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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Tricky business » » Two Enquiries - Which would you take? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Special user
Birmingham, UK
585 Posts

Profile of Flec
I work on a first come, first serve basis. If someone wants me and books me (with a deposit) I commit my time to them, and if someone else comes in with another booking, theres nothing I can do. Sometimes I have to bite the bullet if the gig I take is worth x amount, and then an enquiry comes in for mega bucks....its hard, but that's just me.

But what do you do in a scenario when two different clients want you on the same date, and they both inquire on the same date? I always ask for a deposit to secure the booking, what if they both send their deposits at the same time? This hasn't happened yet...and obviously I would take steps to make sure I wasn't put in the sticky situation of having to return a deposit.

However. If two people email me within minutes of each other, both wanting the same date, but in different parts of the country...what would you do? Added to that the complication that both gigs would initially be worth the same money. Is it a case of just taking the gig that's closest? Or maybe go with the customer who has used you before, and more likely to use you again? Or opposite to that, go with the "new" customer who hasn't used you yet?

This hasn't happened to me yet, but I started thinking about it the other day, and wondered what people would do in that situation?
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Inner circle
Los Angeles
2545 Posts

Profile of magicofCurtis
Usually try to work both in the schedule. Go after both until one closes the deal... Smile
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Inner circle
1848 Posts

Profile of RJE
Exactly as Curtis said, try to figure out how to do both.

There are certain times of year where this problem becomes more common such as around Christmas, Spring Break and Halloween. A number of magicians will receive calls from different sources to perform on the same days around these times of year. Of course, it can and does happen any time of year too.

It helps if you try to be flexible, professional and realistic.

Flexible in being able to work a schedule by calling clients to see if there is any possible way to move times or even dates of scheduled shows.

Professional in being honest and up front with the clients. Let them know that you have a show already booked or inquired about on that day that would conflict. Could they work with you to adjust their time or date.

In both of these cases, I have often found clients willing to move their events to get the show.

Finally, be realistic. Perhaps it would be nice to be able to do every show offered, but realistically, you may not be able to do so timewise and geographically.
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Special user
Roseville, California
696 Posts

Profile of misterillusion
I have sometimes been able to change the scheduling of one of the events in order to squeeze both in. That works sometimes. If there is no way to do both, I refer to another magician who I know will provide a good show.
May every day be magic!
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Inner circle
Arlington, Virginia
2432 Posts

Profile of rossmacrae
You don't actually HAVE either, until the deposit arrives. Tell each the truth: first guy with the bucks in my hand gets the gig.
Blair Marshall
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Inner circle
Montreal, Canada
3640 Posts

Profile of Blair Marshall
Just had a call for a Halloween show, I'm already booked (close to a year in advance for the date they wanted), I mentioned I had a special Christmas show, so they booked that instead. I then suggested if after they see that show they may want to consider locking me in for their Halloween event for next year! They thought that was a good idea. This show was from a solid referral, so they did want me. I always try to accomodate, or make suggestions on how they can book my services. I also try to be proctive in my quest for bookings, as in the case above.

Bill Nuvo
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Inner circle
3094 Posts or
2747 Posts

Profile of Bill Nuvo
Also, you can take both bookings if you have another performer you can subcontract out. Of course this depends on certain criteria. My contracts all state that if I can't perform the gig, I will provide another performer of equal or greater value.

Also as already mentioned, suggest other dates or see if times can be separated allowing travel (I once performed in 3 cities 2 hours apart in 1 day once. I often perform in cities 3 hours apart in 1 day.
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Special user
Birmingham, UK
585 Posts

Profile of Flec
Ross, I might not HAVE either gig, but I do have the opportunity to sell myself to two different clients. I do work a first come, first serve....but I could never say to a client "there's another guy on the phone that wants the same date...first one to get me the cheque wins." Not really my style!
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Special user
785 Posts

Profile of ThomasJ
Aside from the money, compare each client along other dimensions.

What are the chances of each becoming a repeat customer as opposed to a one time deal?

What kind of network does each potential client have? Is one more likely to refer you to more people?

Is the client easy to work with? Will performing for one be enjoyable and fun, while performing for the other will actually feel like "work"?

I'm sure you can think of some more. If the e-mails come in at roughly the same time, I don't see any reason why you would need to book the one that came in first. However, if you have a booking and cancel it because a more lucrative one comes along, I think that is wrong. If nothing is booked yet then the first to inquire aspect should not be the deciding factor.

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Special user
963 Posts

Profile of gadfly3d
If I book something on the low end of my pay scale I book it generically and if a gig that is more in what I generally get price wise I have others I can send with confidence

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