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Topic: Fastest Booking You Ever Landed...
Message: Posted by: ufo (May 14, 2006 06:04PM)
Just for discussion's sake: what was the fastest reallyl good gig you ever booked? Not a phone call coming in that went smoothly, but a gig or venue, etc that you approached with the intent of setting something up. I have to believe there are some great stories out there!
Message: Posted by: magic4u02 (May 14, 2006 06:12PM)
I will get this started by saying the very first year I approached and wanted to land some festivals as a totally new market venture. I knew nothing about the market that much but did my homework, researched it and did a lead generation mailing to about 55 festivals that first year. With in 1 week of the mailing, I had a 25% return rate of people not just calling for info., but people actually calling ready to book. It was astounding, happened so quickly and now many years later we are still running and soing successfully in this market and enjoying every minute of it.

Message: Posted by: Steve Hart (May 14, 2006 08:21PM)
I would have to say the fastest booking I ever got was when my mother told me that I was performing for my brother's Birthday Party.

Since then I would have to say the fastest are when some one runs up to you at the end of the show and says I want you for my next event.

Needless to say if some one sees your show and they really like you, the next time they need a magician they will think of you. The secret is will they be able to contact you when they think of you. Will they remember your name? Where you live? How to reach you?

This is why I used a strategy called "Position Marketing." If you do it correctly people will always think of you first and know how to get a hold of you. It takes a while to establish your positioning but once you do, you don't have to work at getting the bookings, they come to you!

In my opinion my career as a professional magician was a very successful one .
Now after 20 years, I say I am semi-retired . I am only 52 years old.(Now playing with a full deck.)

For the first six years of my career as a full time magician I worked hard learning how to market my self. Once I learned the secret of "Position Marketing" I spent very little time and money in marketing my services.

Fast bookings, the best kind (next to the most enjoyable bookings.)

Steve Hart
Message: Posted by: Brian Lehr (May 14, 2006 10:42PM)
My fastest was when I had a called a daycare last spring. I had just put together a new show that I wanted to market to daycares, and was planning on doing a few complimentary ones to test it out. The first daycare I called was thrilled that a magician was calling her. The only thing she wanted to know was how much the show was, and could I do the show the next week? I gave her a price, she accepted, and I was booked. It was quite a pleasant surprise!

Message: Posted by: nucinud (May 14, 2006 11:19PM)
I was performing at a Birthday Party and at the end of the show,
a women asked me if I was free the following Saturday and
booked me on the spot.

And another time I was table hopping at a baby shower and a guy
asked if I do Communion Parties and booked me right then.
Message: Posted by: Michael Messing (May 15, 2006 05:43AM)
I was performing on a local early morning television program a couple of years ago. I got done with my routine and was off-camera putting away the handful of things I had performed when one of the station employees said I had a phone call.

Fearful that something had gone wrong with a family member, I rushed to the phone only to have a gentleman ask my pricing for a banquet show. He had been watching the TV show and wanted me for his company party. I couldn't believe he was watching at 6:15 a.m.! Booked it on the spot!

Message: Posted by: Donald Dunphy (May 15, 2006 09:58AM)
Do re-bookings count? I get lots of customers that book me on the spot for next year. :)

And I've had a few where the customer tried another entertainer one year, and then called me back right after the event, and booked me, telling me about how they made a mistake in trying someone else (they told me that their event suffered because of a poor choice).

How about this for a re-booking story...

I once did a birthday show, and the customer asked if I could come back tomorrow and perform again. Turned out that the Saturday birthday celebration was for the child and his friends, but the Sunday birthday celebration was for the child, his family and relatives. Originally, they had intended on having me only at the Saturday party.

- Donald
Message: Posted by: ufo (May 15, 2006 11:01AM)
Yeah! that's the stuff! Great stories from all of you. And a business lesson hidden inside every one!
Message: Posted by: rtgreen (May 15, 2006 03:49PM)
I was working a party one time and a guest liked the show. He called a friend who was having a different party, and arranged for me to go to the second party that night! It only happened once and I don't expect it to happen again, but it was a bonus night for me :)

Message: Posted by: todd75 (May 15, 2006 05:22PM)
I once got a call and booked them within a minute. Now that is quick! They wanted no sales pitch, nothing except a price. I went against all traditonal sales and landed the gig.
Message: Posted by: Lee Darrow (May 18, 2006 08:11PM)
I had just finished doing a luncheon sweet-16 party in the north shore suburbs, literally packing up my bag to go when three of the girls came up to me and asked what I was doing that evening.

