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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The January 2012 entrée: David Kaye » » Promotional/take home items » » TOPIC IS LOCKED (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

randyburtis
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Can you share with us what has worked for you for promotional items or items that you get into the hands of people(whether kid or parent) that has proven for you to be effective in it promoting you...
Randy Burtis
Calgary's Kid Show Magician
www.calgarymagician.com
www.Facebook.com/calgarymagician
David Kaye
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Sure,

FIrst some rules: Every kid must go home with your name and web site. don't be ashamed. That is how you become busy and successful. Whatever it is that goes home can cost under a dollar. But whatever it costs, it is worth it in new business.

THe best thing for kids to go home with is something that a) will stay in their room or home for a long time, and b) is fun to play with. The first premium I gave to the kids was a 12" peanut shaped balloon with cardboard feet. The balloon had my picture on it. I taught the kids how to make it do a trick. When the parents returned, all the kids were showing their moms the new trick they can do. This balloon stayed on kids shelves for months. (business card staple to the feet)

Now I give my Jumbo Inflatable Wand (which I sell on my site, customized with your logo and web site). Every kid gets one. This is even better. It is made out of plastic something. But not latex, so it doesn't pop or lose air like latex does. THese things stay in the kids rooms for years! It costs about 40 - 75 cents each, depending on quantity. Every kid goes home with a toy I taught them how to play with, and it has my info on it.

Not a fan of the dollar bill. Kids under 6 cant read, and if they could they cant really do the tricks listed. Coloring sheet is nice. Give them the coloring sheet with your characters picture. Tell them to take it home, color it in, and send you a photo thru email. IF they do that they get something special. Whatever it is. The paper costs you 10 cents, so there is room to send them something reasonable as a reward. Tell them they must hang the picture on the refrigerator.

Hope that gives you good ideas.
David Kaye / Silly Billy
www.sillymagic.com
Donald Dunphy
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David -

Do you give away Jumbo Inflatable Wands to all of the kids at larger events, or just at birthday parties where there are less kids (so the overall expense is less)?

- Donald
Donald Dunphy is a Victoria Magician, British Columbia, Canada.
Powermagic
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With your wands, do you adjust your show rate to cover it? It will cost on average $10 in give aways per show and I seem stuck in pricing myself to be equal or just below my competiton in "these times" or I do nt get the work. so sometimes it is hard to part with even $10 even though the wands are great and I had used them when they first came out. Would you sell them as a premium since they play large or is it best to give them away.
So do you feel if you do 5 shows, hand out 100 wands at say .5 per wand, that is $50 on top of your other expenses. If you only get 1 party booked at $185, is it worth it to give these great wands away? While it seems it has paid, I am wondering if the cost to get that show really paid. What do you think? That means that show you are working for $135 minus other costs like travel. Now you are Silly Billy, I am guessing you have not accept $185 for an hour since that article in the New Yorker came out.
I would think at $400-500 you might have a different feeling on tha $50 investment, even if you only get 1 show. Smile So how does a magician who has to travel in the city on trains or cabs , with min props, sell a show for that much? How do you get the client past that more props is not needed for that kind of rate?

BTW do you inflate all the wands when you hand the out? Are they done before you get to the show, at the show before, or part of the show. (ie spend the last 12 mintues blowing up wands instead of doing balloon sculptures?
Thanks for the input
David Kaye
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Donald,
I give the wands away at small parties. At large events if people pay a ticket price I will sell them. (a theater) If they are seeing a show that someone else pays for (corporate gig), I give them out for free.

Power,
Re: the cost of the wands. We are talking about the wand I created called Jumbo Inflatable Wand. I often suggest to magicians that they sell the wands to the mom as an alternative to party bags. It would go something like this. "During the show I give a giant magic wand to the birthday child. The other kids see it and often want one. So if you want, I can sell you the wands for $2.00 each, and it is a nice alternative to giving the kids bags of toys they don't want."

I understand about these times and you have to keep your price competitive. But if you don't take advantage of the marketing opportunity at the booked gigs, you are throwing away future gigs. Always give the kids something with your name on it.

