After previously doing a review on BandAidz from the perspective of a ‘crowdsurfer’ (read it here), what better way is there to get an insight into this revolutionary new app than by talking to the man behind the vision! Within sending off an email to BandAidz creator Justin, there was a very quick, prompt and professional response in my inbox within a couple of days; let’s find out what Justin has to say!
1) What was going on at the time that led to the initial discussion about BandAidz?
Well, having been a musician for a while now I’ve come to notice it’s getting harder and harder to engage an audience that’s interested in your music. We have the tools of social media, but the algorithms are being updated continually and not to HELP musicians but to further HINDER their reach. Unless of course the musicians are willing to PAY OUT THEIR TEETH to reach a decent sized audience. Not only that, I think technology hasn’t been utilized enough to allow new and innovative ways for musicians and fans to connect. Honestly, I was doing my 9-5 job waiting at an airport at 6am and the idea hit me like lightning! I had been stirring on the above for a long time and although the idea was only principals, I thought “F it! This could really change things up.” It has morphed a bit since its inception but here we are!
2) Were you a crowdsurfer, band member or manager?
I’ve played the roles of all the above! haha So that’s helped to identify the problems each of these people have and it’s been hell fun creating ways to solve the common issues they each face. So many times I’ve forgotten an awesome bands name from the night before, so many times I’ve had to spoon feed all the information about a gig to my band mates, so many times I’ve had problems that could be easily solved but just aren’t for some reason!
3) How long did it take to get enough of a bankroll to get everything started?
Well I’d been saving for a business venture for a few years. But if you’re thinking of building an app, whatever you think it’s going to cost double that and you’ll probably be near the actual figure! Haha. No seriously it nearly sent us (me and wife) broke! and we were adamant on not seeking 3rd party funding as we wanted full control of the company and its’ direction.
4) Were there any major hiccups or setbacks during the creation of BandAidz?
Tonnes! In fact it was more a series of small battles won rather than a few set-backs. The worst was that the initial concept was more that people were supposed to buy the music through the app. But this meant we had to pay artists, and not only would Apple and Google take a cut from that money, then it was taxed at 5% through the US government! So that was a 35% loss to the artist. Not only that, BandAidz would have to submit forms for every payment to Apple / Google to get paid and even more to the IRS so it was just a tax and logistics nightmare which was not anticipated at the start so we were about half way through and had to start all over again!
5) How did you pick which app designer you wanted to work with?
We used a company who has a head office in Melbourne and has great rates. It’s an outsourced labour company so the coding was done in a “low cost” country. That might scare most people but I have spent months in these countries so I knew the culture and how to handle business with them.
6) How long did it take from initial conversation to the finished app being available for download?
About 2 years. Took a long time, lots of patience, lots and lots of testing and lots and lots of testing! haha
7) How many countries has BandAidz been downloaded in so far and how much is that number growing as word gets out?
It’s only been release in Australia so far. We just want to get a solid adoption rate then we can expand into other countries. Although still contemplating launching in the USA early this year. Numbers have grown a lot since the launch so we’re really happy about that! Getting into the thousands has been a big leap!
IF YOU WANT TO KNOW MORE ABOUT BANDAIDZ, CLICK HERE!