We asked Kevin Morris of the successful Fallen Angels club in Glasgow to write a blog on how he finds audiences for his promotions.
When first asked by Simon from Hands Up For Trad to put a few words together on promoting shows, it sure did get me thinking.
As a one-man band I don’t have the biggest of budgets to help spread the word of the shows, I have been putting on since 2004.
It has become apparent to me over the years that you can never quite put your finger on why a specific concert is busy or why some are that bit quieter. If I did have the answer I would have more hair, longer nail and be writing this from a balcony overlooking a Spanish golf course. That being said, sometimes when it all goes right, the ‘not knowing’ is exactly what makes it all so exciting.
In the early days of putting on shows the main means of promotion relied heavily on radio plugs, posters, mailing list and newspaper gig listings and previews.
We do still send out monthly newsletters to our mailing list, and thankfully we still have BBC Radio Scotland in this country. Since we started the Iain Anderson show has been supporting our shows, often playing artists from upcoming shows and giving gigs a mention. Another Country with Ricky Ross first aired around 7 years ago and there is no doubt that Fallen Angels Club has benefitted from his support. Both are capable of bringing previously unknown artists to mainstream radio and giving the upcoming gig some ‘kudos’.
The Herald and The Metro have always been very supportive as well. Unfortunately, most newspapers seem to be cutting their coverage of The Arts and this is reflected in the coverage we receive.
Fast forward to 2016 the rise of social media is a very cheap and effective way for us to reach and expand the audiences for the shows.
Social media is a great way for us to reach the right audience, as people that follow our pages on Twitter and Facebook obviously have an interest in the genre of music we promote, i.e. Americana/Folk.
The beauty of social media is that it allows us to share posters and Youtube clips. This gives potential audiences a chance to really explore an unknown artist before making the commitment to buy a ticket. It also means they can see the upcoming shows and allows for interaction between people, sharing memories, posters and information with their friends.
Instagram is a new form of social media to us, where we are trying to build up our followers as experts say this is the fastest growing of the social media.
What we do try to do is make sure we use the right venues for each individual concert, as if concert goers see the right acts in the right environment they would hopefully be inclined to want to return to our concerts.