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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Tricky business » » The Pricing Dilemma! (3 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

magicalnick
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59 Posts

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Yes, the good ole pricing questions! Here is my dilemma. I am trying to get myself established in the area I work in. I have been fighting myself for the past few weeks on where to set my pricing. I have had a few calls and emails where I explained my show first (some already knew because of my website) then tried to save the pricing for last. I had the typical I need to talk to my husband or just no reply back to my email. I even followed up the next day or two and still nothing.

I will be the first one to say I am not a sales person and have had trouble talking on the phone in the past (just not something I enjoy doing). I have gotten better but still would say I need more practice. I also did my research and know what other local magicians are priced at in my market.

Here is where I am fighting myself - I set my pricing a tad lower than most in the area. Not overly low but still lower. My reasoning is I just can't fathom a parent spending over 200.00 for a birthday magician. And this is where I fight with myself - I know I do a high quality show and I connect with kids better than others in the area which makes me want to raise my prices with the others. However, I still go back to the affordable pricing thought.

So here is what I am asking: 1. Do you think my lower pricing (not overly low) is hurting me in getting those clients or do you think it may be something else? Or is the price shopper phone call just a typical scenario that I will have to deal with? As you can tell I am still going back and forth on this topic in my head and it is frustrating. I am eager to get shows to improve on every level but it is very difficult to deal with the dead end inquires Smile Any advice or stories on how you started and what worked well for you is highly appreciated. I want to make as many mistakes and fix them now so I can learn and improve quickly.
dearwiseone
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Inner circle
Portland, OR
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MagicalNick,
If you'd like to send me a couple videos of your performance, and your website, as well as the area you're located in, I'm happy to give you my specific thoughts on your pricing.

Based on the limited information I have, it sounds like you're newer to the market, in which I would stick with lower prices, to get more practice. This might mean pricing yourself VERY low, but you need experience at this point.

Personally, I don't get a lot of price shoppers, but I still have the occasional contact that doesn't decide to book.

If you have trouble on the phone, and don't like selling, put all your prices online and do the majority of your booking through online mediums. There are tons of programs, plugins, etc. that will help with this.

If you're struggling with the value of your show, consider doing things that will increase the value of the your show, at little cost to you. Get feedback from every show you perform so you can adjust accordingly.

Hope that helps,
Kevin
Robin4Kids
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Lower Alabama
396 Posts

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MagicalNick,
I think your pricing is ok if it isn't too far under what everyone else is charging. If you are comfortable working for that amount to start with, it should work. As your bookings start to increase, you can always bump the price up.

You have a nice looking website, which gives the image of a quality entertainer. The only suggestion I would make as far as pricing goes would be to make the pricing difference between the two packages a little more. If $145 is going to be your lowest price, I would consider offering a little less, like a 30 min. show instead of 40. Right now the only difference in your gold package is a backdrop and music for $10 more. I would consider making your gold package at least $195 with more in addition to the backdrop & music(ie. longer show, animal production, balloons, birthday gift, giveaways, games, special illusion such as chair suspension or anything else you could add value without adding too much additional expense).

Just a few ideas to consider, but ultimately you will be the best judge of what pricing works the best for you and what you need to offer for that price.
Donald Dunphy
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Victoria, BC, Canada
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Magicalnick -

Something that might help you, too, is to write out a phone script to use when handling show inquiries. It can prompt you which questions to ask (encouraging the customer to do some talking), and so you'll know what you want to say to sell the show.

For example, if you ask the name of the birthday child, you can use that later on in your script when describing one of the tricks that the birthday child might help with. That will help the parent to imagine having you at their child's party.

- Donald
Donald Dunphy is a Victoria Magician, British Columbia, Canada.
magicalnick
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Thanks - Yes, I do tend to rush through a phone call and sometimes I have trouble receiving all the information I should have received by the end of the call -Even when I go off a checklist type of show form I created. I guess I need to take a deep breath before I pickup the phone and go through the routine slowly so I don't forget. I haven't put much time into my phone script so I will definitely look into that.
Vick
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It's taken me 10+ years to make
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I looked at your site and 1 video
I know your market as occasionally I go that far north for adult shows and the occasional scouting performance
Your prices are way to low
$145 for 40 minutes is giving shows away, that show should be at least $225 (I get more but there are differences between you and I and you're doing pre school shows which I don't do)
You are your own worst enemy. Because you can't see someone spending over $200 for a show in your mind you're not comfortable charging that fee
Help yourself is you show worth $15 a head? 20 heads in the audience = $300

