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Topic: Marvins Svengali pitch in London
Message: Posted by: DonDriver (Sep 25, 2010 08:32AM)
A friend of mind just emailed me this vid of a Svengali pitchman at a Marvins stand in London.I'm not too impressed.However if it works for him who am I to say.
I watched a black guy (american) at Toys are Us in Times Square that was working the Marvins stand.He was very good and I think much better.I just think English people are very dull.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ORBICcgKLXc

What do you guys think? It will be fun to hear your comments.

Later,Don
Message: Posted by: sethb (Sep 25, 2010 04:03PM)
This video points out the difference between a "pitch" and a "demonstration." There was no tip here, just one or two people. Of course, it might have grown into a tip with the right handling. But as it was, it was just a demonstration, and there was no real effort to sell the deck (turn the tip). The guy keeps saying that this is his "best-selling trick," but that's hardly a pitch! He apparently has a nice indoor location and a fair amount of foot traffic, but he isn't using it to the best advantage.

I also agree with Don, the fellow looked like he was just "phoning it in." While you do have to memorize the Svengali Pitch, there's no need to make it robotic and mechanical. This was more about "See How Good I Am" instead of "Think About What A Great Trick You Could Do." A fatal error, in my humble opinion. Plus, he was mumbling and speaking way too fast, in my experience. He was entertaining himself, but not anyone else.

Maybe the guy was on salary instead of commission, and he didn't care how many decks he sold? SETH
Message: Posted by: DonDriver (Sep 25, 2010 04:53PM)
My friend Scott from over at the scoundrels fourm found this vid of Marvins at Toys are Us in Times Square.This isn't the guy I saw but hes still much better than the guy in the other vid from London.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=clzqmLZ04O4&feature=player_embedded

Scott pointed out this guy had the tip do tricks with the deck so they know how easy it was for anybody to do.A very important part of the Svengali pitch,where as the guy from London never let anybody touch the deck.

Here is Josh who I did meet.Hes not doing a Svengali pitch but you can see how in touch with his tip he is.Very good !He didn't even try to hold this bunch.I'm sure he could see it would be a waist of time so he did just a trick to amuse them to keep them happy and than got a good tip to turn.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z7hn0n_CCpI&feature=player_embedded

That's the bad thing about working in any store,you can't be rude...you have to do some kind of trick if they ask.Even if it looks like they are just "tire kickers" and than move on...fast.

Later,Don
Message: Posted by: sethb (Sep 26, 2010 07:53AM)
You're right, Don, the difference is like night and day. Look at all the energy that guy puts out. He's like a 100 watt bulb! Also notice that once he got his assistant's name, he repeated it a few times during the routine. He didn't just "ask to ask" and then forget it. Very important, the audience watches for such things.

On the second video, very good handling of the TT; this guy knows his angles and his misdirection. Very nice ditch of it, too.

But I think they both talk too fast! I learned the hard way that the slower you talk, the more attention people will pay to you. This doesn't mean you have to drag things out, but you do have to speak slowly and clearly so that everyone can understand you. Otherwise, you're not getting through! To see what I mean, watch Don's "Svengali Pitch" DVD. You can hear every word, but the tempo doesn't drag or bore anyone.

An added bonus for speaking slowly is that you have more time to think about what comes next, more time to size up the tip, and more time to emphasize the high points in the routine, with a lot less effort. You may do a few less pitches per day, but I bet you will have bigger and much better tips. SETH
Message: Posted by: JoeJoe (Sep 26, 2010 08:22AM)
[quote]
On 2010-09-26 08:53, sethb wrote:
An added bonus for speaking slowly is that you have more time to think about what comes next
[/quote]

And the marks have more time to think too ... which I feel is bad. The last thing I want is a mark that has the time to think about what he wants to do.

-JoeJoe
Message: Posted by: DonDriver (Sep 26, 2010 10:29AM)
[quote]
On 2010-09-26 09:22, JoeJoe wrote:
[quote]
On 2010-09-26 08:53, sethb wrote:
An added bonus for speaking slowly is that you have more time to think about what comes next
[/quote]

And the marks have more time to think too ... which I feel is bad. The last thing I want is a mark that has the time to think about what he wants to do.

-JoeJoe
[/quote]

Speaking slow and deliberate Joe-Joe is the key to any good pitch.Just trust me on this one.

When I David Walker was breaking me in years ago ago he "drove" that into my head.He would tell me to speak HALF as fast as I am...over and over and over again.Thats is the very best thing I learned breaking in.I put that in my DVD and stressed that point...SPEAK SLOW AND DELIBERATE !

