Are you looking for guidance on how to open a private room karaoke bar? We are here to share a helping hand! In this article we'll provide useful insights and information of the steps you need to take to start a karaoke business. You'll find here our 10 step list on how to start karaoke business, with practical steps to help you start your karaoke room business — from business plan to pressing play! And as this article focuses on karaoke room business, we also wrote one about how to open your own bar, so make sure to check that too.
Note that this article is not a legal advise, but a general overview of starting a karaoke room business! For details and specific criteria for opening your business, please consult your local authorities.
Start a private room karaoke bar by following these 10 steps:
1. Make a business plan — investments, operating expenses, profit estimates
When getting started with a karaoke room business, or considering how to open a karaoke bar, you need to plan your business — just like when starting any type of a venture. For business plan guidelines and templates, navigate for example here.
To figure out the starting cost, operating costs, your break even point, and in what terms you'll be able to make profit with your business, you need to detail it all out, run some calculations and scenarios. You might want to look for prospective spaces and their rents, benchmark some competitors, and count in all your necessary purchases in order to make educated forecasts about your business. To estimate and benchmark your costs and revenue streams, download our free karaoke room business guide!
To make some calculations about your karaoke room you can see some averages on Singa powered venues below. Of course, it depends on your city, location, target audience, your marketing etc. But here's something to reference to!
Do you need external funding or business partners?
When your business plan is advancing, you will need to consider your financing and starting costs. For funding your business, there are more opportunities, in case you don't have all the money ready in your bank account. For example, you might want to talk to potential investors, consider bank loans, governmental entrepreneur support funding, or getting business partners onboard.
2. Define and decide your concept
So, you've decided to open a karaoke bar or a karaoke room venue. What else you need to think? You need a concept for your venue — what's your vibe and who's the audience for your venue. This is also dependent on the neighborhood you're planning to open in, so do your research on potential spaces, neighborhoods, and existing bars. Find your sweet spot and something to make you stand out from competitors! Our customers include for example Vietnamese bistro with karaoke rooms as well as bowling alley with karaoke rooms.
Maybe put together an ideation workshop on your own or with your potential business partners and put your creativity in action to define your concept. To define your business, you can include for example:
- Name: an important and obvious one. What will your venue be called? That'll be the usual suspect of what people know/remember of your bar. So make it a good one. To get some ideas, why not try some bar name generators online or a random word generators!
- Pitch: If you'd have to explain your karaoke bar in few sentences, what would those be? You can also use your pitch as a tagline in your website, instagram, flyers etc. Make it stand out!
- Target Audience: eventually, who will your audience be? Is your karaoke bar targeted to young, hipster folks, hardcore karaoke enthusiasts, or above-median income business groups — or something else? It can help your planning to define your primary target visitors. (Obviously, they are karaoke singers!)
3. Find the perfect space
One of the most crucial decisions of your private karaoke room bar is the space itself. Maybe you started your planning with spotting a perfect available space, but in case you haven't found your desired spot yet, you'll want to make the right decision. Venue will be one of your big monthly costs, and it'll determine the framework to your operations. Obviously, you can renovate, decorate and style your venue, but some things you cant change are clearly;
Size: How many rooms you want to operate? Are you opening an intimate karaoke bar, or a party karaoke hub? Do you need a proper kitchen, terrace, dancefloor?
Based on our karaoke room business guide the typical karaoke room size is 12-15 m2. The number of rooms can be anything between 1 and a dozen, depending on if you're planning to open karaoke room focused business, or a bar with karaoke room as an additional benefit.
Location: Central, neighborhood gem, nightlife hotspot? Where your bar is located will play a major role in how your customers will find it. Do your research, ask around — just know where to go.
4. Register your business, get licenses, permits, trademarks!
To open a business, there will be a lot of paperwork to do — and it's not always the easy part. Especially when opening a business that includes selling alcohol, having visitors, and staying open late, you want to make sure that you have done everything by the book, and you have all necessary permits and licenses to run your business.
Note that getting all paperwork done can take a while, so make sure to start well ahead your planned opening! It might be a good decision to hire a lawyer and accountant to make sure everything is covered and correctly executed.
The necessary paperwork depends on the country and state you're operating in, so please check the necessary steps from your local authorities! But some general things to take into account:
- Register your business
- Get all necessary insurances (property, staff, liability, etc.)
- Taxes and accounting
- Permits for alcohol, opening hours, public music playing
5. Get the best karaoke content
The obvious thing to consider when digging into how to start karaoke room business — karaoke itself! When karaoke is used in a commercial and public display, you need to make sure to have fully licensed karaoke for this type of use. Luckily, there are karaoke providers that have made sure to get the licensed content easily available for you.
