Primary Blog/Gigging Musician Podcast/Episode 226 - Maximizing Gigs: New Tools for Tracking Success and Boosting Bookings

Episode 226 - Maximizing Gigs: New Tools for Tracking Success and Boosting Bookings

Wednesday, March 27, 2024

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Episode Recap

In this episode, Jared is on the road to Cheyenne, Wyoming, for a gig, sharing exciting updates from the world of BookLive and Fulltime Music Academy. He introduces two groundbreaking features designed to revolutionize how gigging musicians manage and evaluate their lead sources. First, Jared discusses the lead source performance dashboard, a tool that provides unparalleled insights into which marketing efforts are truly paying off, offering clarity on the profitability of various platforms like Wedding Wire and Gig Salad. This dashboard not only tracks the number of leads and bookings from each source but also calculates the conversion rate, total revenue generated, and even the average revenue per lead, empowering musicians to make informed decisions about where to invest their marketing dollars. Next, Jared explores the new sales cadence feature, a systematic approach to following up with leads that ensures no opportunity slips through the cracks. By providing a series of templated messages and reminders for follow-ups, this feature aims to increase response rates and bookings, turning persistence into profit. Jared's enthusiasm for these updates is palpable as he explains how they can help musicians book more gigs, earn more money, and ultimately, find greater satisfaction in their careers.

Best Quote

"Data is the golden standard of marketing. You don't want to live without data for too long because it's like flying a ship without a map, flying an airplane without knowing how fast or how high you are."

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Transcript

What's up, gigging pros? It's Jared Judge. Welcome back to another episode of The Gigging Musician Podcast. I am on my way up north, heading to Cheyenne, Wyoming from Denver, because I've got a gig, and I know it's been a while since I have posted one of these podcasts, and I apologize for that, but I've been busy.

In fact, there's been a lot of amazing changes happening in our world of BookLive, Fulltime Music Academy, and I'm super excited about all of them. I'd say the two biggest ones that I'm super excited about are some feature updates inside of BookLive, and I'll go through a couple of them. But I want to start with a little bit of backstory.

Why you should care, because otherwise it's just farting in the wind. So why you should care is if you're a gigging musician, you know that your livelihood depends on the number of gigs that you play and how much you get paid for them. And so in order to book a gig, you have to have somebody reach out to you and say, hey, I'm interested in booking.

You give me your price and availability. That's just the general summary of a lead. And I get tons of leads every single year through a variety of sources.

And the problem? I'll start with the first feature. The problem has been, I have no idea which of these sources actually work for me, meaning they make me money rather than lose me money. And I'm not sure what is the percentage of leads that actually turn into bookings.

How much money have I actually made from this lead source? Are these gigs, like, higher paying gigs than other lead sources? Like, should I focus more on one versus the other? Like, is gig salad better than wedding wire?

And I'm sure I'm not the only one who goes through this. In fact, I'm certain I'm not the only one who has had these questions, because I've talked to a lot of other musical act leaders, and whether they're soloists or they run a band or a string quartet, they have similar questions, like, I'm paying thousands of dollars to wedding wire every year.

How do I know if I'm actually making my money back? Or are they just charging me? And I'm literally paying them to play, which pay to play gigs are not something that I consider doing.

It's not a profitable venture. So the first feature I wanted to chat in BookLive solves that issue. And I'm super excited about it, because what it does, I call it the lead source performance dashboard, which I know is kind of a clunky name.

I'm going to rename it. But the lead source performance dashboard shows you all of the leads that you've brought in into BookLive, which means I'm going to start tracking my leads a little bit more rigorously and where they came from. But it shows you, of all these lead sources, how many leads have they actually given you? Right.

I just did a wedding expo. It's called the Love is sweet wedding Expo in Boulder, Colorado, and I brought in 79 leads, and it shows me 79 leads, which is amazing from one source. Other sources, like some of the venue tours that I've been on, maybe one or two leads.

But then the other cool part is when you actually turn those leads into gigs. Like, you talk to the lead, it's a wedding. You say, great, I'm available for your wedding.

