Today, Tixxy released our latest update that allows music artists to send SMS messages to their fans for free!
I’m a former professional musician that got into tech and wants to help other musicians. My first startup, Soundstr, aimed to help artists earn more royalties when their music is played in bars, nightclubs and venues - kind of like Shazam, but for businesses. My new startup, Tixxy is making it easier for fans to discover concerts and connect with their favorite artists.
As an artist, I was always frustrated when we’d make an announcement and only a small portion of our fans would see it. This meant fans missed our shows and news about the band. Ultimately, this meant we lost money.
The only way for artists to reach all of their fans is to pay tons of money. You either pay to “boost” posts social posts, pay CRM companies to send messages to your email lists or just live with only reaching 20% of your fans. Do you really own your list of fans if you have to pay to reach them? It’s total bullshit - artists work hard to win fans over with their art, and now they have to pay exorbitant amounts of money for the right to reach them. I don’t think that’s cool.
Tixxy helps fans find out about concerts based on the music they listen to and sends them text alerts. Tixxy does this automatically and predictively. There’s no app to download or maintain and fans control how frequently they’re alerted - no spam! And, it’s totally free!
Artists never have to send out a concert announcement again. Tixxy just does it the second tickets go on sale. In addition to automating targeted tour marketing, Tixxy now allows artists to send custom SMS alerts to their ENTIRE fanbase for free!
But how is this free?
Unlike traditional CRMs, social media companies or concert apps, Tixxy makes money when someone buys a concert ticket through our platform. Tixxy gets paid when the artist gets paid (and the artist gets paid a lot more - how it should be).
If you’re an artist and you think it’s bullshit that you have to pay to reach your fanbase, learn more here: https://yotixxy.com/artists or email us to get started: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Why This Is Important
Dinosaur concert apps, social media, traditional communication tools and even some of the newer ones that artists use to connect with fans, charge artists to reach their entire audience. Even though social media allows artists to reach some of their following, artists always have to pay if they want to reach their entire fanbase. Got a new song? Pay up. Got a tour announcement? Pay up. Reloaded your merch store? Pay up. Not since Myspace has any platform allowed an artist to freely message all of their fans. It’s been 15 years+ and things haven’t changed until now.
A New Paradigm
“Fuck you, pay me” isn’t Tixxy’s business model because our service was built by artists with the specific intent of helping artists. Rather than simply using artists to kickstart user growth only to essentially stab them in the back by selling ads and access to their fans, Tixxy makes money through arrangements with ticket companies. Both Tixxy and artists want to sell more concert tickets. If Tixxy doesn’t sell a ticket, Tixxy doesn’t make money. So Tixxy is on the same team as artists!
What Is Tixxy?
For those artists that are hearing about Tixxy for the first time, Tixxy is a service that automatically texts concert alerts to fans, based on the music they listen to so they never miss a show! Now, Tixxy allows artists to send other important messages to fans, for free! There’s no app for fans to download. Tixxy doesn’t layer on additional fees to tickets. Tixxy doesn’t sell data or spam people. We like to think of Tixxy as a more ethical marketing tool for artists.
How To Get Started
If you’re an artist and want to start messaging your fans for free, just go here and sign-up. All we ask in return is you tell your fans about Tixxy. Don’t want to message your fans for free, no worries. We’ll still promote your shows for free!
Artists shouldn’t have to pay to reach their fans.
About a week ago, I attended my first concert back since the world was rocked by COVID (no pun intended). Below is my experience both from the band and fan perspective.
First, a little background. About six months ago, my wife and I had a baby. Despite being vaccinated, we’ve remained cautious about venturing out into social settings out of fear of catching COVID and infecting our son. So, before this week, concerts were off the menu. If we didn’t have a baby to worry about, my wife and I would enjoy our vaccinated status much more, but alas, this is the world we now find ourselves in.
This concert that I attended was special for me and one that I was willing to make an exception for (with the proper precaution). I first joined the music industry as the drummer for Hawthorne Heights them in addition to our good friends, Bayside, performing in my hometown at Bogart’s (Cincinnati, OH). Even though I routinely chat with my old bandmates and friends, it’s been two years since I’ve seen most of them in-person. I wasn’t going to miss this show….it was time to get back to some semblance of normalcy.
I arrived at the show. First thing I did was meet up with my old bandmates on their bus. Everyone wore masks (even though the bus is their home away from home). We caught up and they explained the tour rules during COVID:
No one hangs out in the dressing rooms.
Everyone isolates on their own bus, except while loading in and soundchecking.
No one goes out to the merch booth to sign autographs.
