Friday, March 14, 2014

Ghost Town (slight return)

According to The Coventry Evening Telegraph some people seem to have a ‘Field of Dreams’ philosophy to the lack of a city centre music venue. I wouldn’t expect them to appreciate the finer details but an assumption that this much-needed centrally placed venue would instantly solve all of the city’s entertainment woes is almost certainly misplaced.

The debate was sparked by two Coventry bands who have omitted the city from their current touring schedule. It’s not the first time they’ve done this and the lack of an appropriate venue certainly plays a part in the process, but it’s not the whole story. Touring cycles often alternate venues/towns/cities in order to avoid over-playing in a certain territory. Thus Wolverhampton/Birmingham, Liverpool/Manchester, Glasgow/Edinburgh can often be swapped dependent upon where the act played last.

Clearly a band would always want to play their home-town but nothing would be more embarrassing than failing to sell out in your back-yard, having a guest list that’s bigger than the box office sales print-out may also be a big issue. Tours take a number of factors into consideration from regional popularity to an area’s general population and prosperity.

Monday, March 10, 2014

The anti-marketing marketing angle

Blame Bowie. By issuing a single and album that few people even knew was being recorded he started a trend that we now seem to be seeing a lot of, the ‘stealth-release’. For once in his illustrious career he wasn’t the first to do this but the PR splash he created is one that others are ultra-keen to replicate.

It is a trick you can only consider attempting if your fanbase is already huge and your reputation mature enough to survive it. Everyone else is already releasing material into the ether without much fanfare, now it seems that the famous think that they can also get away with it.

It’s a risky business. By easing back on the marketing you are essentially only reaching those who are actively engaged with you, those who are likely to see the Facebook updates or the shared tweets. You may rely on the hardcore to do the work for you but there is a potential that you may not reach the unengaged mass, the normal fan, the casual participant, basically most people.