Promo giveaways for a cover band

Discussion in 'Band Management [BG]' started by SoCal80s, Aug 13, 2018.

  1. I’m thinking of buying some inexpensive promo items to give away at our shows to help people remember us. Primary target group is women. Below is what I’ve found in our budget that I can get with logo and url printed on it. What do you think? Any other low-cost ideas?

    Drink coasters
    Silicone bracelets
    Mardi Gras-style beads
    Temporary tattoos
    Last edited: Aug 14, 2018
    electracoyote likes this.
  2. gln1955


    Aug 25, 2014
    Ohio, USA
  3. acid bass

    acid bass Supporting Member

    Apr 2, 2010
    In my experience these things can be cool and make the show more fun, but rarely lead to anything more than a follow or like on social media.

    That being said, I've tried numerous things. I think my favorite was LED bracelets that were sound activated, but they were expensive. Looked great and made a couple of our shows really awesome, but wouldn't do it again based on cost. These guys do custom glow bracelets that end up being fairly cheap and are a lot of fun at shows (Personalized Glow Sticks). If you've found an inexpensive place to get Mardi Gras beads I'd like to hear it. Everywhere I looked was a little too expensive or you have to place a really big order to make it cost effective (still end up dropping $500 tho).
    SoCal80s and Goatrope like this.
  4. My country/pop/rock covers band invested in can coolers, shirts, tanks, and hats. Can't hardly give the coolers away - but we are selling the HECK out of the other stuff. $15 apiece, 2 for $25. Not looking to make much money on merch - just to get the name out there - and it's working :)
    Misfit Wookiee and SoCal80s like this.
  5. electracoyote

    electracoyote Supporting Member

    I like the outside-the-box thinking on this thread.

    I've been managing a dance party cover band for the past three years, and we routinely bring the party and pack floors at public venues and private events. Our tee shirts are not selling (even at cost which is $10.00) and we basically give them away to special guests and talent buyers. I think different audiences and demographics are attracted to different merch and swag.

    I like the "give it away for promo" approach in the OP (that's basically what we've been doing with our tees). If it gets you a couple of likes or thumbs-up or good word of mouth, that's the goal. It adds up over time.
    Jimmy4string likes this.
  6. I use shot glasses. They're not real expensive and make a good visual for a country/pop band.
    electracoyote and richntiff like this.
  7. Chango Malo

    Chango Malo

    Apr 8, 2017
    an old band I played in back east used shot glasses. We had cartoon pictures of each member of the band printed on them and rotated the shot glasses each gig. You had to make it to a bunch of gigs to get one of each. We would get with the bar managers to feature a "shot special" that would come in the shot glass. Venue got to sell booze, we got our faces/name out there. It was the second best promo we ever did.
    JACink, Oddly, juancaminos and 7 others like this.
  8. what was the first best promo?!
  9. gln1955


    Aug 25, 2014
    Ohio, USA
    Great idea!
  10. Chango Malo

    Chango Malo

    Apr 8, 2017
    I'm not sure if it's legal to talk about it on TB, it involved 500 adult entertainment devices.
  11. wideload


    Apr 15, 2004
    Salinas, CA
    Boy, I miss the 60’s when they gave out those neat little pieces of rice paper... :)
  12. Ironbar

    Ironbar Inactive

    Aug 24, 2013
    Tigard, Oregon
    Anything to do with sex sells- especially with women. Up here in Oregon there's a winery called Naked Winery. At every festival they sell crap tons of swag with the phrase, "Get Naked" on it. Probably outsells even their wine!
    electracoyote and Jimmy4string like this.
  13. Thanks for the lead on the bracelets. Here's what I found for the beads, I'm not too crazy about the look because they don't look very shiny, but you can get 240 for $389:

    Mardi Gras Beads with Medallion

    I haven't bought any yet, just something I'm considering.
    acid bass likes this.
  14. RichSnyder

    RichSnyder Gold Supporting Member Supporting Member

    Jun 19, 2003
    Koozies are something that are likely to be used, about $1.20 each when you buy 100.
  15. Bunk McNulty

    Bunk McNulty It is not easy to do simple things correctly. Supporting Member

    Dec 11, 2012
    Northampton, MA
    We've tried T-shirts, hoodies, tank tops, and hats. We like stuff that people will wear. Better name exposure. All of them are a pain in the butt except the hats: One size fits all! Maybe because we're in New England, the hoodies, which are the most expensive ($25) are also the best sellers. On our next order I think we're going to get XL and XXL only, they seem to move quickest.
    electracoyote and Jimmy4string like this.
  16. REV

    REV Supporting Member

    Jun 18, 2006
    Aimed at women? One word. Panties. With your bands name on them. Here's what you do. Every once in awhile during your set, you throw out a pair of panties. Wrap them up so they are easier to throw. Mixed in with all the little ones put in one pair of gigantic ones. Ask the ladies to show them off when they catch them.
  17. Lava

    Lava Supporting Member

    Jul 14, 2014
    El Paso, TX
    We sell t-shirts. $15 for newer designs and $10 for older designs. We also give away stickers and buttons for free. People love the buttons. I find that the free giveaway items almost always lead to t-shirt sales.
    Bunk McNulty likes this.
  18. Chango Malo

    Chango Malo

    Apr 8, 2017
    OK, fine. First best promo I ever did:

    I had a buddy who worked for a long haul LTL trucking company. His job was to deal with busted/ruined freight; figure out who was at fault, settle with insurance companies, dispose of wrecked merchandise. One day he sends me a message that he had a box of 'adult toys' of various sizes that had been written off and would I like them as a joke give-away promo. He's the guy that hooked us up with a few cases of shotglasses as well. He was busting my chops but to get back at him I said "yeah, how much?" Turned out they were a total write-off and if I picked them up that afternoon it was free. Seems the only other way to get them off the property was by dumpster. So I drove over there to pick up what I thought was a box of vibrators.

    Wrong. Oh so wrong.

    it was a PALLET of vibrators.

    550 to be exact. From the size of a bic lighter up to a small banana. So I called the guy who had printed up the shot glasses and asked if he could print the band logo on hard plastic tubes of various sizes. He said he could, discount if it was all the same logo. So I dropped off 50 boxes of various sized implements and he just about died laughing. Two weeks later they were ready to go. We gave them out as freebies with the nightly drink special (cosmopolitans. don't judge us, it was 2002) for the next few weeks. Anyone who bought the drink special could come up to the front of the stage, reach in the box and grab a present. We thought that we would find them all over the club at the end of the night and promised Katy the bar manager that we would pick up any implements to be found. Lo and behold we never found anything. Nada. Not a thing. They lasted for three weekends and we were out. Funny thing is we were asked for the next couple years if we had any vibrators to give away nearly every gig.
  19. Spent


    May 15, 2011
    Upstate NY
    And I was going to write about the band logo thongs we were selling (our best selling merch) but was concerned it may not be appropriate. Now I feel totally OK about it, but your story just blew mine out of the water. Two thoughts...

    1) close the thread, you won

    2) I’m sharing this with my band, you never know..
    BOOG and electracoyote like this.
  20. micguy


    May 17, 2011
    My first thought is they're dense and easily thrown. Just make sure you don't give 'em out if the audience is not into your music.
  21. Primary

    Primary TB Assistant

    Here are some related products that TB members are talking about. Clicking on a product will take you to TB’s partner, Primary, where you can find links to TB discussions about these products.

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