Thursday, April 17, 2008

Corporate Entertainment Booking - 5 Steps to Simplify the Process

Over the past 20 years, I've had experience as an entertainment booking agent, performer, and purchaser of entertainment. Being on all three sides of the fence has given me a unique perspective on how to simplify the entertainment booking process. I've identified several ways to improve relationships between presenters, artists and agents, and summarized some ways to improve the process.
1. Offer Promotional Materials Online for Review
Event presenters get no shortage of mail. They are asking for more information online, presented in a consistent, easy-to-review fashion. Performers need to have press kits in PDF format, headshots, and video clips on their site. More importantly, the information needs to be quickly identifiable through simple, clear site navigation. Agencies need to create artist pages with consistent layouts and all of the information necessary to make an informed booking decision. At Larry Weaver Entertainment I've opted for a one-page layout for artists, although we do have a separate online video player page.
2. Return Requested Paperwork on Time
When presenters ask for a contract, invoice, or W-9 form, they want it quickly - not weeks (or months) later. Likewise, agents and artists want the paperwork executed and returned in a timely fashion. It's incumbent upon the agent or artist to have a CRM (customer relationship management) system in place that alerts them when to follow up with a Presenter. We've developed our own in-house computerized tracking system to get contracts out faster and make sure they're processed efficiently.
3. Provide Downloadable Show Promotion Resources
After the show is booked, Presenters need access to online materials to promote their shows. Artists and agents must offer full-color photographs that are camera-ready for print in brochures or for local media. Posters, press releases, and bios are also a nice touch.
4. Supply More Responsive Communication Channels
When issues arrive, Presenters want immediate contact with the agent or artist. Presenters and Agents should exchange cell phone numbers as well as the cell phone number and emergency contact information for every Artist. Make sure your Contact page has several methods for communication listed.
5. Deliver Professional Follow-Up
After the show, artists and agents want to know how they did. Presenters want a place to share their thoughts on the performance. Offer an Post-Show Review Form to allow Presenters to address any issues and leave a glowing review. Client satisfaction should be your top priority!
Presenters, Artists and Agents all want the same thing: a worry-free partnership that leads to a successful performance. Let's continue to work together to make each other's lives easier.
Got an idea to simplify the booking process? Please leave your thoughts in the comments section. We want to hear from you!

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