Critique our web copy...

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by miko, Sep 22, 2003.

  1. howdy--

    this is probably along the lines of the 'who leads the band' thing...

    we got into discussions last nite about the text on our web site. one member felt it was too self-effacing and derogatory, and put us in a bad light. he said he was ashamed to show it to his mom.

    i thought that was ridiculous, as i can't imagine what moms and rock 'n roll have in common, but whatever. i'm open to suggestions. i wrote the text with a deliberately tongue-in-cheek sensibility, and thought it silly to take ourselves so seriously, so i made it a little sarcastic and [i thought] funny. i really don't care if folks think i write to guys in prison or not [that'll make sense if you read my bio].

    in my mind, said band member didn't provide any real thoughts on what would make the text better, so for now i'm leaving it. but i'd love an objective person's thoughts.

    if any of you have a minute, can you please read the band bio section of our site & give me your opinion? you have to click on each name to read each bio. once you're on a bio page, you need to hit "back" to click on other member names.

    it's the 'through the smogg' section at:
    excuse the silly pop-ups; we're still poor.

    smogg is original hard rock, if that helps any.

    thanks loads!
  2. thrash_jazz


    Jan 11, 2002
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    Artist: JAF Basses, Circle K Strings
    I liked it - rock shouldn't take itself too seriously!

    It's a bit too detailed for a bio that you'd be mailing out, but for a website it's great IMO.

    I can see why the guy wouldn't want his mom reading it, but who cares.

    Only thing is that it made me laugh. If I went to a gig based on reading that, I guess I'd be expecting the same sort of humour in the stage show.
  3. I've never worked on a band website so I'm not completely certain what to put on one. I have worked on any number of professional and commerical websites/intranets for coporations so I'll have to go with that. Though I'd take everything I say with a grain of salt since it might not apply to a band oriented site.

    1. Ditch the 'Smogg Alert' page completely.
    Right now it's blank and there's absolutely nothing worse for a site's credibility than a blank web page. It generally shouts "unfinished" or "not serious". Instead place the bands schedule on the home page. That way people can get that information right away, if they're looking for it. On the other hand if they're just browsing and stumble across your site it's still a good idea as it might induce them to check your show out.

    2. Keep things simple.
    I'd suggest listing the band position for each person under their name on the home page. Things like this shouldn't require a visitor to dig through the site.

    3. I'm a little iffy on the background of the button images.
    It looks like a Matrix type clone and that's become very much overdone. It also doesn't really gel with the rest of the site. You could just as easily get away with red text on a green "cloud" type background and that would relate more with the band and the site's overall direction.

    4. Put your contact information on every page.
    Not just on the 'Contact' page. Again you don't want to require a visitor to dig for essential information.

    Note that this might reduce the need for a 'Contact' page though I'd suggest keeping it and then just adding a few things, as a summary of sorts, for visitors too lazy to look around. I'd include a couple jpg's from the photo page, a song or two from the 'E-Missions' page.

    5. I'd ditch the 'Smogg Central' page too.
    Unless you're planning on putting something on it, it's just not all that useful right now. A messageboard would be useful of course, but NEVER use a message unless there's going to be substantial traffic. Lack of a messageboard won't generally turn people off, but a messageboard where people can hear crickets chirping will drive people away.

    Once you start getting a reasonable number of hits per day, at least around 50+ at a minimum (though 150+ is better) then I'd suggest a messageboard. A caveat to this would be a messageboard that would serve a greater, more generic, population.

    An example would be an onling gaming group that hosts a messageboard for people who enjoy playing CounterStrike in general rather just with that group. An example for Smogg would be a messageboard that covered the local rock/music scene. But the same 'hit' rule applies. If you do start a messageboard and it doesn't take off quickly, within one month, then kill it.

    6. 'Smogg Shots' is ok, but a few suggestions.
    6.a. pic10.jpg and pic17.jpg are essentially the same. I'd suggest getting rid of one of them.

    6.b. One of the most important elements of a photo is *context*. Absent context, the viewers will supply their own, which may not be the one you are trying to convey. A good way of conveying context is captions, which you do use on some. I'd suggest the captions describe what the photo is capturing (at a gig, rehearsal, studio, etc) and then, if you want to, add something humorous. If you do add a caption though I'd suggest also including the caption on a webpage along with the photo. Again you always want to include context with a photo.

    6.c. Add some photos of people at a gig.
    You do this in one photo, which makes it more interesting. And that's really the point. Photos can be/are a source of advertising in such circumstances you want to convey a specific impression. A good impression to convey is fun. I'd suggest including photo shots of the band playing and including shots of the people there.

    If you aren't completely selling out a gig then keep in mind that you can give an impression that may be at odds with reality. Professional cameramen do this all the time in the news media. You couldn't imagine the number of times where a photo suggests thousands of people participating and it turns out to be 15 people and a guy walking a dog. If you aren't selling out a gig you could selectively target areas near the stage that have a high concentration of people. You could ask everyone to move a bit closer and then take the photos. This is bit deceptive but all things are fair in love and music. :) Another option is to simply pack the crowd with friends and take photos then. The important thing is to have them.

    If you're selling gigs out then by all means, ignore this last paragraph. I just wanted to include it to be as complete as possible in my post.

    Whatever you do NEVER post photos of a partially filled gig. That would be tantamount of announcing that you're good, but not *that* good, which would be a bad step to take. It would also be like McDonalds producing adverts that actually displays the BigMac you get through the drivethrough, rather than the (totally unrealistic) perfect one they show.

    7. Finally I actually read what was asked for in the original post. Whoops! Sorry. :)
    The bio text is kinda fun but it might be a little less serious than it should be. I'd suggest leaving out the masturbation and prison references, though that's just me. Another thing might be to either detail the gear for each band member or none of them. Though that's not what I'd call an important change.


    I hope that helped some. Keep in mind that these are all just opinions and that the final judge has to be you. I guess I went a bit farther than I probably should have. For some strange reason I read that first post as a request to evaluate the whole website, not just the bio.

    I hope everything goes well for you and that you have a great time!

  4. yoshi


    Jul 12, 2002
    England, London
    Reads great to me, it's pretty obvious that you've intended to present it in a 'tounge in cheek' way. Why's he so worried about what his mum will think anyway, it's as though hes 8 or something :p

    The (bassist bio) 'he was playing a s---ty fender squire until he ditched his hooker habbit' may miff off his mam a bit though. Unless he did have a problem, in which case I'm sure she's very proud.... (;))

    Edit: PS- has FREE webhosting with NO POPUPS or banners.
  5. Josh Ryan

    Josh Ryan - that dog won't hunt, Monsignor. Supporting Member

    Mar 24, 2001
    -Seems fine, homour is a good thing. It edges up to the line of a little too "low brow" a couple of times, but it's not bad.
  6. thrash_jazz


    Jan 11, 2002
    Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    Artist: JAF Basses, Circle K Strings
    Isn't "low brow" humour well matched with hard rock, most of the time?

    Almost EVERY original local hard rock band I've seen had something lowbrow about their show.
  7. Josh Ryan

    Josh Ryan - that dog won't hunt, Monsignor. Supporting Member

    Mar 24, 2001
    Sure, if you want it to be. :)
  8. DirtDog


    Jun 7, 2002
    The Deep North
    Oh, ed, you'd just LOVE my band's MP3 site as our "official web presence", then.


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