Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Tips for Hiring Great Entertainment

My friend and colleague on the west coast Dan Ohrman recently posted the tips below on his Facebook page. I hope they provide you with useful information for planning your next party:

Here are seven tips on hiring great entertainment for your next social bash. Whether it’s live music of any size, genre or style, DJ’s, Interactive entertainers, dancers, MC’s, magicians, comedians, these easy tips will help you select the best professional.

Seen or been seen. Reputation is everything in entertainment and something any good entertainer will achieve, a good rep that is. In fact, the best entertainers have something beyond a good rep, they have BUZZ. When you hear three or four people tell you, “oh you gotta have ….” you’re dealing with someone who has BUZZ. Do you want to stake the success or failure of your special event on someone who no one has ever heard of? Perhaps for a more casual affair, having the best isn’t as important. For everything else don’t be so easily persuaded, stick to your gut and look for the BUZZ.

Excitement. Now if you hiring a jazz trio you might ask yourself why in the heck do I need excitement? Simple answer, with whatever you’re in the market for, the person who represents this person or group should have excitement for what they do. Passion to be the best, to achieve and/or maintain the buzz I mentioned above. Not to mention they should be excited for the chance and honor to be hired by you. Run of the mill attitude, no enthusiasm in your conversation, no excitement for the opportunity of your business, I don’t care how good their rep is, Forget about em! For the more obvious entertainers such as bands, DJ’s and strolling entertainers, excitement is a huge part of what they do. NOT CHEESY but certainly excited. Their enthusiasm should shine through from the very first conversation.

Value. Now to be clear, value does NOT mean the cheapest. Value simply put means you understand what you’re paying for and feel good about it. Every good entertainer has GREAT value. Bad entertainers (missing all the elements I’ve mentioned so far and continue reading below) will either be cheap, overpriced or unclear in how their service adds value to your special event. It’s easy to recognize because you won’t be able to connect to them and/or their service and you certainly will not feel good about spending a single penny on them. Really is that simple!

Eclectic. The word really says it all but I’ll add some complimentary words like emotional, creative and unique. It’s ultimately up to you to decide what’s classic or cliché. If pulling a rabbit from a hat still excites you or Celebration is the song that makes you run to the dance floor, don’t let anyone tell you anything different other than we’re happy to do it. On the other hand it’s good to know that there are new tricks up their sleeves. Following are some examples of what I’m talking about. The band can play some current music for your younger or young at heart guests. The DJ knows the latest interactive dance craze or even perhaps has a few of their own. The MC can customize your introductions in such a way that it represents you, your personality and embodies the emotion of what’s being celebrated. In summary, great entertainers will find out what’s most important to you, put their own creative stamp on it and the results are a truly memorable event for everyone attending.

Never say die. I’m going let you in on a not so secret fact, STUFF HAPPENS! I “G” rated this article for the sake of any young readers. Bottom line is we’re talking about a live event. Through all of the best pre-event planning, you never know what’s going to happen, how people will react or if they will naturally dance on their own until that night when it unfolds live. You must have entertainment that embraces tough situations and turns them into successes. Ask for war stories not just the best of hype.