Here's how much I charge, blah, blah, blah. And then you create the gig in BookLive. They sign a contract, and all of a sudden, for that lead source, it tracks.

You've got another gig booked from wedding wire or from the love is suite wedding expo. And that gig was $1,000 gig. So you brought in $1,000 for that lead source.

And then over time, it just tracks this data. So say those 79 leads from the love is suite wedding expo turn into 20 booked gigs. That would be 20 divided by 79.

We'll round that to 80. Roughly 25% conversion rate of leads to gigs. And the amazing part is, it will track that for you.

It'll say, hey, of these 79, 20 have turned into gigs. You have a 24 point whatever conversion rate, and it does this for all of your lead sources. So wedding wire, maybe you're at 60%, maybe some of these others, you're at 5%.

Like, wow, this is eye opening stuff. But the other cool part is, say those 20 gigs vary between $500 and $2,000 per gig. Then it will count all of the money of those gigs, and let's say, on average, those were $1,000 gigs and they were 20 gigs.

And it'll say, the love is sweet wedding expo turned into $20,000 worth of business for you, which, holy crap, the amount of insights we can gain from that are so much better than anything before. Like, unless you are super meticulous about tracking all this with spreadsheets, here's the power of this. It is not free to advertise on any of these platforms.

I will tell you, the love is sweet wedding expo. I paid about $400 to exhibit at, which is actually really cheap compared to some of the other wedding expos, but if I know with certainty that I book $20,000 worth of gigs from something I paid $400 worth, I believe that tells me that I had a 50 to one return on my investment. Let me just do the quick math on that.

$400 is what I paid for the booth. Multiply that by five, and you get $2,000. Multiply that by ten.

So we get 50, and we get $20,000. So, yes, I would know with certainty that by investing in this wedding expo, I got a 50 to one return on my investment. And so that is incredible.

You go to a blackjack table, and if I put in $100, I'm expected to lose. Playing perfect blackjack strategy, you're probably going to come away. You're definitely going to go towards zero.

So it has a less than one return on your investment. Whereas if I go to this wedding expo, 50 to one, that's insane. And you'll do this for every different lead source.

So, with wedding wire over the past five years, I've probably invested over $10,000 into wedding wire, and I still need to go back and track and attribute all of the leads and gigs that I've booked to wedding wire. That's kind of the work for me right now, is back populating my previous leads. But I will see without a single shadow of a doubt whether or not wedding wire is profitable for me.

Because if I've spent $10,000 and I've made over $10,000 in gigs, well, I've got a positive return on my investment, which is amazing. And the other amazing part is, if you know that some of these lead sources have a higher return on investment than others, then the 80 20 principle says that 80% of your results will come from 20% of your effort. And if there are some 20% of my lead sources are providing the highest return on investment, then I should cut out the remaining lead sources that are just not as profitable.

I should go all in. Like, if wedding expos are 50 to one, which, by the way, that's not a real number. I don't know yet, because the wedding expo literally just happened a couple of weeks ago.

But if they are 50 to one for me, and wedding wire is only two to one, well, math says I should cut out wedding wire and spend all my money on wedding expos, so that's the kind of insight that you can get from this. The other thing is, as I mentioned before, it'll also calculate your average dollar amount per gig booked on that platform. So you may discover that gigs on gig salad pay half as much as gigs you get from wedding expos, or half as much as gigs you get from a referral from a venue.

And so you'll know that you're actually working twice as hard for the gigs that come from certain platforms. Like, if gig Salad truly is the cheaper platform where you get cheaper gigs out of it, then you're working twice as hard than other platforms. And once again, 80% of your results will come from 20% of your efforts.

If I'm wasting my time on gig salad or something, I'll know, and I'll be able to cut it. And then the last amazing insight from this first feature is it actually calculates the average revenue per lead. And so what this means is, say that wedding expo, I booked $20,000 worth of gigs from it, and I got 70 leads, 79 leads.

Let's round that up to 80 for the math. What it will do is even though those 80 leads did not turn into gigs, it will take the $20,000, and it will divide it by your 80 leads, which I'm going to need a calculator for that. So $20,000 divided by 80 leads equals $250 per lead.

