I'm not a superfan. Your merch table is to blame.

Don’t miss an opportunity to create a superfan by blowing it at your merch table.

I went to see a really great band the other night – a band I know and have seen live numerous times. I’m not quite a superfan, yet – I don’t own all their music or any merch, but I expect I will someday, even though I left the last show with a twinge of disappointment.

It's not that the band wasn't great. Their live show blew me away, and I came in with high expectations. I even had money in my pocket I brought with me specifically to spend at the merch booth after the show. I wanted to purchase the band’s two latest releases on vinyl, having already listened to the streams online. I could have ordered them online (and I hope I still can), but I knew the show was coming up, so I figured I'd save a little on shipping and maybe even get the band members to sign them at the gig.

As the show was ending, the vocalist announced he'd be at the merch booth after the show and he’d be happy to sign stuff, chat, hang out – whatever anyone wanted to do. Awesome! As the last chords echoed and the band exited the stage, I headed straight for the merch booth in the back. I was fourth in line, checking out the goods, and noticed two of the people in front of me grabbed copies of the records I wanted, which were displayed on the front counter of the booth. When they got theirs, the stock on the counter did not get replenished.

My heart sunk. Those were the last two copies! I looked at the other stuff they were offering (after making sure there weren't additional copies under the table – or somewhere!), but nothing they were selling was going to replace what I had my heart set on. I ain’t made of money. I wanted to support the artist, but I wasn’t going to buy something just because I was there. That money was for those two records.

So I walked away without the records or the hand-screened promotional show poster they were giving away if you bought a record. And I didn't get to have my records signed or get the chance to chat with the band while it was happening.

It was a great show, and I never imagined I’d leave with even the slightest disappointment, but I did. And it was slight. It's not the end of the world. I’ll get those records, but I didn’t get the experience. And that's a bummer.

So what I’m trying to say is, don’t blow your chance to turn someone into a superfan by not having stock of your best merch at your show.


This post was written by Brad Bush and originally appeared on CD Baby’s DIY Musician Blog. Reposted with permission.