How To Promote A Live Music Event

By Tiara Ogabang

This article will discuss the 10 best ways to promote a live music event.

These include: how to pick a date for the live music event, how to promote the event with your event venue, how to make the ticket purchase process as easy as possible for your customers, how to create a good merchandise offering, how to set up a backup plan if the event doesn’t generate the expected number of ticket sales, and finally, how to tie up all the loose ends after the event.

Picking the right date

Picking the right date

One of the key elements of live music promotion is picking the right day. There are four main days that can work for live music events: Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

The most popular days are Friday and Saturday, but don’t overlook Sunday or even a date during the week. Thursday shows are becoming much more popular as Thursday is becoming the new Friday.

This doesn’t have to be a hard and fast rule, but a key factor in deciding on a date is how many other live music events will be taking place on the same day.

The more, the better. It’s a good idea to look at the number of live music events at the venue to get a better idea.

Working with the venue to promote a live event

Working with the venue to promote a live event

To get a better idea of how to promote your live music event at the venue, you need to talk to your venue about its needs. Ask your venue about its seating needs.

For venues, it’s generally a good idea to work out your ticketing and turnstile buying strategies a month or two in advance of the actual event.

This gives you enough time to talk to and persuade ticket sellers to give you a better deal, if you’re buying from them.

Some venues will sell tickets for £10 or £15, while others charge more than that. A monthly calendar of live music events at the venue can help in deciding what to charge for tickets and where to sell them.

Is there a preferred seating area, or would it be better to have a staggered seating plan?

Or maybe you’ll want to set up an outside area where people can get some fresh air. This could be an ideal spot for a street corner or a laneway leading off the courtyard.

Having the venue’s ideal seating layout in mind will help you to set a seating plan and buy tickets in advance.

How does the floor planning of the venue look?

How does the floor planning of the venue look

Another part of the venue planning involves how the venue would be set up for stage production. How many tables and chairs will you need, and where will they be placed? Is it best to have a stage running along one wall of the room, or can a different direction be better for setting up the sound?

This is also a good time to talk to your venue about how it’s working to accommodate different kinds of musical tastes, and whether the space can be used for anything else besides live music. Is there a section for wheelchairs, a space for the visually impaired or a conservatory?

It could be an ideal place for an awards ceremony or a bridal suite.

You need to talk to the venue about sound and lighting so you can get a handle on how loud it will be, as well as how much power is needed. Having this information in advance will help you to secure the best in-house staff to run the sound and lighting.

It’s also a good idea to talk to your venue about your requirements for merchandise sales. How will the venue attract people through the door? Is a line-up of top-selling artists enough? Or does your venue need to set up a small stand with two big signs to advertise in advance?

Again, it’s a good idea to speak to the venue about this issue.

Ticket prices — what's a good rule of thumb?


The next step is to decide on ticket prices. How much should the ticket be?

Should it cost less for seniors and younger audiences, or is it best to charge the same price?

The venue should also give you information on what else will be happening at the same time – either with a busking or a wheelchair-bound area, for example.

For us we've always had success charging less and getting more people to come — this way you incentivize people to come and hear your band or lineup of bands. Then in the next show or concert series, you can charge more and people will be prepared to pay it if they enjoyed it last time.