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#105912 by fisherman bob
Sat Apr 03, 2010 2:06 pm
We played at a really nice venue last night. There's major construction right there at their doorstep and it's hurting attendance. A friend of mine stopped by there and had a heckuva time finding it. Does anybody have any ideas or experience getting PR? Maybe if I approach some major media sources (newspapers, radio, etc.) I might have better luck getting them some PR than if the bar itself tries to get PR. We've played at a few really nice places that went out of business recently. Lots of factors to that, the recession and the smoking ban are primary, but throw in a major obstacle then you've got some serious problems staying in business. Other than having really good bands (like us) play at your venue what ideas do you have to help promote a venue?

#105913 by ANGELSSHOTGUN
Sat Apr 03, 2010 2:17 pm
Yeah,, Just hype your band like crazy and let people know the best place to see you is at so and so. Come on down if you want to have some fun. Flyers ,trade papers,word of mouth , you can't be bashfull, brag brag brag.
then go and deliver.
You have to fill the river if you want to catch fish.

#105962 by sanshouheil
Sat Apr 03, 2010 9:05 pm
If a temporary problem exists such as being obscured by construction a temporary solution might be best.

A teenager with a sandwich board a couple nights before the show so rush hour travelers will see " OH the will be a blues band playing there tonight"

#105992 by gtZip
Sat Apr 03, 2010 10:19 pm
Radio, Bob.
Radio, Radio, Radio.
If you, or the bar, can get some station to do a remote from that bar and mention it up until around the time you play... I think you'll be shocked at how many people come in.

The bar can have a gran re-opening, or a construction sucks promo, or whatever.

#106043 by fisherman bob
Sun Apr 04, 2010 4:30 am
sanshouheil wrote:If a temporary problem exists such as being obscured by construction a temporary solution might be best.

A teenager with a sandwich board a couple nights before the show so rush hour travelers will see " OH the will be a blues band playing there tonight"
Maybe I need to start a Bluefin Tuna Band street team...

#106059 by sanshouheil
Sun Apr 04, 2010 12:35 pm
Why not Bob?
Many a master showman has employed street teams.

Yeah, some covert operatives, that's the ticket. 8)

#106067 by Dewy
Sun Apr 04, 2010 1:16 pm
We've done the occasional "shuttle bus" thing with our fans. Have someone standing by to meet folks at a location and show them in or give them a ride to the show if its in a difficult location.

only really works with small crowds though, 100 or so loyal fans.

#106069 by philbymon
Sun Apr 04, 2010 1:51 pm
I don't advertise bars. Bars advertise ME.

The bar should be doing more, imo. FB is being used by lots of venues to keep in touch with thier patrons. Free drink tokens & buffets. Signs, hell, they could put up a simple neon arrow pointing at thier entrance, & nothing else, & it would get attention from the curious.

I think it's very cheesy to advertise other bars when I'm playing in one, & I've done it very rarely in the past, but I won't do it anymore, esp if the bar is in the same area where I'm presently playing.

About the only thing I would do, is to send out invitations to my fans via email.

Shuttle buses, street teams, these are great for your band, but the venue should provide radio or whatever for themselves. If they aren't interested enough to do those things that make them successful, it isn't your job to cover thier asses with ads anymore than its your job to order thier liquor & pretzels.

If a venue fails due to the stupidity or apathy of its mgmt, all the help you can give for your occasional performances there won't help them stay afloat.

#106076 by jimmydanger
Sun Apr 04, 2010 2:25 pm
I have to agree Phil, I don't believe in advertising for a bar. Ideally a bar should have its own built in crowd, with your band's fans filling it out. Being loyal and helpful to a bar will not do anything for your band in the long run; it might get you a few extra gigs at the place but that's it.

#106078 by sanshouheil
Sun Apr 04, 2010 2:33 pm
I have no direct experience to base this on but I have to disagree on this issue.
For sure it's the Bar's job to advertise themselves. But the band should advertise as well, for themselves and the venue as long as they play at that venue.
It would only make sense that the band would also stand to gain fans / following that will increase their word of mouth viability in their geographic location.
More doors open when they are knocked on.
Or as my fortune cookie said the other day:
Chance favors the active !!

#106079 by philbymon
Sun Apr 04, 2010 2:39 pm
Well, when bars see you favoring thier competition, it could even hurt you in the long run, sans.

"Let them play in thier favorite bar. They aren't promoting MY bar like they do so-&-so's!"

Stick to the tried & true - emails, snail mails, even street teams & shuttles, if you must, hell, I've even narrated the radio bits - that the venue paid for, but that's as far as I'll ever go for a venue.

#106085 by sanshouheil
Sun Apr 04, 2010 2:45 pm
Good point Phil.
May be too much to expect a "Wow listen to them hawk for their employer, let's get em to work for us too" attitude.

#106100 by fisherman bob
Sun Apr 04, 2010 3:59 pm
The guys that own Tailgater's are quite young. They could use some advice. A number of weeks ago I gave them about six posters of our band to promote the show. I didn't see any of them put up in their bar. Now that we have played there they now realize we're for real and they might better promote us in the future IF we play there again. A lot of the bars that start having blues bands in town will contact the Blues Scciety and have some sort of big opening event, a multi-band benefit show, an International Blues Contest preliminary round, etc. Not that I'm enamored with the Blues Society, but that has jump started a venue and gotten some decent initial crowds into their venue. I know signs are very important in advertising. I've got lots of different ideas on sign advertising but when this particular venue didn't even bother to put up my signs that I gave them I'm not sure they are even worth bothering with advice. I've only been playing pro for thirty years. Sometimes I feel my advice falls on deaf ears...

#106102 by Dewy
Sun Apr 04, 2010 4:21 pm
I don't advertise for bars, I agree upon that.

I advertise our shows... and of course mention in a kind manner the club we will be playing at.

If they serve food, its the best (insert something they make) anywhere to be found... Their waitstaff is the best in town (said loud so the waitstaff can hear it and hopefully try to live up to the praise).

I see lots of bars trying to put the responsibility off on the band, but in my opinion, the burden is on both. The rewards should also be evenly distributed between those who advertised, and those who did not.

#106113 by Starfish Scott
Sun Apr 04, 2010 5:47 pm
GIVE SOMETHING AWAY...


People love anything that could possibly be free or close to it.

Give them incentive to show up!

a) 1/2 price food/booze/>?

b) pole dancer(s) (come on you may know some women who's nuts enough)

c) If you have cool tee-shirts, give them away some how there at the scene.

d) raffle your wife/sister/mother-in-law lol

e) all of the above..


You get the gist.

Ask yourself what would get U to show up and walk past all that debris.

The best 2 I saw recently were;

1) 10cent wings. (whoa nellie)

2) Buy 1 get 1 free, beers.

That joint may go down though cause people are drunks in general and the beer is whatever they are trying to move/dispose of on any given night.. (u need to train 4 this event) lol

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