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Concert Promo Guide - comments

Stewart 09 Mar 11 - 02:58 PM
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Subject: Concert Promo Guide - comments?
From: Stewart
Date: 09 Mar 11 - 02:58 PM

After producing concerts for many years
I've decided to put together a guide. I'm
not sure I know all the tricks of the trade
or am doing the best job, but I'd like to
put this out for your information, critiques,
and suggestions.

I've noticed that many musicians do an
inadequate job of promoting their own gigs.
It's harder to get a good audience turnout,
so we need to work harder on this.


CDs to the local radio station – at least a month in advance. Have your performer send a CD to the radio station for possible air time. It often takes a month or more to filter through various people and reviews.
Press Release – about one month in advance. Send to local news and other media outlets, societies, organizations, and radio stations relevant to the type of event. Include a sort narrative about the performers and the event – what, who, where, when… No more than a page in length, no more than 300 words. Write in the form and style of a short news article – if the editor can use this directly without much rewrite or editing, it will more likely be used.
Calendar Items – about one month in advance or before the deadline for the concert month. Include date, time, place, title, performers, several sentences describing the event and what the performers do, price, contacts, other information (web sites, phone numbers, reservations req.). Keep this concise – editors often have a limited space available. Send these to relevant print and online calendars.
Posters and Fliers – at least two weeks in advance. Post at local music stores, libraries, bookstores, coffees shops and other places where the community congregates. Fliers can be made from the poster at quarter size and distributed with the posters where feasible.
Mass emails –about a week before the event. Use you own email list and also email lists of other organizations that might be interested. Always obtain consent for the latter – never hijack other lists without their consent (that's called spamming, it isn't nice!).
Requests to local radio stations – the week of the event. Request air play and announcements from the local radio stations – keep badgering the particular DJs every day if necessary.
Contact the performer(s) – about a week before with last minute details: when to be there, requirements for the sound system, time for the sound check, etc.

Send a complimentary CD to the local radio station – at least a month in advance. They can't give you air time if they have nothing to play. It often takes a month or more to filter through various people and reviews.
Provide promo information to your producer in a timely manner. Best done on your web site. This should include photos suitable for a poster - high resolution (about 1 Mb size file, at least 5 x 5 inches at 300 dpi). Include a short blurb (a few sentences) suitable for a calendar item, a few one-liners suitable for a poster, and a longer paragraph or two suitable for a press release.
Post the event on your web site. Keep your web site up to date.
Help distribute posters and fliers.
Send announcements to you own email list. Personal contact with your good friends and fans is also helpful. Do this at least a week in advance.
Contact the producer – a week before, if he/she hasn't already contacted you, for last minute details and to assure your producer that you plan to be there (haven't forgotten).
At the event – be there at the requested time, or even a bit earlier (that makes a big impression on the producer – you might even be invited back). Remember to bring your CDs for sale and anything else you need for the concert. Be prepared ("that's the Boy Scout's marching song") – don't blame the sound person if you don't sound good. The sound person can only do so much, the rest is up to you. No whining, be professional. Thank the producer, the sound person, the volunteers, the audience, and anyone else involved.
After the event – send a thank you email or card (even better) to the producer.


Is this helpful? Do you have any other suggestions or critiques?

Cheers, S. in Seattle

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