Stop Complaining about Newcomers and Start Adding Value!
It’s an ongoing complaint I see on social media about the singing/performance industry — “all these newcomers are undercutting us and taking our work…we should be getting paid more.”
It’s easy to blame the rookie for your shortfall in bookings and financial turnover but you’ve been around for years and you’re competing with an amateur?
The fact of the matter is that this is never going to change. The only way to change how this affects you is by changing the way you do business.
Venues (pubs, restaurants, social clubs) book you to make a higher return on their investment. If you don’t bring extra-value to their event then why should they re-book you let alone pay you more money?
With every performance I’ll make a concerted effort to talk to everybody in the room before I begin a show. I want to make the customers feel welcome and happy in my presence and deep-down I want to feel good around them too. It’s a small step in customer service that can lead to not only a great atmosphere but huge rewards in the form of repeat bookings and private work.
Plus, if the owner/manager sees this kind of rapport you’re building with their regular customers then he/she is hardly going to object to you returning after you’ve become mates with everyone in the room.
Without actually performing yet you’ve added value to the show. Everyone feels good around you and they’re more than likely to actually pay attention to your performance as opposed to your counterpart who turns up, sets up, sings, packs up and leaves again.
I’ve seen singers do this countless times and it sickens me because they will be the ones complaining the most.
How many times do you call a client to see what you could do better? How many times do you call a client to see whether you can help with promotion? Do you offer marketing materials of your own? Are you actively sharing their posts on social media to your followers to raise awareness?
All of this adds value.
If you’re not doing any of this and you’re an ‘established’ artist/singer/DJ/whatever — you shouldn’t be complaining about the newcomers as though they are the problem.
If clients lose interest in you or don’t deem your show to be worth more than a newcomers performance then who’s fault is that? It’s not the clients fault and it’s certainly not the newbie’s fault either.
For every complaint I read on Facebook about the state of the industry I often wonder how many times these guys look in the mirror and ask themselves what they could be doing better — rather than feeling shortchanged because they are not.
I’d be honoured if you shared this article for me. :-) All the best, Charlie.