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You’ve got your show.

You’ve got your website.

You’ve got your promo video.

So why isn’t the phone ringing off the hook?

There could be thousands of possible reasons, but if you’re struggling in your business I’ll bet at least one of the following strategies should make a difference.

Marketing is Not About Applause!

If I could just get one concept through performers’ heads…

When you’re on stage, you want everyone to like you. You want them applauding and laughing at your jokes. You want the standing ovation at the end. That’s part of being a great performer.

Assuming you will win over everyone with your marketing is faulty, and dangerous, thinking.

If you look at almost any product in any industry, conversion rates are typically less than 3%. Imagine having an audience of 100 people and only 3 are applauding. Sounds heartbreaking, right? But that’s the reality of business.

The game, as with almost every successful business, is to make sure you’re targeting the right people and speaking to them with the right words and images.

Even Facebook started in a very small niche.

Hint: If your business card says “Magic for all Occasions,” as mine did when I was 14, you’re going to have a very hard time connecting with anyone. The broader your market, the less likely you’ll reach them.

So ask yourself: Who wants (better yet, needs) what I have? Be specific. If you’re great for intimate groups, forget working the stage. If your act is great for kids and families, don’t try to sell it to corporations.

The best solution, of course, is to have a message you need to put out into the world. I like to think even the most shallow, self-centered performer is driven by something deeper. Why do you really do this? Once you know that, find people who will appreciate what you’ve got to share and spend all of your time tying to connect with them.

You Are What You Measure

Marketing and advertising are all about testing.

If it creates sales, then it’s good advertisting. If not, no matter how pretty or clever it is, it’s a waste of time and money.

The good news is that most performers already have the necessary skills to be good at marketing. They just don’t realize it.

Great performers listen to the audience and make changes based on response. In fact, that’s how they get to be great performers. If you want an example of this, watch the movie Comedian. It’s Jerry Seinfeld’s story of going back on the comedy club circuit, after the TV show ended, and trying to build a new act.

When you listen to your audience’s response, you’re testing your material.

Don’t you think that’s what you should be doing with your marketing, as well?

Are you getting feedback on your website, your promo video and your blog? Have you tested multiple versions to see which gets a better response?

There are plenty of tools out there that will help you track and measure the response to everything you do online. If this concept is completely new to you, just start by installing Google Analytics and spending a few weeks watching how people interact with your website. Then start manually changing things, one at a time, and see what difference it makes.

If you’re on my mailing list, I’ll be sending out specific tips and techniques on this topic in the coming weeks.

It’s Not About You…

It’s about the value you bring to the event.

You have a service. Some people will want that service, but most people don’t want what you’re selling!


Did that hurt?

Let me qualify that and take some of the sting out of it by asking you a question:

How many times a day does the average person consider purchasing what you’re selling?

If you’re selling food, it’s several times a week. Toilet paper: probably once a month (unless you shop at Costco, in which case it could be years 🙂 ).

But for you, dear friend, it may be only once or twice a year, at best.

What’s worse: even when they’re looking for you, they’re only thinking about themselves.

They don’t care what you do. They’re only going to hire you if they feel you will add something of value to their program.

Here’s a quote, direct from the master, himself, John Caples:

“The most frequent reason for unsuccessful advertising is advertisers who are so full of their own accomplishments (the world’s best seed!) that they forget to tell us why we should buy (the world’s best lawn!)”

I’ll end with this practical exercise:

Go over all of your marketing materials (print, web and video) and ask this simple question:

“Is this about what I do or what I can do for them?”