Australian jazz survey – results and our to-do list

15123293_sIn the wake of our near-miss decision to close down, we decided to reach out and find out who likes and why, with a survey that asked people to tell us about their use and preferences of the site. Thanks to everybody who responded to the survey in January. We asked some pretty focused questions about what you liked to read on the site and what other content you’d like to have access to in the future.

A good number of people replied and about half of you asked for a set of extempore jazz postcards to be mailed out to you. They’re in the post this week.

In summary, it seems you love what we do already but you also like the ideas we suggested for ways to help the site be an even more useful member of the jazz community.

Who visits and why?

More than half of our respondents said they were musicians, and about the same number said they were fans. One respondent possibly didn’t like the word ‘fan’ and instead classified themselves as ‘listener’. Fair enough. A significant number of publicists, writers/reviewers and photographers also took the survey. We also had people who were producers, teachers, board members, a travel agent, and someone who is ‘jazz curious’ (which tickled us somewhat!).

This validated what we thought was happening. The site is useful to musicians, and enthusiasts (many of whom are also musicians) but also to the whole scene, and the people who support – and are supported – by it, including venues, record producers and labels, writers, reviewers and photographers.

Significantly, over 80% of our respondents consider themselves to be active members of a jazz community, using channels such as Facebook and Twitter. Again, that’s what we thought, but thanks for taking the guesswork out of it. For musicians who may be connected through music but located geographically distant from each other, Facebook is incredibly helpful as a way of staying in touch and sharing ideas. But it also does that if you’re in the same city and playing together regularly.

So we’ll continue to connect with you using the channels you like to use already. If you haven’t liked us on Facebook, this might be a good time to click that button and start getting updates.

Your favourite content

In order of preference, respondents wanted more of the content you can already find on in this order of preference we’ve listed below. We found it interesting that news, profiles and interviews were your favourites. Not surprised though. Because we’ve been saying (like, forever) that even though many musicians say ‘the music should speak for itself’ even musicians will acknowledge that the stories behind the music and about the music are important. Which is why we do what we do. In case you’d forgotten!

  1. Jazz news
  2. In-depth profiles of jazz musicians
  3. Interviews
  4. Australian jazz and improvised music releases
  5. Music reviews (concerts and recorded music)
  6. A weekly podcast

You’d like to see more…

When we asked you about some other services we’ve been thinking about, here’s what you voted, again in order of preference, with number 1 being the thing that got you most excited.

  1. A national Australian jazz directory
  2. Annual printed collection of ‘best of’ articles, interviews and profiles
  3. Banner advertising
  4. Writing and editing services

Magic free internet?

Many of you said you’d also be willing to pay a small amount for banner advertising, a listing, a print edition of our best articles and writing and editing services.

A proportion of respondents that they wouldn’t be willing to pay for banner advertising. Could we take a moment here to remind you that the site is not funded by any grants from government, and has been running on the smell of an oily rag (plus a percentage of Miriam Zolin’s salary) since its inception. Every time you pay for an advertisement on our site, it helps us pay writers, which then in turn means that great content about Australian jazz and improvised music is reaching a wider audience. Just sayin’.

Responding to your responses

Again, a huge thank you for taking the time to complete the jazz survey. And thanks also to all our thousands of regular visitors and the people who like, share and comment on our posts on Facebook, retweet our Tweets and interact with us on the site. We’ll take as much of that kind of love as you can offer.

Free community listings

You’ll see we’ve already started acting on your wishlist, with community listings (free!) that are super easy to create or claim (plus we provide support if required). Community listings are a GREAT way to promote your next CD, your band, your venue, your services. And just in case you missed it, FREE (with added extras you can purchase if you want extra pizzazz and promotional oomph)

Banner advertising

Our banner advertising remains incredibly affordable and effective, so please think of us when you’re next launching a CD, running a festival, touring a band or promoting your venue. Our basic rates will get you an advertisement that reaches thousands of site visitors. For a little bit more you can also organise a specialist interview, feature or even just a boost through Facebook.

Printed editions and writing services

We’ll keep you updated on this, after we’ve huddled in the corner for a while to come up with some ideas.