So I know that for every lead that comes in through that wedding expo, that lead is worth $250 for me. And no, that doesn't mean that every lead turns into a gig. But on average, each lead is worth $250, which means I should be willing to put in at least $250 worth of effort towards nurturing those leads.

And that will have kind of a positive feedback loop, because if you're putting in $250 worth of effort into every single lead, do you think you're going to book more leads, book more gigs from those leads? I think so. And that will actually turn that $20,000 into a higher number. So that is the lead source performance dashboard, and that is inside of BookLive.

Again, this kind of data and insight on gigs and where you book them from and how much those lead sources are worth is completely unheard of in our gigging world. It's also unheard of in a lot of marketing worlds, too. Like, data is the golden standard of marketing.

You don't want to live without data for too long because it's like flying a ship without a map, flying an airplane without knowing how fast or how higher you are. And so having this control over that is just an amazing feeling. And I got so excited by it, I just had to release this feature, and so it's available to you in BookLive.

If you go to booklive.com clients, you will see a tab called lead sources, and you'll see all of your lead sources. So I'm going to be going back to all of my previous gigs and attributing where the lead came from so that I could see how much money I've earned from each of my lead sources, and I'll try to report back to you.

I've been busy, but I'll make a good effort. My Fulltime Music Academy members get this insight very quickly, but I will do my best to make it up to you guys. And now, as for the second feature, I'm super excited about, which is the fact that sales cadences are actually here with leads.

So, again, story so that you understand how cool this is as a gigging musician, I get so many leads of people saying, hey, are you available? How much do you charge? And I'm pretty good about sending my first follow up message. Like, my first, yes, I'm available. Here's how much it costs.

Here's what you get with your performance with me. Are you interested in securing your date? But I would say over half of the people that I reach out to and send that message to, over half of them don't respond, which I know you're probably thinking, that's crazy, because I actually have had people say, like, I thought you had any year, 100% success rate, and the answer is no. I'm just doing a lot more volume so that it's easier for me to book so many gigs at a high rate as I do a lot of marketing.

I get a lot of people into my funnels. So over 50% of people don't respond to my first message, which is nuts, and it's completely unacceptable. And then I had to accept the fact that it's my fault because, well, first off, if it was the perfect, most compelling message, then I would get closer to 100% response rate.

But second, I have to recognize the fact that these people, whether it's a corporate event, a wedding, a community event, festival, whatever, they're super busy. Like, I'm busy, you're busy. We're all busy.

And these people, unfortunately for us, as musicians, the musicians are not their top priority. They might have a family thing going on this week, or the newest season of Survivor might have just come out and they have to watch the episode and they forgot to reply to you, or they have kids running around that, hey, got to take the kids to the dentist, drop them off for soccer practice, et cetera. And so they're busy and they're not meaning to ghost you.

They don't know how it makes you feel, but it's just the reality of their situation. So we can't take it personally, but we do need to follow up. And that is where I have historically been pretty bad at.

So I discovered the power of sales cadences as a way to systematically follow up with these people, to send them messages, encouraging them to reply to you. And I've been using them quite a bit with following up with venues and event planners to get on their preferred vendor list, and it's been super successful. It's like professional persistence.

In fact, my studio professor back in college, he had a quote on his door by Calvin Coolidge, something to the effect of, know, the one thing that will set those who are successful from those who are not is persistence. And I butchered the quote there.

But that's the idea, is we want to be professionally persistent with our leads, that if we follow up with them on a regular basis, maybe once every other day, and not just emailing them, but maybe calling and texting them, too, then you will close a lot more leads, or if anything, you'll get the clarity of them saying, hey, we went with somebody else.

And then you aren't wondering, did they actually get my email? And so I brought the sales cadence feature over from the gig vault, which is about building your partnerships into the leads area of BookLive, so you could say, hey, I just got a new lead from Gig Salad. I'm going to enroll them in my gig salad follow up sequence specifically for weddings or corporate events. And then what it will do is it will loop you through a series of follow up messages.

