How To Get More People To Come To Your Shows. Part 2

II’ll give you 2 great examples by comparing two rock bands I know. I’ll show you how one of these bands totally packed their next several shows and the other band missed their opportunity to do the same by making a critical mistake.

For part one of the series, go here.

Band 1

Image credit: Nirazilla on Flickr

The first band put together their own show and instead of teaming up with another band, they hired a small group of (very attractive) women dancers to perform on the stage as the opening act. It was announced (before and during) the show that these women and the band would be hanging out with the audience ‘after’ the show at a nearby hotel lobby. People enjoyed the show and the activities that followed later. The key piece of success for the band was that they heavily promoted the event as ‘special’ and promoted the dancers (including embedded dancer videos on the band’s and club’s website) in as many places as possible. They worked very hard to promote the uniqueness of this show and told people very clearly how ‘this show’ was better and more special than previous shows. It didn’t take long for the promotion to go viral in the area. The final result: The club was packed!

During the opening song and the band’s final song the dancers came out and danced on stage, then moved into the crowd for a while and danced there too. The dancers were smart when they had the idea to integrate their act with the bands act on and off stage. They made real connections with the crowd as they mingled with them at the show and also afterwards. Both the band and the dancers did something really good for themselves. Instead of just putting on a good show and making the audience have a good time, they put a strong desire in the minds of many people there to come see them again and again.

This band did similar shows with these (and other) dancers as well as comedians and other acts (both musical and non musical) to keep their shows different from each other so that people would not only get off their butts to come to see the band for the first time, but also for a second, third, fourth, fifth and more times.

Band 2

I recently saw a second band play in Chicago. Their show also had other ‘acts’ that were not bands, including a pair of very attractive fire eating women who the crowd went absolutely crazy for. The only problem was there were only about 100 people in the venue to see the show (the club can hold up to 1,300 people).

The band knew the audience would love the show, but they failed to promote it well and differently than how they promoted their past shows. So at the end of the night they had 100 people who might come back to see them again. Had they promoted the event as the first band did, they would have had several hundred people coming back to see them again.

Had the show been promoted and organized more similarly to the way the first band had done, they would have several hundred people coming back to see them again at their next shows which would then almost be a guaranteed success (at least on the local level)…

It’s very important that your shows are unique from each other and not necessarily unique from what other bands do. In addition, the most crucial lesson to be learned is all of your ‘promotion’ needs to highlight each of your shows as unique, different and special events. It’s not enough for your shows to actually be unique, you need to always communicate that uniqueness in all of your heavy promotion.

What about your band? Well, I’m not suggesting to simply copy what the other bands did above. I’m suggesting for you to think a lot about what your band can do to make your gigs more unique and special for your fans. So talk with your band mates and brainstorm new ideas that may work for you. To learn more ideas, you can download this free eBook about getting more people to come to your band’s future gigs.

Tom Hess is a professional musician, recording artist and mentors other musicians from around the world to expand or start a music career.