New Lessons: Showreels & Video, and Cruise Ship Magic

New lessons have been added to the range of How To Be A Professional Magician courses. These are on the subjects of Showreels and Using Video to promote your act, and how to move your carer to sea and become a professional Cruise Ship Magician.

These were both missing from when the course first launch in 2020 because each is such a large subject. In fact, at l had considered expanding these lessons into courses in their own right!

Using Showreels and Video to Market Your Magic Business

The Lesson on Showreels and Using Video Effectively starts with a discussion on how video has become more important, cheaper and assessable both as a creator and viewer; and how video is moving beyond a standard showreel used as an advert to promote your act.

Breaking it down further we look into the Types of Showreel and use for video you can use, why you would use them and the various applications of the different styles of video.

Next we break down the Elements of a Successful Showreel. Whatever the style, type and application of the video there are certain features you will want to ensure your video has to improve the chances of your video doing what you need it to do: not a simple vanity exercise to get views, shares and Likes; but to generate interest in your business that leads to enquiries, customers, bookings and financial reward.

We now look at the Equipment needed. With so many options and ever moving technology this isn’t a list of equipment, but a breakdown of the types of equipment you’ll need to produce your own videos. Even if you outsource to a professional videographer it pays to have an idea of how the equipment works so you can work with the videographer to get the most from their filming and editing.

Only now do we explore What Content You Need. At first you will think it’s simply footage of you performing, but that is just a part of a well produced showreel that is tailored to the wants and needs of your specific clients. It’s also possible you already have enough imagery to make a type of showreel, even if you don’t have video footage. We also explore the use of music, and why using your favourite song can have detrimental impact on your showreel – and even give business to other magicians!

This Lesson about Videos and Showreel is included in the Marketing and Sales section of the following courses:

Becoming a Cruise Ship Magician

The new Lesson on being a Professional Cruise Ship Magician has been compiled not from personal experience, but from interviews with professional established magicians who derive a the majority of their magic income from performing on cruise ships – from small afternoon shows through to headlining the theatre auditoriums on some of the world’s largest and most luxurious cruise ships.

This lesson is very detailed and gives information not so widely known. It’s written in a way that will enable an experienced magician to create a longer term plan to get a foothold in the cruise market, and what the booking agents, entertainment managers and passengers expect from you; and what you need to provide to get repeat bookings for future cruises to turn it into a lucrative and ongoing carer.

This covers what will be required of you and your act. This isn’t about choice of material (it is assumed that by the time you are ready to perform on a cruise ship your act will be honed down) that works well with an audience, but how to build acts that fit stringent criteria of what the cruise director wants his passengers to see, but also the standard travel restrictions and sizes of cargo box.

Once you have your act “ship ready” we explore how to promote yourself, and to whom! This can take a little work and dedication, and also time. However, the goal of this topic is to improve your chances of success with consistency. We also delve into what types of contract you’ll be offered, rates of pay to expect, and what to do when you are onboard.

This Lesson about Cruise Ships is included in the Magic At Corporate Events section of the following courses:

Podcast 008: Do You Really Need A Website?


How To Be A Professional Magician, Podcast 8

Do You Really Need A Website?

In this episode of the How To Be A Professional Magician Podcast we ask if you really need to have a website. It used to be essential; but with the dominance of social media platforms is spending money to design and host a website a worthwhile expense?In this episode we ask if having a website is necessary, especially with social media providing alternative platforms.

To answer in a single word: “Yes!”

Nowadays many magicians don’t actually have a website, relying primarily on using a Facebook business page (not their own personal Facebook page, though even then some do). However these magicians are often amateur magicians who wish to give the outwards appearance of looking professional, but don’t want to to invest either the time or money into creating a unique website.

With a website a potential customer will know you are more professional than a magician who links to a Facebook page. The website domain name should be used for your email address too, ‘free’ email addresses such as Gmail and Hotmail doesn’t look professional in the eyes of a prospect.

Remember that by relying on a third party social media platform you don’t have control. The format of the pages could change, or at a time in the future you may need to pay to continue using the service – or as least pay for even those following your page to see your posts. Essentially your business model is reliant on the business model of the social media platform’s business model, and that may not be in your interest.

