[Dixielandjazz] Advertising

Larry Walton Entertainment - St. Louis larrys.bands at charter.net
Tue Nov 7 12:47:53 PST 2006

I actually make the things but there are drawbacks.  Magnetics are OK but 
they are easily damaged.  They must be removed and cleaned under on a very 
regular basis or they will glue down to your car's finish.  Small amounts of 
dirt get under them and they sweat.  Now you have moisture, an abrasive and 
movement.  Yes they move, not much and you can't see it but they do.  You 
have just introduced sandpaper to your car's finish.  If you carry  a spray 
wax and wax your door before putting the magnetic down and clean under it 
every time you get gas you will have no problems but when it's below 
freezing that just isn't practical.  You should also have a piece of sheet 
metal to stick them to flat when you aren't using them.  The worst thing you 
can do is throw them into a hot or very cold car draped over stuff.  They 
take permanent bends that just won't come out.

They are a reasonable advertising technique they also say Hey! there are 
band instruments in this car come get them.

Even though I make them and sell them I don't use them except when I am on a 

If you buy printed Magnetics such as I sell make sure they are laminated. 
There is a new process out that bakes ink onto vinyl.  It doesn't need to be 
laminated but doesn't last as long but it is very good looking.

My friend Mike Brooks - EMBEE ideas - is now selling music stands using the 
new process printing on vinyl decoration.  He does some pretty cool things 
with it like printing on silver sparkle vinyl which shows through the ink so 
you can have things like Silver sparkle letters with red sparkle drop 
shadows on black stands or red sparkle with black outlines on white stands. 
It's pretty cool

My printed magnetics are pretty good for two years if taken care of. 
Straight vinyl lettering is very good too.  Non laminated printing in vinyl 
is good for about a year but then again most people don't use them that 

The advantage is that some insurance company's frown on you using your car 
for business and don't want signs on your car.  It is better to have a vinyl 
lettered sign be put on your driver side rear glass like in an SUV or van. 
The cost is about the same or less and can be removed with a razor blade 
without any problem.

Printed signs are gorgeous though.  If your sign guy is worth anything you 
can have photos and multi colors that you really can't get with the straight 
vinyl magnetics.

If you want signs, look on E-Bay.  There are guys out there that are pretty 
good and will make a magnetic for your for not much.  For your reference I 
charge $60 for two plus art work which can set you back a bunch depending on 
what you want.  I have a $30 minimum on set up which includes one proof, a 
photo, lettering and layout.  Changes start at $15 but most people like my 
artwork.  I drop the printing price to $24 each for more than two.  If 
someone just wants straight lettering then I might not charge that much. 
I'm not selling signs (especially since my printer is down right now ) but 
these prices are fairly competitive around here.   The prices are 
considerably higher on the left and right coast but not bad if you book just 
one job off of them.
St. Louis - the most dangerous city - watch out here comes one now!!!!!
----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Russ Guarino" <russg at redshift.com>
To: "Larry Walton Entertainment - St. Louis" <larrys.bands at charter.net>
Cc: "Steve Barbone" <barbonestreet at earthlink.net>; 
<dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com>
Sent: Tuesday, November 07, 2006 1:24 PM
Subject: Re: [Dixielandjazz] Advertising

