10 Tips for Booking Entertainment for a Corporate Event

Finding entertainment for company conventions, holiday parties, or conferences can feel like an extraordinary task. There are thousands of corporate entertainers that are very good, good, and right under the ones available. This list will give you some suggestions on how to narrow your search and find entertainment that will help make your event a success!

10 – INITIAL PLAN. The most popular corporate entertainers order very quickly for popular dates. During the corporate holiday season (Nov-Jan), entertainers can start ordering more than a year in advance. Avoid disappointment and start looking for entertainment as soon as you know the date of your company event.

9 – KNOW WHAT YOU WANT (AND MORE IMPORTANT, ANYTHING YOU WANT TO). You can find an entertainer more easily if you have ideas about the types of entertainment that will work well for your group. Popular entertainment companies include:

COMEDY – Comedy action can be a great way to make your group laugh together. Comedy doesn’t have to be just a stand-up comedian. Many corporate comedy actions combine magic, juggling, or various other shows into their comedy shows. This variety helps ensure that there is something for everyone in the show.

No matter what type of comedy you choose, make sure that comedy will suit your group. Many comedians have different ideas about “clean comedy”, so be sure to ask for a demo video to see the show (see # 1 below!)

MUSIC – Many main singers and bands are available for corporate events.

MAGIC – There are many different styles of corporate wizards and corporate magic shows. Some magicians offer walking magic (going to a table on your show), some doing big illusion shows with special effects and a number of dancers, others specialize in comedy magic that makes your audience laugh in the air. Whatever style of entertainment the company you are looking for, be sure to find magicians who only specialize in that style. There are magicians who will tell you that they are doing everything – illusions, comedy, walking around, but that is because they are not good at certain styles, so all their performances are usually just ordinary. For the best performances, recruit professional magicians who specialize in one magic style. These players will be the best in their field in illusion, comedy or magic because that’s what they do.

HYPNOSIS – Hypnotists can be very good for the right group. Hypnosis shows are very interactive and require a very open and unhindered group to be truly successful.

8 – DIRECT BOOKS WITH ENTERTAINERS TO SAVE MONEY AND HEAD. If you order corporate entertainment directly through entertainers, you will save money on entertainment. Most corporate entertainment agencies add 15-35% extra for the cost of an entertainer. By ordering direct company entertainers, you also have the convenience of being able to talk to entertainers (or their office staff) about any questions or problems. Most corporate entertainment agencies will not let you talk comfortably until the day of the show. By ordering directly, you can be guaranteed that there is no miscommunication about performance. You can find direct contact information for entertainers by doing an internet search for “company entertainers”, “California comedians”, etc.

7 – PLAN THE REALISTIC BUDGET. The old saying, “You get what you pay for”, applies to entertainment too. Entertainment is not a place to save a few dollars. You will never cut corners on food that you will feed your guests, and should never cut corners on entertainment. Bad entertainment can damage the event as fast as bad food. You won’t be able to get a GOOD quality company entertainer to do a show for $ 400. Costs for TOP QUALITY, professional company entertainers will range from $ 1500 – $ 100,000 + depending on the size of the performance and the experience and reputation of the player.

6 – KNOW THE PERFORMER EXPERIENCE. You want corporate entertainers who are primarily entertainers for a corporate audience. Don’t be afraid to ask … Is the player a full time entertainer? Have they ever appeared on shows like yours in the past? Do they have letters of recommendation and reviews from previous clients for you to read?

5 – IF YOU HAVE A SPECIAL REQUEST … ASK FOR! Many entertainers are happy to adjust a portion of their appearance for your event. If you have a special request, be sure to discuss this with the player at the time of booking.

4 – DISCUSSION REQUIREMENTS SET-UP BEFORE ORDERING. The regulatory requirements for entertainers vary greatly. Some can do in the corner of the room only with microphones, some require special minimum and sound stage areas and lighting equipment. Make sure that your place will be able to meet your comforting arrangements before ordering.

3 – LEAVE THE GUEST YOU WANT MORE. 90-minute entertainment may sound like a great idea when you plan your company event, but most viewers don’t want to watch a 90-minute program. Older shows are NOT the same as better shows. Even TOP comedians and entertainers in the WORLD (Jerry Seinfeld, Jay Leno, etc.) only perform 60-75 minutes. Professional entertainers and corporate event planners agree that a good duration for most of the company’s direct entertainment is 35-50 minutes. It’s always better to get your audience excited and want more … than to make them tired and start looking at the clock.

2 – KNOW WHAT INCLUDES THE COST. There are travel costs associated with hiring national entertainers for your company party. Many entertainers include travel costs in their performance costs and for some trips will be an additional fee. Be sure to find out what is included in the costs that you quote to avoid unexpected (and potentially expensive!) Surprises.

1 – MOST IMPORTANT – ALWAYS ASKING TO SEE DEMO VIDEOS. Demo videos are the only way you can truly assess whether a company entertainer will be right for your company party. The demo video must be a brief highlight of the event segment of an entertainer. Videos must be filmed in front of an immediate audience so you can see how the real audience reacts to the show. If the entertainment video is nothing but a split second clip and flashy graphics that are tuned to music, then they might try to cover up inadequate performance – or worse, it could mean that they NEVER even perform in front of a real audience.