What is the “algorithm”?

The Busking Project’s algorithm is a simple points system that determines how high you will show up in searches on the site. You get points for doing the things listed below.

What do the “points” do?

So, when a client searches for performers in London, where we have over 800 registered buskers, the buskers that appear at the top have the most points.

Why did we need to invent an algorithm?

As of writing this, we have 6,464 profiles on the site. About half of them have done nothing to improve their profiles. Before we had an algorithm, clients were seeing a confusing mix of “good” profiles, where buskers had put in an effort to make their profile pop, and “bad” profiles, which might just be a thumbnail photo and nothing more.

How many points do I need?

Luckily for you, it’s VERY EASY to leapfrog up the searches by doing simple things (shown below). However, we have many profiles that are really well made and popular So, if you want to be in the top 100 profiles, as of writing this (23/11/2018), you need 540 points.

Okay, so how do I get points?

It’s all explained below, but put simply; create a great profile, update your events info, become a member, use the site’s tools, gain fans, get hired, sell music and get tipped!

STEP 1: CREATE A GOOD PROFILE

We want performers with the best profiles to appear at the top of the search results – it’ll make the experience of finding buskers for events easier for clients. (Edit profile settings)

140+ character Bio. Tell people who you are! Make them fall in love…

30

Upload 8 photos. You get 23 points for the first photo, 20 for your second, and so on. Uploading 8 photos gives you 23 + 20 + … +5 + 2 = 100 points.

100

Upload 2 videos. These are REALLY important for clients looking to hire you, so we give you 50 points for the first video, and 25 points for the second.

75

Upload a cover photo. This really makes a difference to your profile – it’s the first photo visitors will see.

30

TOTAL FOR A GREAT PROFILE

235

 

So, there are 235 points available for doing these simple tasks, and that’s enough to get you in front of 9/10 of the performers on our site!

 

ADD YOUR “EVENTS” INFO

One of the main reasons we’ve made this algorithm is to make the site more useful for events producers. So, we’re also giving “points” to buskers who make themselves easier to hire. (Edit events settings)

Fill in your events bio. Tell clients why they should hire you, the people you’ve worked with, your professionalism…

30

Add a minimum fee. This helps clients (and us) know whether we should consider you for events.

30

Upload an Electronic Press Kit (EPK). Not everyone has one of these, but if you do, upload it to your events info and clients will see it when you apply for events.

30

TOTAL FOR A GREAT “EVENTS” PROFILE

90

 

If you’re keeping a running tally, this means by now you could have gotten 325 points for doing ALL of the above – as of 23/11/2018 that’s enough to put you into the top 400 performers on our site!

 

USE OUR SITE’S TOOLS

Show that you’re taking this website seriously – use the tools we have on offer!

Download a sign (here). You can display these signs in the street, to send people to your profile. Oh, and we’re currently making this section of the site better (more signs to choose from, more customisability etc), but anyway, give it a go!

30

Upload a music album (here). Musician? Want to sell music on one of the least-expensive services available? With busk.co there’s no upload fee, no hosting fee, no membership fee, and you take 90% of the sale price. It’s a better deal than every other music selling service out there (that we know of)!

30

Connect a bank/PayPal account (here). This site was set up to enable buskers to get cashless tips on the street, and to help you sell music. Connecting your bank account is free to do, and we don’t take a cut of your tip (although we do take a little from music sales). Read more about getting tipped here.

100

TOTAL FOR USING OUR TOOLS

160

 

Is this fair? We know not everyone is a musician, not everyone displays signs, and not everyone would feel comfortable getting cashless tips in the street. But, for those of you who have done all the above, as of 23/11/2018 your 485 points will get you into the top 150 buskers on our site.

 

GET A PRO ACCOUNT

This site is definitely “free to play”, but we do have “pro accounts” that give you a whole bunch of goodies and points. You can upgrade your account and read about the benefits here: busk.co/pro

Get a Pro Account. This will cost you $15/month or $150 a year, but that expense comes with a lot of good tools.

300

Choose a URL (members only). Get your own, custom URL, like “busk.co/nick” (that’s me) for example.

30

TOTAL FOR BECOMING A MEMBER AND CHOSING A CUSTOM URL

330

 

Is this fair? Well, yes and no. We took a long time deciding how many points to give. With the above points method, buskers who’ve tried hard with their profile AND become members will be at the very top of search results. But buskers who ONLY become a member, and do nothing else with their profile will have hundreds of “free” profile buskers in front of them. Buying a profile is definitely a good way to get seen, but it’s not great by itself – you still have to have a good profile to be right at the top.

As of 23/11/2018, making a good profile AND becoming a member would give you 905 points, enough to get you into the top 30 performers on our site.

Even if rising up the ranks doesn’t interest you, there are a lot of other features and goodies that you get when becoming a member – we’ll design custom signage for you (with your colours/branding), send you the info of hundreds of festivals to apply to etc. See all the other benefits here: busk.co/pro.

 

GET FANS AND DEMONSTRATE POPULARITY!

If you’re getting fans, selling albums, getting hired for events and getting tipped in the street, it’s obvious that people like your act. If that’s the case, it’s likely that clients will want to hire you. So, we’re giving you points for that, too.

Get “fans”. If you send people to your profile (click here if you’re logged in), you can ask them to become your “fan”, just by clicking the fan button (fans will need to create a profile to become your fan). Each fan gets you 20 points.

Sell a music album. Send people to your profile to sell music. Every sale will get you 100 points. You get 90% of the sale price.

Get tipped. Send people to your profile to tip you. You get 92-98% of the tip, and the rest goes to bank fees (The Busking Project doesn’t take a cut). Every tip will get you 100 points.

Get hired for events. Obviously the MOST important thing for clients is whether you’ve been hired before. So, we give 100 points EVERY time you get hired.

TOTAL: UNLIMITED POINTS

 

What does this mean in practice?

Doing just the basics gets you ahead of 90% of buskers. But, as of 23/11/2018, to become #1 you’d need a whopping 8,000+ points. This means the only way to get top spot is to do what the top buskers on our site are doing – gain fans, get tipped, sell music and get hired for events.

Is the system fair?

Probably not. For example, jugglers aren’t going to be selling music albums. And not everyone can afford to pay for membership. However, we’ve tried to balance the points out so that anyone could rise to the top spots, if they use their profile as it’s intended.

If you want to let us know how we could improve the above system, let us know. We’re happy to change it, if there’s a really good reason to.

Thanks! And good luck out there,

Nick