In this episode, Jared shares a few tips on how to earn more money per gig. After all, in order to achieve our music career goals faster, we need to step on the gas pedal.
What is up gigging pros. It's Jared and today I wanted to chat about how to earn more per gig. So before we do that, I just want to let you know this episode is sponsored by the Gigging Secrets book. It's available to you for free, just pay some shipping and handling at GiggingSecrets.com. Alright, so first, I apologize for the quality of the mic. Today, I am on my hike in Arizona, I'm on a little trip visiting my family. And I have my microphone, but I left it down at the bottom of the mountain, and I'm at the top right now. So that's unfortunate. But we'll make Dukas as gigging pros, we roll with the punches. And so I wanted to chat about how to earn more per gig, because this is one of the keys to getting you to six figures a year off of playing music. And so people ask about this a lot. And it seems like there's just not enough knowledge on the subject, and maybe not enough bravery on the subject. And I'll talk about that. So the first thing to know is like, I am always experimenting with my group Dream City Strings. You know, when we first started, we were not making a ton per gig. It was more than nothing, that's for sure. But it wasn't enough to sustain somebody. And we have progressively over over the the years of our existence, been figuring out ways to earn more per gig, and it's been paying off. And one of the people who played for me recently at a gig, he went out to Buffalo Wild Wings afterwards. And he, this really touched me, he said, Do you know what this last gig means to me. And I said, No, what he said, it means my new pair of glasses. And that was incredible. Like, that was a big payoff for me, because I've been working so hard to achieve this, earning a lot of money for performing. But to be able to contribute to his life in a very real way meant a lot to me. And if you're listening to this, thanks for sharing that with me. And, you know, putting up with a lot of my crazy experiments, you rock. So that's why I feel like it's so important for musicians to understand how to earn more per gig. So that, you know, we can pay for life and be musicians and be fulfilled. So one of the cool things about that gig is that was a way to earn more per gig. That initially was a wedding ceremony that we were earning, you know, our flat rate for. But one of the initial ways to earn more per gig is to play more time. So they added on a cocktail hour and your ability to sell people on more time will increase your earnings per gig, you know, you can almost earn double for that. Oftentimes, though, as a selling point, you might want to discount additional time, instead of charging your flat rate per hour, you might say, Well, if you book us for the second hour, we're already there, I want to make this an appealing offer to you to add more time, we're not going to charge you double, or whatever your per rate is, we will give you a discount. So it's something to experiment with. So adding on more time, is a way to earn more per gig, I should have started with this number two, because it's quite frankly, the most obvious, which is charge more per gig. And this is where a lot of bar and club musicians might say, you know, we are kind of stuck at the mercy of whatever the bar and club owners pay us. And to that, I understand that here, you start, it's time to start thinking is that bar or club, you know, worth playing. And I hear a lot of people protesting right now. And I get that like, you know, this advice is not for everybody. If you want to keep being at the mercy of bar and club owners that devalue your time, that's your choice to do that. I understand that you're getting to build a following that way. But as a gigging musician, that's not a way to earn more per gig, the way to earn more per gig is to raise your rates and stick with them, and say no to opportunities that aren't worth your time. So this is an area that I would honestly admit that I've struggled with a little bit, because it's scary to raise your rates. It feels like well, people have booked me at this, my previous rate for so long, that they're used to it, and I'm gonna get a lot of people saying no, and offended that I'm raising my rates on them. And I would say, well, most people book live music only once in their life. So only new people are going to experience your new rate. And as you play more gigs and you get more testimonials, the value of your services rises. And it justifies your higher rate. And so if you're not super comfortable, just like you know, doubling your rates right away. Then one thing that I've been excited matching with is like increasing your rate 50 bucks each gig you play something like that. Where, to you the bandleader. It feels like you're making progress. But honestly, to the people who are getting quotes from you, they they don't know the difference, because, you know, they've never booked you in the past. And, you know, I've actually encountered people who said, like, I had my, my family booked you a year or two ago for my sister's wedding. And you guys charged less than, and I say, Yes, that's true. But it's been two years since then, since then, we've played an extra two or 300 gigs, or I'd say weddings, and earn that more experience behind our belts, we've won XY and Z new award since then. And to keep up with a competitive market, because we truly are the best in our field, we need to raise our rates to justify our our value, and they get it. And I still get people saying, you know, you're out of our budget. But that's okay. Because I get people who say you are in our budget, and let's sign the contract. So number one was play for more time. Number two, was to actually raise your rates. And number three, is a fun one, an interesting one that almost no musicians think about. And I'm going to encourage you to think about it is, what