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Encore’s Guide to Creating a Top-Notch Gig Application

So you’re on Encore, you’re ready to play and the gigs are rolling in. What happens next?

Every Encore musician worth their salt knows standards are high and competition is stiff, so if you want to win a gig it’s crucial you make a good impression right off the bat. This is Encore’s step-by-step guide to building a top-notch gig application.

Encore ensemble Jazz Lane

1. Master the details of the gig.

Clients want to know that you’re taking the opportunity seriously and you’ve thought it through. Never send an application until you know exactly what the deal is, and don’t apply for anything that isn’t relevant to you!

2. Write a sparkling covering letter.

This is your opportunity to catch the client’s eye, so make sure you’re personable and polite. “We can do this, check out our profile” tells them nothing – you need to be friendly, address them by name, and clearly state why you’re exactly the right candidate for the gig. Slightly too formal is always better than too casual.

3. Quote realistically.

If you are quoting for a gig, make sure the figure isn’t something you’re going to want to negotiate on later! If you’re applying as an ensemble, you can go further and break down your fee in the covering note. Make sure you research your travel costs before you apply, as it never goes down well if you have to ask for more expenses at a later stage. We recommend Citymapper if you’re travelling within a major city, or Google Maps for anything else.

4. Update your profile.

Check your Encore profile and, if you’re applying for a group gig, your ensemble’s page. Make sure there’s as much information available as possible about what you do. It’s essential that you have a detailed biography, a profile picture, possibly some additional photos, and most importantly some media for the client to watch or listen to as well. Very few clients confirm a booking before hearing you play (live recordings are better!).

If you’re in need of some quality professional photos, we’ve secured an exclusive discount for Encore members with the photography company Splento. Find out more here.

5. Proofread and send.

Scan your application one more time, then send it and wait to hear from the client. They will probably need a little time to consider the applications they receive, so don’t chase unless it’s urgent!

6. Communicate professionally.

If your client gets in touch asking for more details, make sure your response is as useful as possible, and remember you have competition – so be nice! If your client asks to see more media, upload it to your Encore profile and let them know it’s there (this will also help enormously when you apply for gigs in the future). Don’t suggest you chat over the phone at this stage as, for your protection, we won’t release details till a booking is agreed in principle (obviously there are sometimes exceptions).

7. Confirm the booking.

Success! You’ll receive a booking request via email alert, open it and click to confirm as soon as you can. Enjoy the gig!

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James McAulay

Encore Co-Founder & CEO. Cellist, pianist, singer and aspiring guitarist.

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