Marketing may have been the focus of my major in college, but I enjoy getting to show my parents that I’m capable of putting my music minor to good use too. My own personal ROI of sorts, on convincing them that I could do so in the first place. This week I saw Bastille perform their first show ever in Los Angeles at the sold out Troubadour. In a rare showing from an LA audience, they weren’t talkative, iPhones were not often held overhead and they were totally invested in what the band was doing onstage. So, in honor of this week’s En Route to ROI series and how much fun I had at the show … here’s the Benchmark 5: Tips on ROI from Bastille.

  • Give your all to your audience. They will give it back tenfold. Dan Smith is an expert frontman. He moves around the stage with purpose, riling up all sides of the venue. He even sang part of their hit song “Flaws” standing atop the bar at the back of the room. Your audience will take notice of your efforts and want to repay it.
  • Give them something familiar. Bastille was playing in LA for their first time. It was a new audience to them. They did what most bands do in a new environment. Win fans over with a cover. If you give your audience something they can connect to, it will serve as your foot in the door.


  • Pair with a bigger commodity. The band recently concluded a stint as the opening act for Muse in the UK. That’s a great way to gain exposure. Especially since Muse is one of the biggest current touring acts from that locale. If you can partner up with a major player in your market (not a competitor…but a business that compliments your product), it will lend some credence to your company.
  • Charm them. Smith was tremendously appreciative of the reaction the band got from the LA crowd. He thanked us profusely. He also made us laugh, asking us to jump up and down with him for a song … since it was the only dance move he had. Charm will lead to plenty of opportunities for you and your business. Keep it on the earnest side and far away from the used car salesman side.
  • Overcome your obstacles. Smith lost his voice the day before. He admitted as much to the crowd. To the untrained ear, there was probably no difference. I could see that he’d fall off notes here and there, or rely on his bandmates or the crowd to fill in some gaps. It didn’t matter. He moved about the stage with maximum energy and the crowd ate it up. Everyone roots for an under dog and will rally behind you.