“It’s not just about saving time, it’s also about finding the right tools for our business. 9 Spokes has a wide array of apps that can be extremely useful for startups.”

Business background

Gigride is an online marketplace, connecting venues, hosts, or event promoters with bands and musicians to book them for their gigs. Co-founders, Marco Santesso and Oscar Simon Chu Ortega, spotted the gap for a service to match artists with venues who are looking for a suitable band at short notice. Based in Shoreditch, Gigride is set to revolutionise the live music industry across London and other cities.

Busy event organisers and promoters lack time to search samples and find new talent. In just three clicks, event managers can book a band, with access to SoundCloud and YouTube links plus reviews left by other venues and gigs where they’ve played. The platform is easy to use, allowing up-and-coming musicians from all over the world to find venues that are looking for great bands.

After participating in the Big Idea Challenge, Gigride received support and desk space within London Metropolitan University’s business incubator, Accelerator. Marco and Oscar invested all their time into building the service and growing their marketing reach to sign up hosts and musicians. Gigride went live in November 2016 with a strategy to spread the word fast.

To communicate with their expanding community, Oscar implemented multiple marketing apps – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, MailChimp– then tackled the task of measuring Gigride’s progress and monitoring their business metrics with apps like Google Analytics and Hubspot CRM. Even launching Gigride as a minimum viable product, members found the platform easy to use to start conversations with new contacts.

9 Spokes dashboard set up

Oscar met 9 Spokes at the Quickbooks Connect Business Show in London, going to the stand to explore how the dashboard could help Gigride. Right there he realised it would save him lots of time, instead of logging into multiple apps on a web browser. He set up a Gigride account with 9 Spokes, customising the dashboard to see his top key performance indicators on the home screen.

“Instead of me opening multiple tabs on my browser to work out the effectiveness of our marketing campaigns, I can see it immediately on the 9 Spokes platform. For a startup, even a few pounds a month has an impact – so it’s great that 9 Spokes is completely free for small businesses. We are already using Hubspot CRM and email marketing. As we expand, we will be using more of the apps available through 9 Spokes. I have a list which we plan to introduce as we grow; we’ll use Expensify in the future to track the costs of using bloggers to interview musicians and Box to help us manage audio files for running Gigride’s online radio service.”

Linked apps

Expensify: to manage the team's expenses
Twitter and Facebook: reaching their community
Google Analytics: to monitor website traffic
MailChimp: for email marketing

Connect more, know more

Having the 9 Spokes dashboard means Oscar has more time to plan campaigns and special events. London has been a great launch pad because live music is available in so many pubs. Elsewhere in the UK, live music is just as popular; people engage more in going to a gig to hear live bands.

Gigride has bands from all over the world using the platform to come and play in London. In London alone, 150 venues have signed up and internationally, over a thousand bands are using Gigride.

For Milan’s music festival, they are working with venues and musicians to grow awareness of Gigride opportunities.

“When I turn on my laptop in the morning, the 9 Spokes dashboard is the first thing I look at. At a glance, I have an idea of what’s going on in the business; its functionality saves me time. It’s one place where you can put all the tools you are already using and you can customise your business dashboard to make it unique.”