The Magic Café
Username:
Password:
[ Lost Password ]
  [ Forgot Username ]
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Tricky business » » Increasing your children's birthday party business (1 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

 Go to page 1~2 [Next]
Donald Dunphy
View Profile
Inner circle
Victoria, BC, Canada
7408 Posts

Profile of Donald Dunphy
Increasing your children's birthday party business

I thought this might make a great topic for a thread.

Here are some of the ideas that I've used over the years, to bring in children's birthday party magic show business. I've performed at well over 1000 birthday party shows over the years. Feel free to add on ones you've tested.

1. The #1 thing you need is a great birthday party magic show, priced at a reasonable price. And hand-in-hand with that is great customer service.

2. Create a page on your website, that advertises the show. Make sure your webpage has good SEO.

3. Include customer testimonials, from birthday parents, on your website as soon as possible.

4. Put a video on your website, so people can see that you are good.

5. Classified ads in newspapers. I have used these successfully over the period of many years, but I haven't tried them in the past few years.

6. Ads in a parent magazine. I have used these successfully over the period of many years, but I haven't tried them in the past few years.

7. Ads in free online classifieds (for example, Craigslist).

8. Giveaways / souvenirs / BOR items that contain your contact information, at shows. Note - I am not saying to do BOR sales at a birthday show, but you can upsell items in advance.

9. A gentle plug promoting your birthday shows, when appropriate.

10. Do shows at daycares, schools, etc. where you will be seen by kids (if the daycare party has kids AND parents watching you perform, even better). In short, if you are good, and are seen performing, you'll generate show inquiries.

11. Keep record of past customers, and contact them by mail a month or two before the anniversary of their show. Explain that you have a new show, and would love to come back again for their party this year. There is a chance that they misplaced your business card, etc. I contact a birthday parent by mail, because I am contacting them at home. For people at businesses (non-birthday shows), I contact them by phone and/or mail.

12. Perform at family restaurants. You can generate spin off shows from that.

13. Small gifts for your customers. When I send the confirmation letter, the parent gets a gift. When I do the show, the birthday mom gets a special gift from their child (actually from me). When I send my thank you card, the parent gets a gift. This is a little touch that puts my service over the top, and parents tell me how much they like it.

14. When you are finished the show and getting paid, give the birthday parents a few business cards (I give 5), and tell them they are in case other parents ask about the show. I usually have parents tell me that they've already had other parents ask them for my card. I also put my business card rack on my table, along with my activity postcard rack, at the end of the show. Then I take cards from my activity postcard rack and give them out to the children. Some parents in the room will help themselves to cards in the business card rack, without you mentioning them.

15. A special trick involving the birthday child, making them a hero / star of the show.

Feel free to add to the list.

- Donald

P.S. Bonus idea that I haven't tried, but I know that some do with success:

- If you collect leads / inquiries by email, keep note of them even if they don't book, so you can contact them again next year (David Farr's Amazing System product does this automatically).
Donald Dunphy is a Victoria Magician, British Columbia, Canada.
Rodney Palmer
View Profile
Inner circle
1317 Posts

Profile of Rodney Palmer
Donald,

I see you have some very good ideas. However I found two of your ideas that do not work well anyomore.

Newspaper Ads=ZERO Bookings

Parent Magazines-This used to be a very Lucrative AD but it has now dried up. I usually get only a few leads per month and they just do not seem to work like they used to. In the past few years I booked less than 15 shows from a Parent Magazine Ad.


QUESTION: What type of Small Gifts are you giving to the parents. And what Gift is given each time a Gift is sent from the First Gift to the Last in that order.


Rodney
"Creating Memories That Last A Lifetime"



In order to keep "MAGIC ALIVE" Please become a Mentor to a Young Person.
Donald Dunphy
View Profile
Inner circle
Victoria, BC, Canada
7408 Posts

Profile of Donald Dunphy
I give a birthday banner, as well as a party tips booklet, in with the birthday party confirmation letter that I mail. The birthday banner idea is my own, and I've been using it for many years. Note -- this is a great reason as to why you shouldn't do birthday party confirmations by email. Sure, you can include the party tips booklet as an article or ebook, but you can't send a physical item like a birthday banner. Smile

At the show, I make a big balloon flower, and have the child give it to their mom (along with a hug), while saying thank you for the party. I got this idea from an article by Tom Ogden in a magic magazine (perhaps Genii) sometime in the 1980s or 1990s.

