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How Headliners Choose an Opening Act

Liston Witherill
Liston Witherill
2 min read

If you’re trying to get more leads and build pipeline, you only need two things:

  1. Traffic – people who see your offer
  2. Conversions – people who take your offer

Simple, right? Not really, because you don’t need just any people to see your offer, you need the right people to see it. And as I said yesterday, someone else already built your perfect audience. So instead of starting from scratch, borrow someone else’s audience (be The Opening Act).

But you might be asking yourself:

How do I know this’ll work for me?

Great question! It will work for everyone so long as you choose the right partner. Let’s go back to the concert for a moment.

If you’re at a concert to see John Mayer, and Lil’ Uzi Vert comes out as the Opening Act, it won’t work. Why? They’re too different. They’re just not compatible.

When the Headliner chooses an Opening Act, they want to be sure of a few things:

  • There’s obvious crossover appeal: the Headliner’s audience has to like The Opening Act, and vice versa
  • The Opening Act is reliable: they’ll show up on time, give a great performance, and show up again for the next show
  • There’s evidence that it’s working: The Opening Act won’t have the following of a Headliner, but they should have some true fans and shows under their belt; maybe one day The Opening Act will be so big that they’ll be in a position to boost The Headliner’s career
  • Complimentary, but not too similar: because they need to appeal to the same audience, the music of The Headliner and The Opening Act has to compliment one another, but not be so similar that there’s competition or confusion
  • Obvious uniqueness: the more obvious the uniqueness, the better the chance that the audience will like The Opening Act

If this all comes across as completely obvious, it’s probably because it is. Yet businesses struggle to navigate The Opening Act / Headliner dynamic that leads to crucial Partnership Marketing relationships.

It might seem complicated, but there’s another way to look at it: there are hundreds of thousands of businesses in the world. A handful of relationships can mean the difference between mediocrity and hypergrowth. The parameters listed above are a means to limit your search for the right partners.

Get out there and make some key relationships happen. Your business depends on it.

Notes