blog banner

Green Screen Tips

By shooting your next project on a green or blue screen, you have the ability to create a clean and stylish video production. Having the ability to change your subject’s background in post production will give you limitless options when it comes to your final product. There is a wide variety of chroma key backgrounds to choose from that will give your video production a polished look similar to larger video productions.

Using a green or blue screen in your production pipeline is simple: get a solid color background, film your subject in front of the background, then remove the chroma key in the background using your video editing software and replace it with something else. However, getting a precise key from your video can be a trial and error process that could cause frustration if the original video is not shot correctly.

Here are some techniques that you can use to make your green screen background production as trouble free as possible:


– A chroma key background can be any color as long as it is not contained within the foreground elements you would like to keep in the scene. Most video productions utilize either a green or blue screen. A clean key can be achieved with either color, but you will want to take into account the color of clothing your talent will be wearing and also make sure nothing in your scene closely matches the color of the background color you are trying to remove.

– Use paint or a drop cloth and try to remove as many wrinkles or variations in the color of your background as you can. The more consistent your background color, the easier time you will have been removing it in post production.


– The most important element of a good green screen video production is the lighting. A well lit scene will allow you to tell the software what color to knock out and what elements to keep in the scene.

– Set up a series of lights who illuminate your backdrop consistently and try to reduce the number of hotspots on the backdrop. Outdoor or fluorescent lighting is a good option because it is a diffused light who spreads evenly across your backdrop.

– Light your subject well using diffuse lighting as well. Furthermore, a back light that illuminate the back of the subject will help to create a clean edge for your video software to work with.


– Place your subject a minimum of four steps from your backdrop. This will eliminate shadows from falling onto the green screen and will also help to minimize the color spills. Color spill occurs when the reflected green from your backdrop “spills” onto your subject and causes the color of clothing or skin to change the hue to match the backdrop. This can cause problems for your color key software and results in rough edges on the final production.


– Try to shoot your video with the best HD camera you have been available. If possible, use a camera that allows you to make manual adjustments to the ISO/Gain, shutter speed and white balance. The ISO/Gain controls should be set to a low setting. This will require lighter, but will give you cleaner video with less noise and artifacts.

If you follow these simple rules, you can create high quality green screen footage that will allow you to remove the background in your video editing software. Now you can replace the green screen with a virtual background or other video background. Have fun!

But, if you want to save yourself from the trouble and guarantee a professional result to your film, contact VFX LA.

Read More

Digital Movie Making Tips: For Starters and Professionals Alike

Whether it is for a short film of your loved ones or a short film you are creating for your filmmaking course, digital movie making is here to stay and it’s not merely a trend. A neophyte trainee in filmmaking or a professional film producer must know what needs to be checked when you are filming. The following are basic tips that both types of filmmakers can use:


The development stage of digital film technology today has reached the point wherein no-knowledge individuals, about digital filmmaking, can come up with professional-looking videos and short films for both family and friends.. This is so because of the user-friendly equipment used. However, you should be able to pick one that suits all your needs and varying uses.

You must be aware that the digital video camcorders come in different formats. The MiniDVs would film on small tapes while those video cameras record on HDD or High Disk Drive. DVD camcorders on the other hand film videos straight on discs which you can view on your DVD player.

If you will be using it for family gatherings, the MiniDV is the more appropriate one as it can be handy and easy to operate. The other types of cameras also have their own advantages. Video cameras make it easy for you to share your work with others. This can be great for those who are studying filmmaking and needs to share their films to a group. An advantage of the DVD camcorder is the large storage which is good for those who produce long films or professional ones.

You must also have the video editing software but you need not worry as they come built-in with today’s desktop PCs and laptops. But, if you prefer to have a professional touch to your editing process and add motion graphics, visual effects and other assets, you may visit VFX Los Angeles and check their services.

Angles and Shoots

For you to shoot same as any professional, there are four aspects to consider: lighting and exposure, audio, stability, and editing. Digital video camcorders won’t function well in an environment with a wide lighting range. Always consider that the lighting must be uniform.

For stability, particularly for the small cams, always use a tripod when filming or a digital stabilizer when you have one. Bear in mind that a slight jolt o the cam can cause a huge damage on the entire scene.

