Now is the time to start planning your Christian bands success for next year! The place to start your plan is by first evaluating where you are, then where you want to be in a year. After that, you can create steps and a budget to get you on track for your best year ever!
In Part One we evaluated the physical assets of your Christian Band. Now we need to look at all the intangibles…
This is probably THE most important intangible asset of your band. Spend as much time as necessary evaluating and trying to find cost effective ways to improve your ministry online. There are many tools available for each platform, with more being added daily. It is worth doing some research to find what works best for your band. Look at:
• Your band’s website
• Facebook page
• Twitter profile
• YouTube Channel
• MySpace page (if you have one)
• Wikipedia page (if you have one)
• Any platform that sells your music (Amazon, cdbaby etc.)
After you have evaluated all the pages your band administrates, go a step farther and consider ways that you can expand your reach online. For example: Are you using music sharing sites? Are you leaving comments on other people websites that point back to your website? Have you joined groups that talk about Christian music? What can you do to join your online concert promoting efforts with the efforts of the venue? One of my online mentors says the best thing we can do to promote ourselves online is to “be everywhere”. In other words, whenever a potential fan is online they should be bumping in to your band repeatedly. What can you do to make that happen? It is very time consuming, and I will admit that I am still working on that for this website. But I can also say that I have definitely seen results from the time I have invested… many of your found this site by visiting another site where I left a comment or by participating in the same Facebook group.
• Check the file you keep to prove usage of your bands name – does it include posters, etc from all your shows (especially those in states that you have not previously played)?
• Does your partnership agreement or whichever documents you use for the bands legal structure spell out who owns the band name and who gets to keep using it if members leave or the band breaks up?
This encompasses the overall look of the band, its music, and its ministry in every place you are represented. The brand can be identified with logo design, color choices, overall feel (industrial, dark and moody or bubblegum pop, playful and bright for example).
• Does the brand represent the band well? Does the brand depict your bands style of music well? Do you need to redesign?
• Is the brand being represented consistently? (Onstage, online, at your merch. table etc.)
• Is the brand being confused with someone else?
• Are you on track to release your next project?
• How many more songs do you need to write?
• How is the current way of songwriting working for the band? Do you have ideas of new methods to try?
• Which of your songs need to be rewritten?
• Have you chosen a studio? Did you like the last studio and engineers you used? Do you need to try something different?
• How are you handling the cover art and inserts?
• Who is doing the duplication and packaging?
• How is the band going to distribute the release?
• Reevaluate your decisions to register or not to register your songs with the copyright office.
• Check to see if your records of who owns which songs are correct and put in a safe file.
• Look at past interactions with the media… radio interviews, print articles, tv appearances, etc. What could your band do better? How can you attract more media attention?
• What can you do to get more airplay?
• Is your one-sheet up to date?
• Have you included recent media appearances in your press kit, website, and one-sheet?
There are a whole lot of topics to discuss here and this is by no means an exhaustive list. So, take time to discuss and research how your band can improve in all these areas… it will pay off next year. You do not need to have all the answers in one meeting. Break it up over several weeks if necessary. Remember to allow time to talk about any other areas that need to be changed in the upcoming year. Try to come up with the next steps you can take in each area and then prioritize those steps.
Next week we will continue this band evaluation. Can you guess the topic? It is arguably the most disliked topic in any bands ministry… 6 letters… starts with a “B” and ends with a “t”.
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