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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Tricky business » » Difference between $100 and $1,000 magician. (17 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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saysold1
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Quote:
On Jul 2, 2015, TonyB2009 wrote:
Last summer I had a residency at a resort every week, at a price that I thought was okay (but not great). It was on a quiet evening that I would not normally have been working, and close by, so I took the money the agency offered and did the season.

One night I was cancelled because the resort had a big music act in and felt that they needed a prestigious magic act to go with it. I told the agency I was as good as any they would book, but they went outside the agency and hired the magician direct. He asked for eight times my fee, and finally settled for five times my fee for one evening.

The following week I asked the resort entertainment manager how I compared to the expensive magician. He said that I worked the crowd better, but the other guy had a nicer suit.

"Next time we have a situation like that, we will give you an extra hundred and you can hire a suit," he joked.

So there's your answer; it is the suit.

On a serious note, it is a pile of things that have nothing much to do with the magic. How you look, how you speak, the style of your website, the quality of your promotional materials, the confidence in your voice when you answer the phone. This year, fed up with the recession, I have begun presenting myself properly and asking for bigger fees with complete confidence. And funnily enough I am getting the gigs. Still a long way off a thousand a gig, but the day will come.



It is the entire package: The salesmanship, the presentation and pitch to the booker, the performers record of past shows, the suit (minor), the show itself, and many many other variables.
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Tony Thomas
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I recently hired a performer who charged well North of $1,000 for a church outreach event. We blew it out with 1700 in attendance. It was a great event, great message, ect. I'm a magician that charges $400-$600 per event typically (at least for larger church shows). So, I was very interested to see what separated me (at my level) and this person I hired.

My conclusion. There were a lot of things that separated us...
1- His website (highly professional)
2- The photographs of him on his site were clearly done by a highly professional designer.
3- He has a promotional package, that included art to download, videos to show our congregation, posters, etc. All with a high level of artistic flair.
4- His endorsements on his website weren't just pastors from other churches, they were nationally known personalities, like Dave Ramsey, Max Lacado, and others
5- He had authored his own book, professionally published, surrounding a theme of his stage show - so he clearly had content to communicate.
6- He has performed for some of the largest, most well known churches in the U.S., and received those endorsements
7- He had an elaborate array of videowork. Some of these promoted themes, like a commercial that could run on a TV. These were highly artistic, well produced short films, that were quite impressive to me personally (because I could tell what was required to pull the video together).
8- What wasn't a difference between him and me? The types of magic tricks that he performed. It was a clear reminder that it isn't about the Magic.
9- What he did very well, and what made his show successful and of great quality, was his ability to communicate a cohesive and entertaining message which carried the show.
10- And finally, he had a cool factor about him. I guess you could call it the X Factor. We shouldn't overlook that he was young, good looking, and cool from appearance.

What separates a $100 performer from a $1,000 performer. A lot of things - quality marketing, niche focus, something to say, entertaining stage presence, experience, the X Factor. And maybe a little Magic. Interesting topic.
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Tony Thomas

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Mindpro
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Very well said. It's professionalism. Professionalism is comprised of so many different elements and components, I would say close to twenty five or more things that immediately come to mind. This is what separates so many performers, as many will never realize this or even become aware of it.

Next is understanding the difference between a performer and an entertainer. Again, some never do or will. Then as you say come sthat "X" factor. Thanks for the reminder and great insight.
Ken Northridge
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Excellent post Tony! I love how specific it is.
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TheRealMagicMike
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The word that comes to mind that represents the difference between a $100 magician and a 1K magician (and I've been both... in fact, I've been a $50 magician) is "insight". A client (whether its for a birthday party, company picnic or a trade show) appreciates, respects and values "insight" into their event. By that I mean, connecting with the prospect by giving valuable information about how to make their event better, what people at the event typically like in an entertainer/magician, and how you help meet those needs and wants.

It's part personality, part confidence and a lot of experience (success and failure), to develop real insight into someone's event. A prospect (or anyone for that matter) can sense real knowledge and authority.

