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Paddy
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Inner circle
Milford OH
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I still don't like the title after thinking of 2 other ones but here goes.

I have learned to join several groups for networking. These are business groups like the JayCees (I am too old for them but something similar) that have entrepeneurs like us with small businesses. They usually have a weekly or monthly breakfast meeting with a round of introductions to begin.

During the introductions I give a 15 to 30 second ad about me to the group, usually something like: "Good morning, my name is Peter Lansing and if you do trade or consumer product shows and want to get crowds with qualified leads, call me. Again my name is Peter Lansing at Scho-Lan Entertainment." Now a sales trainer told me this morning that during the introduction I should perform a quick magic effect like the coin disappearance or a quick silk routine with a napkin or even a silk from my pocket. I will be doing that tomorrow.

I have gotten 2 jobs from this technique from just one group I belong too in the last 4 meetings I attended.

Also, I get to the meetings early enough to walk around and put a busines card on EVERY PLACE SETTING. No one has ever complained and a number of people have talked to me after the meetings about my business. Everybody takes the card with them.

I have even handed out my cards at religious services, (not on the Sabbath but weekday services) and other gatherings.

This is a starter. Lets get the ideas rolling so we can all do better matketing and make more money!

Peter
Non Impediti Ratione Cogitationis

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magic4u02
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Peter:

Giving out your card is nice but that is a passive form of marketing. You also want to try and make sure you turn it around and also do active style marketing.

Active marketing means you are always incharge of the sales procedure every step of the way. For example: an ad in a magazine is passive because you are dependent on the person contacting you. You have no control over it.

However, if your at a meeting and your talking with someone, make sure to get THEIR business card or e-mail as well. Why? Because this then turns a passive marketing into active.

You now are in control of the marketing you will and can do for the suspect or prospect. When you get home you can send out a simple thank you e-mail to thr person and give them a bit of a call to action for more information. This puts you in control.

See what I mean? If it is not clear, I can certainly elaborate on this approach a bit better. Please just let me know.

Kyle
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Paddy
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Milford OH
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GREAT idea Kyle. I always do get their card when I give mine out but have not been using them as I should, now that you mention it.

Thanks for the ideas.

Peter
Non Impediti Ratione Cogitationis

I reject your reality & substitute my own

http://www.Scho-Lan.com
magic4u02
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You're most welcome. Yeah, gathering their information allows you to be in control of the marketing efforts. It allows you to be active in the sales process by contacting them as a follow up to your initial meeting.

When you get home, send them a thank you e-mail. This is a great way to 1) look professional in their eyes and 2) keeps your name fresh in their minds. Give them a reason to contact you back and you will be ahead of the game.

Kyle
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Daryl -the other brother
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Boy am I glad I found this post! I'm 48 (49 on Halloween) I am planning early retirement at 50 (have to, my plant is closing) The plan is full-time magic. One of my best friends is very successful in real estate, he attributes this to good marketing. We are taking some of his ideas and incorporating them into my business. heres some of our ideas, tell me what you think.

I have a great show for wedding receptions so I decided to target this market first. My web-site is devoted to this venue. Within a few days I will start sending out feelers to reception halls & caterers (ala David Dee)and follow up on any responses with a detailed sales letter.

At the show I have everyone sign a card for the bride & groom, I take advantage of this and leave a notebook also. This is my mailing list, anyone who signs it gets my newsletter filled with discounts & coupons for 10% off my shows. I hand out fortune telling fish to the kids with extras for the parents (these contain my business card)and I do a spell-bound that turns a silver dollar into one of my wooden nickels. After the show I send a thank you with a performance evaluation sheet and tell them if you liked the show, tell your friends.
magic4u02
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Daryl,

I am also glad you found this post. I would love to help you out in any way that I can. I am very much into marketing my magic and have been studying it long and hard for the past 3 years now.

The first thing you must have is a good product. This means having a good quality show that is right for the market. Keep in mind that having a great show does nothing if it is not market-appropriate. Make sure your show is tailored to the market(s) your trying to reach.

Great idea with starting with ONE target market and sticking with it through out your markewting campaign process. The mistake too many people make is that they try to tackle every single market at the same time. This becomes too overwhelming and you do not get to focus and channel your energies to where they need to belong.

