So you have 50 email addresses of friends who like to know when and where your band plays next. Your bandmates have another 75 combined. That’s actually not a bad start. Growing your fan email list is made really easy when you use an email marketing service. You can put forms on your band’s website where people can sign up (example at www.redwoodband.com), and include features in your emails that enable fans to forward to a friend, who gets a subtle solicitation to sign up. You can also do some old-school stuff that works well, and this is something you should always be doing. Promote your email list at every show. Provide a clipboard for signups (not my favorite method, but it works). Tell your audiences that they can sign up at your website, ask for business cards at your shows. Having good looking women solicit sign-ups at gigs works well too. At family friendly shows, I’ve even had a band mate pimp out his toddler to hustle the audience for tips. I suppose this could work well for email sign up solicitations.
With the growing number of smart phones in audiences, you could even tell people to email you at a special email address (e.g. [email protected]). There are dozens of ways to grow the list, from QR codes on your gig posters to pimping out toddlers. The point is, you gotta work it!