Any camcorder contains basic audio devices in it. For you to have better sound quality, you can set a boom microphone on the audio input port and put it closer to your subjects when you are filming.

Read More

Impromptu Romantic Gifts

Often when people think of giving a romantic gift, they think in terms of connecting the gift with some particular occasion, such as an anniversary. But that is not always the case. Sometimes you are with your beloved and feel a sudden urge to give him or her something special and unexpected. That is when you need to assess the resources at hand and come up with an effective romantic gift.

While it is true that jewelry stores are rarely open around the clock and buying flowers at any time of the day or night may not be possible, you can come up with some pretty imaginative gifts. They may be a little offbeat or quirky, but as long as they convey love and affection, they still classify as romantic. To help you get started, here are some possibilities.

One of the fun things about an impromptu romantic gift is that it can be just about anything. All the gift has to do is convey love and affection. The best way to do this is to take into consideration the likes and dislikes of your partner. For instance, if your partner loves peanuts, make a quick run to a convenience store and pick up a couple dozen packets of salted and flavored peanuts. Arrange them in a simple basket with a few balloons attached. This creates a gift that will probably get a good laugh. At the same time, the gift also reminds your partner that you know him or her well and love to do little things that bring pleasure.

Another romantic gift that you can give at a moment’s notice is a night out. If your partner has had a rough day and seems to be down in the dumps, shake things up a bit. Whisk them away for a meal out and maybe a movie. If money is tight, pack a picnic and head to the park or the beach for dinner under the stars. The idea is to give your beloved a respite from the day’s cares and let him or her know that no matter what you are always there to offer comfort and support.

One of the most endearing impromptu romantic gifts you can offer your beloved is the gift of your time. Dropping what you are doing when you see that your partner really needs you sends a clear message about where your priorities lay. This type of gift costs nothing and is always within your ability to give. The potential for reaping benefits from this type of gift is also unlimited, in terms of making your relationship stronger.

You don’t need a lot of money or preparation to present the object of your affection with a romantic gift. All you really need is to be in tune with what your partner needs and wants right this minute, and find a way to respond to that need. Saying “I love you” with the right gift of action or some appropriate token at the spur of the moment will deepen the connection between the two of you, and ultimately enhance both your lives. If you want perfect ideas for your romantic gift, check Always On My Heart.

Read More

Video Production Cost: Keep Corporate or Internet Video Cheap

High video production costs – or the perceived costs – prevent many people from creating or commissioning the corporate or Internet video they need or desire. The truth is, to make a basic corporate or Internet video, the production costs can be quite inexpensive if one approaches the process with a solid plan.

Does Your Video Production Really Need the Herd of Wild Elephants?

Keeping video production costs down does not mean you are limited to one talking head in one location, but it is fair to note that if you want to make a reasonably priced production, you need to have reasonable concepts. Elaborate settings or exotic props of any type are not going to allow for a financially friendly shoot. While it is fun to watch Super Bowl commercials that incorporate herds of elephants or CGI space aliens, those features are not available to the average Joe on a budget.

Making your corporate or online video on a shoestring starts in the planning phases. Be reasonable. Jot down your ideas, and give each of them a dollar sign rating for what you believe the cost of getting everything needed into place would be. This will allow you to eliminate high concept ideas that may not actually play out any better than some of the lesser priced scenarios.

Be Creative with Dialogue and Expressions of Actors

There is no shortage of aspiring actors out there that will be more than reasonable with rates for their efforts. This is not to encourage anyone to take advantage of someone else, it is simply a case of stature in the business. If an actor or actress is a complete unknown, it is not taking advantage of him or her to offer a role for reasonable money. Besides, no one is twisting anyone’s arm to do the job.

It is quite possible you already know people who will be comfortable in front of the camera or maybe you are a bit of an extrovert. If the people onscreen are very expressionful, it opens up a great deal of opportunity for creating pieces that rely on acting and dialogue, and to give it an awesome touch you can add visual effects (to know more about it you can visit the Vfx Los Angeles website). 

I Can’t Shoot This Video Myself

When looking to hire someone to shoot your video, keep the same tips from above in mind. When outlining your concept to the videographer, point out your attention to frugal details. The shoot is going to be reasonably priced for them due to your planning, so make sure your quoted price reflects this. If a videographer is going to charge you the same amount as he or she does for projects with much higher end production requirements, move along to the next pro on the list.