Later,Don
Message: Posted by: Brent McLeod (Sep 28, 2010 03:30AM)
Great advice as usual from Don

The people must understand you as well as have a great time before the pitch

In over 5 yrs of Tradeshows & markets & Festivals Pitching the Svengali Professionally
I now have a routine of fun & Interaction-(the guest must handle the cards)

heres a few pics of pitching at different Indoor & Outdoor venues!!-Enjoy
Message: Posted by: Brent McLeod (Sep 28, 2010 03:32AM)
Heres a crowd at a kids show fair at our Booth

We sold over 800 decks
Message: Posted by: Brent McLeod (Sep 28, 2010 03:34AM)
Attracting a crowd before the routine begins
at a Indoor Trade show

I use a money effect to attract a crowd then start the routine that attracts even more etc.....

Had been performing for 6hrs at this stage...
Message: Posted by: Brent McLeod (Sep 28, 2010 03:37AM)
Crowd having a good time-

Im the hot sweaty dude on the right

Did a street festival last Sat & blocked the footpath as well......
Message: Posted by: Brent McLeod (Sep 28, 2010 03:52AM)
Large outdoor Mall-
Starting out!!!

Heaps of good advice from Don Drivers products/DVDs over the years keep you going for hours
and when youve done a routine thousands of times it becomes so natural-you concentrate
on the Interaction & then the Pitch...........

When I work I use up to 6 different decks with different cards for many who see more than 1 routine
I also use the names of 2 people right through the whole routine & make them get applause many times over
also I get 1 of them to cut the deck often as the reveal at the end with all the cards really floors the crowds
and adds to the sales...

Many times Ive had people say I'm the greatest card sharp theve ever seen even after Ive spent
5 mins telling them its a trick deck-Go figure........
Message: Posted by: DonDriver (Sep 28, 2010 04:10AM)
Brent,
Great story.This is what keep me going,success stories like yours...I love hearing them and knowing I had a little something to help you along the way.

And yes just SOME help...if you don't have the engery and perseverance on your own to be in the pitch bussiness you won't last very long no matter what you learned from my DVD.

Thanks again for the posts...have a good one,
Don
Message: Posted by: sethb (Sep 28, 2010 07:02AM)
[quote]On 2010-09-28, Brent McLeod wrote: Crowd having a good time - Did a street festival last Sat & blocked the footpath as well....[/quote]
Hey Brent, sounds like you had some really big tips! I have managed to pull those sorts of tips on occasion, and it's a wonderful feeling. It's almost like you are surfing and have managed to catch a giant wave! As you noted, a good pitch can run rings around even the most impressive static display.

Of course, I always apologize for blocking the street or pathway, even though I'm not really sorry at all! I have also found that a big tip just feeds on itself and attracts even more people. So when I ask everyone to move in closer so that the street isn't blocked, often that only attracts more people and makes an even bigger traffic jam. Those are also the times I'm glad that I invested in a decent wireless PA system!

But if you play it right, you can just roll that big tip over and get two or more pitches out of the same crowd (the ones that could see what you were doing, and then the ones that couldn't). So don't leave just yet folks, we're going to do it all over again for those of you that missed the beginning or couldn't get a good look at what we're doing up here! Stick around and watch the Magic Cards, ladies and gentlemen, it's amazing yet so easy to do once you know the sneaky secret, and the cards do all the work for you . . . . SETH
Message: Posted by: Brent McLeod (Sep 28, 2010 10:15PM)
Thanks Don-

Always a pleasure!!-Thanks for the kind words-appreciated from the Master!!


Seth-

Like your idea of a repitch for the crowd at the back,
I usually am selling then need to reset & quickly start again etc

Sounds like you have had some good days as well!!-Great post thanks

Brent
Message: Posted by: sethb (Sep 29, 2010 06:51AM)
Brent -- The other thing I have learned is to keep an eye on the size of the tip, and to expand the pitch as the tip expands.

If I start small with just a few people and am working mostly on the table, this means that as the tip grows, the cards need to come off the table and get up in the air. The gestures also need to get bigger and more expansive.