The website is great to have but make sure you get people to go to the website. You can do this with a "call to action" on some of your materials that perhapos gives them a discount if they book via your e-mail or if they mention something at your site. It could also be a free report at your wbsite that explains how they can have the best wedding possible. They get this by going to your site. This directs them to go to your site and read more about you.

Start with a master list of the wedding venue places, halls, caterers etc. This list can get you started with them by doing a small cold call that does not SELL to them but gets you contact information for where to send out information for them to consider.

Now because many of these places are NOT the client who would really book you, you may have to play it as more of a networking type or a referral type of a deal. In this sense your working with them to get them to pass on your information to their clients. In return for this, you can 1) give them a comission or a referral money for their referral to you and 2) you can advertise their information in your materials.

The thank you kit and evaluation form is critical and I use this a lot. It works wonders and makes you look great in the eyes of the client. It also gives you a chance to get referral letters and quotes you can use.

You certainly seem to be headed down the right path with this. Please let us know how your doing.

If you think of ever getting into the festival market, let me know. That is my marketing specialty and I would be happy to help you out with this.

Kyle
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MagicalPirate
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Since your market is weddings and your are in an area like Chicago you should have more than one of those wedding marketing shows in your area. You should be at everyone of these that you can find. Marketing at one of those trade shows aimed at the brides will put you in front of the person making the decision to hire you. I would use the contacts that you will be making with the caterers and such to find out when these shows take place and who to contact to get into these shows.

Now is the time to find out when they are and to book your space. Winter is coming soon and that is usually when they are held for the June buying season. I would also suggest that you develop another show for a market that would even out the lopsidedness of the wedding market. While it is true that weddings take place year round early summer is the really big (ie June) time for them.

Martin Smile
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magic4u02
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Actually it may come asa surprise that the number one wedding month is now October. But having another market for the off months would be a smart investment of time.

Kyle
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Daryl -the other brother
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Kyle & Martin,
Thanks for the great advice. As usual, the information you offer is priceless. As I mentioned in my earlier post, weddings are where I will target my active marketing. Working these receptions should introduce me to contacts for other types of work such as adult & childrens birthdays. This type of show will also be promoted in my newsletter.

Once I go full-time, I plan on adding restaurant work during the week to balance things out. At present I can't accept that type of work because my "real" job involves rotating shifts & rotating days off.

Kyle thank you so much for your generous offer to help me along with this. I have loved magic since I was a child but my late father always said "magic is fine for a hobby but you will never make a living at it". Since that is now exactly what I am planning on doing, I want to do it right. Insight from pros such as your-self will be a valuable asset.

Martin, I agree about the trade shows. This is something I am also looking into. I realize living in Chicago should give me access to many doors of opportunity. All I have to do is find them & knock. Smile

Again, thanks for your interest, I'll keep you posted.
magic4u02
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I think you have the right idea and approach. Let me know what your first order or plan of attack is and we can help you get ready for it. For me, this time of year is when I start acquiring and fixing my festival list. I then start to make my cold calls in late December and do my mailings in January. This will of course vary pending your market.

Kyle
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MagicalPirate
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I'm glad to see I'm not the only one messed up by an uninformed father. It put me well behind the curve and I'm just now getting back into performing when I could have been way ahead. Well no looking back. Just looking forward.

Martin Smile
Martin Blakley, CSH, DASH, CMSA
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Copyright to my own words retained 100%.
magic4u02
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*I was always fortunate to have parents who backed me up in anything I decided to do. I guess that my dad, knowing I wanted and had to be an artist and graphic designer, knew that doing magic wasn't much different. If I had a passion for it, and gave it my all, I could accomplish most anything.

Kyle
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Daryl -the other brother
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OK here we go. I'm attacking this from 2 directions. The first is direct mailers to people on my mailing list. As I mentioned above, about a month ago I came up with the idea of starting a mailing list. I have done 2 shows since then and so far have 34 addresses from people wanting more information. I am in the process of writing my first newsletter. It will be 3 seperate sheets.
The cover sheet will thank them for joining my "inner circle" and inform them of my different family shows IE: Adult/Children Birthdays, Dinner Parties ect. It also has a coupon for 10% off of any of my shows.
The second sheet will have my A MAGICAL WEDDING letterhead and will talk about my special wedding entertainment.
The 3rd sheet is a special halloween flyer advertising 2 halloween shows- Trick AND Treat Kid Show & A Boo-tiful Evening, strolling magic for costume parties.
Also in the envelope will be 2 postcards for referrals. All they do is fill in the info, stamp it & put it in the mail. I offer a gratuity finder's fee for any shows from a referral.