After the show, when I mail the thank you card, I include IMD (Dean Hankey's Invisible Magic Dust) as a small gift in with the thank you card. My thank you card wording is on another, older thread, for those willing to search it out. It's based on Barry Mitchell's Thank You Card wording, from his CD, "The ABCs of Children's Magic." (For those who didn't know, I was a ghost writer on the current version of IMD. I contributed to the final product. I'm a fan, although I don't get royalties from the sale of it.)

I do not tell the customer about the gifts in advance.

What ideas do you have to add to the thread?

- Donald
Donald Dunphy is a Victoria Magician, British Columbia, Canada.
Michael Messing
View Profile
Inner circle
Knoxville, TN
1813 Posts

Profile of Michael Messing
Great stuff, Donald. I've been having the birthday child give mom a balloon flower and a hug for years but I didn't read about it. (I thought I had an original idea. LOL!)
Dynamike
View Profile
Eternal Order
FullTimer
24098 Posts

Profile of Dynamike
Quote:
On 2013-01-25 18:05, Donald Dunphy wrote:


Feel free to add to the list.



Become a member of The Magic Café where magicians help magicians.
David Thiel
View Profile
Inner circle
Western Canada...where all that oil is
3896 Posts

Profile of David Thiel
Outstanding list, Donald. Thank you!

Upselling is a key...no matter whether you're doing a kids show or an adult one. I can significantly increase my earnings by asking an adult client if they'd like a 45 minute show instead of a 30 minute one...or if they'd like to consider adding on customized banners etc.

Here are a couple of ideas for birthday party sales:

1) I belong to both GigMasters and Gig Salad. I know they both get roundly rapped here, but I've had great success with them. Why? I don't expect these services to actually sell the product. That's my job. So, as opposed to sending off a package via email and complaining about how I never get anything, I'll send a package promptly, tell them in the email that they can expect to hear from me later that day and I call.

2) You REALLY need to have a good phone presentation for your product...and a solid website that gets people to pay attention. A guy who sounds uncertain on the phone isn't going to inspire confidence.

3) Pay good attention to what Donald said about add ons. I sell my birthday show at one price...but for an additional $35, the parent can add balloon animals for each of the children. I know another performer who makes good coin selling goodie bags. You're going there anyway...why not upsell?

4) Make friends with related performers. I don't do facepainting for example. But I know several very good facepainters. When it comes up, I can recommend her for the job and she pays me $25 for the referral. I do the same for her. It works out perfectly.

David
Whatever doesn't kill you makes you stronger. Except bears. Bears will kill you.


www.MindGemsBrainTrust.com
www.magicpendulums.com
www.MidnightMagicAndMentalism.com
Karen Climer
View Profile
Veteran user
Orlando, Florida
324 Posts

Profile of Karen Climer
I agree that a good phone script is important. A good website will get them to call you, but then you have to sell yourself over the phone.

It's important to be flexible. Quite often we have to work in less than ideal situations, and you just have to make it work. You can be a prima donna, but you won't be in the business for long.

Donald, where you put you contact info on the IMD. Do you put it on the little book? I can't find any room on their to fit anything extra.
Donald Dunphy
View Profile
Inner circle
Victoria, BC, Canada
7408 Posts

Profile of Donald Dunphy
Hi Karen -

With IMD, the booklet goes into a small coin envelope. Dean supplies artwork to print a label that you stick on the front of the envelope. I created my own contact label to print and stick on the back of the envelope.

- Donald
Donald Dunphy is a Victoria Magician, British Columbia, Canada.
Neale Bacon
View Profile
Inner circle
Burnaby BC Canada
1775 Posts

Profile of Neale Bacon
I am working on a phone script now. As much as I hate cold calling, I need to do more of it.
Neale Bacon and his Crazy Critters
Burnaby BC
Canada's Favourite Family Ventriloquist
www.baconandfriends.com
Mindpro
View Profile
Inner circle
9986 Posts

Profile of Mindpro
Phone scripts are not just for cold calling, as they are actually more important for fielding and selling incoming calls.
Dannydoyle
View Profile
Eternal Order
20374 Posts

Profile of Dannydoyle
Absolutely right.
Danny Doyle
<BR>Semper Occultus
<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
scottds80
View Profile
Special user
Victoria, Australia
730 Posts

Profile of scottds80
I have updated my service from just a magic show, to a full magic party service including games, prizes, extras for goody bags, and also a disco option. I have a couple of disco lights, portable powered speaker and a fog machine. The child loves to choose their music too.

