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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Tricky business » » Charging too much or too little? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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magic4u02
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Eternal Order
Philadelphia, PA
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Mandrake:
Well this certainly is a start from which to work from. It appears that you know magic and I assume you have a half way decent kids show set up and ready to book.

With this in mind, I would first try and find out the going rate for shows in your area. It is best to call a magic friend who you can trust and who you can talk to. If not, calling one up from the yellow pages, and being honest about it, is never a bad thing. In most cases it is best to let them know your calling because you do not want to unddersell anyone and that you hope you might be able to network with him/her.

With this in mind. I would take the going price and lower it a bit since you are just starting out. Then as you get established, you can raise the price based on how many shows you are getting.

Hope this is of help.
Kyle Peron

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ed rhodes
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Inner circle
Rhode Island
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Quote:
On 2003-08-17 11:20, magic4u02 wrote:
Mandrake:
Well this certainly is a start from which to work from. It appears that you know magic and I assume you have a half way decent kids show set up and ready to book.

I [had] a decent kids show ready to book. Had a major personal disaster about three years ago and 90% of my stuff is [gone!] Give me time, I'll get the show back up and running.


With this in mind, I would first try and find out the going rate for shows in your area. It is best to call a magic friend who you can trust and who you can talk to. If not, calling one up from the yellow pages, and being honest about it, is never a bad thing. In most cases it is best to let them know your calling because you do not want to unddersell anyone and that you hope you might be able to network with him/her.

I'll keep that in mind. Of course that's not to say I can feel good about charging in their neighborhood when they probably have a lot more experience than I do.

With this in mind. I would take the going price and lower it a bit since you are just starting out. Then as you get established, you can raise the price based on how many shows you are getting.

Hope this is of help.

It does, I still have to go by what my gut tells me is right and I just can't justify $150 for a local party.

"There's no time to lose," I heard her say.
"Catch your dreams before they slip away."
"Dying all the time, lose your dreams and you could lose your mind.
Ain't life unkind?"
magic4u02
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Eternal Order
Philadelphia, PA
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$150.00 is a going rate for a b-day party in my Philadelphia area. But, this really changes form location to location and also on what your presenting to your clients. You certainly do not have to feel that you have to charge the going rate if your just starting out. Down the price a bit and get out there doing shows, As you get more shows and become more relaxed with things, you can raise it over time.
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AragorntheMagician
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Metro-Atlanta
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I once ran into a baker who had a shop next to the Train Station on the line into NYC. He had two (2) Baskets of Muffins on his counter. One basket said, "Muffins = $1.00". The other basket said, "Muffins = $2.50". After several months of seeing people getting the muffins (and most getting the $2.50 ones) I asked him what the difference was between them. He smiled and said, "No difference, some people just like to pay more".
Here in Atlanta where we have a large cross-section of incomes I have started to quote price associated with what subdivision they live in. For someone in Conyers I will quote $100.00. If that person lives in Ansley Park I've quoted $400.00...and gotten it...for the same show....LOL.
You need to know what your competition charges and also know what makes you stand out. The usual 1st question is, "What do you charge?". Ken Scott has a great response..."The show with the White Tigers is $5000.00" and he takes it from there.
Yours,
Aragorn TM
aka: Bob Suhr Smile
aka: I used to be BOB (It's Cellini's fault)
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ed rhodes
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Rhode Island
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[quote]On 2003-08-19 09:57, AragorntheMagician wrote:
I once ran into a baker who had a shop next to the Train Station on the line into NYC. He had two (2) Baskets of Muffins on his counter. One basket said, "Muffins = $1.00". The other basket said, "Muffins = $2.50". After several months of seeing people getting the muffins (and most getting the $2.50 ones) I asked him what the difference was between them. He smiled and said, "No difference, some people just like to pay more".
Here in Atlanta where we have a large cross-section of incomes I have started to quote price associated with what subdivision they live in. For someone in Conyers I will quote $100.00. If that person lives in Ansley Park I've quoted $400.00...and gotten it...for the same show....LOL.

I remember a magician writing in a magazine about doing a children's show. He got hired at his usual rate (I think it was about $250) and found out he was to perform on a private luxury yacht for one of the wealthiest families in the country. He also found out (after asking around) that he was the lowest priced performer on the boat!
"There's no time to lose," I heard her say.
"Catch your dreams before they slip away."
"Dying all the time, lose your dreams and you could lose your mind.
Ain't life unkind?"
Emazdad
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Plymouth UK
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The first questions often, "How Much do you charge" but it's not the first thing I tell them. Before I tell them I go through my whole sales patter and the last thing I say is the cost. When they phone up enquiring about an hours magic show for a birthday party, I tell them all about my 2-hour party package, by the time I get to the price it's already sold.

