Marketing to Casinos

Post topics about the business side of magic.

Postby Guest » 03/05/03 09:42 PM

I will be performing at two (hopefully) casinos this weekend. The reason I say hopefully is that I am overnighting video, promo etc. to one so they can make a decision.

I will be performing for a high-roller / customer appreciation event. This is a situation where I have offered the casino an hour of strolling magic to audition for them.I've done this with success in restaurant scenarios in the past. These events happen on a monthly basis.

Now my question. What is an apropriate price range to suggest to my contact?
My plan is to suggest a price per event but also to discount for multiple events.
Please be specific regarding prices (give me a number)!

This particular gaming corpration did very well last year profit-wise and is currently making plans for a $325 million dollar facility. I found this out after securing the audition and doing some research on the company.

Just wondering if anyone else works in a casino or has had experience with negotiating with them.
Since they have several properties I would eventually like to rotate to each of them as their entertainer.

Any responses appreciated.

Pete Mills
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Postby Guest » 03/06/03 01:00 AM

Charge them ALOT more then restaurants (obviously) since they can afford to pay you. Since I am in Australia, I don't really know but is a good price. However, the corperate ballpark is a good guide.

Also, during the audition try and find out WHY they want you there. Do they want to show off how much money they are willing to spend on highrollers? Do they want you to encourage the idea that anyone can win? Are you there to bring people into the event?

If you want to be THEIR entertainer, come up with some effects that use their logo or their playing cards (punched of course).

I am doing a similar gig in a few weeks (stand up show) and I have found that Casinos are very big on the idea of winners!
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Postby Larry Horowitz » 03/06/03 06:15 PM

I say you do not charge alot because they can afford it. Just don't be afraid to charge alot. It's a subtle difference in thinking.

Base your charge on the importance of the event to the client.
Larry Horowitz
 
Posts: 401
Joined: 01/17/08 01:00 PM
Location: L.A.

Postby Guest » 03/07/03 05:24 PM

What do you feel that your time, energy and act are worth? I have never understood the mentality of asking a client how much their budget is and then deciding on your price afterwards. Could you imagine going into the grocery store where the manager asked you what your budget was before you went shopping and they changed their prices accordingly?

Your price should be set, the same as you charge other corporate clients. That's it.
PSIncerely Yours,
Paul Alberstat
http://www.stores.ebay.ca/ABstagecraft
Supplying Unique Mentalism World-wide
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Postby Guest » 03/07/03 10:46 PM

I never set my prices. I don't ask for a budget either. I come up with a quote based on what I feel my services are worth to my clients for an event.

It doesn't matter what they are worth to me because I don't pay my bill.

A grocery store will change their prices based on what people are willing to pay, they just can't afford to do it for each customer.
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Postby Guest » 03/21/03 11:57 AM

Hi Pete,

Just wondering what happened with this gig? Did you get it? etc...

www.JeffEzellMAGIC.com
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Postby Guest » 03/21/03 09:28 PM

Jeff,

Thanks for asking. After doing the event. I called the events coordinator to get some feedback.

She said everything went well. When we got to pricing she said a local guy had come in before. He did caricatures "and some tricks" while his wife read palms. They charged the casino $300.00 for three hours of this.

Wether this was true or not (probably) is beside the point. The value they (the casino) place on magician's as entertainers is low to say the least.

Needless to say I told her this was much less than I would expect from a casino. Bear in mind during this event I worked 10 pepole won $500.00 a pieceas door prizes. That's $5000.00.

So I'm attempting to educate the client and broaden their vision about what I'm able to do for them. We had to break off our conversation because she had to go to a meeting.

I will touch base with her next week. Any suggestions are welcome, though it sounds like the well has been poisoned by someone who underpricd themselves and future performers there.

If I hadd this to do over again I would schedule a meeting with all the decision makers prior to performing the event. Inform them of all the scenarios I would be appropriate for (restaurants within the casino, VIP events, corporate events held at the hotel,waiting lines for shows,etc.)

Then perform for the event

The good news is their are four other casinos in the same town.

Pete
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Postby Pete McCabe » 03/22/03 12:36 AM

Pete Mills:

I'm not a professional magician, but perhaps you can apply some things I've learned from m years in marketing.

About 3/4ths of the companies that my agency pitched, the reason they were looking for someone is because they had hired someone cheaper than us and were dissatisfied. But we never thought the well was poisoned. We just thought they had a bad taste in their mouth.

So everything we did was designed to educate the customers why we were so much better than the people we were trying to replace. (It helped that we actually were better.)

When I say "everything we did", about half of that was our own marketing materials, and half our ability to discuss intelligently exactly what they wanted from an agency.

One marketing piece we always included was a "How to Pick An Agency" guide. That alone got us a significant portion of our new business. I would think a "How to hire a Magician" brochure would be extremely helpful to any magician.
Pete McCabe
 
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Joined: 01/18/08 01:00 PM
Location: Simi Valley, CA

Postby Guest » 03/28/03 07:28 PM

I have a casino gig next week where not only am I performing in High Rollers room, I am performing for 350 hotel owners, restauranteers, venue managers and other people who I should impress!

*GULP*
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