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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The little darlings » » Kid Show Grab Bags (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

SethL52
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Arab, Alabama
56 Posts

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Hi, I was wondering what most of you do. Do you make the grab bags yourself? Do you order them? If you do order them, where from do you get them? And also, do you charge more to give out grab bags? What other items do you normally give out? Do you think it helps sell you more by always giving the kids something?

Thanks,
Seth Smile
Cheshire Cat
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Wilmslow, UK
941 Posts

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Interesting to hear our 'party bags' or 'loot bags' are 'grab bags' in Alabama. The way kids take them probably more appropriately named! Also our 'bouncy castles' are 'jumpers' in the States.

It is a good way to advertise, Seth, for as long as you need it. Entertainers around me who do it claim to absorb the bags in their fees - by mysteriously are dearer than us! They have bags printed with their details on and usually buy a few things wholesale and maybe include some other advertising line in the bag. We never did bags, but did supply invitations in a party pack by post when we confirmed the job (with our details on). As parents send invites out, sometimes weeks in advance, I think you'd find invitations not only cheaper but longer life. Smile
Andy Wonder
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Auckland, New Zealand
744 Posts

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I have just started offering bags here. I call them Goody Bags here in New Zealand. I include a small pack of wheat chips (crisps in the UK), a rocket balloon, lollipop, white rabbit brand candy (available from your local Chinese supermarket), fortune telling fish, a couple of Qualtex animal balloons with instructions on twisting a dog, a round smile face regular balloon, some magic collectors trading cards (my business cards), a cut out floating butterfly illusion (the one where you stick coins on the back, discussed elsewhere in this forum), an A4 printout of instructions on simple fun tricks you can do at home and a promotional fridge magnet.

I charge NZ $2.50 for them, which is only really enough to cover my costs & time in putting them together. I get a little bit of extra money from them, but the main purpose was to get my fridge magnets and promotional stuff out there.

Ace, I like the idea of just doing the invitations. I had long thought about adding a generic birthday invitation to my web site for clients to print out. I have noticed in the past some clients had actually scanned my business card and put that on their invitations. I even went to a party recently where they had my caricature reproduced on the birthday cake.

What do your invitations look like? Colour? B&W? I might start sending out invitations myself. I have a laser printer at home now so I could just laser print them on some colour card. What else do you put in your party pack? Perhaps name tags and a planning guide for Mum & Dad. Actually sending out those invitations could go a long way to building up some expectations in the birthday child. Plus if they have sent out my own printed invitations with my caricature on them they are hardly going to cancel their booking in favour of the zoo! Think how disappointed their guests would all be after expecting Andy Walker’s magic party show.
Andy Wonder, Auckland, New Zealand
Steven Steele
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Chief of Staff
Hesperia, California USA
1904 Posts

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I do the "Goody Bags" thing. I know a lot of magicians just swear buy them, but here in southern Cal the jury is out. I have tried every "gimmick" out there and after over 1,000 bags produced this past year, only 3 responses to the mail in Free Magic Trick to get names. However, the business continues to grow just by word of mouth. That is the best advertisement I can get.

I used to charge extra...give 10 charge extra...it wasn't worth the paperwork. Now I just give whatever they need. It never exceeds 20 except a few times a year. The bags themselves may be a selling point, but I'm not sure. It's a pain assembling these things week after week. I may discontinue them. Will wait and see.

Steven
kenscott
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Goodie bags, rabbit hat pinatas, etc. Upselling, I call them. Looking at last years numbers, 2002, I did about $19,000.00 just in upsells such as the bags and pinatas. I have several packages ,and in the middle package, which is the deluxe, I give them 8 bags for FREE. If they need more they are only $3.00 per bag. My cost in the bags are about $1.10 per bag. That includes paying my mom, who is retired, to make the bags for me.

The rabbit hat pinata is one that the kids DO NOT hit. It is a pull string method where the kids pull the stings and one of them opens the pinata. I sell about 4 out of every 5 shows.

I am a stong believer in upselling. It is where you can make a lot of money and by having this available you look very professional and helpful. In the states there are more and more moms working today and the less they have to do the better they like it.

Ken Scott
Emazdad
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Plymouth UK
1954 Posts

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I don't give out party bags. I just make sure every kid at the party gets a balloon model and a colouring picture with my details on it.
Yours Funfully
Clive "Emazdad" Hemsley
www.emazdad.com

"Magic is a secret, without the secret there is no magic"

Remember there are only 3 types of people in the world, those that can count and those that can't.
keeblem
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Essex, UK
1166 Posts

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Hi Andy,

Your goody bags sound really good! Like you say, you can't make an awful lot of money out of them with all those bits you're putting in them!