The isolation part was one of those harsh realities of COVID that I hadn’t considered when attending: I wouldn’t actually get to see some of my friends because they were being (justifiably) cautious. For the remainder of the night, we hung out behind the bus in the parking lot. I was able to catch a couple of the Bayside guys, catch-up with other old friends and meet a couple new ones. Everyone wore masks while social distancing outside. In addition to the health risks of COVID are the very real financial risks that bands have to consider. If you get sick, you can’t perform. If you can’t perform, you don’t make money.
Into the foreseeable future, bands will need to physically separate themselves from fans which places more of an emphasis on artist-to-fan communication tools in-order to maintain (and grow) their relationships with fans. Tixxy helps on this front but allowing artists to send free text messages to their fans (as opposed to other services and social media which charge for this feature).
This tour required fans to either show proof of vaccine or provide a negative COVID test for entry to the venue. In the event you didn’t bring either with you, Bogart’s had partnered with a local clinic to conduct COVID tests (for a fee) directly outside the venue. I thought this was an awesome idea to ensure a safe environment for everyone in the venue, not to mention protect the entire concert industry. It made me feel more comfortable entering a venue and shaking off some COVID social anxiety.
At the start of October, two of the largest concert promoters: Live Nation and AEG, will no longer leave it up to the individual artists to set COVID protocols for their shows. Live Nation will require proof of vaccine or a negative COVID test for every fan and all employees must be vaccinated. AEG will require proof of vaccination, negative tests aren’t enough. The National Independent Venue Association has published a checklist with up-to-date guidance for venues, re-opening in this COVID landscape.
All of this to say, because of my particular need to remain more cautious, I still wore a mask inside the venue. Many others wore masks as well, but on this particular evening, less than half of the people in the venue were wearing masks. The venue was nearly sold out, so finding a place to stand that was 6 feet away from other people was a challenge as people moved around, but not totally unmanageable. The really encouraging piece to this is that fans clearly want to go to concerts again, which is amazing. This also means that shows might begin to sell out again and if you, as a fan, don’t have your finger on the pulse of the music scene, you’ll miss out. Fortunately, there are services like Tixxy which text you the second your favorite band announces a tour date so you don’t have to worry about missing a show and you become the person in your friend circle that knows about all of the cool shows coming up!
For those that were wondering, the bands put on an awesome show and Cincinnati represented! Ohio is still for lovers ;)
In the end, I had a lot of fun seeing old friends and seeing live music again. If I’m being real, I definitely had some anxiety about attending, but overall felt safe and was pleasantly surprised by the heightened precautions put in place by the tour for entry. I’m looking forward to more events in the near future!
So, let's talk about Tyler the Creator.
Tyler released CALL ME IF YOU GET LOST on June 25th, and to be honest this has to be my new favorite album of his and is definitely in strong consideration for my just flat-out favorite album ever (Unless Kanye’s Yahndi counts, pain).
As far as my favorite song on the album goes, WILSHIRE is my current favorite but that changes from week to week, this is the first album for me that I truly have no skips. Every song is good, and they just give me great vibez.
Along with the album Tyler has announced he has a tour starting this fall and running through midway next year. I know I will be seeing him for sure in Columbus, and am considering making my way to Chicago to see him a second time. If you are interested in seeing him live, you can get tickets here.
Originally published on Rock Paper Scissors
SMS-based concert discovery assistant Tixxy is now launching in the US with partners Sound Rink, 10th Street Entertainment, and AXS
Hey Everybody! I’m Samantha - your average overworked college student, art hobbyist, and big music fan who is occasionally known to memorize album track lists in order.
One of my most defining personality traits is that I am very passionate about the music I listen to. I’m pretty sure I annoy all of my friends with how much I talk about my favorite artists and songs, but somehow I didn’t truly realize how important music was to me until COVID hit last year. And to be honest, I have one band to thank for that discovery. I’ve been a 5 Seconds of Summer fan since I was fourteen, but something about listening to their music over quarantine reminded me why I love music so much.
When I stayed up until midnight to listen to their latest album, CALM, when it dropped last year, I wasn’t expecting the whirlwind of self-discovery that would result. It started off so casually. I listened to it when it dropped on March 27th last year and loved it, but I was too caught up with early pandemic college stress to truly appreciate it. Then, 2 months had passed, college classes ended for the summer, and I was bored out of my mind. It was almost like that really cheesy quote from The Fault In Our Stars by John Green: “I fell in love with you the way you fall asleep, slowly, and then all at once.” (14 year old me would be really happy to hear that I’m still listening to 5SOS on the daily and quoting John Green. Nearly 21 year old me doesn’t know how to feel about it.) What was once casually listening to an artist’s latest album spiraled into a deep dive of their entire discography.