I have sent thank you & evaluation sheets to both parties. I already got them both back...straight A's!!Their comments will also be in my newsletter.

The other plan is to set-up working relationships with halls & caterer's ect. I'm still on the starting block on this one. The problem is I have done a lot of work with very affluent clients. My wife is involved with a major hospital and I have done a lot of private parties for doctors. My style fits in very well in this social setting and it is the one I would like to target, so researching the proper halls & contacts has been slow. Also, as Martin suggested, I am looking into wedding trade shows. Lots to do but I'am shooting for Jan. 2006 so I'am on track with my plan. Well enough for now. Sorry about the looong post.
MarkTripp
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Well, back in the day, when I was using the Flora pricing...

If I was doing a big show, I took a calander along with me, new, big one.

I told everyone as a special treat, I was going to give away a FREE magic show, to someone for their birthday.

I had people write their name and phone number down on their birthdate, then had the host close their eyes and flip and pick a date.

I then did that show for free...

...now knowing EXACTLY when about 100 other birthday's were, and the name and phone number of the people!

This is great for puiblic shows, I have used it and variations at trade shows like wedding planning, etc.

Yes, you give away a free show. But the leads you get are qualified and stronger than any you pay for, and cheaper too!
magic4u02
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A mailing list is great but I would make sure that you categorize your mailing list. Theere are different types of people to mail to and each type gets handled a bit differently.

For example, your mailing to a suspect (someone who does not know you) will be vastly different then a mailing to a Prospect (someone who has shwon interest in your services but has not committed. There also would be a difference in what you mail out to a Customer (someone who has used your sewrvices before).

In my ACT dadatbase, I make sure to distinguish between these various types. I then create a field and a pull down menu so I can easily select them. Thsi way I can do an instant search and do a mail merge JUST to the group I want to direct a mailing to. It works out much better and helps me stay focused on my target market.

Newsletters are a great way to keep your name out there and to get people to know you are atill doing your thing. It is a great way to not always hit them over the head trying to sell to them.

Another great method is the use of a personalized INVITE that invites your prospects to come see one of your public performances. This makes them feel special and gives them a way to see you perform live without feeling intimidated about it. It also shows you are working a lot.

The coupon is a good idea. Any type of marketing you can do that has a "call to action" on it is great. A Call To Action is anything that you use or say that gives the person a reason to want to contact you.

Daryl,
I would be careful combining two different markets into your one mailing. This may confuse people as opposed to landing you gigs. A more focused single market mailing seems to work better when directed at people who will use your services for that market. Just my opinion. The best way is to test it out and track the results.

I also use a Referral Rewards System. Just keep in mind that you should reward them even for a referral that does NOT land in a paid gig. This encourages them to keep on referring names your way.

Daryl:
Your on the right track by researching. That is so critical before starting to do any marketing.

You can also get leads and phone numbers in various ways WITHOUT having to offer a free show at all. I have used many methods that have worked out great for me for this purpose and I will share them with anyone if interested.

Kyle
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Daryl -the other brother
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Mark,
Good Idea but if you use these calenders at every show, you would be giving away a show for every one that you do. Financially I'm not in a position to do that right now.
Quote:
On 2004-09-18 09:03, magic4u02 wrote:

For example, your mailing to a suspect (someone who does not know you) will be vastly different then a mailing to a Prospect (someone who has shwon interest in your services but has not committed.

Kyle,
Why would you send a mailing to someone who doesn't know you? Are you talking about intro letters to halls and such?


Quote:
I would be careful combining two different markets into your one mailing. This may confuse people as opposed to landing you gigs. A more focused single market mailing seems to work better when directed at people who will use your services for that market.

My plan is single market mailings to the businesses I want to work with. Since this will primarily be weddings that is the market I will present to them.
For my mailing list, I figured since they have already seen me perform, I would introduce all of the celebrations they may have in which I could be a service.
Quote:
I also use a Referral Rewards System. Just keep in mind that you should reward them even for a referral that does NOT land in a paid gig.

Good Point!!

[quote]You can also get leads and phone numbers in various ways WITHOUT having to offer a free show at all. I have used many methods that have worked out great for me for this purpose and I will share them with anyone if interested.[/unquote]

I'am interested, I'am interested.
Kyle, could you explain a little about what the festival market is?
magic4u02
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Daryl,

I will be happy to try and explain myself a bit more in detail here and answer any questions that you may have. It would be my pleasure to do so.

