Using what we’ve learned from our community of successful concert hosts, we’ve broken down top tips to consider when hosting memorable musical experiences.
Prepping for the show
Think of your Airbnb experience as your opportunity to share your passion for connecting people through live music. Here are a few things you can do to prepare both artists and guests before the curtain opens.
Communicating with artists
Think of yourself as the director—you get to call the shots. Communicate the need-to-knows before the show so artists feel prepared before the lights dim.
- What can you do to help artists feel ready for the concert?
- When you book an artist, send them an advance email outlining details to set them up for success before the show. When should they load in? Is there an intermission?
- How can you work with the artists to set the evening up to be intimate and story-driven?
Preparing your guests
Just as you need to prep your artists, help guests feel they are in good hands before the start of the show. Try messaging your guests within the app to let them know the nitty-gritty:
- What should they bring with them? (e.g. Bring layers because the venue is cold, don’t forget your ID, extra money, etc).
- Mention any public transportation or parking notes
- Tell guests what you’ll be serving (light snacks?)
- Send suggestions about what to do in the neighborhood (a local bar? A good view?)
Setting the stage
Now that you’ve decided to host, it’s time to get creative with where you’re hosting. Think about designing the space in a way that highlights your personality and the uniqueness of the venue.
The look and feel
- Venue: We’ve heard from guests they appreciate when hosts choose a venue that makes their audience (and artists) feel at home. If you need help, ask a friend to come with you to see what they think of the space!
- Lighting: One successful piece of ambiance guests enjoy is the use of lights. Set the ambiance with electric candles (please don’t use real candles for safety’s sake), globe string lights, Edison bulbs, spotlights, etc.
- Seating: Think about arranging cushions, blankets, couches, chairs, benches, etc. so that every seat can potentially have a clear view of the stage. Guests have mentioned in reviews how seating and vantage points can matter.
- Mingling: Where is a good place for guests to chat? If you encourage mingling, think about a space in the venue for chatting between sets.
- Drinks: Consider providing different types of drinks, and decide if you want to offer some snacks to create an extra-special experience.
- Extras: Try helping guests be comfortable in the space around them by sharing where to find restrooms, refreshments, and emergency exits.
Sound can be a key player when hosting a concert. Think about testing the sounds before the show—consider whether an acoustic or amplified setup works better with your space, guests, and artists.
Pro tip: If you decide to go plugged-in, think about communicating specific needs with artists: PA system, amps, instrument backline, etc.
After the show
When cleaning up after your show, the best practice is to leave it better than you left it. Encourage guests to keep the space clean throughout the night, and consider hiring cleaners to help you break down your set-up.
For good measure: Send a thank you note to the venue within a few days after the show. A little thank you is a big gesture.
Just as you invite your artists and guests to take an musical journey with you, try to continue the conversation before and beyond the curtain call.
Try helping people feel welcome and comfortable upon arrival and throughout the show. How can your setting help guests feel like they belong?
- Think about greeting every guest. Some topics of conversation can include finding out if they are celebrating anything special, if they’re locals or travelers, what they’re most looking forward to about the evening, etc.
- Try encouraging artists to engage the audience in their own personal way. Guests appreciate when artists hold Q&A’s, share backstories, cover songs, and mingle in between sets.
- We’ve heard artists appreciate it when side conversations happen outside the concert space when music is playing.
Pro tip: Intimacy sets Airbnb experiences apart from other events. Remember, a little personal attention goes a long way.
Giving the star treatment
One of the unique aspects of your experience will be your headliner—the artists themselves. When deciding to choose your musicians, think about inviting artists with powerful stories and do your best to make them feel like stars.
- The artists chosen should feel like your esteemed guests for the evening. Learn about who they are as an artist, and try to highlight their unique stories throughout the evening.
- Consider setting up a green room, or private space, for artists to relax and warm up.
- Some successful hosts have voiced guests are welcome to use their phones sparingly to share their experience on social media (but to try to enjoy the show phone-free!).
- Consider sharing how to follow the artists on social media (does the artist have any flyers they want to share? Any social media handles or hashtags to use?).
- A nice way to wrap up the show is to think about following up with guests with a “thank you” message, inviting them to leave a review and follow the artists.