Internet videos for simple YouTube silliness certainly don’t require the intervention of pros to get your crazy ideas or happenings on tape. Make sure you learn a little about capturing good, clear audio and shoot away.

For your corporate needs, whether they are commercials, training videos, interviews or anything of the sort, don’t be afraid to experiment in house. HD digital video equipment has become very reasonable, and a lot of money can be saved over time by having staff members learn to take some good moving pictures. If there are screw-ups, it’s no big deal, as digital video is also dirt cheap, regardless of the type of camera used to capture the piece.

Read More

Corporate Party Themes – Company Party Ideas

Adding a party theme to a company event is a great way to enhance a party. The following are some corporate event themes to consider.

Add to the festivities of a corporate event or party by giving it a theme. Just imagine the CEO on a mechanical bull or the office manager playing limbo. How about some wanted posters of the corporation’s top executives? These are just some of the fun ideas that can be had with a corporate theme party.

Themes for Corporate Parties

Celebrate the brisk weather of winter with a Winter Wonderland theme. Snowflake invitations can be sent out either by mail or e-mail. White and silver work great for a color scheme. Decorations can include white string lights, snowflake ornaments, and white or silver candles.

A hot buffet or sit down dinner goes well with this theme. Be sure to include some hot drinks such as eggnog with rum, hot chocolate with peppermint Schnapps and Hot Apple Pie, which is made with hot apple cider and 1 1/2 ounces of Tuaca. Don’t forget to include some Winter Music and Songs for background music.

Prefer something warmer? A Night in the Tropics theme can encompass Hawaii or the Bahamas and the Caribbean. A palm tree or beach scene make for a nice invitation. Decorations can consist of palm trees, shells and flowers. Tiki statues work well for table centerpieces.

Tropical food should be served including lots of fresh fruit. Piña Coladas and Mai Tais are great cocktails for this type of corporate theme party. Music ideas embrace Hawaiian, reggae and calypso selections. Let employees shed their inhibitions with a fun game of limbo.

Corporate Event Ideas

Get those cities slickers out of the office and ready for a wild night with a Country Western theme party. Try a cowboy hat or horseshoe for the invitation. Use bales of hay and wanted posters of company executives for decorations.

Set up a barbecue buffet including chicken, ribs, ranch style beans, salad, and cornbread. Red and white checkered tablecloths can adorn the tables. Entertainment can consist of country line dancing. For some real fun, rent a mechanical bull.

Interested in something more glamorous? Roll out the red carpet, literally, with a Hollywood Glamour theme party. Stars or movie cameras can be the background of the invitations. Decorations can feature posters of Oscar-winning movie stars.

Place Oscar statues as centerpieces. Keep food and beverages bright and colorful. As part of the entertainment, hand out Academy Awards in various categories such as Most Dramatic Employee, Best Excuse Maker, Biggest Office Gossiper, etc. To add to the fun, hire a celebrity impersonator as the party host. Music can be comprised of movie theme songs.

Corporate Party Themes

Trade in the corporate life for a wild night with a Vegas Casino Night. Invitations can be in the form of playing cards. Set up blackjack, poker, and roulette tables. Give each attendee a preset amount of play money when they arrive. Have prizes available to people who win the most money. If the company works with a charity, set aside one table where people buy in with real money with all proceeds going to that charity.

As people will be playing, have servers visit the tables with finger foods. At the same time, have a hot and cold buffet available throughout the party. Decorations can include logos of famous Las Vegas casinos. Keep the music upbeat and fun.

Go retro with a Disco Fever theme party. A disco ball is a must! In fact, it also works well as the background for invitations. Be sure there is lots of dancing space available. When decorating don’t forget to include a poster of Saturday Night Fever.

Think lots of glitter and sparkle for decorating. There is no particular food associated with this theme, so food can be what the budget allows. Encourage everyone to dress up and award prizes for the best costumes. Include some Great Disco Music and Songs for Parties to get everyone up and dancing.

Company Party Ideas

Imagine everyone eating and drinking and having a great time. Suddenly, someone’s murdered. A Murder Mystery party can be loads of fun. Let invitations suggest some form of tool used for crime. A murder mystery usually consists of the sit-down dinner.