Interesting you include a couple 260s. For some time now I have been thinking about making up a little modeling balloon pack with some intructions and one of those small "squeezy" type pumps. The problem is, I don't know where I can get hold of them and buy them in bulk. I really struggle blowing up 260s (I always use a pump. The only downside to this is that I haven't come up with a good way of making a spiral. Any tips?) so I'm quite sure the children won't manage!
Mark
Emazdad
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Plymouth UK
1954 Posts

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To make the spiral, inflate the balloon then let it down. Wrap it loosely around two fingers then re-inflate it, holding it on your fingers. It takes a little practice, but you end up with a spiral. With one finger you get more turns but it's harder to blow. Someone with iron lungs will be able to do it without first inflating it, but I find that gives me too much of a headache.
Yours Funfully
Clive "Emazdad" Hemsley
www.emazdad.com

"Magic is a secret, without the secret there is no magic"

Remember there are only 3 types of people in the world, those that can count and those that can't.
Andy Wonder
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Auckland, New Zealand
744 Posts

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keeblem
I know those hand squeezy pumps you mean. They are made in Taiwan with the brand name Rabbit. Your best bet is to look for a local wholesaler that sells a range of novelty items out of Taiwan. I have made up a balloon twisting kit for sale. I have it listed on my web site. http://shop.walkermagic.com
Andy Wonder, Auckland, New Zealand
SethL52
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Arab, Alabama
56 Posts

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Where do you all buy your actual bags to make the "loot" bags?
kenscott
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I buy from http://www.funexpress.com I buy them in cases.

ken
Andy Wonder
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Auckland, New Zealand
744 Posts

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I would like to add 3/4" Bouncing Balls to my Goody Bags. Do you think they might be a choking hazard?
Andy Wonder, Auckland, New Zealand
Emazdad
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Plymouth UK
1954 Posts

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I use them as prizes. They're OK for older kids, but I'd take care with the young ones if I were you.
Yours Funfully
Clive "Emazdad" Hemsley
www.emazdad.com

"Magic is a secret, without the secret there is no magic"

Remember there are only 3 types of people in the world, those that can count and those that can't.
Steven Steele
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Chief of Staff
Hesperia, California USA
1904 Posts

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I warn all parents that the bags are not intented for children under 3. As I very rarely do shows for birthday children under that age, it's never been a problem.

The parents have always been very understanding and cooperative.

Steven
Dennis Michael
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Southern, NJ
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Ken,

Your article in Funny Paper Magazine was exceptionally good and worth the price of the magazine. Each month your articles are a valuable assest to all kid performers.

To add to the goodie bags for the kids, how about a free inexpensive goodie bag to the moms? After you read the list, can you hear the moms going "Awwwwwwwww"?

A Bag Full of Life's Little Essentials

A Goodie Bag for Adults at the Birthday Party

In a zip lock bag, place the below item and a paper explaining the meaning of the items. This little inexpensive gesture will win the hearts of the moms and label you a winner. You might just get a couple of extra parties out of this gift giving idea.

  • Elastic: To remind you to be flexible in all areas of life and you will bounce back!
  • Tissue: To remind you to dry someone's tears, to look for those "unspoken tears", and that it is OKAY to cry!
  • Button: To remind you to "button your lips" and LISTEN!
  • Toothpick: To help you pick out the good qualities in everyone, including yourself!
  • Bandaid: To remind you it is never too late to heal hurt feelings— in you, your family, your friends, or your co-workers!
  • Candy Kisses: To remind you that EVERYONE needs to give and receive LOVE!
  • Gold Thread: To remind you that FRIENDSHIP and COMPASSION are the threads that hold humanity together!
  • Eraser: To remind you that we all make mistakes and deserve to be forgiven!
  • Feather: To remind you to TICKLE YOUR FUNNY BONE and laugh— don't take life or yourself too seriously!
  • Mint: To let you know that you are "Worth a Mint"— to me, your family, your friends, and your co-workers!
  • Paper Clip: To remind you when the going gets tough, there is always a helping hand to "keep things together". You just have to ask!
  • Cotton Ball: To help cushion and soften the hard times!
  • Candle: To help brighten your day!
  • Penny: Sorry you will never be completely broke!
  • Marble: For those days when you're sure you've lost all of yours!


A Marketing Idea I got from Funny Paper Magazine.
Dennis Michael
Frank Tougas
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Minneapolis, MN
1712 Posts

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I make my own grab bags using the common zip lock style bag and items I purchase from Sally Distributors. Actually my wife makes them up for me, bless her heart, and she makes CERTAIN every bag is identical for a particular show.

I include my business reply card for the "Magic Club" which gets them some upgraded items in the mail along with enhancing my prospect/mailing list.

Believe it or not, I present the first bag to the birthday child as part of the show. By taking each item out and demonstrating it, this actually adds to the show time. I do gags and bits while showing it. It ends up making my core show 60 minutes and is sold and purchased as my preimum package. Of course it isn't the total of the extra time but it is a good ten minutes of it.

I also use it as reinforcement for proper behavior as I tell them at the beginning of the show there are goodies for all who behave.
Frank Tougas The Twin Cities Most "Kid Experienced" Children's Performer :"Creating Positive Memories...One Smile at a Time"
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