Every musician has a few gigs in their area that they’ve always wanted to play, but for whatever reason, never gets called for.
Then one day it happens…
You finally get the invite you’ve been waiting for.
The gig arrives, and if all goes according to plan, you will play well and meet a bunch of new people that could potentially lead to more opportunities down the line.
Now let’s fast forward a few months to a random Saturday night.
Maybe you’re sitting at home binge-watching Netflix and while aimlessly scrolling through Facebook on your phone, you see a picture of all the people you played with taking a section picture after the concert.
Everyone is playing again…except you.
I know how much this sucks because it has happened to me many times.
Why people don’t get called back to gigs
There are a few reasons that this might happen to people:
- They didn’t play well
- They didn’t need that many players
- The contractor forgot about them
These first two reasons are fair enough.
Sometimes you don’t play and other times they just don’t need to hire someone.
There’s nothing you can do about these two after the fact.
However, the last reason…
As someone that does a fair amount of contracting work throughout the year, I can tell you that it happens all of the time.
If I’m being honest, it’s just really hard to remember everyone each time I go to hire people so often there are people that won’t get hired again.
It’s nothing personal, it just happens.
So here’s the big question:
How do you make sure that the people you meet don’t forget about you in the future?
How to never be forgotten and turn one gig into many gigs
There’s a simple solution to this for musicians:
Follow up after the gig.
Seriously, it’s that simple.
The real reason that people get forgotten about and passed up for future opportunities is because they don’t follow up after the gig with people they met.
Most of instinctively know that we should do this, but the problem is that we aren’t sure how.
It’s easy to email back and forth with the contractor before the gig, chat with your stand partners on break, and thank the conductor after the performance.
But when it comes to following up with everyone after the gig, it’s not as natural.
I used to say “Oh, I need to follow up with that person…” after the gig.
Then a day went by…
Then a week…
Then a month…
Next thing I knew, it had been several months and I hadn’t done anything.
Like I said before, following up is the kind of thing that we know we should do, but the most people just don’t know what to say.
With that in mind, I came up with a script that can be used to follow up with anyone.
Here’s the exact script you can copy & paste:
Hi person that hired you,
I just wanted to send a quick note thanking you for inviting me to perform at whatever the gig
If you ever find yourself needing another your instrument, I would love the opportunity to come
back and play again.
Thanks again for the opportunity and I hope we have the pleasure of working together again
-Your name here
All you need to do in order to use this script is paste it in an email and customize the underlined sections.
If you want to try it out, I would recommend you start with the follow people from the most recent gig you played:
- The contractor – They’re the ones that hired you and could hire you again.
- The conductor – Depending on the gig, the conductor might be involved with personnel, but it’s also great to introduce yourself because they likely conduct several ensembles and could perhaps call you for one of those.
- Your fellow members of the group – Whether it’s the people in your section or the folks from other parts of the ensemble, these people are your colleagues and can be an excellent source of referrals in the long run if you keep in touch.
By following up with all of these people after every gig, you’re going to dramatically expand your network in no time and potentially lead to many other opportunities.
All of these connections will play a crucial role in how much work you get as a freelancers so don’t be shy about following up with everyone.
One simple email could be the difference between getting forgotten about and turning one gig into many gigs.