Somewhat flabbergasted, being in my fifties, I asked why. "We're having a party tonight and wondered if you were free and what your price is," was the reply. So I gave them my price, made sure that there would be adults in attendance (NEVER do a teen party without them!) and got the address.

"Can we pay you now?" they asked. And handed me the CASH.

I don't think I will ever forget that one. And it happened again about three weeks ago!

Lee Darrow, C.H.
Message: Posted by: diamond (May 18, 2006 10:21PM)
I just had an express (re)booking last weekend. I was performing 2 big illusion spots in a variety theatre in a big casino last Saturday. This theatre invites magicians only on Saturdays as an addition to their regular show with singers and dancers. After the show the manager of the place approached me and told me he loved my show very much asked me if I could come back on Sunday and perform again. I gladly accepted. The only thing was that due to the fact that they had a large percentage of returning audience, the manager asked me if I could do 2 different illusion spots on Sunday. I accepted, but here's what was tricky about all this...

Usually at this time of the year I send all my illusions for repainting and redecoration. Fortunatelly, I never send them out all at once, but all my regular short acts are noot complete... For instance, a 5 minute spot is usually consisted of 2 illusions and I have many ready short acts like that (themed and choreorgaphed - many of them with a plot that connects the 2 or 3 illusions performed), but this year it happened for all of these acts 1 illusion participating in each act has been sent for painting... So I had much less than 12 hours to recombine 4-5 illusions into 2 new spots. The casino is in a city which is 2 hours away from the city I live in. The conversation with the manager of the place is going on at around 4 AM (the show ends at 1, we get a dinner after the show, relax and have a shower, dismantle all the illusions and we ride back home). I had to be there again at 6 PM for a rehearsal and the show would begin at 11:30 PM.

With illusions it is always much harder than with smaller props due to the fact that I had to go to my warehouse, chose the illusions to be performed, assemble them at home (sometimes it takes 30-40 minutes to assemble just 1 illusion), check if all parts are there and if all of them are working properly, rearrange and remix the music on my computer, transfer the music onto an MD, burn it on CDs (I always do that just in case), rechoreograph the routines with my assistant, find suitable costume (all of our short illusion spots are themed and each one is performed in a different stle on a different music in different costumes). Now some illusions have special costume requirements and it was really hard (and time consuming) to think which 4-5 illusions I would use as there are problems in recomnbining them (this illusion doesn't go well with that one, or these two illusions go well together, but wait a second for this one my assistant has to wear a long dress and for the second one she has to wear a bikini costume)...

So, we came back home from Saturday's gig at like 6AM on Sunday morning. All the way on the road I switched my brain to turbo mode to recombine the illusions I had at that moment into something that makes sense. We come home, unload the illusions (throw them around actually which is also a problem as I live in a tiny apartment), then I had like 2 hours of sleep. At 8 I went to the warehouse, I chose the illusions to be performed, at around 11 AM the illusions were assembled at my place. Then I had to do the music which lasted until noon and then we had like 3 hours for a rehearsal. Then I dismantled the illusions and packed them for transport. At 4 PM our driver comes to collect us and the illusions and we are there at 6. The illusions are assembled aain and the rehearsal with dancers starts at 7:30. Then we had like 2-3 hours of free time until the show begun.

Fortunately, the casino is near the Danube, so I just rushed out and spent those 2 hours watching the river in the evening to relax a bit. Gallons of coffee and Red Bulls kept us alive and kicking on that day... The show was great - the manager and the audience loved us and we got reinvited to perform there in 2 weeks time, again with new illusion spots. We got home at around 6 AM again. And then I slept for like 15 hours or so.

That was an ultra fast booking for me and I got extremely tired, but I doubled my weekend income!!!!!!!