by Kevin Gallagher
Before I worked as a Magician, I used to work as a Computer Systems Engineer. I still have a retained interest in computers and so have a good understanding of them, it was very natural therefore, for me to specifically approach computer and control companies when I started to develop Tradeshow work. I now work regularly for a number of Computer Network, Control and IT companies, including the likes of Hewlett Packard, undoubtedly because when I was developing the business, I was able to talk to them on their terms and demonstrate that I understood exactly the nature of their business. Coins traveling from hand to hand for example, become data packets traveling from Server to Client but it is a distinct advantage to have some idea of what I am talking about because an error in the script or mistake in the patter could have significant implications. In this case, for example, if I happened to say "ten megabits per second" instead of "one hundred megabits per second", the slip might be enough to send those spectators with 'trained ears' on their way to find a competitors stand.
The benefits are two fold. Firstly, I am much better placed to pick up work from this type of company because I can 'talk their language' and they will be far more comfortable talking to me if there is some common ground and understanding. Secondly, I am adding value to myself because there are many Tradestand Magicians and there are many Computer Salesmen but there are a very small number of people who are able to offer both.
No matter what your trade, profession, other expertise or interest, if you can combine them somehow with the Magic work that you do, the combination of skills will make you more unique and therefore more attractive and valuable. All market sectors have their own Tradeshows and Exhibitions. If you are more selective in the type of company you contact, you will generally get better at approaching them and your literature can be better targeted, more specific and therefore more effective.
Decide what else you would feel comfortable standing in front of people and talking about without having Magic as a vehicle or visual aid. Be it Financial services, Plastics, Pharmacy and medicine, Electronics or Bog brushes, you will have the basis for increasing your status and earnings as a Magician.
© Kevin Gallagher April 2003