Thursday, June 28, 2012

Professional Entertainment or Not Professional Entertainment?

In my March client newsletter, I wrote an article about a customer who was struggling with whether to have entertainment at their event.  I was just reading it again and realized it had some good information that was worth repeating here, so here it is:

I had an interesting phone conversation with a client yesterday. She's on a committee interested in re-hiring me for a graduation lock-in event for a class of high school seniors at a school where I worked the same event last year.  The event last year went really well, and the students were absolutely raving about my performance.  The planning committee is made up of different people this year, though, and the client told me that they were asking her some tough questions about why they should hire me for the event.

She said the committee members were asking her questions such as:

  • "In some years in the past, we didn't have any entertainment--why should we pay to have it now?"
  • "Why are Mitch's programs so expensive, and why should we pay that much for entertainment?"
  • "What's the point of having entertainment at all, when we already have plenty of activities for the students?"
These are all valid and even valuable questions to ask when planning for an event.  If you don't know why entertainment is important for your event, and how it will enhance your event, you should be cautious before committing significant portions of your budget to it.  And when choosing an entertainer, it's also important to know what you're getting and what the value will be for your event.  Not all events need entertainment, and not all entertainers are appropriate or desirable for all types of events, including me.

Part of my job in advising clients is to first determine whether they need entertainment at all, and if they do, whether I'm the right fit for what they need.  Here are my answers to some of these questions:
  • If you want your event to be more than just a series of activities, but also a truly memorable and fun experience that your guests will remember with fondness and enthusiasm, good entertainment can fill that purpose.
  • However, if you have an extremely low budget, you may want to pass on the entertainment in favor of better food or other services and instead use some creativity to come up with fun activities.  If your budget allows, though, hiring a skilled, professional entertainer is tough to beat.
  • Food and interactive activities are great, and for some events, they're all you need, but the right entertainment can make an event an exciting, uplifting, and unforgettable experience!
  • My entertainment programs are unique in that I lived in Los Angeles for ten years, one of the most competitive entertainment markets in the world, as well as traveling throughout the United States and several other countries.  In order to work the markets that I have, I had to develop entertainment programs that could compete favorably with other world class entertainers.  I'm not just another local entertainer, and my programs show it.  I can literally guarantee that your guests will have an absolutely astounding and unforgettable experience that they'll be talking about for months or even years to come.
  • While my programs are more expensive than other local entertainers, the prices of my programs are actually lower than other national entertainers of my caliber.  I feel strongly that the value of my programs far outweighs the price of the investment in them, and I consistently exceed my customers' expectations.  All of my programs come with a money back guarantee.  I virtually guarantee results for your events, something most local entertainers would never even consider offering.
As for the high school senior lock-in, the question would be, "Do you just want to have a safe environment with a few fun activities to keep the kids occupied for a few hours?"  For some, this may in fact be enough... "Or do you want to make the event a truly unique and special, emotionally uplifting experience, and have the kids walking away going 'Wow!  That was AWESOME!!!"  That's the difference I can provide.

I'll be the first to admit that my programs are definitely not appropriate for everyone's events, and I pride myself on helping clients to determine whether we're a good fit, and if not, I do my best to advise them on other options.  But for those whose events can benefit from what I offer, my programs are excellent (even if I do say so myself), and I thrive on offering the best programs and customer service I possibly can at a competitive price.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Event Planning Gets Sophisticated, and Simpler

Here's something my event planning clients may find useful.  It's a short article on new trends in planning special events.  The article is actually written for law firms in Canada, but it has some practical ideas that can be applied to any business events.  Enjoy! Event Planning Article.