Whilst researching you, your prospective clients may link from your business page to your personal page; and if you haven’t amended your privacy settings they may see things you would prefer they didn’t (such as political views, opinions, personal photographs and “banter” between your friends).

There’s the possibility that your social media account could get hacked or your account suspended. The worst case would be having your entire account deleted. This would mean you lose complete control, whereas with your own website you can upload a back-up and continue business.

Website are quick, cheap and easy to design, develop and host; and easy to update and expand as you and your business develops. You can continue to use social media, and link between your website and social media accounts to obtain clients and keep them engaged.

If you have any questions about building your magic business please email [email protected].

Please subscribe so you can get more weekly bite-size magic business lessons.

You can also listen to the Podcast on the following formats:

Apple Podcasts (iTunes):




Podcast 006: Should You Send a Newsletter?


How To Be A Professional Magician, Podcast 2

Should You Send a Newsletter?

In this episode we ask if you should send out a regular newsletter? If so, how often, and what should you write in it?

Sending a newsletter is a great way to stay in contact with people, but who do you want to be staying in contact with. Your newsletter mailing list may include:

  • Prospective clients,
  • Industry professionals (such as agents, event management companies and event coordinators at venues),
  • Past clients.

Newsletters are a great way to reconnect with people, remind them who you are, show them what you do, and how professional you are.

Sending a newsletter is a great way to raise awareness of cross-selling opportunities, especially to past clients have booked you for one type of event and may not be aware you can also work at others.

Remove those that didn’t book you once their event has passed, and remove past clients a sensible time afterwards (such as 6 to 12 months). Ensure you comply with all GDPR and Data Protection regulations, and ensure you make it easy for people to unsubscribe should they wish.

How often should you send a newsletter? Quarterly (once every three months) works well.

From personal experience I found monthly newsletters can be a little too often, and isn’t required. You can also start running out of material for the newsletter.

Quarterly newsletters gives you three month to accumulate enough interesting stories and items to include in the newsletter.

What to include in your newsletter? You may want to include things that have happened since the last newsletter, such as:

  • Prestigious bookings you have attended,
  • Television or media appearances,
  • Involved in any interesting projects,
  • Look at your blog articles and social posts for inspiration.

Link your newsletter to your website and social accounts so people can find out more, but avoid linking to external websites if you can help it.

As well as looking back you can also look forward to upcoming seasons, and promote your seasonal shows and party options (such as promoting magic at Christmas parties in your autumn newsletter).

If you have any questions about building your magic business please email [email protected].

Please subscribe so you can get more weekly bite-size magic business lessons.

You can also listen to the Podcast on the following formats:


Apple Podcasts (iTunes):


Google Podcasts:


Podcast 004: What Should You Do At A Networking Meeting?


How To Be A Professional Magician, Podcast 4

What Should You Do At A Networking Meeting?

In this episode we ask what the benefits of a networking meeting are, what you should do when you are there and how to prepare before you attend.

Networking meetings are events were people in different professions get together to explain what they do to other professions; with the view of exchanging business between each other.

Often at the meeting each attendee will be asked to stand up and give a short (often for one or two minutes) pitch. Therefore, if you are attending a networking meeting prepare in advance what you will say. This is sometimes known as an ‘elevator pitch’.

Ensure your pitch makes it clear why someone would want to book you; just saying you are a magician and list the type of events you work at isn’t enough.

Ensure you make clear the benefit to others – not just to those at the meeting. Often people will refer friends and family to others they met at a networking meeting.

Don’t just perform a trick in your pitch. It will be fun and entertaining, but it won’t give the benefits. You may not even want to introduce yourself as a magician at first, but explain the benefits first.

If people are interested in the service you offer they may come up to you at the end of the meeting, and this is then a good opportunity to show a demonstration.

Networking is a two-way street, and you will be expected refer business to the other attendees. If you turn up expecting people to give you business without giving any in return it’s likely they won’t.

Take plenty of business cards.

Some networking groups have membership fees, and you will need to be a member before you can take full advantage of the benefits of the group.

As well as membership costs there are costs for food and travel, as well as the time taken to attend. It’s likely that you won’t recoup these costs straight away, but as time goes on people will still remember you and pass you business years afterwards.