I also try to make sure that I am looking at and speaking to the entire tip, and not just the folks up front. I think it was Don who told me to work to the back of the tip, then I would know I that I was reaching the entire tip. SETH
Message: Posted by: Brent McLeod (Sep 30, 2010 03:26AM)
Seth-

Good Post

I use 1 person at the front to choose the card& get the name

I use a second Person at the far side to select 1 of 4 piles

I use a 3rd person to name out loud any nos between 1-20
and count to that nos etc and they are usually at the back so
Im interacting witht the whole crowd as well as cracking heaps of gags
to keep the crowd laughing & stay to the end of the routine.......

cheers
Message: Posted by: Brent McLeod (Apr 1, 2011 04:40AM)
Just finished last weekend another hectic 2 months of tradeshows doing the Pitch..
Svengali is as popular as ever.....
Message: Posted by: Brent McLeod (Oct 29, 2011 04:04AM)
A few more Pics of Indoor Demo about Casino Syndicate card sharps with to about 250 people
we had great sound,and a massive overhead screen so all could see.....
The assistant was great & very funny during the demo-including a Svengali routine but no one knew....
Message: Posted by: Brent McLeod (Oct 29, 2011 04:09AM)
Pic2
Message: Posted by: Brent McLeod (Oct 29, 2011 04:20AM)
Pic 3-

The camera was zoomed closeup on the table top so really made it easier for the crowd as the response was really
good at the end....I do about 15 Casino card dealing / cheating demos a year for many events....
Message: Posted by: DR STEVE HOSKINS (Dec 4, 2011 07:01AM)
Quote Don Driver;
"I just think English people are very dull".

Thanks a bunch you old red neck, - coming from you that's rich!

Steve
Message: Posted by: Leslie Melville (Dec 4, 2011 07:57AM)
A pretty sweeping statement Don, how many of the sixty million of us have you actually met?

Leslie.
Message: Posted by: DonDriver (Dec 4, 2011 08:32AM)
More than I care to have.
Message: Posted by: Leslie Melville (Dec 4, 2011 05:51PM)
Sounds a bit evasive - let's have some numbers, ten? fifty? a hundred? several thousand? You'll not be coming over any time soon then? Shame.

Leslie.
Message: Posted by: DonDriver (Dec 4, 2011 05:58PM)
Hahaha...don't think so.
Message: Posted by: Leslie Melville (Dec 5, 2011 07:33AM)
Well that really is a pity. You are denying yourself the opportunity of allowing us to show you that we are not all dull. Although I find it hard to accept that you really believe that to be the case. We have all at some time said or written something that we later wish we hadn't (I know that I have).

Sometimes we can say things tongue in cheek, with a knowing look that lets those listening know that we are just joking. It isn't quite same with the written word. Once the words are out there and are being read, in the main by strangers, we are exposed. There are no nuances of meaning, no reassuring smile and no twinkle in the eye to let the reader know that we jest. And so an otherwise leg-pulling remark becomes an offensive insult.

Your remark came following your appraisal of a one and a half minute video clip of a less than inspiring demonstration in a London store. The young man in question may only have begun working there that week, perhaps he may have been inhibited by the fact that he was being filmed. Was he asked if he minded being filmed? Was he informed that the clip was going to be shown on the internet? We and you don't know the circumstances. And yet you happily expose this performance and invite criticism. How dare you!

Have you never given a below par performance? One that you afterwards felt might have gone better? How would you have felt if someone had filmed it and then had it laid bare for the world to see and criticise?

In you questionable wisdom, you have passed judgement on the basis of a ninety seconds film clip and then further compounded the offence by insulting an entire nation!

I have twice given you the opportunity to withdraw or modify you crass remark. On the first occasion you evaded my question completely and further implied a dislike of the English. Is that REALLY your view? Or was it just a light-hearted jibe that looked worse than was intended?

I am still giving you the benefit of the doubt - please let us know.

Leslie.
Message: Posted by: DonDriver (Dec 5, 2011 01:42PM)
Leslie,You are taking this all too serious.I have one of my best friends that lives in Manchester England and one English A.H. that is my worst enemy that lives in Toronto Canada.

Its okay...

Don
Message: Posted by: Leslie Melville (Dec 5, 2011 02:09PM)
Thanks Don for the clarification - that's all I asked for.

However I still think it was rather unkind of you to 'hang out to dry' an unsuspecting store demonstrator and invite all and sundry to pass comment. If he had himself posted it as a Youtube clip and asked for criticism, that would have been another matter, but he didn't. As I suggested earlier, he may have been new in the job and learning - we have all had to do that. Being exposed in the way you did it was in my opinion, somewhat unfair. Perhaps another time you will consider how hurtful something like this can be.

