Wednesday, June 28, 2006

How much do clubbers spend at festivals?

According to Cream, the average person spent nearly £100 on stuff like buses, taxis, trains, drinks, food and accommodation for last years Creamfields.

The economic windfall of the end of summer festival for local businesses is likely to be more than £3 million.

No wonder 90% of residents were in favour of the event moving to Daresbury. The licence was granted this week.

Hopefully our funkpills legal high stall will get a slice of the action.

If you are going to Creamfields make sure you pop over and mention the Gurn blog. I’ll give you a freebie so you can spend your £100 on other stuff.

Keep clubbers together outside the club

A big part of clubbing is the feeling of being part of something: Joining in a community of like-minded souls (no matter of freaky your mind).

How promoters create that feel outside the club?

An innovative way would be to use Ning – a website that allows you to create simple but stylish "social" pages online in a few minutes. You can manage members, post pictures, advertise events and even have a forum.

It won’t be the same as getting wasted in a club and being everyone’s best mate for a few hours, but it will help create a community around a night.

Which will get more like minded people through the door.

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

DJ Tips & Tricks Video Demonstration – A no brainer for Allen & Heath

How do Allen & Heath get DJs to fall in love with what they do?

How about this: They make a mixer that DJs have been waiting for - The Xone:3D - and then put videos online of a great DJ like Ralph Lawson using it.

How can they make it even better?

Put it on YouTube, make it easy to share and invite others to show off their tricks with their own Allen & Heath mixers.

Free advertising.

7 things The End (or anyone else) could do to improve

Club websites are crap. There is too much style over substance, reliance on big name nights or DJs for creating buzz and focus on information over conversation.

Luckily for us there is an exception.

The End in London’s clubbing site is a welcome respite from death by Flash.

What makes The End so good?

Firstly the layout looks great and is easy to understand. You can go where you want and get back without fuss or hunting.

But the real winning touch is the extras. You can go to The End’s site for the listings and hang around exploring stuff like the in depth DJ profiles while listening to their mixes, looking at the gallery or reading the interviews.

It’s nothing groundbreakingly amazing but it shows time and thought have been put in to what people want.

That said, The End still has some work to do to take it to the next level.

After all, modern marketing is about a 2-way conversation.

Here is how they (and any other club with a website) can improve even more:

Can you think of anything else? Have you tried these things and succeeded at other clubs? Let me know what you think.

Monday, June 26, 2006

10 reasons superstar DJs should have a blog

Are you listening Judge Jules, Lee Burridge, Sasha or anyone else from bedroom to main room?

This is why you need a blog:

  1. Your life is dead exciting and people want to hear about it.
  2. There are no top DJs blogging.
  3. The term ‘online diary’ is sooo 1995.
  4. Clubbers love the internet and especially blogging.
  5. You can talk to your fans when they are sober (or not as the case may be).
  6. It’s 21st century branding.
  7. You can podcast on it.
  8. The kids can subscribe to you.
  9. You can show how obsessive you are if you post every day (All DJs are obsessive compulsives, right?)
  10. Writing posts give you something to do on the long flights (or if you are a prog DJ during a record).

Thursday, June 22, 2006

The best story from Escape into the Park 2006

While we were running around Swansea for Escape this weekend we came across the lovely ladies pictured.

(They are in the Gurn babes competition if you are looking to vote for something other than Big Brother.)

I happened to ask why they had decided to dress as army girls. The answer?

The outfits were £3 for the whole lot.

What a great reason, and what else would you need?

Good luck girls.

4 ways to make money from a festival (and still have a great time)

What more can you ask for? It was blinding sunshine all day and a 20,000 plus crowd at Escape into the Park Swansea. The perfect chance to have some fun and make some money.

It’s not a bad life, so how did we do it?

  • We chatted up the clubbers all day on the promise of a "fittest bird and hottest guys" competition. It was a popular idea and we got some great pictures. The idea being they see the pictures and text in to vote for their mates. The winner gets a huge prize.
  • We pushed a load of funkpills on the unsuspecting Swansea punters through our main sponsor stall. We road tested them ourselves and can give the seal of approval.
  • We self promoted through our outdoor stage – the infamous Gurn Bus.
  • Finally the festival paid us for some advertising before the event through emails and banner adverts.
All in all a potentially profitable day for us, but the real test will come if we see a spike in members signing up and using us to buy more funkpills and the like.

How do we do that? Keep producing great clubbing content. (and pictures of semi naked ladies).

It's days like this that I remember how good working in the clubbing industry is.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Can Sonique cut it for Azuli?

You would have thought the Sonique brand was well and truly dead.

Her 15 minutes of fame were back when pop-dance was at its millennium peak and for many her name will forever be associated with the fluffy, poppy end of dance music.

Which makes it odd that Azuli are using her to front a new Haji & Emanuel produced single: ‘Tonight’.

According to her website Sonique is still gigging, still making music (and good luck to her, she deserves it) and the track is doing well in dancefloor charts, but is her defunkt name the right one to use for Azuli?

