Garth Brooks announcing his latest tour unleashed fans pent-up energy of their wallets and he capitalized on that with an efficient tour schedule.
When Garth Brooks tickets went on sale in Indianapolis, IN and I heard it was 4 days/5 shows, I was stunned by the number of performances and staying put in one place for that many days. I wasn’t surprised all the shows sold out in a matter of minutes. I decided to research his tour schedule of how he did shows and have to admit, he may be setting the norm for bigger acts down the road.
First, I started with the months of March through October in 2017. I plotted all the cities he stopped in. His Los Angeles stop, he swung over to Paso Roble (few hours away) and did two shows there. Other than that, he performed anywhere from 3-9 shows at each stop.
Garth Brooks crammed 71 shows into 15 locations. This is genius and here’s why.
Travel Cost: Major musical acts would do this amount of shows in easily 50 plus cities. That takes a lot of money in fuel, labor and travel for the band. By keeping shows in one town for multiple nights, your staff and band are well rested and the labor numbers are way down in building the stage and shipping.
Music Promoter Costs: This is major. I can’t even touch on all the aspects, but this article detailing it out can be read here. Instead of a music promoter having to deal with 50 different concert cities, they can strike great deals with just 15 different venues. Don’t get me wrong, the power of Garth Brooks is a factor, but talking with a venue that holds 25,000 people and telling them it will be filled for 4 nights straight compared to one makes the financial profit for Garth Brooks that much stronger. Example would be the promoter may have to pay the facility a daily fee just once and then cram in two shows. Most likely the venue cut the fee drastically knowing that is 4-5 concerts selling beer, food, drinks and parking was going to be big for them.
Advertising Costs: By hunkering down in one city for many nights Garth Brooks didn’t even have to advertise the conventional way. Not saying this is the only reason why he did the following, but it allowed Garth to go out in the cities he was in and interact with fans by visiting charities and hospitals. Point being, seeing someone famous embrace your city moves people compared to just radio and TV ads.
His Tour Staff: I go back to the touring staff because instead of them feverishly tearing down a set and heading onto the next city, they were doing basic clean up for the next show. Here’s article detailing that at one of his concert stops. His band members then could just walk over to a hotel, go to bed and wake up in the morning and go do relaxing things before a show. Not having the stress of being a different city each night led to put on great performances.
Overall, Garth Brooks probably cut down on concert costs easily 20-30% with this method of show bookings. His management team should be highly commended for this successful business model.