Monday, January 25, 2010

How to run a successful clubnight in 2010

Courtesy of Aidan Kelly, from this thread.

1 - Have a musical and experiential concept in mind - what will the music policy be, and what sort of experiences will you try and provide your customers?

2 - Choose a venue wisely. Obviously beggers can't be choosers, but try and pick a venue who show some level of support for your concept, and that you can at least have some sort of working relationship with.

3 - Get your friends involved, and friends of friends. With Facebook etc it's easier to spread the word without necessarily spamming people. Just putting up a notice on your page can do it without getting up people's noses.

4 -
Work hard at your promotion. Not just on Facebook, but some posters would be a good idea (I think flyers are a bit dated and expensive in our digital age), inform club listings sections, try to establish a dedicated site/page for your event, have a hosting site for mixes etc, basically try to get your message out there using all promotional means possible.

5 - Try to get to know any regulars, give out mixes at the club to punters, start an opt-in e-mail list, do a text message service (opt-in also), provide discounted/free entry to people on the mailing list for certain nights.

6 - Choose a core of resident DJ’s for your night, having tons of residents seems a bit pointless to me, certainly have people who play regularly but I think too many cooks spoils the broth as far as resident DJs go, I think 2-3 is probably the magic number. Get plenty of guest DJ’s involved too though, as they bring their own networks of people. Obviously there needs to be some musical cohesion to the night so select them carefully, but it’s a good idea to get some like-minded people together, they add to the dynamic.

7 - Try to stand out from the competition in some way. I’ve seen so many “house and techno” nights at home, it’s really hard to differentiate some of them. It might be difficult, but try and have something unique, sometimes it’s good to zig when others zag. It could be through a great soundsystem, cool lighting, drinks promotions, open-minded music policy (I think nights that have mono music policies all night are really dull), it’s about trying to find a hook for what you do.

8 - When you get established, try to book an international guest DJ. This can build up the brand reputation, and get people interested in what you do.

9 - Keep a good relationship going with the venue owner, consult them on everything, and keep them informed of any plans you have. They may not necessarily reciprocate, but it’s important in trying to build a working relationship.

10 - Don’t give up when things don’t go right. It’s inevitable that things will go wrong from time to time, poor attendances, sound systems, wrong crowds, bad music, trouble at the venue, unhappy venue owners, basically the odds are stacked against you. But if you are passionate about what you do, and believe in it, you should be successful, and even if you aren’t, at least you’ll fail at something you actually wanted to do than succeed at something you don’t.

...and a later post - I also think it helps if you have someone on your team who isn't a DJ. I think between DJing, equipment, sound, etc., if everyone is a DJ then the music is the main thing that gets the attention. Nothing wrong with this in theory (it should be all about the music, of course), but in practice other things get neglected like organisation, general flow, venue problems, etc., so having a detached person from the musical side can be really helpful I would imagine.

Spot on Aidan!


GKG said...

great post. solid thoughts

DBD said...

cheers - thanks to Aidan Kelly.

There's more good info since posting this on that thread linked in the post.

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