Depending on the occasion, booking corporate entertainment can be a challenging task. Does your business or non-profit have an event coming up? Are you in charge of getting the event planner and entertainment in place? Perhaps you ARE the event planner that has been hired to handle all the preparations for the corporate occasion. No matter the event, one thing is still true, you need entertainment that fits the occasion. Whether it’s a motivational speaker, game, magician, party band or something else, booking the right corporate entertainment will make the event memorable for your audience.
By far the best way to find and book the entertainment for your corporate event is through an entertainment booking agency. Booking agencies handle everything in this department so you don’t need to worry with tracking down the artists, getting pricing, handling negotiations, or preparing the paperwork and contracts. Sounds great, right? All of that handled for a small percentage of the overall booking price. In many cases the booking agency’s buying power will save you money.
Not all Entertainment Booking Agencies Are the Same!
It is important that you do your due diligence prior to making a commitment to any one agency to book your corporate entertainment.
To help you with your journey to finding the perfect booking agency, we’ve come up with the TOP 5 tips to keep in mind while shopping.
2. Do Your Research on Booking Agencies!
This one is obvious and would already be considered by most, however, the right questions to ask and the things to look for when doing one’s preliminary research may not be so clearly understood.
One of the number one items to look for when reaching out to an agency for booking corporate entertainment is how long they’ve been in business or the amount of experience the team has. Who have they booked and how many events have they done? There is no substitute for experience. Theoretical education never provides what experience can over years! An experienced entertainment booking agency will have you covered because they’ve already learned, probably the hard way, where and how things can go wrong. They also know every little question, detail, document, or information you need in order to make sure your event goes off without a hitch.
Another obvious tip is checking out their reputation. How are their past client reviews? Do they have any negative reviews? When asked, are they willing to provide any references? TSE Entertainment has our client reviews displayed prominently on our website as well as provides client references. They include event planners and destination management agency planners.
3. How Responsive and Transparent Is the Agency?
A topflight booking agency should respond quickly to your inquiry. Whether it’s answering or returning your calls or responding to your online inquiry form, the good ones are responsive. Many of TSE’s clients and prospective clients remark to us how pleased they are in how quickly TSE responds to communications. It’s not unusual to wait days for a response from many agencies in the entertainment business. A responsive agency helps alleviate many worries by those planning a corporate event with entertainment.
Any entertainment booking agency that you work with to book your corporate entertainment should be as up-front and transparent as possible. You should understand exactly where your money is going, especially for corporate events that require more than just the entertainer. Their goal should be developing trust and a long-term relationship with the buyer. Transparency is one of the ways you build trust. It’s another reason why some of TSE’s clients keep coming back, some for close to 30 years now.
4. You Should Be Answering A Lot of Questions!
If you’ve worked with an entertainment booking agency in the past, then you may be familiar with the array of questions they need to ask you to make sure they are able to properly do their job and provide the best service. However, if you aren’t, just keep in mind that the more questions they ask, the better!
One major way to tell a good entertainment booking agency from a mediocre one is how much they engage with you from the very first conversation. This is because unlike some booking agencies that literally just play the middlemen between you and your entertainment, other more professional agencies are also interested in providing guidance and consultation to insure you find the absolute best entertainment and experience possible.
Even if they are a more simplified booking agency that doesn’t offer anything outside of connecting you to the band of your choice, at the very least they should still be asking you questions like how long the performance will last, if you’ll be interested in the full band or acoustic set, and if you need anything outside of just the entertainment such as backline and everything the band will need to perform.
Full Service or Just Booking Agency?
Because TSE is a full-service booking agency, another question you will hear when you first speak to one of our agents is whether you will also need staging, lights and sound equipment. As a full-service entertainment booking agency, we offer booking, production and promotion.
Even if you know you don’t need anything other than booking services, it’s still important to ask the scale of services the entertainment booking agency provides. A lot of booking agencies these days will book your corporate entertainment and get your contract secured, but then never follow through on advancing the show and coordinating with the band and event planner and follow up after the fact to make sure that everything was delivered as promised, including the entertainment experience.
A good corporate entertainment booking agency will work with event planner from the very beginning to end to assure all of the things are in place for a successful event. When necessary it should be able to provide any additional services that may be needed along the way.
5. Do Not Use Multiple Agencies to Go After the Same Artists!
The last and perhaps most important tip is to never think you can get the best pricing by working with two entertainment booking agencies at once. This may seem like a great idea because whichever agent comes back with the best price for the same artist saves you the most money and therefore gets your business. However, this thinking couldn’t be further from the truth and can be very damaging to your reputation and chances of getting the artist you really want or the agency that is best fit to help you.
When people try using booking agencies in this way, especially for bigger name artist, they run a very high chance of the artist representatives catching on to what is happening and not taking either booking agency or you as a buyer seriously. In either case the buyer’s rep will require the highest fee quoted in such circumstances.
It’s important to do your due diligence when deciding on which booking agency to use for booking corporate entertainment. Once you select one, then work with that agency unless you feel they are not being responsive and helpful. You can always terminate the relationship and pick a different agency to help you with booking the right entertainment for your needs.
Remember that not all agencies are alike for booking corporate entertainment. A little bit of due diligence upfront can save you a lot of headaches in planning your event. Ask the right questions and use some of these tips to find the right corporate entertainment booking agency for your occasion. Whether it’s a product launch, holiday party, grand opening, team building seminar or celebration event, you should have peace of mind from any agency helping you with the entertainment for the event.