Have different company employees participate as players. Once the so-called murder is known, use some eerie background music to set the mood as everyone tries to figure out this whodunit theme idea.

Employees can throw their cares away with a Mardi Gras theme party. A balloon invitation matches this theme very well. Decorating colors should consist of purple, green and gold. Set up a colorful archway for people to walk through which will transcend them to New Orleans.

Hand out colorful beads and Mardi Gras party masks to each person as they arrive. The cuisine should be kept Cajun with bourbon-based drinks being a focal point. Jazz is the chosen music for this party theme. For added fun, higher a psychic to give readings during this corporate party.

There are so many fun themes for a corporate or company party. Be sure that invitations, entertainment, music and food, and beverages reflect the theme and be assured that everyone attending will have a great time.

Read More

Advertising your brand

Key Action Points

  1. Define the measurable objectives for your advertising campaign
  2. Develop a comprehensive briefing document for the advertising agency, including:
    • What is your brand horizon (where do you want it to be in the medium/long term)?
    • What are the measurable objectives for the advertising campaign?
    • How will you measure the results?
    • How is your brand defined?
    • What is your target audience?
    • What are the other communications activities you are conducting?
    • What is the competition doing?
  3. Invite three agencies to compete for your business
  4. Treat media buying as a separate issue, and consider hiring a specialist media agency
  5. Having appointed the advertising agency to implement the best PPC ad management and work on building a long-term relationship

In more detail…..

Objectives of advertising

Advertising has different roles at different times:

  • introducing the brand to potential customers
  • building the brand into the potential customer’s landscape
  • writing interesting content that establishes trust
  • tempting potential customers to give the brand a test
  • encouraging existing customers to buy the brand again/more often
  • strengthening relationships between customers & the brand

It can, therefore, have many objectives:

  • awareness & recognition of the brand
  • familiarity with the brand
  • favorability towards the brand
  • belief and establishing brand values
  • emotional bonding to the brand
  • the propensity to purchase the brand
  • the propensity to pay a premium price for the brand
  • developing the brand as a talking point

One of advertising’s strongest effects is to persuade retailers/distributors to invest more heavily in the brand by granting more facings, & so a virtuous circle is created:

  • (potential) customers see the brand being advertised
  • people start talking about the brand at home, at work, in the media
  • the brand is more visible in the distribution

The normative effects associated with this cycle encourage (potential) customers to include the brand in their repertoire.

Research evidence suggests that the decay effects of most advertising are rapid – advertising alone does not create a brand loyal customer. It is best to regard advertising as an expensive mass invitation to your brand party – some will love it (especially those who attend all your parties), others will hate it, & most will be bored & waiting for the next one. It is crucial to capitalize on the advertising investment by building a more infrastructural brand experience while you have your (potential) customer’s attention.

Advertising media

There is an increasingly wide range of advertising media available:

  • TV
  • press/magazines
  • billboards
  • directories
  • public/private transport
  • public conveniences
  • Internet links/pop-up ads/banner ads
  • shop facia & windows
  • in-store banners/shelf hangers/display areas/floor advertising
  • gas stations
  • buildings
  • other products

Global brands face the additional issue of whether to develop global or local advertising campaigns. Global advertising campaigns are cheap but will under-achieve in many countries. Local campaigns are expensive & results will vary from pay-dirt to just dirt. On balance, go local for the countries that matter.

Measuring the effectiveness of your advertising

TV advertising is historically where much of the focus on communications measurement has been, because of the size of the budgets involved. The big debate in advertising research is whether advertising can actually be demonstrated to improve sales & profits &, if so, by how much. The problem of assessing the impact of advertising on sales & profits is that it is difficult to isolate its effect from that of other activities taking place at the same time. This is the problem of assessing the effect of any activities on business outcomes. However, there are now at least two agencies that claim to be able to do so by correlating advertising activity to trade and home audits and modeling out extraneous impacts. The use of complex modeling and neural networks can take this approach one step further – to measure the effect of each element of the branding mix on sales and profits.