How do they think it will help?

Chart success for their underground producers?

I'd like to know your opinion.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

A clubbing money making opportunity

Ask any promoter: There are plenty of ways to lose money in clubland. So when an untapped market comes along you should grab it with both hands.

What is this market?

It’s all about information, or more specifically, information delivery. It’s a format called RSS (which you may already know about).

It will work because clubbers are information junkies: Club listings, latest records, clubbing rumours, discussion and drug information is all sucked up as quickly as it is available.

At the moment this is done via email and forums. RSS is a better way of delivering the information.

How can you make money from it?

The idea is simple: Clubbers get the information they want, Promoters and record labels pay for access to clubbers.

It’s a system that works for email and forums already. It’s how and other similar clubbing websites make money.

Whoever can extend that service to RSS will make even more of a killing.

Who is going to get there first?

(Inspired by copyblogger - How to sell RSS)

Friday, June 16, 2006

More sex and drugs... now featuring gambling

If you like for the clubbing, drugs and sex then you can now add gambling to the list of vices we serve.

You might think it's immoral, but we like to think Gurn is giving you a choice of ways to corrupt yourself.

Both new ventures need some work. We are putting some features together on how to play poker and some reviews/testimonials for the legal highs. Do you know how to play poker and want to give me some advice?

Also I want to improve our maketing by following the always excellent advice at copyblogger on 5 Steps to Pay Per Click Advertising That Works

Will the new den of naughtiness that is work out? Do clubbers like sex, drugs and gambling? How well do we need to market these new ventures or will then take off by themselves? I'd like to know what you think.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Gurning in Swansea

If you are going to Escape Into The Park this weekend make sure you head over to the Gurn Bus to say hi and I'll give you a free gift.

I'm especially keen to talk to any clubbing bloggers about an idea I have.

We will be at the back of the second field up by the Hard Dance Tent and will be boshing out legal highs and classic tunes until they tell us to stop.

The picture is me last year enjoying the errr... sunshine.

How can you resist?

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

5 years of sex, drugs, music and politics

Happy Birthday to the Skrufff dance music newsletter; the best news source on the net. If you don’t subscribe to the weekly dose of alternative clubbing news already, sign up now.

I have always tried to get the Gurn news section as good as Skrufff, but sadly I have never quite made it work as well.

Jonty also has a blog (of sorts) which tends to cover the same ground as the newsletter. It also doesn’t allow comments and doesn’t have RSS.

So let me extend an offer to Jonty (or anyone else in clubbing wanting a blog) – get in touch and I’ll help you out.

Wouldn’t you like to see a combination of the news gathering expertise of Skrufff with a proper blog?

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

What's your expertise?

Sharing expertise makes you more of an expert. It builds relationships with people and allows you to get free advice in return.

What kind of expertise do you have?

What kind of advice do you need?

I want you to get in touch and tell me what you know. With your support I can start an informal network of advice sharing through this blog.

Imagine the benefits: A freely available resource for anyone in the dance music industry to get answers to their questions as quickly as they need them via forums, MSN, Skype or email.

Everyone can benefit: DJs, promoters, club owners, producers, PR people, website owners and just about anyone else involved in clubbing.

So contact me now and lets get started making life easier.

(Idea adapted from Qunu)

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Friday, June 09, 2006

Why is selling a dirty word?


What does that word conjure up in your head?

Slick men in shiny suits? Objection Handling? Getting talked into something you dont want thanks to a smooth talking charlatan?

Bad selling has made selling a dirty word.

There is plenty of good selling going on every day too and that has been sullied by the bad image.

Ever got your mates to go clubbing when they didnt feel like it? Thats good selling.

Ever convinced yourself that you really, really need that new pair of trousers? Thats great selling.

Ever had someone listen to what you need then work with you to solve a problem?

Ever had a salesman tell you they cant do what you want, but they can tell you who does?

Thats amazing selling. In the way it should be done.

Thats the way we like to sell at Gurn too: making sales a good word, one customer at a time.

What good selling have you experienced? In clubland or outside?

Now I'm hitting the big time

Well, maybe not quite the big time just yet. But Annie Mac has added me to her blogroll

Which is very exciting.

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

6 reasons why flyers will never die

Internet club listings should have long overtaken the flyer as a way of advertising: It’s cheaper, easier to distribute widely and it can be changed in an instant.

So why has the flyer lasted?

It could be an ego thing:

Everyone likes to see their brands on TV or in print. It validates the products we make and market when Mom sees it in the paper. The Web doesn't offer the same kind of tangibility that other media offers. "I saw it on TV" holds more weight than "I read about it online."

If that’s true, it’s as true for clubbing as it is for perfume (apart from Mum seeing it perhaps).

Also, it’s just as important to remember the other reasons why flyers kick the internet into touch:

Steve Rubel thinks that as the web generation starts to become adults, other advertising will take a back seat.

They will. But the flyer is not going to die anytime soon, even with the MySpace kids.

What do you think?