Words by Kavina.
Australians are known for their love of hospitality and live music. Combine the two together and you create an immersive and unique customer experience that can add an infectious level of atmosphere to your venue that keeps people coming back for more. But it’s not always as simple as hiring a band to play on the weekend, you need the right live music strategy to complement what your venue has to offer and bring additional value to your business.
Here are seven things to consider when creating your live music strategy.
1. The vibe of your venue
Music is another way to portray the story for your venue. The vibe of the local neighborhood pub is going to be completely different to that of a fine-dining establishment. Your live music needs to reflect the decor and message behind your brand and will set the tone for how effectively that comes across. Restaurants and cocktail lounges are visual and intimate spaces that suit slow-tempo and classical choices such as jazz and mood music, which do not distract from the eating experience. Whereas at a pub, live rock music with high energy would go down a treat to complement a laid-back and social beer-drinking culture.
2. Who is the music attracting?
When considering your music offering, it is crucial to factor in your current clientele’s tastes, as well as those of the new crowd that will be drawn to your venue. For example, you don’t want to lose an already established, wealthier but conservative customer base while attempting to attract a younger one. By taking a few things into account when creating your live music strategy, a balance can be achieved between competing tastes and cater to a diverse crowd.
Think about the customers;
• Income and job title
• Location and foot traffic
3. What’s the competition doing?
It’s also good to be mindful of other music events happening in your area and whether there is competing crossover in your clients interests. Sometimes you might notice that a certain kind of live music is resonating with the local area and (if it fits with your venues brand) it could be an easy win to start doing. Or, there might be room for you to bring something new to the area and corner the market.
To get the best of your live music schedule, factor in the times and days where there is flow and lulls in service and how live music could complement or boost the mood.
Friday nights are always loud and exciting, but Sunday afternoons are a good opportunity to wind down the weekend by adding acoustic gigs or chill Sunday DJ sessions. Midweek is a good time to experiment over quieter nights. Feel free to mix it up.
Volume levels are a great way to change the dynamic of a room. Louder, high energy music promotes more drinking and less talking. For a dining focus, quieter and relaxed music creates an intimate space that prolongs the eating experience.
Creating a schedule to suit the needs of your venue makes it a whole lot easier to pick the right live music to bring this to life.
Speaking of which…
5. Picking the right live act
Once you know what kind of music fits the vibe of your venue and the customers you want to attract, you’re ready to pick the live acts that bring your music strategy to life.
Not all musicians will achieve the same effect, and it’s not as simple as booking a covers band and going for it.
If you’re the great Aussie pub with heaps of room to showcase live indie bands on a Friday and Saturday night, you’ll become a hotspot for young creatives and the music community. But bringing in an acoustic set on a quieter night like a Wednesday could create a midweek buzz.
Or an upmarket cocktail lounge that kicks off for 5pm drinks with a DJ roster over the weekend to lift the atmosphere will encourage an afterwork crowd that settle in for longer periods of time instead of having a pre-dinner drink or moving on to something more lively.
6. Keep your friends close
It’s important to foster good working relationships with your artists and nurture the community you are creating around your venue. Artists lead to other artist contacts and a diverse roster. They have the ability to promote and drive customer traffic online and into your venue.
Being respectful to the neighbors and nearby residents by monitoring external noise will keep local regulars in your venue and minimize potential noise complaints.
7. Go out and get going
If you’re feeling good about your live music strategy and ready to put it into action, The Muso app can help you find the best up and coming artists to suit your venue. Muso takes care of the whole booking process, from discovery scheduling, booking and communication, all the way through to paying artists, so you don’t have to worry about the fuss.
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