To get the best professional karaoke software out there, you should check Singa Business — the go-to resource for bars, nightclubs, restaurants, bowling alleys, you name it. It is ideal for any venues that are looking to enhance their experience with flexible karaoke software. Singa Business is an iPad software with constantly updating karaoke catalogue, from old karaoke classics, to new hits. Singa Business has a spesific karaoke room feature — Karaoke Box Mode — that enables you to manage easily all your rooms and bookings. See the video below for more info!
With Singa, you'll also have background music on hand, that you can use to play music even though you would not be running karaoke.
👉 Contact us to get more info and prices for Singa Business for karaoke rooms!
Read also our comparison of 5 best karaoke hosting software to get an overview or some options in the market!
6. Get the equipment!
Before you can move towards opening your venue, there is obviously various kind of equipment you will need. Starting from the obvious: you need furniture — but let's go in more detail with that in the next point.
When you are opening a karaoke bar, you need to make sure to have a PA system for each karaoke room. Don't worry — it doesn't need to be a massive, high-end pricy set-up, but you can get started with quite a light karaoke gear for your karaoke rooms. Just make sure you have some good microphones, a screen, a small mixer and speakers, plus the device where you'll be streaming the karaoke from. Read here all you need to know about professional karaoke equipment. If you plan to book DJ's, you can usually use the same PA system of course!
But here's some things listed that you might need to purchase or rent. You can also consider some partnerships or sponsorship deals with different brands!
- Drinks: from alcohol to no alcohol. Depending on your concept, you might not neer a massive variety of different type of drinks, if you know your audience and/or focus on spesific drinks. Eg. local brewery beers, with some classic coctails. Or natural wines, and tap beers. Or maybe you are an all-in venue with list to cater all needs. Your call!
- Catering/kitchen equipment: such as glasses, plates, knives, forks, bottle openers, napkins, etc. If you run a proper kitchen and serve food, the list of kitchen supplies will obviously be more thorough!
- Cash register/Card reader
- Cleaning supplies
What else? Well, that gets you started with your shopping list!
7. Make your space dashing (and safe and accessible!)
What can make your venue stand out from the crowd — and make your customers want to post about it in their socials — is the interior design, or somehow eye-appealing interior of the space. Themed karaoke rooms can be really anything — only your imagination and budget is the limit! Use an interior specialist, or your imagination. Source fleamarkets for furnitures or go upmarket — it all really depends on your budget and vision. If your budget is not big, even well picked paint can do wonders! Read here for more karaoke room design tips.
Especially if you are running several karaoke rooms, you need to take care of soundproofing your venue, so that neighbors, or singers in other rooms wont get too bothered when the singing gets loud in the am hours. And trust us — it will!
Also, make sure to follow the requirements of safety and accessibility. You want your customers to enjoy their karaoke evenings safely and with no worries, and take accessibility into account.
8. Hire staff!
When your launch is getting closer, you need to do some recruitment, unless you're planning to run the operations on your own (could be tricky!). So make sure you have your karaoke-loving, customer-service oriented people ready when your opening is getting close. A good practice is to do a proper onboarding to your personnel, so that they get familiar with all practices, places, and devices.
PS. Maybe have a karaoke night with your staff pre-opening, at one of your brand-new karaoke rooms, so that they'll know exactly what they'll be selling to your customers! This can also be an extremely good team building exercise — speaking from experience!
9. Get the word out with marketing!
To fill your venue right from the start, you better get marketing! Whether you have a dedicated marketing person, or you're running marketing on your own, here's some general marketing channels for you to consider.
👉 Read our comprehensive article about how to promote your karaoke room business!
- Social media marketing: Tiktok, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter. Make sure your venue has an account with up-to-date info and some appealing images and videos. Don't be shy, show your face and what's happening at the venue! Behind-the-scenes, party footage, etc. Might be worth it to hire a professional photographer for few nights to get some great footage from your venue to use in marketing!
- Google Ads: Paid ads on Google — target the people you wanna reach online.
- Flyers, posters, ads to the neighborhood and venues/stores nearby: Spread the word! Many people might spot info about your venue when they visit a close-by grocery store or a burger joint. But make sure to do this on friendly terms — only leave flyers and posters with permission!
- Influencers: invite over some folks with a good following! Can turn your karaoke room venue's reputation from 'neverheard' to 'place to be' in one night, if you get the right people in!
- Special events: a good marketing hook can be built around a special event or discounted karaoke room campaigns!
- Press/PR: let the press know! You can either invite some press over to your opening event or try sending some press releases to local new sites or papers.
10. Open the doors and let singing begin!
Whoah! That must have been a journey — to open a private room karaoke bar from an idea to a ready-to-launch entertainment venue. Congrats already! Once you open your doors, the real work begins. And of course — the singing begins!
We hope this was helpful. Please be in touch with us on firstname.lastname@example.org, or chat with us on our website www.singa.com/business, if you need help with starting a karaoke room business.
And don't forget to download our karaoke room business guide, with valuable insights and business data to give you more knowledge on how to open a private room karaoke bar!