I'm a good bit older now, so I don't perform nearly as much... but, I can honestly say my skills were not increasing at the same rate as my fees... and people were extremely happy paying the higher fees. My "magic" wasn't particularly better, but my insight into their event made me genuinely more valuable.
Nem
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While I believe there are limits to what the market will bear in some cases, the corporate market is another ball game. I am not aware of any birthday party magicians charging 1k+ but I could be wrong. They would be very few indeed. Unless you are performing for celebrities. Even then it comes down to marketing and reputation. Not knocking the birthday party magician, they have an endless market and usually steady work. The corporate market is entirely different in approach and fees. Just be sure your marketing and skills are up to it before you go there.
charliecheckers
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Https://magicianbusiness.com/mb-001-much......w-smith/

$1000 Birthday Party Magicians exist. It’s always good to explore what is possible I purchsed this product several years back, not to pursue $1000 Birthday shows, but to explore his mindset.
Nem
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Like I said, I was not aware of any. Certainly not the norm though. What did you think of the product?
thomasR
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I would think birthday party magicians are making north of $500 a show in markets like NYC, Chicago, etc.
Dannydoyle
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What would make you think such a thing?
Danny Doyle
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thomasR
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Just a guess. I think I remember Ken Scott saying he was getting $450 for birthdays in Atlanta area. I figure nyc and Chicago could command a bit more.

I should have been more clear. I don’t think all birthday magicians are, but I would think the Ken Scott’s of those areas could make over $500 a show, especially nyc. Again, just my thoughts. I neither live in those areas nor have a I done a birthday party show in years and years and years.
Dannydoyle
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My guess is that the market is significantly less than that. Remember there is a glut of birthday party magicians out there all trying for the same market. Some may very well be that high, but I have doubts to as if that is the median price.
Danny Doyle
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<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
Ken Northridge
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It is my educated guess that getting $1,000 for a birthday party magic show is extremely rare. However, I know for a fact that some people's budget for their child's party is in the thousands, probably 5,000 or more in some cases. In some cultures 1st birthday's are equivalent to a wedding. And why shouldn't they be? Anyone who has gotten through the first year of raising a child knows it deserves a celebration.
"Love is the real magic." -Doug Henning
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charliecheckers
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Quote:
On Apr 13, 2019, Nem wrote:
Like I said, I was not aware of any. Certainly not the norm though. What did you think of the product?


It has been a while since I read it, but I recall specific insights he shared regarding his take on branding, positioning, and marketing. He shared some things he avoids because they would confuse customers or devalue the perception of his brand. I enjoy learning from those who challenge the status quo in any field. I find it especially interesting in the children’s entertainment industry because I can relate to the material more closely. I purchased this product to gain broad knowledge, not to directly impact my current business. For me, and the reasons why I invested in it, I am glad I purchased it.
Mindpro
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If I remember correctly, the key of his book and approach is basically adapting a different mindset. That most approach kids show bookings from a typical "magician's mindset and mentality." It is this exact thing that is limiting and creates many misperceptions. I remember this as it is what I often speak of in my works as well as here. This combined with NOT operating from the magicians perspective but delving deeper into the most important aspect which is the mindset of the client - what they truly want, need and are expecting, NOT what YOU THINK they want or are expecting.

As I have said here many times, it amazes me how many kids performers truly do not understand the market or the prospects and clients. As many still falsely believe the majority book on price as the prominent factor. He also does not believe this and views this as part of the limiting magician's mindset and mentalities.

If you are looking for magic bullets or secrets that he is doing that you are not, you probably may be disappointed as there are no magic bullets in this book. Just an adapting mindset and approach, and of course once this is firmly in place as a new foundation, adapting your marketing and business efforts to this new position.

I remember many dismissing this believing nothing "new" was offered here, and of course many failed to understand its true message and worth. I am on the road right now or would reference exact parts of it, but this has been the jest of it.
Futureal
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Quote:
On May 21, 2015, Tim Friday wrote:
I remember in his book Jamie D Grant suggests pricing your services at the same amount of the average rent/month in your city. I can't remember all the details or what qualifications he says you should have, I would have to look back at his book but it is an interesting way to think of it and it does take into account the cost of living in your area.


Jamie D Grant isn’t even a professional magician he works on an ambulance!

So many so called pros writing books about how to be professionals etc, it’s really screwing up the market. Almost as bad as magicians lecturing material that only flies at magic lectures. And tricks being sold that appeal to magicians but not laypeople.
WitchDocChris
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Jamie never claims to be a full time professional. His book specifically talks about doing magic on the side for money. And he charges more than many so called full time professionals I've seen.
Christopher
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Dannydoyle
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Yea he is VERY up front about it. Yes he has a different perspective because he has another job. In no way does that make it invalid.
Danny Doyle
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<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
Futureal
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If he's upfront about it then fine.
GlennLawrence
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The only birthday party magician I know of who would absolutely be in or above the $1000 range is Silly Billy (David Kaye) out of NYC. Then again he's most likely the top kids party magician in the country so it wouldn't surprise me.
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