With the way the economy is here and around the world we now find ourselves in situations that some of us have not experienced before. Yes the belts have to be tighted a smidge and this month might be the month to tighten up on your shows as well, try to give a smidge more for the dollar, its Feb and that means its the Valentines day month, the love month so show some love and give a little more during your performance, I believe that by giving a little more your reward will be a LOT more in return.
Good point, N-Jay! I had a repeat client last night for a birthday. He lets his kids choose between magic and puppets and I go every other year or so. I know that the magic guy also does balloon animals, so I decided to give that little extra and do balloons this year. I generally don't use them for safety factors with younger siblings.
Here are some extras that clients will appreciate:
Birthdays: Leave a tape of a show behind.
Magically produce a gift for the birthday child.
Leave a puppet for the child. Check www.orientaltrading.com
Dollar Tree often has magic kits, as does Borders' Books. They are perfect for 6 and older.
Schools: Leave a DVD with an educational theme and permission to show it in the classrooms.
Leave posters with positive sayings behind. (And a picture of you and your Axtell puppets.)
Leave a follow-up review (one page and easily administered by teachers).
Libraries: Send them 3 or 4 promo pages in advance to put on the entry doors or bulletins. Many don't promote your individual show and this helps them considerably.
Leave a DVD of a show or a CD of your stories for them to offer for checking out.
Show up early and ask if you can pull 8-12 books off the shelves to display during the show. Tell them you'll find books that have to do with your topic.
Help put the chairs and/or tables back where they should be.
Churches: Offer to lead a few songs before the performance part.
Offer a few small prizes for a question and answer time at the end.
Adult shows: Ask if they have someone they would like to honor. If so, you will call them up as a volunteer and then present the award after that routine.