When it comes to birthday parties I don't charge different rates for different people in the same area, no matter how rich they are. It's the same show for the same amount of kids it doesn't feel right to charge more. But for other events I charge different prices depending on Size /type of event, working conditions etc, and whether I really want to do it.(if I'm not bothered about doing it I quote very very high, if they take it I'll do it, if they don't so what.)
Yours Funfully
Clive "Emazdad" Hemsley
www.emazdad.com

"Magic is a secret, without the secret there is no magic"

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Neale Bacon
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Burnaby BC Canada
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I have my standard rates which are in line with what my local market bears.

If I do a gig that turns out like the yacht gig, I just treat it like any other show. I don't ask how much people earn before setting my price, but if I feel I am being undersold the value the show is to the client, I will do more in depth discussion before settling on a price.

Clear as mud, right? Smile
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Mike Robbins
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Anchorage, Alaska
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I would warn against charging different prices for different people, but for the same venue (birthday party, holiday show, etc). They do sometimes talk and if someone finds out they paid more, they may feel you gouged them.

I remember when I got my first call for a local convention a few years back. I had no idea what to charge, so I bid with what was (then) my "standard" stage show rate of $350 for a 40 minute show. I didn't get it. Talking with the lady who was gathering bids, I found that the entertainment they hired the previous year was an acapella group that they flew in and paid $5500 for a 20 minute performance.

Mike
The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool.
Shakespeare
Cabrera
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Seattle
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My lowest priced show is 150.00. My average priced show is 150.))(45minutes) My highest price so far has been 420.00.
I fing that my prices increase with my experience. My first shows were only 85.00. This eventually increased to 100.0 then 125.00 and now 150. Next year I'll be 175.!
"The quilt of life is woven with many different threads"
kenscott
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Charging different prices is OK ifyou have different packages. And people and really parents like packages to choose from. So make up packages that is a good, better, best, system. and let them choose.

Ken
Kool Kat
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New Zealand
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This is a very interesting and useful discussion. I need a bit of advice about pricing of kids shows in Southern Ontario. I have been here for several weeks on a family visit, and am doing a few shows.

My husband and I have been here in previous years doing a duo show, which we priced at $250 (Canadian) for small venues such as libraries. Next year I'll be coming back, and doing libraries, preschools and birthday parties - probably as a solo.

The show is mostly puppets, ventriloquism and music, with a little bit of magic. What would be a reasonable price to charge in this area? My show has gotten very good reports from this year's clients - I think I priced it a bit low, though ($150 for libraries and preschools, and $130 for birthday parties) - I only decided on the trip at the last minute, so bookings were a rushed afterthought. My shows for this young age group are mostly 35 to 45 minutes (depending on attention span of the group).

Thanks in advance for any advice you can offer.

Cheers,
Kath Worsfold
NZ (Currently Southwestern Ontario) Smile
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Chrystal
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Canada/France
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Hi Everyone,

All good ideas suggested here. Here's another way to possibly decide what the going rate in your "neck of the woods is": Simply call the entertainers in the phone book and ask them. You may get the odd one that finds this intrusive but I bet you the majority will appreciate you not trying to undercut them. The other positive thing is you may develope some new found friendships that can send business your way or vice versa.

While 75 dollars may seem low a price it may be that in that area that's the going rate. Who knows? Another area may have 200 dollars as the going rate. Unless you take the steps to get to know others in your field you may not find the answer.

One of my business mentors showed me on paper when I first started out ...she told me I was charging too little. Charging 25 dollars more per show obviously allowed me to do less shows per month for the same income. So made sense to charge more especially if the going rate in my area allowed for that price.

I think at the time as I was first starting out I was a bit concerned as to whether I was worth it or not. I think all new magicians go through that..didn't we all?
Just takes a bit of confidence to realize ...yes your time is worth it..afterall look at all the unpaid hours we spend practising our craft.

So that's my suggestion and good luck whatever you decide to do. Smile
p.b.jones
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Milford Haven. Pembrokeshire wales U.K.
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While 75 dollars may seem low a price it may be that in that area that's the going rate

HI,
I see what Crystal is saying but please do not fall into the trap of "Going rates" Just because everyone else is stuck at a price it does not mean that you cannot get more or that they are getting as much as they can.
Phillip
Emazdad
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Plymouth UK
1954 Posts

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Looking at the going rate is OK if you want to put yourself in the same league as the rest.

you should aim to put it across that your better than the rest and chsrge a bit more than the others.
Yours Funfully
Clive "Emazdad" Hemsley
www.emazdad.com

"Magic is a secret, without the secret there is no magic"

Remember there are only 3 types of people in the world, those that can count and those that can't.
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