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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Tricky business » » Is there a standard percentage for event planners? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Gregory The Great
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What I don't understand is who in their right mind would pay $375.00 to $400.00 dollars an HOUR for walk-around? I have got a few hundred for a 2 hours of walk-around, but what company doesn't shop around? I have found that agents may not care what your skill level is, they don't know or care how many years you put into performing they just want to sell you. I find it hard to believe you can get steady work at $375 an hour. (I'm not doubting your skill, just the company)

I charge $500.00 an hour.... I haven't worked yet but when I do....
Blair Marshall
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Let's not get started on this line again!!! LOL

B
magicofCurtis
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Gregory,

I see your viewpoint and I once was in the $150 price range when I first started off many moons ago. Through time, development and the proper marketing I came to realize companies have budgets. Now if you are the event planner for the company and the company has $25,000 to spend. Would you want to spend $150 an hour for entertainment, or go with someone you think is cool in your opinion and pay the fee they are asking $500, $600, $800, $10,000 per hour to get what you WANT?

THE key is to get into the market that will attract these type of clients and to know the difference when they contact you. I have learned the difference (for the most part) and I enjoy performing and I do not always make my decision on the fee factor when I do a show.

View it this way, do you always buy the cheapest pair of shoes? Do you always dine in the cheapest restaurants? Do you always buy the cheapest car? Do you buy the cheapest house? Do you always take the cheapest flight? Do you buy the cheapest magic tricks/props?

The answer is no. There are other factors that go into a buying decision than the price. One has to be priced for the type of client they are marketing themselves to.

I have had clients who spent $200,000 on their event for 120 people do you think they want someone for $100 bucks or someone that fits with their $5,000 bottle of wine? And I have had clients who could only spend $2500 on their event. Do you think they want a magician at $500 per hour? NOPE...

Hope I gave you some insight buddy!

Blair nice to see you popping around again....
Bob Sanders
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A key thing to remember is that an agent works for you. You pay them.

Event planners are usually in business for themselves and hire you. Often they are the promoter. other times, they work for the promoter, host, etc. They are never paid by the talent.

Bob Sanders
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Brent McLeod
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Theres some good advice here in this discussion

Using many event planners as I soley work the corporate market

as long as I get my fee whether its 600 dollars or 2000 dollars- I am happy as the planners add there fee to my
price-what they charge can vary from 15 percent to almost double what I charge-doesnt concern me as long as you are happy with your charges & the planners are aware that there fee is on top of that!!

Cheers

-Brent
Decomposed
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I was working pretty regular with three planners before the slowdown. They of course always ask me how much then they talk to the client. Before I never thought about who the client was, hotel etc but will from now on. I am always afraid of going too high and not getting the gig. The planners know me and know my worth of course but since I started out "low" per hour ($150) with them already, I am afraid to raise it now.

Posted: Jul 11, 2008 9:22am
Here is another dilemma I face. For mentalism shows, I do not haul in a lot of stuff. My shows are 30-45 minutes in duration and I charge much higher then I do for one hour strolling.

For example, the event planner or client wants one hour of me (sometimes they say: how much for one hour or a one hour show?). I tell them okay you can hire me for $150 a hour strolling BUT I can give you a 30 minute show for
$595 etc. Thinking maybe I should raise my strolling fees. I usually tell them I have a 2 hr minimum. The problem arises also when the planner needs a special 20 minute presentation for 20 people or so. They hear the "hourly" rate and I am treading water from there on.

Of course I patter this and that about how the audience is all entertained at once with a show, working out of my pockets for strolling etc.

Welcome any thoughts on this. Before the slowdown, I was breaking away from the "hacks" but its nice to see they are working for pennys and dimes once again.

BTW: I have Maximum Entertainment on order.
Gregory The Great
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I feel that I really do understand the "market" but is this work REGULAR or is it every once in a while? I work through agents and book myself so I understand what the agent is there for. I'm wondering if it is a geographical thing or just guts to ask for hundreds of dollars an hour? I know some magicians that charge $375.00 an hour but only work once in a while... Maybe... (And those magicians blow other magicians minds, they are that good!) I too don't mind agents getting a cut, but you need to tell them up front what you are willing to work for. I found it very hard to go up in price after the relationship is made between you and the agent. I have also found it doesn't matter if you are just okay or good, it depends on how the agent markets you! For example, I have seen "magicians" that didn't know what a DL was or a TT and they were getting more money than I was. I feel I do a good job at what I do, I have received many good comments and reviews but I never thought they could afford to pay that much. Instead of over thinking this (as usual) I guess the real question is how do you get to work for those types of companies ON A REGULAR BASIS? I would think they go to an agent for all of heir entertainment needs, before looking for locals they know nothing about. How do you ask for a lot more than the going rate?
magicofCurtis
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Gregory,
The key is to work with the top event planners. I work with a few. When I mean by top event planners they do about $6 million to $170 million + a year in event sales. YES, I could not believe the number either until a few years ago I came across a site that showed the top planners and their figures.

