The Canberra Blues Society new website has launched. We hope that you have had a chance to visit canberrabluessociety.com.au since then. Visiting our new web site will keep you up to date with what is happening in the Canberra Blues Music scene. The new site has many new features specifically for members. To access these, you use your email address to log in to your member profile.
The easiest way to keep up to date with blues music events in Canberra and region and to purchase tickets is by using the Wild Apricot For Members app for your phone (Apple or Android) App Store. It is free.
Install it, then log in using your member email and password (just the first time, your device will remember for next time). You can see not only CBS events, but other events from the Canberra region. "Members only" ticket prices are just a click away! You can also use the app to update your contact details such as your phone number if they change.
Where you have pre-paid for a ticket to an event, many of you have been bringing either a paper ticket or the ticket on your phone when you arrive to check in. After all that’s the way you do it these days right?
Unfortunately we have not been set up to use this and so we ask you for your family name and then check you off from a paper list. This has caused some (small) problems when a group with multiple family names has booked together or other similar cases. Also it has meant that we have to close off online ticket purchase a day in advance to get the list prepared.
With our new member management system which arrives in early October, we will be moving to a more modern arrangement where our front desk volunteers will use their mobile phones to scan the QR code on your ticket (on paper or on your phone) to check you in. There will be a transition period - any event where tickets are already on sale will continue to use the “old” paper-based system. The last of these will be Walter Trout in January 2024.
But what if I forget to bring my ticket? No problem, we can still look you up on “the system” and check you in that way, but of course it is quicker for you and for us if you bring the ticket and have it ready when you approach the front desk!
The tools that we use to administer the Canberra Blues Society, for membership, events and so on have not changed markedly as we have grown from our much smaller beginnings to where we are today. Spreadsheets, an individual’s DropBox account and so on are showing the signs of strain in providing support to our membership and in the running of significant numbers of large and successful blues music events.
We have commenced the implementation of tools that are better suited to the way we need to work. These are Google Workspace for non-profits and a Member Management System called WildApricot.
Several key components of Google Workspace (Google Drive, Gmail, Google Calendar) will provide better information management and communications for committee members (and will allow you to communicate with the committee).
WildApricot will be used to manage memberships and renewals, events and ticketing, merchandise sales and more.
Although the main motivation for this change is to make administration easier, quicker and more secure, there will be direct benefits for all members.
We are about to “go live” with our new web site. Here is what it means for you…
The canberrabluessociety.com.au web site will still be there. Everything you could do there before you will still be able to do.
You may notice some small differences to the “look and feel” but in general will look much the same.
You will get an email telling you how to log into the web site, so that you can get all the online benefits of being a member (see below). This email will signal that the new environment is “live”.
You will get additional emails about features like the phone app which you may choose to use (but you don’t have to).
An online merchandise shop where you can buy our hats, shirts, CDs etc. and automatically get your member discount.
Easier purchasing of tickets to CBS events, with your member discount applied automatically.
The ability to renew your membership online with membership renewals on the anniversary date (so no weird different payments depending on the month of the year). You will automatically get a reminder when your membership is about to expire.
No more need to carry your membership card. You will get one electronically which you can print or store on your phone. Your choice.
Ability for you to update your own contact details including address and email so you can stay in touch as you move.
An app for iPhone and Android which will allow you to buy tickets and quickly check in on arrival for an event and more.
An enhanced band directory so you can easily identify and contact bands that support the Canberra Blues Society.
Better online access to Blues News and other information that we produce.
This is a big deal for CBS. Your committee is having to learn new skills and tools in order for us to provide better service to you, our members and to be able to handle a growing membership and more events without undue strain on our resources. When you see these changes arriving, we’d love your feedback and of course we are ready to assist you through the process of getting used to the new environment!
You can always contact me (Patrick Keogh, the Digital Media Officer) with any comments, questions, suggestions or complaints using email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Google Workspace gives us the ability to have “positional” email addresses, such as “email@example.com”.
This makes it easier for us to communicate and to hand over to new committee members in the future. Most of these addresses are set up to go to more than one member of the committee, so if one of us is away or sick then we will still get your email and can take action.
The whole CBS committee.
Use this for general communications or if you don't know who to send it to.
Issues with the web site, photos, videos, our Facebook page etc.
Event information including International Blues Music Day, booked performances etc.
Anything to do with the monthly pro jam.
Issues relating to membership including joining CBS, renewing your membership, changing contact details etc.
Communications with the committee relating to issues specific to musicians in the CBS.
Anything to do with the monthly Jam Workshop.
... and it will have direct benefits for our members!
We have the Google Drive component in place and will have the Gmail and Calendar functions up and running in March or early April. This is mostly invisible to members other than giving you the ability to send mail to a committee member using addresses that will include:
and so on. We will let you know when this is working!
As we bring the components of WildApricot online, you will see them via our web site. These will include membership and renewals, merchandise sales, events and ticketing, our band directory and more. This should start happening in early May.
The enhancements will include:
Automatic application of your member discount for event tickets, no need to remember a code.
An app for iPhone and Android which will allow you to buy tickets and quickly check in on arrival for an event.
This is a big deal for CBS. Your committee is having to learn new skills and tools in order for us to provide better service to you, our members and to be able to handle a growing membership and more events without undue strain on our resources. When you see these changes arriving, we’d love your feedback!