Measuring the relationship between advertising and results is somewhat easier on the Internet to which many large advertisers are switching. Originally, the most popular measure used to assess the effectiveness of banner advertisements was click-throughs (where someone clicks on an advertisement and is taken through to the advertiser’s site). However, click-throughs have proven a poor indicator of actual transactions, so the most common measure today is simply results. Payment by results neatly combines a measure of the performance of the advertisement with the investment in it.

There are also predictive methodologies that are used prior to the advertisement being shown. These methodologies compare the reaction of consumers to the current advertisement on a number of diagnostic attributes with the scores held in data banks for other advertisements that were tested in the same market place. The agency can then draw a chart to show the likely purchasing response to the advertisement, & the speed of decay in response. The diagnostic attributes will point the advertiser to those aspects of the advertisement which need to be improved, supported by interviews with consumers as to what they liked/disliked about it, what they believed it was telling them, & whether this was in line with their expectation of the brand.

Some agencies offer eye-tracking research that tells the advertiser which part of a printed advertisement held the consumers’ attention. Consumers’ eyes often dart around a printed advertisement, missing the main messages & the brand identification, because they cannot find its focal point or any point of entry. The ideal printed advertisement provides a clear flow for the consumer to follow.

In the advertisement development stage, focus groups are commonly used to explore the content & impact of the advertising.

Read More

How To Set Up an Event Committee

successful event planningSitting around with friends, glass of chards in hand, talk turns to putting on a music festival or fashion parade or dog show or some other event. It’s easy to sit and talk in your lounge room about setting up an event committee and how everyone would love to come, but putting those words into action is another story.

Successful Events Need Passionate Contributors

event committeeThe first step is to confirm who is serious about putting something together and also who has the time to contribute. Let’s face it, planning this event will take up ALL the free time of committee members, so make sure it’s something everyone is passionate about.

To be Successful, Events Need a Clear Purpose

Once it’s confirmed who and how many people want to be involved, it’s important to sort out the purpose of the event. Is it for the fun of the group? Is the purpose to raise money for charity or is this a money making event? If money is even going to pass by the committee’s nose, it’s important to set up a bank account for the exclusive use of the event and ensure any money exchanged needs at least two signatures. It may mean transactions take longer, but it assures members that there will be no questions about where the money went.

Planning is the First Step to a Successful Event


Next, sit down and start planning the event. Actually take the time to write down the goals and objectives of the committee and of the event. Get on paper a general outline or plan of the event and everything that can possibly be considered.

Assign Tasks According to Committee Member’s Skills

It’s now time to start assigning tasks. Break down the event into sections; fundraising, promotion and advertising, council regulations and laws, stallholders, operation of the event, budgeting, grant and funding applications, accounting and insurance.

Give committee members tasks that suit their skills and abilities and make sure they are given tasks that they are interested in. People are more likely to get through the boring details if they are interested in the topic at hand.

Just a note on assigning a ‘President’. This isn’t always necessary. But a mediator or someone who can be called on to make the big decisions when members are locked will be needed. It’s important to also have a spokesperson. Try and make it the committee member that is best at dealing with the media and preferably one that has some experience.

event checklistSuccessful Events Require Lots of Persistence, Planning and Practice

Successful events depend on clear direction, a passionate team and a good premise. Don’t expect too much the first time you hold the event. Keep good records and make sure you remember to check your objectives and goals to ensure you stay on track.

Read More

Getting a Booking Agent

Getting a booking agent - marketing for artists

Many artists fail to understand the importance of a booking agent and how they can help to further the artists career.


Obtaining a booking agent is one of the first few steps on the path to more frequent and profitable performance opportunities. Despite this, many artists do not understand when to approach a booking agent and then pass up the opportunity when it finally presents itself. In order to understand when to approach a booking agent it is necessary to understand the agents income stream.

The formula to getting more gigs through music agencies and booking agents is quite simple. The agent will act on the artists behalf, soliciting contacts at venues in order to obtain gig opportunities. The agent will handle the negotiation of the artists fee, their performance obligations and any other considerations such as riders or breaks during the set. In return for this the agent will take a percentage of what the artist is paid for each gig or performance.

The fee is to cover the agents work negotiating and handling the contracts that will protect the artists payment. It is also to compensate the agent for his contacts. A performance that may require many cold calls and press kits from an artist to acquire can often be obtained with greater speed by an agent who possesses a good reputation and rapport with the venues promoter.

