live. Take a look at Ed Sheer an. Ed claims that he played more than 1,000 gigs before becoming a big star. Before you can play 1,000 shows and make it big, you have to be booked.
This article will discuss how to get live shows under your belt regardless of your music career.
How to Get Gigs For Musicians
Remember that there are always venues, promoters and bookers looking for live acts. It’s up to you to find the right place, to contact them, and to present yourself to them.
This is everything you need to know in order to book gigs.
Create and maintain your brand
Let’s begin with some truths about ourselves. You must be “bookable” before you can book gigs.
But what does this actually mean?
It means . You need to sound and look the part. Your social media profiles and Spottily profiles are the first thing that a promoter or venue will look at. Make sure you have music and are active on them.
Ditto Music allows you to easily upload music that isn’t on Spottily, Apple Music, or any other major music platforms. You can get Ditto Music free, and you can upload unlimited music anywhere for 30 days.
Social media marketing should be on-point and your feeds full of great content. Anything that will showcase your music and inspire people to book you.
Make an EPK
An EPK is electronic media kit that includes links to your music and videos of you performing live. It also contains images for press releases.
It’ll be much easier for people to find out about you and your music if you have all of the information they need in one place, such as an EPK.
It’s all about being professional, looking good and making it easy for the person you are contacting.
TIP: The Chartbreaker Package by Ditto Music includes an Electronic Press Kit template with useful information for musicians and bands.
Contact promoters, venues and festivals
Now that you have a strong online presence, and all your links to your music are in one place, it is time to contact venues, promoters, and anyone else responsible for putting on live performances.
We see this too often: New artists go too big too quickly and end up disappointed when no one responds.
If you’re just getting started, stay local.
Look for bars, clubs and events in your area. Find promoters, open mics, and other venues that are looking for acts.
Start by gathering all their contact email addresses and creating a spreadsheet. Next, contact each individual with a polite, personalized email asking for their interest in live acts. Include links to your EEK and music.
Do your research on any venue you are interested in before you make contact. If you are a rapper, it’s best to avoid reaching out to jazz clubs. This may sound obvious, but if your music doesn’t fit the bill, it’s going to be a waste.
If you are just starting out, staying local is great. But what if your goals are to expand?
There are many websites and resources available to help artists connect with promoters, festivals, and venues. Sign up for sites such as Gigabit, Sonic bids, and Gig starter to get local and international bookings.
It is easy to find festivals that accept bands and artists by simply doing a Google search for terms such as “apply for festivals” or “submit your music for festivals”.
Festivals such as The Great Escape, Barkeeper and Green Man are always looking for new bands to showcase. You just need to take a chance on it and apply.
Our Music Opportunities Map is filled with festival applications worldwide.
Remember what I said about sounding and looking the part? This is what will set your application apart.
Keep in mind that you will likely play for free at first to build your profile. But, keep playing. It really depends on your career stage as to how much you charge for gigs. You will only be able to do it if you have enough experience and practice until you are ready for bigger stages.
Make a positive impression by networking
Although cold emails and festival applications are great, you need to think long-term.
It is important to build lasting relationships and network with the right people. Too often, people make business connections only to find that nothing happens after the initial contact.
It doesn’t matter if you make connections with venues or promoters, but it won’t be easy to get anything from them unless you keep the relationship.
Music conferences & networking events are a great place to connect with the industry.
To do this, you must be a good communicator. It can make a huge difference to improve your people skills, understand body language, and be able to communicate with others in a short time.
As a musician, your selling your self as well as the music. People should remember you and be willing to work with them again and again. You won’t be booked again if your music isn’t great but you are a bit too diva.
Be on time, helpful, and leave a lasting impression. 9 out of 10 times, the promoter, festival organizer, or any other person who booked the event will be able to recall you and return the favor in the future.
Get in touch with other musicians
Networking with industry professionals is essential, but it’s just as important to get to know other musicians, particularly those working in the same genre or area.
Artists share a lot of industry knowledge together. Music friends are the best source of advice, connections and information. They often know someone I have been trying to get in touch with for years.
Don’t be afraid of sharing links, connections and information with others.
Collaborations and gig swaps are a great way to reach other artists’ audiences. It’s easy to do if you have similar music. This gives you direct access to your target audience.
You might reach out to similar-sounding bands at the same stage in their careers, but who are based in another country or the world, and offer to help them in your own hometown.
You can double your fan base in no time.
Be unforgettable on stage
If you forget one thing, all this advice will be meaningless.
Every performance should be an amazing one. Every time you perform, act as if it were your last.
It is because of this that rehearsals are so important and feedback can be so powerful.
Invest in yourself. Keep your eyes open for new trends and stay ahead of the curve. Accept your mistakes and learn from them.
Don’t be afraid of following up with the audience after your performance. Use QR codes to get the audience to follow and connect with your page. Make sure your social media accounts are consistent and easy-to-remember so that people follow the right person.
You can turn potential fans into true fans by making yourself memorable on stage. The success of booking bigger shows and better shows will depend on the size and quality of your fan base.