How do you skyrocket the number of wedding gigs you get? Playing for weddings is a great way for musicians to make some extra money. Not only does it pays well — much better than, say, a restaurant gig — but it’s a lot of fun and takes you to some really interesting and beautiful places.
I’ve been playing for weddings and other special events regularly for seven years. and in the beginning I tried everything under the sun to find gigs. Over the years, I’ve discovered that by far the best way to get wedding gigs is through my website.
A Great Website is the Best Way to Skyrocket the Number of Wedding Gigs You Get
My website at PianoJenny.com ranks #1 in Google for “Atlanta wedding pianist” and #2 for “pianist for weddings Atlanta,” so it’s no surprise that it brings me almost all my leads.
If you’re at all serious about getting wedding gigs, I highly suggest you take the time to set up a website where you own the site yourself. That means a WordPress.org site — not Blogger, Weebly, Wix, or even WordPress.com. How to actually set up a WordPress.org site goes beyond the scope of this article, but these day it’s relatively easy to either find basic instructions on YouTube and/or hire someone who can do it for you.
Once you have a basic website up and running, you need it to rank well. After all, there’s no point in having a site if people can’t find you. So how do you get your site to rank high in search engines?
There’s a powerful technique that, when done correctly, can do wonders for your site.
Your Musician Website Needs a Blog
Your site is going to rank much, much higher (and therefore get you many more wedding gigs!) if you consistently add blog posts to it.
I’m sure some of you are groaning right now. I’m a musician, not a writer! I don’t have the time to sit around blogging! And what do I write about, anyway?
Stay with me, though, because this is important. And you can do this.
Why Blogging is Your Key to Wedding Gigs
Regular blogging leads not only to better visibility, but better credibility when people do find you. Here’s why:
- Google loves new, original content. Most musicians tend to set up a website, then leave it alone. At best, maybe they add a few new photos a couple times a year. Google hates this. It highly favors sites that are regularly updating their site content, and blogging is the easiest and most obvious way to do that. Adding a new post three or four times a month can make all the difference in the world, and if you can manage to post more often, that’s even better.
- Google loves photos, and blogging is a great way to include them. All my blog posts have between 1-8 photos included. Over time, that adds up to a lot of photos, and if you label them correctly, you will begin to shoot to the top of Google. The key to making photos work for you is labeling them with the right keywords. I discuss keywords in more detail in a guest post I wrote about getting your wedding website on page one of Google.
- Blogging is a great way to show your expertise. A website with several posts shows that you know what you’re doing and that you like what you do. When someone contacts me looking for a musician for their wedding at Lake Lanier, I immediately respond with this post about a Lake Lanier wedding that I played for. That’s much more compelling than just quoting my rates, or even just sending them to a static website.
So What Do I Write About?
Blogging can be scary when you’re new to it, especially if you don’t like to write. But, like anything else, it get easier and better the more you do it.
The best way to get started is to think about what questions a prospective couple might ask a wedding musician.
Do people ever ask you about your equipment? I’m asked all the time if I have a portable keyboard (I do) and if I need to bring extra speakers for it (I don’t). Do you have different guitars that you use for different situations? Without getting too technical, why do you choose one type of guitar over another? Maybe you use cordless speakers and you can talk about why that’s an advantage at an outdoor wedding. Include a few photos, and there’s a great original post!
Are there specific songs that people keep requesting? That could be a post right there! You could discuss why that song is so popular, some background about the artist or why they wrote the song (I personally love that kind of stuff), your favorite thing about that song, when or how you learned to play it, is it a challenging song to play, what type of couples it particularly appeals to, a video of you playing it … the possibilities are endless.
Don’t be afraid to be a little bit personal in your posts. Couples want to work with real people, not robots that sound like everybody else with nothing original or unique to say. Who are some of your musical influences? What concerts have you been to recently, or what music have you been listening to yourself these days? After all, you might as well have some fun with this blogging thing and write about what you actually enjoy and care about.
Maybe you could even write a post about how and why you started playing the guitar and include a couple photos of you as a kid. People will love it!
Another obvious way to get material (and what I do most of the time) is to write posts about where you’ve played recently. This doesn’t have to be limited to weddings. You can include recitals or other types of gigs. The great thing about these kinds of posts is that they pretty much write themselves. Tell where you were, what was cool about it, and what songs you played. Include a few photos and describe them — and there’s your post!
Want to Know More About Getting Wedding Gigs?
Check out my latest book, Giggin’ for a Livin’: How to Make Money as a Musician Playing for Weddings and Special Events. It’s currently available in ebook form on Amazon and you can use the free Kindle app to read it on your phone. It gives more information about building a musician website, and also covers topics such as wedding repertoire, networking, and setting your rates.
Question: What have been some of the most popular topics on your musician website and blog? You can leave a comment by clicking here.