The $50 bucks is amortized over many shows. The actual cost at one show is just the price per kid there. But you must give something. don't be cheap about getting more bookings. (Yes, the $ value I give away is not so high compared to a high price for my show.)

So how does a magician who has to travel in the city on trains or cabs , with min props, sell a show for that much? How do you get the client past that more props is not needed for that kind of rate?
The answer is you must have a great show. The parents arent buying a lot of props, big set up. The kids and parents love my show. Killer show is always the answer to marketing problems and pricing problems.

How do you get the client past that more props is not needed for that kind of rate?
This is in your mind, not theirs. I have never heard this complaint. 95% of my bookings are from word of mouth. That means the kids want me and they were able to find my contact info. That could be from a give away or the internet.

Blowing up wands - I usually blow them up at the end of the show. Sometimes I blow them up first if we are waiting for more kids to arrive. Sometimes I blow them up while the kids are eating cake after my show ends.
David Kaye / Silly Billy
www.sillymagic.com
Powermagic
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Thanks for input.

Maybe I did not try your wands long enough but after the first batch did nto produce a single showI moved on. I also tried those appearing wands that rolled up and currently hand out a magic card with contact info attached to a platic magic trick. None of these seem to be the trigger to a sale on their own. That is, if it seemed that spending more or less, trying these things are not really paying for themselves so recently opted for what was less expensive.

I am lookng at it as a required evil. Like business cards. You seem to need one to be taken as legit by most but in 25 years of pinning them on boards, handing them out at every show, putting them in party bags, I get maybe 1% or less business from a card. I also give magic wand certificates that have my name, address phone number.
I just do not see these extras doing the job so I am not sure where to go.
duanebarry
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Quote:
On 2012-01-16 20:52, Powermagic wrote:
Maybe I did not try your wands long enough but after the first batch did nto produce a single show I moved on.


If I've been reading David's advice correctly, the wands themselves aren't supposed to produce shows.

You having a Great Show makes your audience want to book you for their own party. The wands just let the audience that saw your Great Show know how to contact you.
Donald Dunphy
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Quote:
On 2012-01-17 11:53, duanebarry wrote:
If I've been reading David's advice correctly, the wands themselves aren't supposed to produce shows.

You having a Great Show makes your audience want to book you for their own party. The wands just let the audience that saw your Great Show know how to contact you.


Ding Ding Ding! Give that man a prize!

- Donald
Donald Dunphy is a Victoria Magician, British Columbia, Canada.
David Kaye
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You having a Great Show makes your audience want to book you for their own party. The wands just let the audience that saw your Great Show know how to contact you.


Yes. Excellent. There is another reason. For all you Marketing Boot Camp-types, The premium keeps you "front of mind" in the client. (Or specifically, the child) If you give them something that goes in the garbage then there is no reminder of you for the kids. If you give them something that stays around then: the kid pays with it, the mom cleans it up and puts it away, a friend comes over to play and is introduced to said premium. In all these moments your name and show drop into their minds. so, a toy they play with, something that goes on the fridge (color in sheet), hangs on the wall (whatever...) is all good. When I go to the kids homes for their birthday party, they drag me to their rooms to show me the picture of Silly Billy they colored in hanging on their wall. They are so proud. I take a photo of it and the kid. And I have a collection of these photos. Tons of kids standing next to the picture of Silly Billy they colored in.

I get asked often, "do you get any business from X?" (could be premiums, free shows, street performing, benefits, ...) The answer is it all mixes together to create the marketing strategy. You are hitting the clients on many fronts in combination. McDonalds doesn't get people to eat there because they give away Free sodas. They get customers through a combination of free sodas, TV commercials, billboards, haveing a playground in the restaurant. It all contributes.
David Kaye / Silly Billy
www.sillymagic.com
Powermagic
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Mcdondals gets people to eat there by hooking them on highly addictive fat. I am still confused on why it is "bad" to feature props in a kids show but OK to add in promotional items which can be viewed as a prop as well? Heck, it is a kids show, the one place props should not be down graded. There is a reason kids like TOYS over
books.
Donald Dunphy
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Quote:
On 2012-01-17 20:30, David Kaye wrote:
I get asked often, "do you get any business from X?" (could be premiums, free shows, street performing, benefits, ...) The answer is it all mixes together to create the marketing strategy. You are hitting the clients on many fronts in combination. McDonalds doesn't get people to eat there because they give away Free sodas. They get customers through a combination of free sodas, TV commercials, billboards, haveing a playground in the restaurant. It all contributes.


