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Learn How To Book 100+ Gigs A Year WITHOUT A BOOKING AGENT!



Bethany Jane is a professional singer and guitarist that performs at weddings, parties, events and care homes over up to 120 times a year, without the help of a booking agent. In this blog, she is going to provide you some insight as to how you can do the same.


"I don’t have a booking agent, but work with various online platforms for musicians to promote myself," Bethany stated. By doing this, she is able to book up to 120 gigs a year for herself, a truly remarkable feat.

We were lucky enough to chat with Bethany and pick her brain about how she is able to do this, and her answers could very well help you accomplish the same, and maybe even more!

How were you able to book that many gigs a year, completely on your own? Bethany always begins by getting herself a profile on various websites that advertise musicians.

"Some I pay for, others take a cut if I get a gig through them," she explained. She further added, "I’m on about 3 sites that actually work for me in the UK," but was quick to acknowledge that what works for her, may not work for other musicians, as everyone (and their music) is unique.


Beyond booking professional gigs through these sites however, Bethany always does a lot of the hard work herself. She will take on some pub gigs or go busking, to get her name out there, which helps her get evermore bookings. In addition, to busking and using this services to help her get gigs, she also does "cold-calling" or outreach, by approaching venues and asking if they would like music in their restaurant or pub. One of her keys to success also includes word of mouth, in which she will perform for friends, so that they can mention her services to people they know too.

What would you say are must haves when looking to book gigs? Strong portfolio? EPK? Website? Pitch? When asked about must-haves, we had suggested some prompts, including a strong portfolio, EPK, website and/or pitch, but Bethany had said, "I would say you need some professionally shot photos (by a photographer who has experience shooting musicians) and a professionally shot showreel of a few for your strongest songs. It does mean you have to pay but it’s worth it."


This can show promoters and venue owners that you are serious about making music.


What would be your recommendations for artists to include in their pitch? As much as you may hate to market or pitch yourself (or your music), it is something that is needed when booking gigs on your own. Bethany suggests that you "keep it personal to the client and try and meet their needs for the gig. Try to be flexible and mention things that can set you apart from someone else."


Do you have an email template you use? If so, what does it look like? "I usually introduce myself and say what I play, include info such as that I’m insured and use PAT tested equipment," she explained, "and often make it personal to them and their event – explaining what music I can offer, how many sets, if I can learn a song or few and a quote," she added.

What advice would you give to artists that want to book their first few gigs? And eventually 100+ a year?

A short, simple and clear message - "Get yourself some professional photos and videos – these are must," Bethany stated.

Is there anything else that you would like to share? "Building up as professional musician takes time and initially you may need to take on a few gigs for free/lower paid just to get experience and show people what you can do," Bethany stated. She then explained that while you should d that for a bit, it is important that you have confidence in your own worth and charge enough for your talent. "This will vary, but do your research in your area and have a price that meets others around you," Bethany added. In essence, "be confident that you are worth it. Don’t let people take advantage as everyone wants a free gig from musicians, do them if you want to, but don’t feel pressured to take every offer that comes along," she concluded with. If you would like to keep up to date with Bethany, follow her on Instagram here.


 

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