MB 033: The Importance Of Outsourcing With Stephanie Lee Harper


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The Importance of Outsourcing With Stephanie Lee Harper

How to be a magician and outsource extra bookings to a costume characters you have trained


Stephanie Lee Harper aka. Super Steph was driving to gig in her signed up van. At a traffic light a car pulled alongside and the man driving enthusiastically waved a balloon sword at her. She could have driven off but she didn’t. This strange meeting led to Stephanie creating a business where she recruits, trains, books and takes a cut of the performance fee of Super Hero party characters. Find out the nuts and bolts of ….

running a business model like this and discover the importance of ‘outsourcing’, whether it is finding people to take extra bookings you have earned or finding people online who will do administrative tasks that you dislike doing. Lots to learn in this information packed episode withe Stephanie Lee Harper.

In This Episode We Discuss:

  • How to move towards a protected income as an entertainer
  • Should you create different price points between a magic act and super hero characters
  • Can you outsource your phone enquiries? Playing to your strengths … can you actually get someone to take phone bookings because you don’t like phone work
  • Where to find entertainers to be on your books
  • Who are the best type of people to hire?
  • Which age is best?
  • How to interview entertainers for the positions.
  • How much should you pay
  • The first steps you should take to begin outsourcing bookings to other entertainers
  • Secret Tip to help you secure more bookings
  • How first impressions are important

Links and resources discussed in this episode:

4 Hour Work Week – Tim Ferris

Jay Jay as featured in Episode 2 about Youtube and Money

ODesk  – a great place to start outsourcing jobs

Steph’s website


Here’s the screen shot of Julian’s Magician School that I won the Knucklehead of the Week award for.



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Thanks again, Ken and Julian

Meet the Author

Julian Mather

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Just finished listening to this very interesting podcast. I’ve outsourced lots of gigs in the last year and I stopped because I couldn’t trust the artists to 1) show up ON TIME and 2) honestly represent themselves as Knoxville Party Magic. I always paid very well – purposefully to maintain their loyalty but it appeared like these artists only cared about the current gig and nothing in the future. After checking with the client, I was told that the artist passed their own cards… grrrr!

    Many of the artists that I hired were better at their craft (magic, face painting or balloons), that I am but when it comes to business, they have no sense of it. Then I went through a period where I would simply give the client the contact info to the artist & let them work it out amongst themselves and trust the artist to give me a small “finder” fee. Curiously, these gigs were done deals but when handed over the the artist, they couldn’t close the deal on their own. I even called one of these clients afterwards and all she would say is that she’d changed her mind. Strangely, I had time and date confirmed when I’d pass it on.

    I hated leaving a client stranded because I wasn’t available and I know of good artists in the area that may be available. I’ve learned that it’s better to leave a client stranded than to give Knoxville Party Magic a bad image.

    Funny how Steph talked about the “65” year old lady and not want to be that – neither do I so I’m going to have to figure out how to be a successful agent or go into another line of business… maybe I should be a “virtual assistant”! 🙂

    I would have loved to hear from Steph how she gets so many gigs! Does her assistant Wayne or Abbey cold call? Does she supply products, costumes, insurance, etc.? This podcast definitely needs a “part 2” !

    Sorry for being so long winded but this is a subject in which I have great interest.

    Keep up the great work with the podcasts!

    • I’ll put it to Steph to do a part 2 sometime next year.

    • Stephanie Sunshine

      Yes, Christine – you really should have a go at getting a VA (virtual assistant) – we cold call – we call old clients – we email clients every year around the same time they were looking and enquired the years before – and we advertise on google adwords! and gumtree

  • steve wick

    Very informative interview. I have considered doing something like this, but I would struggle with trusting someone else too my clients. I agree with Christine, this interview can be expanded even more.
    Thanks for sharing so much great info Steph, I recently discovered a you tube video of yours that I have sent some bookers to have a look at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mW9D-T7Vg0Q
    I really like the natural down to earth feel of the video.as well as the great tips that are so often overlooked by parents.

    • Stephanie Sunshine

      ohh thanks steve!! – ohh yes we can expand on this topic even more!!

  • Hi Steph! I had to search you out – simply because I’m very interested in women in this industry. Here in the US I don’t think there are many doing this professionally. Do you have a regular appearance with this kids show Wurrahy? You’re really good at what you do and I love the bit you did with the Axtel bird & the stiff rope… I’m definitely going to put that in my act! Hope to hear again about in Magician Business! Thank you for sharing your story!

  • @stephanie_sunshine:disqus Thanks for an interesting podcast! One question I had – you talked about the fact that you do (have someone do) the laundry. Do you provide all the costumes? Did you have to have an inventory of costumes before you hired your first person?
    Trusting other performers is always hard, and finding reliable people is even harder. I know a magician that put together a great program to do magic in restaurants. He put a lot of time, money, and effort into making sure that people would be trained and knew how to perform, and he wound up giving it up not from lack of interest from the restaurants, but because he just couldn’t find reliable performers and in the end he just didn’t feel like he could rely on people to represent the brand he was trying to build. As more than one person I know has said, “The biggest problem with magic is magicians.” The superhero idea seems a lot more amenable to being simpler and finding people able to perform it.