else can you sell to the same customer? And we call these upsells? So what upsells Can you add to your bookings? And so we don't really think of this, you know, we're most musicians, we're not trained in business. So we don't think about it this way. But when somebody books, you, they become your customer, you have already proven that you can sell one thing to them. Now think about what else can you sell them. And so, for my group, we charge an additional fee to learn new music, because we do actually pay for all of our arrangements, and we get cheap music specifically made for that song. Or we you know, it just cost money. And we build in a profit margin into that rate, so that we're not just paying, you know, how Leonard for the sheet music, we're also paying our group and whoever coordinates the purchasing of that sheet music. So building a profit margin to that. Some other ideas of what else you could sell to them. If you are, if you play a lot of outdoor gigs, and you require shade, you can sell them the service of bringing a tent. I've seen some groups do that. And my group doesn't do that. Because we just require it in their contract and shift the burden of that to the person who booked us or the venue. But there are groups who use BookLive software that I've seen who do charge extra for a tent, and they'll set it up and they'll add a profit margin. So they make money on that, too. It's not just paying for the tent. What are some other things you can sell to your customer who has already booked you? I'm talking a bit more about private events here. So for private events, specifically, weddings, a service that I add as an upsell, people can actually purchase recording services from me, meaning if they want a keepsake album of their wedding music, I will bring a microphone setup. And I will record the group building the profit margin. And then, you know, give them a USB thumb drive with the actual music that was played at their wedding. And I charge for that, and it's a it's a it's a moneymaker. So that is a possibility. Also providing sound equipment. Like I know many bands already bring their own sound and they include that. But what if you wanted to add on emceeing services? That's an upsell. For my acoustic groups out there, like my group Dream City Strings, we do offer amplification as an upsell. And we'll bring our own sound equipment and microphones specifically designed for our string instruments, and will charge for that building a profit margin. Are you noticing the pattern here, you get this? And that is a service we offer them? And you might be asking when do we offer these things? And I would say right when they book is the best time to offer them any additional upsells you can actually can add that on to their contract before they even sign it. But the second best time is anytime that you have an interaction with them. So like the song based like the song custom song upgrading. People purchase that as they're building and planning their setlist for their wedding. They'll use BookLive the client portal to pick the songs from our current library. And then if they have some song that, you know they had their first road trip, and they played the song and sang it and they need to have that at their wedding. They will reach out to me and ask me Hey, do you Can you play this song? And I'll offer them the custom song upsell? And what else can you sell them. So think about different services that you can offer, a really big one that I left out is you can actually work with a different group type. And say you're playing the wedding ceremony. And you're a string quartet. And they say to you, Hey, do you have any? Do you do offer jazz musicians, and you don't have to be a jazz band. To do this, you can say, I work with a XYZ jazz band. And let me work with them and get back to you. And we can include it in our package for a price break. And then you have just up sold them on a different group. And that's included as your booking and you can add a profit margin on that. And boom, that's how you earn more per gig. So I hope I just blew some people's minds here. Like you can be super creative. This is just, you know, the tip of the iceberg of how you can earn more per gig and the tip of the iceberg for upsells. So, it is possible to earn a living from playing music, you can earn a major six award for earning six figures a year in bookings through the BookLive software. But you might have to be creative at first, and how you increase your prices and charge more per gig. So I hope that helps some of you. Oh, by the way, I mentioned that earlier that this was really just for private event gigs. But there are ways to upsell public event gigs. Many musicians initially gravitate towards selling merch, like, I don't know, T shirts and hats, stickers, and even their own albums. So that is one way to upsell. Although I would argue that's not really selling directly to the customer who booked you that's selling to other customers or future customers who are your audience members. So think about, you know, I'm not the public events wizard. I am the private events wizard, but don't call me that. Although if you do a laugh, I'll get a kick out of that. So be creative on that. And if anybody has any creative ideas on how to earn more per gig on public events, or even more upsells and more ways to earn more per gig for private events. I would love to know shoot me a message you all have my email address. It's Jared@BookLive.com Or join the Gigging Musicians Facebook group, and make a post. Let me know what you think about this. Make sure to like and subscribe to this podcast and again, get your free copy of Gigging Secrets the book that will get physically shipped to your door that teaches you the strategies the playbook of how to start from nothing and earn a living from your music. Get that free plus a little bit of shipping at GiggingSecrets.com Alright, hope you enjoyed this. Remember, you are only one gig away