For the next 3 months (yes, 3 months), I exclusively listened to 5 Seconds of Summer’s entire discography on repeat. If you’re wondering how to be in your favorite artist’s top 0.001% of Spotify listeners when Spotify Wrapped comes out, I know from experience that listening to them every day for 3 months works - just in case you were wondering. The only time I took a break from their music was when Taylor Swift released folklore (another album that I passionately love btw). Now, you’re probably wondering what about 5SOS’s music inspired me to listen to nothing else for 3 months straight. I’ve broken it down into 5 reasons:
When I listen to 5SOS, I don’t just listen to the lyrics. I listen to the instruments, the production elements, the vocals, the lyrics, all of it. They are one of very few artists I listen to that I feel like their instruments are just as important and intentional as their lyrics or vocals. That’s not to say that I don’t think other artists are intentional with their instruments. I am just really passionate about the instrumentals in 5SOS’s songs. For example, if you can listen to “Red Desert” (the first track off their latest album) and not be completely entranced by the bass and drums, then I just don’t know if I can trust you. You’d have to be lying to me. I’m kidding- sorta (I’m really passionate about my love for this song, particularly the bass and drums). If the guitars in “More” (track 9 off their third album, Youngblood) don’t get you hyped up, then I don’t know if we can be friends. I could go on forever about the different instruments that I like in particular songs, but I’ll leave it at that. I just strongly believe that you should give their music a listen to and truly appreciate what they’ve done with their instruments and production.
Moving along to their versatility, none of their albums are the same sound. One of my pet peeves is when albums have songs that all sound the same or an artist’s new album sounds just like their old ones. While some artists can successfully make a career out of sticking with one sound (and that doesn’t make them any less talented), I highly value artists who have the ability to work across multiple genres or sounds. Not only is this versatility present across their 4 albums, but it is also present in their last album alone. Just within the first 6 tracks, all of the songs sound vastly different yet completely cohesive.
I feel like there is a very clear distinction between artists who are truly passionate about making good music and those who just do it as a cash grab or to have fun. It’s so much easier to enjoy an artist’s work when you can feel their passion in it. Unfortunately, I’ve never had the chance to see them play live, but I have listened to their live albums, and I can hear this passion when they perform their songs. If you want to see what I mean, you can stream their Meet You There Tour live album on Spotify or look up their live performances on YouTube. You’ll easily be able to see how much effort, passion, and dedication they put into each and every one of their performances.
Nostalgia plays a key part in why people like many of the things they like. This is particularly relevant for my music taste. Many of my favorite songs are the ones that remind me of something in my past. Early Taylor Swift hits different because “Love Story,” “Our Song,” and “You Belong With Me” were constantly playing on the radio when I was like 8. I’ve really been enjoying Billy Joel’s music lately because it reminds me of the songs my dad used to play when I was young. With 5 Seconds of Summer’s music, I easily attach their early releases to my middle school and early high school days. Middle school and high school weren’t a great time for me (as I’m sure they weren’t for most people), but I remember going home after a long day of school and putting on their debut album. Then, everything was okay. To this day, their music still means a lot to me because it’s been there for me through so many ups and downs.
Calum Hood, Ashton Irwin, Luke Hemmings, and Michael Clifford. That’s it. Those are the reasons.
So, when COVID finally ends and concerts are a thing again, I will have no shame in being somewhere in the crowd of their show, screaming the lyrics to every song they perform because there is no other band that I’d rather support than the 4 aussies who made the past 7 years some of my best years.
And that’s all for now. I’m over and out!
While I may not be the biggest Weeknd fan on the face of the earth, something really struck a chord with me at the Super Bowl halftime show. I was not able to put a finger on it until the following Tuesday.
My name is Nando Zegarra. The guy in charge of Tixxy social media, and the master meme-maker behind #DannyDevitoFriday.
Why was the Weeknd’s halftime show so important? It starts with a one word: hope. I was unsure of what I was even hopeful for which is mainly why I had a difficult time putting all of this into words though. Was it that covid would be over? Was it that I was looking back at concerts? Hell, was it even that I was hoping to go to a Weeknd concert? I was just overall unsure at first.
Come Tuesday it hit me: I was hopeful that the Weeknd's Superbowl performance would give all of us all a little bit of hope. Hope that we are almost out of this pandemic; hope that we will soon be able to see incredible performances like the Weeknd’s in person. I watched this guy whose songs always get stuck in my head, perform for 14 minutes and ten seconds, and had a smile on my face because it gave me the hope that I would soon be able to get into concert stands again, and enjoy being surrounded by people vibing to music.
However, even after watching the performance multiple times, there is something that I am still unable to explain. And it has to do with the final song of the Weeknd’s set.
Why is it that when “Blinding Lights” came on, I had chills and was in awe the entire time?
So while I work on understanding that I ask you this: did the Weeknd’s performance strike any chords with you? If so, let me know @yotixxy on Twitter. I would love to hear what you think.
Thanks for reading, and have a great rest of your day!
-Nando Zegarra (Tixxy Community Developer/Media Manager)