Finding a Booking Agent

Getting a booking agent

It is often best for an artist in search of a booking agent to make enquiries within their local music scene. Honest opinions of a booking agency will always come from the artists already using the agency.

The size and number of booking agents available to an artist will vary depending on the genre. For example, an established wedding band will be spoilt for choice. Conversely an artist in a less profitable genre such as metal will have less choice in booking agents.

Aside from making enquiries with fellow musicians, it is possible for artists to find booking agencies through a number of mediums such as phone directories and the internet.

Most booking agencies will have a web presence which will usually detail the acts and artists they are looking for and will often feature a list of their current clients.

Phone directories used to be the first port of call for an artist in search of an agencies but due to the increasing use of the internet to find businesses combined with the increase of agencies, it is likely that only a few agencies will be represented in the phone directory.

The Booking Agent’s Fee

The agent will typically charge 15% as their fee and through this number it becomes easier to understand what a booking agent looks for in a client. Essentially they want clients who already have a proven value in the eyes of venues and can therefore command a fair fee for their performances.

An agent will have no interest in a band who possess a small fan base and earn £50 per performance.

Whilst this may be a disappointment to very small acts it is the agents pursuit of greater income that will pay off in the artists favour. Where possible the agent will seek to increase the artists performance fee in order to increase their own income.

The agent is also motivated to ensure that the artist has performances in the pipeline. Often the artist will discuss their availability for performances with the agent and set a maximum number per week before embarking on a contract with them.

Thanks to this, the relationship between artist and booking agent is far more trusting and honest than that of artist and manager or artist and label. The booking agents income is linked directly to their actions for the artist and so only by acting in the artists best financial interests can they profit themselves.

Booking Etiquette

There is great debate over the proper etiquette when performances acquired by the artist directly. Even though the booking agent may not have negotiated on the artists behalf it may be likely that the agents past efforts have led to this performance opportunity. If this is so then it is professional and courteous for the artist to notify the agent and pay the agent their contractual fee.

Marketing for Artists

Getting a booking agent - promotions

Obtaining and working with a good booking agent is an integral component in an artists attempt to earn a liveable income from their live performances and to expand the physical reach of their performances.

A good booking agent can open doors for artists and provide enhanced credibility when approaching venues.

Aside from the methods described above, there are a number of searchable online directories of booking agencies, these will be of particular use for artists in areas with smaller music scenes or who are just looking for alternatives to the current major booking agencies known in their area.

Two large directories of this type are, The Music Biz Academy Directory and The American Federation Of Musicians Booking Agent Search.

Working with a booking agent is a fantastic way for an artist to further their career, reputation and financial gain. It is a key stepping stone on the path to greater musical success further down the road and a route that all artists should consider in their marketing plan.

Read More

Advance Marketing for Touring


Advance Marketing for Touring

When an unsigned band books its first tour (see Getting Bands Out of Their Own Back Yards), chances are that it will have to accept some undesirable time slots for many shows. It is going to take some work to fill a venue for a gig booked on a Monday or Tuesday night in a city where the band has no established fan base. Putting some effort into public relations ahead of time can pay off, however.

Local Venue Advertising

While the band can hope that the venue into which it is booked will market the upcoming show, it should not rely on that happening. Many venues will save marketing dollars by only advertising for special occasions or weekends. A band can locate local Internet sites that offer free advertising and post ads at two-week and one-week intervals prior to the scheduled show.

There is generally at least one publication in each major city that features a calendar of upcoming events (for example, in St. Louis, The Riverfront Times would be considered). Additionally, sites established especially for musicians can attract an audience, even if those audience members are other musicians who simply wish to check out the competition. Again, by way of example, in St. Louis, the site on which to post would be

Finally, a band should not forget nor discount the reach of sites such as, which has a specific category established for “Events” in different locations. Ads should be well-worded, mention any other acts with which the band is playing (and which may have a draw), and make note of the fact that band merchandise will be offered – perhaps at a discount for the first fifty people at the ‘merch’ table. (Merchandising will be discussed in an upcoming article in this series.)