Plus you have another guy in your area doing crappy shoes cheap.
Can I please suggest maybe considering your attire Don't go all loud ugly vest but maybe upscale it a little. You'll feel better and look like you should earn more ;-)
Unique, Thought Provoking & Amazing Magical Entertainment Experiences
Illusions By Vick
Blog of a real world working magician
Magic would be great, if not for magicians
Vick
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It's taken me 10+ years to make
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Parents spend over $300 every day of the week on a 45 minute performance of amazing magical entertainment for their children's birthday celebrations
with no add on's or extras.
See the difference in how we express, it's about perceived value then delivering an experience
I don't perform many children's parties but I hope this helps
Unique, Thought Provoking & Amazing Magical Entertainment Experiences
Illusions By Vick
Blog of a real world working magician
Magic would be great, if not for magicians
Paddy
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Inner circle
Milford OH
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I just had a call yesterday about a show and when I quoted my price (which is standard for this area) she stated that she had quotes that were $50 less. I explained that the reason they were less than me is they don't have the experience I do. My show is the result of years of refining and improving. I booked it. Smile Being cheap means cheap quality.
Non Impediti Ratione Cogitationis

I reject your reality & substitute my own

http://www.Scho-Lan.com
Sam Sandler
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Inner circle
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Printing comes down to supply and demand. As well as what you need to get in order to make a profit.

If your show cost $100 with travel and materials you need to make more then $100 to turn a profit.

You also mentioned you can't see a mom paying more then $200 for a birthday party.
That can be due to area your in as in many other areas parents are paying over $300 for a birthday party.

I wonder if instead of charging less then others you charge more and try to set yourself up as the primer party magician in your area.
Don't cheapen your show rather present it as the best in the area.

Good luck and have fun

Sam
sam sandler- America's only full-time DEAF Illusionist
http://www.samsandler.com
http://www.deafinitelymagic.com
thekidsmagician
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Bristol
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Some good advice given above.

Before you sell anyone on a price, you have to be confident in your own mind that your pricing is justified. If you're just starting out (it doesn't look like you are from your website though), I wouldn't recommend charging a higher price until you are absolutely confident that your show is providing the value to your clients that justifies that higher price.

Zig Ziglar said "Selling is essentially a transfer of feelings" - if your feeling is one of uncertainty or doubt, that will come across in the way you try to sell.

- Mike
Children's entertainer in Bristol - making children look AMAZING! - www.thekidsmagician.com
Mindpro
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Eternal Order
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It also not just a matter of being worth your price, yes, that is extremely important, but equally as important is your ability to be able to sell your services at that price. If you don't believe in it yourself, how can you expect anyone else to? Bottom line is you have a few basic decisions to make. What is your current market price? Where you you want to priced and positioned within this marketplace? What is the true value and worth of your show to the purchaser? And what does your show offer that creates the value or perceived value to justify your pricing?

I am a firm believer that with proper positioning, perceived value and experience, one can charge whatever they want - if they are properly able to present and sell it to the purchaser (obviously within reason - any $10,000 kids birthday performers should expect to have a lot of time off to themselves - lol)
rossmacrae
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Arlington, Virginia
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See my two youtube short videos

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I2520IkikHg

and

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AqKnMitZhLw

and

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L07_KszrWoM (ignore the "yellow pages" stuff but note what customers care about)

They are chapters from my two DVDs for magicians, which I have now released to the public free because they're getting a bit old (but the principles in them are not). They each concern setting your price and selling to the prospect when they call.

Good luck!
thekidsmagician
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Bristol
118 Posts

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Quote:
On May 8, 2014, Mindpro wrote:
I am a firm believer that with proper positioning, perceived value and experience, one can charge whatever they want - if they are properly able to present and sell it to the purchaser (obviously within reason - any $10,000 kids birthday performers should expect to have a lot of time off to themselves - lol)


I agree with you 100%.

- Mike
Children's entertainer in Bristol - making children look AMAZING! - www.thekidsmagician.com
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