The Music Business. Most of us have the first part of that phrase down! We spent hours and hours of wood-shedding to get good enough to play in a band. Once we got there, we kept practicing to get better and better. When it comes to the “business” side of the music business, most of us are clueless. Especially when it comes to booking our cover band. We focus on getting better at what we play rather than learning how to book. But booking event type gigs is ALL about business! One of the most important things you can do is build a better website.
Who do you build your Website for?
One of the biggest “business” mistakes bands make is building a website for the wrong people. We create websites to impress other musicians, clubs, our fans or all three. That’s because we’re still looking at the band through our “I’m going to be a rock star” eyes. (hint: if your website has a “tour” tab, your website is focused on the wrong crowd.) Ask yourself this question: “who am I trying to reach with with my cover band website?” Possible wrong answers are:
- Club owners or booking agents
The answer is none of the above!
potential customers, not fans
Once you decide to play event gigs, the first thing you have to do is build a better website. You want a website that will impress potential clients. This looks a hell of a lot different than a website that’s designed to impress music fans. Consider weddings: Do you know who your target customer is?
Let me give you a hint. It’s the person whose going to make the decision when it comes to hiring the band. That’s the bride and her mom. They’re customers, not fans! Women are the main people looking at your website to decide if you’re the right band for the wedding. A fan website, or one that’s geared at clubs can turn these two off. Fast.
Draw them in, Don’t turn them away
A talented band in my area asked me to look at their website. They couldn’t figure out why they weren’t getting wedding gigs. They were all top notch players, sounded great and had the right set list. I spotted the problem the second I landed on their website. It was built to impress fans, not potential clients. They were trying to look as bad-ass as possible. Their homepage looked like this, though this isn’t them.
This is a great band photo! It’s also a great example of the kind of photo NOT to use if you’re trying to get wedding gigs. The mother of the bride would take one look at a website like this, close the page and run as fast as she could to lock the front door. After that, she’d hide her younger daughter in the closet and call the police! That’s the wrong message. You want to get the gig, not wind up in jail.
All kidding aside, the trick is to design your website so that it impresses the bride and her mom. You want to draw them in and get them excited about your band, not scare the hell out of them. That’s going to look a lot different than the bad-ass website you’d build to impress fans or club owners!
ask the right questions
A good place to start is to get inside the head of potential clients. In this case, it’s the bride and her mom. Ask great questions! For example:
- What do they want at the wedding?
- What’s her vision for after dinner?
- Does she want an epic dance party?
- Why do they want a band instead of a DJ?
- What does she want her friends to remember about the party?
Once you know some answers, you can build your website to speak to these areas.
Use photo’s they can relate to
Try this: instead of using bad-ass photos of the band, use bad-ass photos with brides in them! Or include photos of a packed dance floor. Something important happens when a bride sees a bunch of people on a dance floor having the time of their lives. She envisions the same thing happening at her wedding. She starts to see herself and her friends in the photos. And all of a sudden, she’s interested in your band! She’s thinking you can make that happen for her too. Here are a few great examples. Do you see the difference?
These wouldn’t be great photos for a fan based website, but they’re perfect for events gigs. If you want to book more weddings, start tweaking your website. You don’t have to use a lot of photos with your band in them. You don’t even have to use photos of packed dance floors from your own gigs. There are a lot of free to use photos out there. So use them. A great free resource for quality photos is Unsplash
Ready to Book more weddings and corporate parties?
Don’t know where to start booking gigs? Check out my free 3 Proven Tips video.
If you want to book more weddings, make sure you design your website to attract brides and their mothers! Use images and text that appeal to them!