Halloween provides the perfect opportunity for a concert or music festival. On 28 October, 2011, Bombskare seized that opportunity and hosted Skalloween 5, a night of “fancy dress mayhem” and music at the Liquid Room in Edinburgh. The Imagineers were on hand to share the stage, and the band’s home crowd cheered them on.
A nine piece band, Bombskare is Scotland’s Ska Juggernaut. They are not to be missed, and their savvy promotional strategies ensure they won’t be.
A Cutting Edge Social Media Campaign
Bombskare knows its audience: internet savvy and plugged into social media. “We use social media website and flyers and posters. We used QR codes too. Social media works best,” Susan Forgie of the band told me in a recent interview.
Most event promoters are familiar with the power of social networking by now. Sites like Twitter and Facebook allow labels and bands to quickly share information with interested groups of followers. Information about events can be posted around the web, where it will be indexed by search engines like Google and Bing. Even without a custom designed website, fledgling bands and music groups can build a following and get the word out through sites like Bandcamp and MySpace.
Bombskare has leveraged social networking by keeping its website up to date and connecting it to its Twitter page, Tumblr Account, Facebook Page, and MySpace. Bombskare uses a number of sites to reach its audience.
The Power of Codes
In addition, the group uses QR codes. QR or “Quick Response” codes are barcodes that organizations can use to give individuals quick access to site URLs. What looks like a box with a randomly generated design is actually a barcode that can be printed onto flyers, posters, and tickets. Individuals can use their smart phones to quickly scan the codes and visit sites.
Bombskare uses these to drive potential attendees to information about the band and ticketing.
“We offered special advance prices in our online shop for two weeks before the general release. We offered them in our online shop, a local record shop, and Tickets Scotland,” Susan told me.
Presales of tickets can be a great way to promote an event. Attendees are more likely to buy discounted tickets and share the deal by word of mouth. Advance sales also give event planners a better idea of whom and how many are attending an event
Pleasantly Spooky Surprises
For Susan and Bombskare, the highlight of the night was a ska rendition of the Ghostbusters theme song and the fancy dress costumes.
There was a minor glitch when the band ordered the wrong size flyers, so their advice to others planning similar events is to do so well in advance of the actual date. “Make sure your tickets are available two months before the gig,” Susan advised. The band also encourages offering special deals and merchandise to bundle with tickets and further encourage sales.