Some people ask me what the cost is for a certain type of entertainment for their event, such as a band or comedian. This is a tough question to answer and of course requires more details about the event such as location, budget, time, and more. Many times, especially it todays market, after getting sufficient information from the potential client, I will quote them a price, say for a band. Then after several days of thinking about, meeting with board members and the like, they will call me back and tell me that they have decided not to have any entertainment. Now, I don’t mind that reaction as long as they are aware of the cost of NOT having any entertainment, because that cost is much higher than they think.
Let me explain. When an event books entertainment, it’s an investment not only in the event itself, but also in the retention of guests, attendees, etc.. This is especially true if it is an annual event. You need to provide a fun and entertaining atmosphere for guests and live entertainment is an easy and popular way to accomplish this. Don’t get me wrong, there are certainly other ways, such as games, a speaker, prize drawings and more, but live entertainment provides a much deeper and richer experience, in my opinion. If a guest comes to your event and does not feel entertained or that they got their money’s worth, they will not be back next year, and what’s worse is they are likely to stop other people from attending from the negative word of mouth that will come from them. The other benefit of live entertainment is that it can be a significant draw for attendees if the entertainment is known, either locally or as a national celebrity. This may cost a bit more, but you gain the media exposure of that person, the buzz, their network of contacts and much more. This also saves you money on marketing and advertising expenses as you can often piggyback on the use of the celebrity.
It is easy to see why investing in high quality live entertainment can reap rich rewards not only for your guests but for your event as a whole.
So, the next time you are thinking about cutting a portion of your event budget, be sure it is not something that will hinder the total experience for a guest, whether it be entertainment or otherwise.
Joshua Gair – Impact Entertainment