Even the large companies will contact entertainers directly. Most companies will create an entertainment committee and each person has a different responsibility, IE find the entertainment, cater, etc.
Now for the large PR events - marketing events - product luanches. Companies usually go through their PR rep in house or outhouse and then the PR reps usually goes with one of these large event planning companies.

Here are a few of the big boys in your area - FL

company, headquarters A Joy Wallace Catering Production & Design Team, Miami
phone, Web site 305/252-0020, http://www.ajoywallace.com
chief executive Joy J. Wallace
average number of special events produced annually 400
average annual revenue from special events (forecast for 2006) $6.5 million
noteworthy events this year Heating up south Florida with work for the Vizcayan Ball, Museum of Discovery & Science, and Conservancy of Southwest Florida galas.

Deco Productions, Miami
phone, Web site 305/558-0800, http://www.decoproductions.com
chief executive Sharon Siegel
average number of special events produced annually 130
average annual revenue from special events (forecast for 2006) $10 million

company, headquarters Strategic Events, Atlanta
phone, Web site 770/379-9334, http://www.strategicevents.com
chief executive Scott Gilmore
average number of special events produced annually 14
average annual revenue from special events (forecast for 2006) $6.5 million
noteworthy events this year Updates for 2006 include opening of office in Italy. Client roster includes IBM and BellSouth.

And one big boy for you guys to lick your chops at:

company, headquarters George P. Johnson Co., Auburn Hills, Mich.
phone, Web site 248/475-2500, http://www.gpjco.com
chief executive Robert G. Vallee Jr.
average number of special events produced annually 4,100
average annual revenue from special events (forecast for 2006) $250 million plus
noteworthy events this year Busy, busy: GPJ produces more than 10 events every day worldwide for global brands going after B2B and B2C audiences, stressing innovative, "brand consistent" experiential event marketing. Clients include Cisco, IBM and multiple automakers.
tacrowl
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Quote:
On 2008-07-11 09:22, Candin wrote:
They hear the "hourly" rate and I am treading water from there on.

Of course I patter this and that about how the audience is all entertained at once with a show, working out of my pockets for strolling etc.


Don't tread. Don't try to justify the fee. When I quote a fee, I shut up. Silence is uncomfortable to most people so they try to fill the void. They can schedule you on the spot, they can ask questions, they can say they have to go to committee, or they can say it is too much/too little. No need for you to twist in the wind.

If you've pre-sold the show, they should want you, so trying to justify the fee makes a client question why you need to do so. It makes you look hungry. Trust me on this - silence works.
Tom Crowl - Comedy Ventriloquist

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Decomposed
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I think I got my degree in the wrong subject. I see no ryhme nor reason for the way the event planners work where I am located. I think I have contacted them all and only three use me sparingly. I know its not how good you are that matters. I hear constantly the perfomers who stay busy and its not based on their show. Do not get me wrong, most are good but its who markets them.

I think "agents" represent the top names only.
Decomposed
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Quote:
On 2008-07-11 22:57, tacrowl wrote:
Quote:
On 2008-07-11 09:22, Candin wrote:
They hear the "hourly" rate and I am treading water from there on.

Of course I patter this and that about how the audience is all entertained at once with a show, working out of my pockets for strolling etc.


Don't tread. Don't try to justify the fee. When I quote a fee, I shut up. Silence is uncomfortable to most people so they try to fill the void. They can schedule you on the spot, they can ask questions, they can say they have to go to committee, or they can say it is too much/too little. No need for you to twist in the wind.

If you've pre-sold the show, they should want you, so trying to justify the fee makes a client question why you need to do so. It makes you look hungry. Trust me on this - silence works.


That is some excellent advice. One of the things I hate the most is the quote over the phone. Most times its over the net.
Gregory The Great
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Thanks for the "LINKS" it might actually HELP!!
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