By the way, your 'worst enemy' in Toronto will take great offence at being called English! He is in fact a proud Scotsman!

Leslie.
Message: Posted by: Brent McLeod (Dec 13, 2011 11:47PM)
[quote]
On 2011-12-05 15:09, Leslie Melville wrote:
Thanks Don for the clarification - that's all I asked for.

However I still think it was rather unkind of you to 'hang out to dry' an unsuspecting store demonstrator and invite all and sundry to pass comment. If he had himself posted it as a Youtube clip and asked for criticism, that would have been another matter, but he didn't. As I suggested earlier, he may have been new in the job and learning - we have all had to do that. Being exposed in the way you did it was in my opinion, somewhat unfair. Perhaps another time you will consider how hurtful something like this can be.

By the way, your 'worst enemy' in Toronto will take great offence at being called English! He is in fact a proud Scotsman!

Leslie.
[/quote]

Well Leslie-I lived in the uk for 8 years and I agree with Don on the clip and the English...we were like beacons of light at hndreds of functions etc..
In this tough business of pitching criticism is expected-its how you learn whether you want it or not
speak to our good friend in Toronto.. ML

A crass sense of Humour is essential-your initial comment proved Dons humourous jibe
exactly-English are dull, I met thousands....stiff upper lip,upper class and Biggles to boot..
-you took the bait,hook,line & sinker-Dont worry about it Many of my best friends,family are all english and there dull as ..
Do I remind them-all the time..there dry humour that the english have give it back as well-great stuff..
we are all having fun-this forum is about the hard world of Pitching-
Cheers
Message: Posted by: Leslie Melville (Dec 14, 2011 09:12AM)
Hi Brent,

Here was I thinking that this thread had been exhausted when here we have - a little belatedly - King Don's Knight from the Antipodes riding in with support. I have to say that I am impressed! Eight years in the U.K.! Well then you must indeed have met many thousands. And ALL of them, every one - bar none - even relatives, as dull as.......

However I think that says more about you than them. But hey, it's Christmas so let's put it to bed.

By the way, as a result of a suggestion made by someone else (our good friend in Toronto!) I have discovered that the guy in Hamley's was not actually pitching. This was a filmed promotional video for Hamley's Toy Store. He was just demonstrating for the benefit of the camera. So we were all wrong!

Merry Christmas to all and as Tiny Tim said, "God Bless Us - Every One!"

Leslie
Message: Posted by: DonDriver (Dec 14, 2011 10:59AM)
Thanks Brett...you get it!

Leslie you keep beating a dead horse thus proving just how dull brits are...smile
Don
Message: Posted by: magicbyfish (Jan 18, 2012 05:19PM)
Don I have a lot of respect for you , but you wanna call brits dull , kindly specify, that's like me saying your hawaiian, also the difference between the brit buying psyche and the american one is huge, ask qvc ! and to be honest, you wanna criticise it ,, why not come over and show us dull brits how its done , in a uk carboot sale or market on a wet sunday morning !
Message: Posted by: DonDriver (Jan 18, 2012 06:28PM)
It seems like you brits like to beat it into the ground...chill already.It was a tongue in cheek statement...move on.This subject has gotten quite DULL.

Come up with something new to b*i*t*c*h about...please!
Message: Posted by: dbuckalew (Jan 19, 2012 03:59PM)
Q. How do you know when you have a jet plane full of English people?
A. When they turn off the engine you can still hear the whining
Message: Posted by: Brent McLeod (Feb 3, 2018 12:39AM)
[quote]On Sep 29, 2010, sethb wrote:
[quote]On 2010-09-28,

But if you play it right, you can just roll that big tip over and get two or more pitches out of the same crowd (the ones that could see what you were doing, and then the ones that couldn't). So don't leave just yet folks, we're going to do it all over again for those of you that missed the beginning or couldn't get a good look at what we're doing up here! Stick around and watch the Magic Cards, ladies and gentlemen, it's amazing yet so easy to do once you know the sneaky secret, and the cards do all the work for you . . . . SETH [/quote]

Ive just reread this last paragraph I missed from a few yrs back and consider that such brilliant advice and at a pitch can double the sales...
can vouch for that so much..thanks again
Message: Posted by: LeoH (Feb 3, 2018 01:05PM)
This "tip" about bringing up the spectators from the back of your last demonstration to become the front row of your next is pure gold! Thanks Seth!

Thanks Brent for resurrection of this thread. I would have missed this advice if you didn't.