MB 011: Promo Reels For Magicians


Listen on  iTunes or Stitcher!
Promo Reels for Magicians and Entertainers

Promo Reels & Videos

Best Practices and Tips for Creating Promo Reels for Magicians and Entertainers

What is the purpose of a promo reel?  Who needs one?  How long should a promo reel be?  Do they have to look really professional to be considered?

We all hear about needing a promo video reel but there is little information on how to actually go about constructing one. Cue Steve Russell! Steve is an entertainer who also understands the ins and outs of a great promo video because he produces them working magicians, jugglers, ventriloquists, stand up comics, dancers, hypnotists, musicians.

In this episode we talk about:

Steve says “Video is perhaps the most persuasive tool in the performer’s marketing arsenal. It is your chance to give your potential clients a taste of who you are and what you do. Sadly, most performers put up a clip that is badly edited, overly long and without a focus on selling.”

  • Making a professional video that is memorable, to-the-point, and targeted.
  • What is the purpose of a promo reel? Understanding this is crucial to it being successful.
  • What does the potential client expect to see? What messages do they expect to hear?
  • What camera shots you need to get? Where to put up your camera?
  • How to create voice overs that will get heard..
  • Where to put your calls to action.
  • How to use testimonial quotes that get responses.
  • 2 things NOT to put in your video that scare off potential clients.
  • What parts of your show to include and where to put them in the video.
  • Steve’s big tip for creating promotional videos

Links and resources mentioned:

GigReels – See Steve’s work

Steve Russell 23 Top Tips for creating promo videos

Musicbakery.com – royalty-free music, excellent quality, ranging from $34-50 per song.
Audiojungle.net – thousands of royalty-free songs. Ranging in price from $8 to around $30. (there is an affiliate program, by the way)
http://www.borrowlenses.com – rent video equipment for your shoot – 10 days with a gopro is $46 US.
flixpress.com – automated video intros – some free, some costing around $4 to $70.
intromaker.net – automated video intros ranging from $5 to $20 per intro
fiverr.com – source of intros – get HD and 1080 res.
elance.com – voice over artists

http://www.videomated.com/shop/ – good quality video intros – some free, some $5.

EZVid – Julian has played with this free editing software and it has a lot to offer

Camtasia – Ken and Julian’s video editing software of choice. Check out these intro tutorials Julian made up for you.

Thank you for listening

To get more Magician Business Podcasts sent directly to your device as they become available, you can subscribe on iTunes or Stitcher!

Please help by leaving a review on iTunes, they are really helpful and we appreciate you taking the time. Reviews help our podcast get noticed by entertainers, magicians and performing artists all over the world which grows our community. A larger community means more experience to share with each other so please feel free to share your comments below.

Thanks again, Ken and Julian


Meet the Author

Julian Mather

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Question for everybody … what holds you back getting a promo reel started. I’m surprised at the slow interest in this topic. This episode has so much info to get you started.

    Does video scare you technically?

    Does it seem too time consuming?

    Does it appear too expensive?

    Do you not feel a need for a performing video?

    I’m really interested to know so Ken and I can get some answers for you.

    • Clayton Poland

      Sorry for not responding earlier. I just saw your question.

      For me, its about producing what I feel is a quality video. I am working on mine now. My problem is that I always compare my video to other performers videos and see something I want to change. I need to get over that and put together the best video possible.

      Here’s a side question. Is there anyway to follow these conversations so we can receive a notification when someone has responded or posted in the comment section? Similar to how facebook works. You receive a notification when someone posts a new questions or comments on an existing question. You can also choose to stop receiving notifications for each comment string.

      Just a thought? I know this would help me respond to more posts.

  • steve wick

    Julian, I don’t mind editing videos, technically I don’t have a problem. My biggest issue is making it a worthwhile reel. It’s easy to throw together some good footage with some music, but as Steve Russell says, it needs to show your potential booker what you will do for them and also have a logical and clear call to action. I am still quite happy with my most recent attempt at this, however after listening to this interview, I am keen to have another go at it soon. I like the idea of a voice over, but I am also aware that while the world we live in is closer on a global scale. certain tactics seem to work differently on different continents. I think it is a case of try and see what works best for your market.

    • Julian Mather

      Steve I think it’s best to get something out there, at least up on youtube. You can give people a link. This is less than ideal but something is better than nothing. All that I’ve just said comes with the caveat that you have to have a decent show. By that I mean if you say you make kids happy, the promo reel needs to have evidence of that. If you wow corporate audiences you need to see that. First attempts at this are rarely your best effort. You can ceratinly put these first attempts up and SEO them and benefit from some traffic to your site. The key here is to start to gear up and master video. It will be very hard to compete without it.

  • For me it is the time commitment. It is a lack of suitable footage, and then the time to plan, write and edit. I’ve no doubt it would be a great thing to have, but feel like I need to give it a fair bit of thought while there are other, immediately actionable things I also want to do.

  • Clayton Poland

    For me, I don’t want to produce a bad video. I think it is something that I will always change and improve over time. I appreciate the list of resources that you added in the notes that will help make the video look professional.
    I’m working on a new video now and just had a chance to listen to the podcast today. This is a great resource.

  • Pingback: Magician Ken Scott - Marketing old school | Magician Business - Marketing for magicians and performing artists()