Why send out to someone that does not know you? Simply to get them to know who I am. It sounds silly but that is the truth. A person will not contact you if they do not know you exist. They will also not use your services if they do not know they are out there to be used.

A Suspect is anyone who YOU feel could benefit from your show but that person or organization does not know who you are just yet.

These Suspects are then found through your research and by compiling a list. This is a list of those people in your intended market eho you feel can benefit from your services but do not know you yet and have had no coorespondence with you.

You send them out your information in the hopes of getting them intersted in you and what you can provide for them. You let them know you are a solutions provider and can solve some of the many problems they are faced with each year.

I hope this makes a bit more sense. Let me know and I will elaborate on this a bit more.

Always reward someone any time they give you a referral name. Do NOT just reward when they end up in a paid gig. Rewarding them all times gets them to be encouraged to do more for you. They will want to refer people your way because they know you appreciate them doing so. It really does work.

In regards to your festival questions, I have a HUGE thread started in the Tricky Business section called "Getting Started in the Festival Market". Your best bet is to start there and read up as it covers so many of the same questions you may be asking yourself right now. Then if you have questions still, send me a PM or post at that thread and I can help you out in more detail. The festival market is my speciality and has been very good for me.

You might also be intersted in knowing that I am currently in the process of writing a book and reference guide all on how to get into the festival market. This will go into a lot of details and talk about everything anyone needs to know about getting into this exciting market. I will keep you and others posted on this project and when it is getting close to being completed. I think it may help out a lot of people.

Methods for acquiring leads and information:

- If wanting to get names for a birthday party. Then one method is to do a Raffle concept. At your show you have a raffle and drawing for a free magic kit or a free set of tricks. The kid writes down their name, address, ADULT"S e-mail address, birthday etc. on the form and then drop it into the box or hat and you wull a winner out at the completion of your performance.

This allows you to get great information without having to give up anything more then a mere simple trick or magic set that may cost you $5 tops.

Just keep in mind that you make sure the kids have parents permission to fill out the form. Parents are protective of their kids these days and getting kids info without permission can be a bad thing. This is why I also ask for the PARENT"S e-mail so I am sending to the parents and not the kids.

- Another way to acquire names without giving up too much is through a coloring contest. You have a coloring flyer that you give out to the children. They have time to color it in and fill in their information at the bottom of it. You then collect them all and slect one as the winner of the contests or you can select multiple winners if you like. You keep the great drawings and all the information that is on them. The kids then get a fortun telling fish or a magicians assistant certificate or a magic wand to take home with them. It is great when you can make them all winners.

There are many more ideas you can use but this gives you a sample of what you can use or try to get information you need without giving away so much. You make everyone happy at the same time as you are getting great marketing information.

Hope this helps.

Kyle
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Daryl -the other brother
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Quote:
On 2004-09-18 11:59, magic4u02 wrote:
A Suspect is anyone who YOU feel could benefit from your show but that person or organization does not know who you are just yet.
You send them out your information in the hopes of getting them intersted in you and what you can provide for them. You let them know you are a solutions provider and can solve some of the many problems they are faced with each year.

This sounds like the intro letter I will be sending to halls & caterers. Do you also send this to the general public? Seems like a large investment in postage for a hit & miss proposition.

I read your post on festivals (very insightful BTW).Sounds like you & your wife found the perfect nitch! Concratgulations! As for me, I have 2 very good children shows (birthday) but my best stuff is my table-hopping/strolling magic and my romance-themed floor show. This allows me to market to: Adult/Child Birthdays, Dinner Banquets,Wedding/Anniversary & Wine-Tastings, that's a lot of markets and they all stay in bounds of what I already do well. Festival magic is a completely different venue and as you stated earlier it's best to narrow your focus to what your most marketable products are.
Keep the great advice coming. As long as your talking, I'll listen.
MarkTripp
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Yes you can get leads all sorts of ways...

...but do they have the name and birthday of the child?

Again, do as you wish, I know what worked well for me in the long run.
Daryl -the other brother
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Mark,
Once again, I like your idea about the calendar and will proably use some form of it in my kid shows. I'll just change the free show to something else, like a free trick or a discount coupon. Thanks for your input.
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