Do you pre plan your tour routing to create your future tours?
I used to pre plan my artist’s tours to look the way I wanted them to end up once the tour was contracted. I would get out all the maps, coordinate the routing with my act’s goals for the tour and set the tour dates accordingly. Then I would go after the venues in the towns that I had pre-selected for our
optimum routing. Sure I had to juggle a few dates here and there, but for the most part, I was able to pre plan my tour routing to be as efficient as possible.
Now this can only happen if you also do some goal-setting before you begin booking. It also works best when you know the markets that will offer you your most advantageous gig results and focus your tours within those markets.
It makes no sense to open yourself to the, “whoever calls we’ll go there,” method of touring if you are trying to build a loyal following. That hap-hazard tour method is no strategy at all and is one sure to put you in dept fast.
When you want to open a new market, you have to plan for it so it makes sense routing-wise, financially and falls within a logical time-line.
My favorite routing plan is to work outward from a strategic center point, like your home base or an adopted home-base-like market. Allow the work you’ve done to build loyal fans in that market propel you on to other nearby towns where your fans might follow or tell their friends. Let your home-base
media overlap with nearby towns so you are stretching your media connections one or two towns away instead of two states away.
This overlapping of fans and media creates a routing dream tour, one that may even afford you to sleep at home many nights, saving precious expense funds for more important needs.
This type of concentric circle routing to nearby towns builds a regional support base. As you expand these circles wider and tap more of your region’s venues, you create more cost efficient touring with shorter, more manageable tours.
The next time you prepare to set up a tour, pre plan your tour routing to encompass the markets closest to your solid fan base or home base. Create a tighter tour, a more cost efficient tour and one that creates a stronger bond within your region. Pre plan your tour routing, your fans and your bank account will thank you.
Here are two articles that will help:
Have you built a loyal home base of support? How do you expand your touring markets? Do you pre plan your tour routing?
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