I've heard this marketing concept referred to as "synergy". The idea that the most effective marketing is a result of many (effective) little things working together.

- Donald
Donald Dunphy is a Victoria Magician, British Columbia, Canada.
David Kaye
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Quote:
On 2012-01-19 13:30, Powermagic wrote:
Mcdondals gets people to eat there by hooking them on highly addictive fat. I am still confused on why it is "bad" to feature props in a kids show but OK to add in promotional items which can be viewed as a prop as well? Heck, it is a kids show, the one place props should not be down graded. There is a reason kids like TOYS over
books.


I don't see where that was said. If I said it, then I take it back. that is not a true statement. There is nothing "Bad" about props. I use a lot of props which have bright colorful art on them. I think kids like that. The premium give-aways serve a different purpose.
David Kaye / Silly Billy
www.sillymagic.com
TonyB2009
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Quote:
On 2012-01-19 13:30, Powermagic wrote:
There is a reason kids like TOYS over books.

Says who? Plenty of kids like books over toys. I was one of them. One of my kids is as well.

I could equally counter that kids like TV over toys. Again, it is true in some cases (which shoots your props argument in the foot) but not true in other cases. We are not all the same.
Powermagic
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No I would say presnt a 2D look over a 3D world and they will gravitate to the 3D. Sure we are not all the same. Take is a majority comment,

Go to any day care. While you see books, and kids to like being read to, a day care without toys will not go far.

My point is that this is the one place we should not be faulted for showing off the weird and wonderful magical toys. FOr some reason magicians love to buy such things but then are fautlted if they use them.
Powermagic
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David there are many magicians on the Café that like to say that "a show is about you, the performer". They claim it does not matter what props you use and that you should not rely on fancy back drops, pretty props or should you have to do allot big tricks.
While I understand the concept of not relying on the tricks to sell the show, I do feel a fun show full of props is fun and maybe the U.S.P one has if say we are not willing to do a chair suspension or bunny to compete with others.



Quote:
On 2012-01-19 15:06, David Kaye wrote:


I don't see where that was said. If I said it, then I take it back. that is not a true statement. There is nothing "Bad" about props. I use a lot of props which have bright colorful art on them. I think kids like that. The premium give-aways serve a different purpose.
Futureal
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Quote:
On 2012-01-19 13:30, Powermagic wrote:
Mcdondals gets people to eat there by hooking them on highly addictive fat. I am still confused on why it is "bad" to feature props in a kids show but OK to add in promotional items which can be viewed as a prop as well? Heck, it is a kids show, the one place props should not be down graded. There is a reason kids like TOYS over books.


Have you been reading the same thread as the rest of us?
David Kaye
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I will try to answer this.

First - The best, most unique part of the show should be YOU. Yes, it IS about you. Like going to see stand up comedy and you don't remember any of the jokes but you remember which guy was the funniest. You want the audience to see your show and say I loved that magician. NOT to say, "I loved that bunny production."

Some laymen think magicians are lousy entertainment. They see magicians who have many props on stage but are boring entertainers. If you RELY on the tricks and props, without presenting your character, then that is less interesting.

So, lets say this: The audience should remember YOU not your props. Maybe that is a better way to say it.

Second, having said that, it does not mean that having props, owning and displaying things you bought, is a bad thing. It just should not be the only thing.

I agree that kids should see a beautiful performing space with colorful props. I think that is exciting. Some people pull one trick at a time out of their table, perform it, and put it back. Some people display everything and use one prop at a time. I am in the latter category. So I do believe in a colorful, prop filled performing space.

But when the kids ask for Silly Billy they are asking for ME, not my chair suspension.

A prop filled colorful stage can be a USP. But privately the thing that is going to sell more shows is YOU.
David Kaye / Silly Billy
www.sillymagic.com
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