I have a "complete package deal" which is a strong upsell. It is only for an extra 1.5 hours, and double your income on that visit. Quite a few mothers so far have just said "I'll go for the complete package" because it takes the pressure off their hands.
"Great Scott the Magician", Gippsland
bobn3
View Profile
Special user
Wichita, KS
718 Posts

Profile of bobn3
Donald,

I liked your ideas. I have to agree with Rodney on the Parent magazine. I was able to get a rate of $70/month because of running it for a six month contract. I got zero calls as a result of this. Having been divorced two years ago, I have to be brutal with my marketing budget, so I dropped it. I tried calling the magazine to make changes to the ad, but got no call back until I left a message that I was discontinuing the ad. Such is life.

Bob Phillips
yankay37
View Profile
Regular user
Canada
176 Posts

Profile of yankay37
I think it's very hard to make a video of a kids show. You need to get permission to put it on your website from each of the parents.

Or do you just offer them a free show in exchange?
WesleyBryan
View Profile
New user
53 Posts

Profile of WesleyBryan
I'm getting into kids shows myself in a couple of months. My plan is to have the first one at my house. So I can video tape as I please. Then I'll do two or three more in homes of people whom I know and am good friends with. That should give me plenty of photos and footage.
Al Angello
View Profile
Eternal Order
Collegeville, Pa. USA
11047 Posts

Profile of Al Angello
If you look at Silly Billy, The great Zucchini, or Tricky Ricky you will see three very successful children's entertainers who make it look very easy. Well it is not easy and these three men were born to entertain children. Kids entertainment is a very lucrative business and it is not for everybody. If you do not take to it like a duck takes to water perhaps you are not suited to entertain kids.

Kids entertainment should not be looked at as a part time job, but a calling that is not for everybody.
Al Angello The Comic Juggler/Magician
http://www.juggleral.com
http://home.comcast.net/~juggleral/
"Footprints on your ceiling are almost gone"
JoshLondonMagic
View Profile
Special user
678 Posts

Profile of JoshLondonMagic
Quote:
On 2013-08-06 08:16, Al Angello wrote:
If you do not take to it like a duck takes to water perhaps you are not suited to entertain kids.


I disagree with this statement. I was horrible at entertaining kids when I first started doing kid shows. But over the years got better and better as I found my voice, routines that worked for me and honed my brand.

Doing kid shows is tough at first and I think it can have the potential to scare people off if they have a bad experience. But, if you seek out as much information on the subject as you can by way of books, videos, etc. and you actually try the stuff out there is a chance you can and will like/be successful as a kid show magician.

Doing kid shows is a lot like trying to lose weight. The first workout is terrible, you feel embarrassed, you feel like you want to vomit and go hide in a corner. The 2nd show isn't so bad. And as long as you're trying to find your "sweet spot" you will eventually hit it and be ok.

Josh
Josh
Ken Northridge
View Profile
Inner circle
Atlantic City, NJ
2273 Posts

Profile of Ken Northridge
^I like you weight loss analogy. And sometimes after successfully losing weight you realize you’re fat again, and wonder, ‘how did this happen?’ Sometimes, due to mitigating circumstances, a kid show can make you feel like an amateur again, no matter how successful you were yesterday.
"Love is the real magic." -Doug Henning
www.KenNorthridge.com
Dannydoyle
View Profile
Eternal Order
20374 Posts

Profile of Dannydoyle
Vomit and hide in the corner. That is EXACTLY how I felt. Man yea. Doing that kids show made me feel like that for sure.

You can get better at them, but certainly there are those of us with absolutely no business even trying to do that.
Danny Doyle
<BR>Semper Occultus
<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
Al Angello
View Profile
Eternal Order
Collegeville, Pa. USA
11047 Posts

Profile of Al Angello
There are lots of guys who are looking for a hobby, and think that doing a party or two on Saturday morning would be a great way to make a few bucks, and get out of the house. Most of these "cook book magicians" never really make it, and give all of us a bad name.

If you tried kids magic and learned how to be successful at it then I say that you are more than just another "cook book magician".

Unfortunately there are lots of cook books out there that supposedly teach you how to do it by the numbers.
Al Angello The Comic Juggler/Magician
http://www.juggleral.com
http://home.comcast.net/~juggleral/
"Footprints on your ceiling are almost gone"
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Tricky business » » Increasing your children's birthday party business (1 Likes)
 Go to page 1~2 [Next]
[ Top of Page ]
All content & postings Copyright © 2001-2020 Steve Brooks. All Rights Reserved.
This page was created in 0.22 seconds requiring 5 database queries.
The views and comments expressed on The Magic Café
are not necessarily those of The Magic Café, Steve Brooks, or Steve Brooks Magic.
> Privacy Statement <

ROTFL Billions and billions served! ROTFL