Your band has cobbled together enough fans in some cities to support a tour. Congratulations! Now comes the hard work. Touring can be stressful, surviving on gas station burritos and little sleep, so here’s some advice to help your tour go smoothly:
1. Appoint a Tour Manager
Whether you hire or assign one, it is crucial to have a tour manager, as the single point of contact to streamline and organize the tour. The tour manager will oversee budget and finances, communication with venue managers, tour schedule and logistics, to make sure everyone knows where they need to be and knows what they need to do.
2. Use Social Media Effectively
Target your fans in each city where you’ll be touring. Use all the social media platforms, especially Facebook, to reach fans and potential fans with the details of your upcoming gigs. Drive them to buy tickets and share the tour information with their friends.
3. Plan Transportation Wisely
You may want to rent a bus like big-time rock stars, but you most likely can’t afford to yet. Consider renting an RV and sleeping in it to save on hotel costs, or maybe renting a cargo van will better serve your needs. You may also need to rent a trailer for your equipment, road cases and gear. Think this through very carefully, since so often this one area eats up lots of money. If you can borrow reliable transportation, do it.
4. Order Promotional Giveaways
Besides the t-shirts and CDs you’ll be selling, have something free that you give to fans at the shows. It can be stickers, bracelets or posters. This guarantees that every fan goes home with something that has your band logo on it. Every time they see that giveaway item, it’s a promotion for when you play there again.
5. Get Quality Video and Photos of Your Shows
Don’t forget this! It’s vital to use video and photos from your gigs to promote your band and future tours on social media. Nothing makes a greater impact than seeing your band performing live on stage in front of fans.
Most bands aren’t lucky enough to be an overnight sensation. Touring bands need determination, hard work and consistency to make their mark. Using these 5 steps and planning ahead will make all the difference, as you strive to live the dream.