Benefit Concert Advice

Jim Scott Benefit Concert – description and some advice:

Jim makes special deals with community groups for benefit concerts.  We recommend ticket prices should be at least as much as a movie.  $10 in advance – $12 at the door is typical.  $12 in advance – $15 at the door is not too much for an unabashed fundraiser.  If just making an event without advance sales, sometimes a sliding scale of $7 to $15 works well and is flexible and inviting.  Promo pictures, press releases and posters are on the website for downloading.

Announcing the coming concert at services as many times as possible in advance, and selling tickets at coffee hour helps get a good turnout.  Simple tickets can be easily be printed/copied 8 or 10-up on card stock and do help to underscore the importance of a community event and enhance prospects for success.  Actual tickets are not really necessary for a congregational event.  Taking reservations on a list (and payment) gets a guarantee of attendance, or at least a contribution to the event.  Light advance sales might call for a stronger promotional push as the event draws closer.

Calling it a benefit or fund-raiser for some purpose can lend legitimacy to an event, and will often bring out the fence sitters.  We appreciate that church groups will value a good UU event and are not thinking so much of making money.  Our only concern then is that this doesn’t remain as motivating to the committee to promote.  For greatest success, we find, the key is to advertise it as a church event and a special opportunity not to be missed.  This will be a great community builder with a celebrated musician who has a long history of creating UU music and helped develop the Green Sanctuary program, etc. etc.

Outside promotion can bring in some people, but usually takes the church having established a precedent of concerts for the wider community.  It’s not difficult to find the main media sources in your area with a quick search on the web, and Jim has notoriety for his associations with the Paul Winter Consort, and as an activist for ecology and peace.  Local peace and ecology groups can be a good source of audience and possible collaborators.

Prices will vary depending on travel distance and other factor.   A typical deal is – the first guaranteed amount goes to Jim and then the proceeds are split 75% to the church and 25% to Jim thereafter – then a larger gross follows the formula below.  We ask for a guarantee against the first money that comes in.

The math – some examples:  proceeds up to $400 – goes to Jim;  proceeds total:  $500 – Jim $425/ church $75;   $800 – Jim $500/ church $300;$1200 – $600 apiece; Over $1200 – continue to split @ 50/50%  Until – Jim will be paid in full at half of $2,000 gross – all further proceeds go to church.