Social Networks and Email Marketing for Upcoming Tour Stops

Advance Marketing for Touring - social media and email marketing

This is one area where a band’s social networking presence can make a real difference. Maintaining an online calendar is a given, but a band should take extra steps to hype upcoming shows in other cities. When posting updates and reminders, the inclusion of a request to forward the post to other subscribers in the targeted geographic location can net better results.

Starting at least a week prior to the show, the band should alert fans on its social networking sites of the upcoming appearance and increase the frequency of such alerts right up to the day of the show. For instance, the first post could go out about a week and a half prior to the date of the show, with follow-up alerts two days later, then two days after that, until about four days prior to the show when daily posts can be made.

Similarly, if a band has an established distribution list for an email newsletter, sending an extra alert prior to the scheduled tour, then prior to each scheduled stop on that tour should be considered. Care must be taken, however, to prevent the band from appearing too “spammy.” As with ads, emails should mention anything about the venue that will be attractive to potential audience members, including a mention of the other acts with which the band will be playing.

Radio Airplay Requests to Promote Stops on the Tour

Advance Marketing for Touring - radio airplay requests

Probably the most difficult advance marketing endeavor for an unsigned band is to request radio airplay in each city prior to a performance there. If, however, a band has an EP suitable for radio play, it should attempt to take advantage of this marketing method. Doing so can be somewhat labor-intensive, but can pay off with a packed house.

The band can locate local radio stations (not forgetting college stations) by accessing sites such as By entering the city’s Zip Code, the band can find all the stations in that locale. From there it will be a matter of making calls to determine who to contact and the goal will be to reach out to the Program Director.

If the band’s representative cannot speak directly with this person, a message should be left, and the band should follow up by sending a promo package with a cover letter addressed to the Director that explains that the band will be in that city, and would appreciate some advance airplay to promote the show. About a week prior to the show, a follow-up email to that person will be in order. The email should mention the message and the promo kit, and again respectfully request airplay prior to the show.

Creatively Marketing Upcoming Shows

While it would be nice if a band could afford a billboard that announces an upcoming show on each tour stop, doing so is probably not going to be the reality. Putting some time and effort into advance promotion will pay off, and a band should apply its creative side to doing so. Doing Internet searches such as, “free advertising in Memphis,” can turn up methods of marketing that the band may not have considered.

Finally, even if only five people turn out for that Monday night show in Topeka, the band should give its best performance to those people (especially if they paid to be there), maintain its professionalism, and keep working toward the goal of playing to a packed twenty-thousand seat amphitheater.

Read More

How To Turn Your Music Career into a Massive Success

How To Turn Your Music Career into a Massive Success

Do you desire to take your career to the next level of success? How is this done? Though it isn’t quite as simple as following a step-by-step guide, there are many things you can do to gear your band toward the next level of success in hyper-speed. Below is a combination of online and offline tactics that if combined should help you to easily become a force within your target geographical areas (assuming you’re motived and your music is actually any good). Read on and turn your music career on high.

Conquer the College Market – By getting radio play at local colleges, playing shows at the colleges, and cafes and coffeehouses that are nearby your band will conquer the college market. It may take some digging to get the proper contact information for booking college gigs but it is extremely worth it. A group can earn easily enough to live off of for a year one in the college market.

Open Mics and Paid Venues – Open mic nights are a great starting point and testing ground for new musicians. They are open to everyone and you get your chance to show the venue owners and bookers what your band is made of. This should open up several opportunities for your band to start to receive paid gigs as a result.

Internet Promotions and Marketing Campaigns – Utilizing your email list and social networks your band can really start up a buzz. Your band should be constantly marketing to your target demographic month after month, year after year. This works well for companies and will work well for your band too.

Active Email Lists – The larger the better. Email lists keep you and your fans in constant communications. This is a great way to make online sell because those on your list usually are your hardcore fans.

Freebies and Other Swag – By giving out freebies and swag items with your band’s url address you are exposing more and more potential fans to your band. This works very well.

These are just a few of the easier tactics your band can tackle whether you are just getting going in performing and marketing your band or a seasoned veteran. There are many other ways you can quicken your success factor and gain more exposure, but these are most of the main ones for making a splash in your local market. Once you conquer your local market you can simply magnify these tactics to your entire region, and then the nationally and then…possibly…internationally! Take good care and utilize all of these high speed music career tactics and look to see your music career excel.

Read More