It'll say, hey, you just got the lead. Send this message first. And then you say, okay, I sent it.

And it'll say, all right, your next step is to send them a text message, or call them and call them immediately. And then you mark that step as complete. And then if they don't respond, it will tell you, hey, in two days, send this follow up message through gig salad.

And it has a template and everything. And then once you mark that as complete, it'll say, okay, send this follow up text message. And if they still don't respond, then it will say, hey, in two more days, follow up with this message.

And it'll just keep doing it until they get so frustrated and annoyed that you're being professionally persistent that they will either book you or say, hey, we went with somebody else, but the idea here is like, you're not annoying them. You're not doing this to be annoying. You're actually doing it to move the relationship forward.

You're doing it to kind of force them to make a decision quicker, which is actually in their best interest. And so you have to have the mindset of, like, I'm doing this to help them. I'm being persistent to help them make a decision so they can check it off of their list and help them move on to other things that they want to do, rather than just the logistics of booking a musician, which I honestly believe that what I do is in service of other people.

So that's why I believe sales cadences really are a tool to help them in a positive way, because otherwise, you're just leaving it in this gray area, which damages you. You deserve to be replied to. I know.

I felt that way. I felt resentful and pissed off that these people, why don't they reply to me? And then when I accepted ownership and responsibility, it was no longer me getting pissed off. It was like, oh, it's my fault.

I am causing this. I'm leading to these circumstances. And so that's how this sales cadence feature will change the game with your ability to book more gigs, get replies, and be happier as a musician.

So that is the two new features, and they are both available immediately inside of BookLive. You just got to log in, and both of them are kind of related to each other because if you add a lead into BookLive and you attribute their lead source to gig salad, then you also can enroll them in a gig salad specific sales cadence so you can follow up and increase your conversion rate on gig salad, increase the dollar amount that you make per gig and per lead. And it is just a virtuous cycle that will help we musicians make more money, book more gigs, and be happier.

All right, so go check that out. It's a long episode. Super excited about these features.

You could probably tell. But if you want, go get your free trial of BookLive at www.booklive.com. And there'll be a place to get a free trial.

Or go to openthegigvault.com. It'll actually give you a longer free trial, a whole month instead of just two weeks. And let me know what you think of these features, because if you really take what you do seriously, you're going to want to know how much money are you getting out of each of these platforms based on how much you're putting in, and you're going to want to do everything you can to make that the highest amount possible through sales cadences.

All right, thanks for tuning into another episode of The Gigging Musician Podcast. Remember, my friends, "Your music will not market itself". Bye, everybody.

Episode 232 - From Bar Gigs to High-End Events: The Renegade Musician's Guide to Success

Episode 231 - Leadership in the Music Industry: How to Secure High-Profile Gigs and Take Charge of Your Career

Episode 230 - Unlocking the Secrets of Consistent Networking and Modern Sales for Musicians

Episode 229 - The Power of Networking and Recommendations in the Music Industry

Episode 228 - Navigating the Gig Economy: Venue Tours, Expos, and the Power of Numbers

Episode 227 - Strategic Moves: Venue Tours, Expos, and Unexpected Gigs

Episode 226 - Maximizing Gigs: New Tools for Tracking Success and Boosting Bookings

Episode 225 - Unlocking Gigs: Venue Tours and Strategic Partnerships

Episode 224 - A Day in the Life: Venue Tours, Unexpected Gigs, and Networking Wins

Episode 223 - Landing Gigs Post-Wedding Expo: A Musician's Success Story

Episode 222 - Navigating the Wedding Expo Scene: A Musician's Journey to Success

Episode 221 - Maximizing Success at Wedding Expos: A Musician's Guide

Episode 220 - Unlocking High-End Gigs: Venue Tours and Virtual Assistant Strategies

Episode 219 - Maximizing Your Music Career: The Power of a Personal Assistant

Episode 218 - Unlocking High-End Gigs: A Musician's Guide to Preferred Vendor Success

Episode 217 - Gigging Musician Podcast: Joe Deninzon Interview

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