Let’s talk about wristbands (yipee!). This is an idea I’ve been toying with for a little while after seeing it posted by a few other music blogs around the web, but I haven’t actually put it into practice yet. Wristbands are required at the door of just about every show you’ll be playing, so why not see if you can distribute your own wristbands at the show to get some additional branding/exposure for your band both before and after you’re done playing.
You’ve probably seen venues with custom wristbands before (where I’m from they’ll print coupons for Domino’s pizza onto the wristbands), but have you ever considered asking the venue if you can use your own?
OK, so here’s the basic idea. Depending on how much you try and pack onto the wristband (logo, text, colors), the more expensive it’ll be. Keeping things simple with just your band’s logo/website or some text with your name on it will keep costs to a minimum and you’ll be able to print a lot more bands for the same amount of money.
The sites I’ve been looking at for custom wristband printing have the costs coming out to anywhere between $.03/band to $.06/band for the fancier color ones. Obviously, it’ll help to shop around and maybe even consider a local printing company who can cut you a break.
Because the bands I work with each have their own logo and custom fonts, I really wanted to find wristbands that could use an uploaded logo so that the band’s image is preserved for the entire evening. I’ve mentioned the importance of “image” before, but if you’re going to be printing wristbands, you should really make sure people remember your name and logo when they make it home from the concert.
Website + Download
If possible, see if you can also include your website on the wristbands. I like to think you’d be able to put a custom download link on the wristband so that if people want to check out your music after the show, they’d be able to navigate to your website and get some free music from you for coming out to the show!
Obviously, a lot of this plan has to do with getting permission from the venue you’re playing at. Sometimes venues are under contract with other local companies for advertising space on their wristbands, but from experience, most places just buy plain wristbands from somewhere like Costco and call it a day. If you approach the venue before the show and see if they’d mind using your wristbands to hand out instead of their own, your band’s name will be around everyone’s wrist at the show. If 30-40 people make it out to see you and the other local bands playing (maybe in a foreign town), you’ll hopefully make a memorable impression on at least half of them with your band’s name.
If you’re savvy with your band’s website, you can setup a custom link that will only be printed on the wristbands. http://bandname.com/tour2013 could be where you direct people to and if you have something like Google Analytics set up on your website, you’ll be able to see just how many people make it to your website after they’ve left the concert.
Where to Buy Wristbands
Alright, so now you’re on board with the idea, where do you go to actually buy these things? I’ve found 3 different website (aren’t I nice?), but I think you’ll be able to find plenty more with the help of Google. These sites range from plain white wristbands that are 2 or 3 cents each to the ones I mentioned earlier that can include your logo and custom text that cost about 6 cents each.
As a side note about the CDBaby wristband site. I like that they encourage you to put a download link on the wristband, and their design looks pretty cool, but I just don’t really like that you have to redirect users to CDBaby to download/buy the music. CDBaby’s digital distribution is really cool, but I just never felt like it was a professional place to sell your music. See what they’ve got going on with their wristbands though, as they might just appeal to you.