Rock clubs are failing in many major cities, and the reasons are diverse and complicated. With the advent and ever-increasing popularity of e-entertainment (YouTube, Spotify, etc), there is less and less of an incentive to actually go out and see live music. Because of that, rock club owners are forced to think of new ways to entice folks to come in to see music. The more people in, the more drink revenue, and the happier the bands will be and the good ones will be more likely to come back. The bad bands will play no matter what, but if you get the good ones to come back, you’ll improve your club’s reputation as a place to go to hear good live music any night of the week. But how can you get more people in the door?
1. No Cover
A lot of venues think they have to charge something at the door. A door charge is not always a bad idea, and people are used to that and will pay it. But if you’re struggling, you might want to make some shows – particularly the ones on off-peak days like Sunday-Wednesday – free for anyone. They will still buy drinks and in fact will likely spend the same amount from the bar that they would have on the door and bar to begin with. The advantage is you can get foot traffic in, people who would actually be deterred by a $5 cover but would poke their head in – and probably buy a drink – if it’s free.
2. On-street Advertisement
People don’t tend to read the paper anymore to find out what’s going on in the town, or not in the numbers they used to, and information online is so busy and easy to ignore, that even proper print and online advertisement does not guarantee you’ll get noticed by the people who would likely to come to the show. It’s still important, if not more important than ever, to do proper physical promotion. And that can be a sandwich board or even retractable banner stands that you put on the street in front, or at nearby corners directing foot traffic to your venue. Knowing about a concert is more than half the battle, so don’t miss out on getting the people who are actually already out and about to come by. You can get these promo materials affordably at http://thedisplayoutlet.com.
3. Diversity of Music
Some venue owners think it’s important to focus on a particular style of music so that locals know what they’re getting any night of the week. I think that makes no sense. Why appeal to one demographic when, over the course of the week or month, you could appeal to all demographics? Have metal if you want, but also have folk rock, alt rock, country, indie, and even movie nights or plays! The more diverse your club, the more likely you will get your name out to a large swath of the population, and that only helps your image and reputation, and to get both more people and better acts at your venue.