> Larry,
> Thanks for your insight.  I have found the yellow pages, both print and 
> internet
> have been of little value and I have never gotten my money back.  I have 
> stopped
> using them.
> I have a lot of business cards with me and I tell people I am a "Jazz 
> Clarinetist".
> Many are intrigued and I give them a card.  It is surprising how often, 
> several
> years later I will get a call and the person will say "I don't know how I 
> got your
> card, but I am interested in using your band".
> I keep thinking I should get two of those magnetic signs and hang them on 
> my car the
> way the building contractors do.  Then I am advertising all the time as I 
> run
> errands, etc.
> Russ Guarino
> Jazz Clarinetist.
> "Larry Walton Entertainment - St. Louis" wrote:
>> Two big problems with advertising in general.  First the leader cut isn't
>> all that much but even if it was leaders do a whole lot of extra work for
>> that money.  Secondly at least here, advertising costs an arm an a leg.
>> I had this very cool idea.  I would run an ad in the daily paper in the
>> Obituary section.  They have various ads for funeral homes and florists. 
>> My
>> reasoning was: older people read the obits often and send flowers.  What
>> better place for a band that can do funerals and play music that this 
>> group
>> really likes.  A stroke of Genius......until I found out what it cost. 
>> The
>> rate was $15 a day and no you couldn't pick and choose days.  You had to
>> take ads for every day except Sunday.  The weekend papers cost more. 
>> There
>> were no discounts if you took less than 6 months and no I couldn't do it
>> anyway because bands were in another section.  I would have to book a 
>> pretty
>> good job at least every two weeks above my booking rate now to pay for 
>> that.
>> Getting more jobs might be a justification to raise prices to cover it 
>> but
>> you start losing some because of that too.  The idea is to make money not
>> lose it.
>> The big problem with newspaper advertising besides cost is that young 
>> people
>> just don't read newspapers and TV ads are out of the question.
>> IMHO Yellow page advertising is worthless most of the time.  I would be
>> interested in knowing if any members of the list use Yellow pages and do
>> they feel it's worth it and why.  I found that I got a lot of calls from
>> other bands pricing me and people looking for the cheapest band and very 
>> few
>> hit pay dirt.
>> After that just where would you suggest advertising that is affordable?
>> The thing that makes bands different from building materials or any other
>> "thing" and most services is that there is only one of you to sell for a
>> particular night.  The four Saturdays after Lent are almost always booked
>> with weddings as is a couple of other times a year.  Since there is only 
>> one
>> of you how do you optimize your advertising?  You can run a sale on shoes
>> and sell a thousand pairs and if you run out issue rain checks but a band
>> has just themselves.  One shot per night.   That makes advertising in 
>> effect
>> much less cost effective.  An owner of a DJ service can have multiple 
>> setups
>> and hire DJ's as needed.
>> I find most advertising to be not that effective anyway.  The best 
>> turnover
>> we ever got was by putting flyer packets on cars at the wedding shows 
>> after
>> they priced us out but the DJ's didn't like that and wanted to fight us 
>> and
>> went around taking them off the windshields as we put them back.  We even
>> got chased once.  A very interesting time.  We actually got more calls 
>> doing
>> that than playing for the bridal fashion shows and paying the venue. 
>> That
>> was a lot of wear and tear.  We started doing it as a group and three or
>> four of us tended to keep them inside.  We did that for three years at 
>> about
>> a dozen bridal shows.
>> You can be in the bridal shows but they cost about $1500+ here for a 
>> booth
>> and they don't let you perform or play music only hand out cards or CD's.
>> They do give you a mailing list and at 39 cents plus printing costs you 
>> can
>> get into a couple of hundred dollars real fast.  We would typically book 
>> two
>> to four weddings from each show.  The trouble was that so many would get
>> married on about the same dates like the month after Lent.  We have a 
>> large
>> Catholic population and they don't marry during Lent which almost kills 
>> the
>> wedding band business for that month and a half.  Then everyone wants to 
>> get
>> married on the same days.  The other side of the sword is that everyone 
>> gets
>> engaged at Christmas and if you aren't playing someplace public in 
>> January
>> or at the Bridal shows it's difficult to book jobs.
>> Some of you in your music business are fortunate to have a steady 
>> clientele.
>> I don't advertise at all in my sign business and I have more work than I
>> want.
>> I would really be interested in any suggestions that anyone has about
>> advertising and success stories that they have had or do you find it
>> difficult to advertise.
>> The best thing that has come along seems to be the internet but how has
>> anyone optimized that to be an effective tool?  How do you get people to
>> visit your web site?
>> I follow the six foot rule of sales....everyone within six feet of me 
>> knows
>> that I am a musician and band leader.  I actually made a contact last 
>> night
>> for an anniversary party in the web design class that I took to develop 
>> my
>> web site.  Word of mouth, mostly mine, seems to work fairly good but I 
>> would
>> like to be more effective AND at the same time take more money home.
>> Larry Walton
>> St. Louis
>> ----- Original Message -----
>> From: "Steve Barbone" <barbonestreet at earthlink.net>
>> To: <dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com>
>> Sent: Monday, November 06, 2006 3:59 PM
>> Subject: [Dixielandjazz] Advertising
>> > "pat ladd" <pj.ladd at btinternet.com> wrote (about advertising)
>> >
>> >
>> >> Hi Tom,
>> >>
>> >> I think this is a point which is either appreciated or not. It can`t 
>> >> be
>> >> taught.
>> >>
>> >> I used to run my own business selling building materials. Everything 
>> >> from
>> >> cement and gravel to wallpaper and paint. When things were bad in the
>> >> building trade, a regular occurence as house building became a 
>> >> political
>> >> football, I always doubled my advertising budget.
>> >> My competitors took the line `business is down, I must cut my costs. 
>> >> Cut
>> >> back on advertising`
>> >>
>> >> I could never understand the logic of that  which was no doubt the 
>> >> reason
>> >> that I kept taking my competitors over.  When the word got out that I 
>> >> was
>> >> going to retire I had national concerns standing in line to buy me out
>> >> and I
>> >> finally sold for a ridiculously large figure with lots of `0` after 
>> >> it.
>> >>
>> >> My father used to say  `Early to bed and early to rise
>> >> Work like hell and ADVERTISE`
>> >
>> > Solid advice from both Pat and Pat's Dad.
>> >
>> > Many businessmen I ran across in my day gig life viewed advertising as 
>> > a
>> > cost and so when ever they hit a business slowdown, they cut the
>> > advertising
>> > budget. Very short sighted.
>> >
>> > IMO advertising (and promotion) is an investment in the future of the
>> > business. It goes to the very essence of what business focus is: "The
>> > prime
>> > purpose of business is, to stay in business." (Harvard Business Review
>> > article by Peter Drucker several decades ago) That's why one advertises
>> > and/or promotes.
>> >
>> > I do think it can be taught. And believe it is taught in Business 
>> > Schools
>> > all over the world from The Harvard Business School to the college of 
>> > hard
>> > knocks. Some folks who have attended, heard, and then discarded the
>> > subject
>> > matter are just poor students.
>> >
>> > That's what the band leader is supposed to do with part of the leader 
>> > fee
>> > money, rather than buying a Turbo Porsche. Or, if in the big leagues, 
>> > just
>> > check out all the ads in the "Entertainment" section of newspapers like
>> > The
>> > NY or LA Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Chicago Tribune etc., etc.
>> >
>> > Or, after a successful business career of advertising investment, you 
>> > can
>> > take the excess money and buy an airplane and/or a country Estate like
>> > list
>> > mate Pat Ladd. :-) VBG.
>> >
>> > Cheers,
>> > Steve Barbone
>> >
>> >
>> >
>> >
>> >
>> > _______________________________________________
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>> > Dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com
>> > http://ml.islandnet.com/mailman/listinfo/dixielandjazz
>> >
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