If you have any questions about building your magic business please email [email protected].

Please subscribe so you can get more weekly bite-size magic business lessons.

You can also listen to the Podcast on the following formats:

Apple Podcasts (iTunes):




Podcast 002: Should You Be A Magician For All Occasions?


How To Be A Professional Magician, Podcast 2

Should You Be a Magician For All Occasions?

In this episode we ask should you advertise that you are a “Magician for all occasion” on your marketing.

It’s likely that as a professional magician you already work at all types of occasions, and you will want to work at all types of events.

However, you don’t want to come across as a magician for all occasions to your prospective customers.

Firstly, it (and variations of it) are popular, and it is a phrased used by quite a lot of magicians on their websites and therefore it doesn’t make you stand out amongst the others.

What you really need to do is come across to your potential clients that you are an expert, and specialise and have experience in exactly the type of event they are arranging.

This could be be that you have the perfect act or perfect trick for their event, and this is communicated to them. Of course, it may be the same act or trick – but it is customised to fit.

This demonstrates you are an expert in this field. They will know that you are experienced at working at similar events, and makes you stand out against the other magicians who may now come across as “generic” by not specialising.

Setting up a website, having business cards and brochures that focus on a particular type of event will really demonstrate that you are expert in that field. At a minimum you should have separate pages on your website.

Once you have established to the prospective client that you are the expert magician they want, you can then cross-sell and tell them of secondary services you offer in addition to the primary service that they initially required.

This adding of extras to the primary service can increase the total income you are also able to generate from each individual booking.

Once at the booking you will be demonstrating that you are an expert in that field, but you can use the opportunity to let the guests know you can also be booked for other events, and therefore increase the number of repeat bookings and referrals you get.

If you have any questions about building your magic business please email [email protected].

Please subscribe so you can get more weekly bite-size magic business lessons.

You can also listen to the Podcast on the following formats:

Apple Podcasts (iTunes):




Brand Awareness – Video Business Lesson

HTBAPM Brand Awareness

In this business lesson we cover the subject of branding yourself, and creating brand awareness.

Before you even start to think about ways to market your magic business you need to develop your brand. It is important that your brand is unique and stands out against others, so don’t just copy another magician’s style.

Your brand doesn’t need a logo, simply deciding on what fonts and colours you will use is enough to get started, and it can develop as times goes on and your business evolves.

Ensure that you come across as an expert, and that your branding looks professional and conveys the style for the type of events you want to be working at.

Use your brand consistently in all your marketing, that way it will build the awareness with the audience; meaning that they will have familiarity with you when it comes to deciding which magician they want to book.

Wedding Fairs – Video Business Lesson

HTBAPM Wedding Fairs

In this business lesson we cover the subject of wedding fairs.

Wedding fairs are a great way to meet brides and grooms, show them a demonstration of your magic and discuss how you can entertain them and their guests on their wedding day.

We look at the types of wedding fair and how you can choose the best one for you to attend. What you need, and what you should do whilst you are there. Most importantly, we discuss what information you need to collect from the bride and groom, and how to use that information to follow up afterwards to increase the chances of you getting booked.

New YouTube How To Be A Professional Magician Videos

I’m currently producing a range of How To Be A Professional Magician videos for the YouTube channels.

Each video is about 5 minutes long and is crammed with bite-sized actionable content to get you started. They are no fuss and throw you in at the deep end. No waffling, and no excuses for you not to take action right away!

Check out the videos already available, and subscribe to the YouTube channel to get updated as soon as new ones are released.

Click: The How To Be A Professional Magician YouTube Channel

Learning more

The How To Be A Professional Magician Courses cover everything you need to know to set up a business as a professional magician. The Full Course contains all the information (as well as 30 minute Skype consultation to help you get your business launched), and the abridged courses also cover business set-up.

What is a Professional Magician?

By definition a professional magician is someone makes their living performing magic. However, there’s more to it than that, a magician must also act professional, and be perceived as professional.

If you have tooth-ache you want to see a professional dentist, someone who has training, experience, the right tools for the job and a clean and hygienic room to operate in. You shouldn’t trust a dentist that doesn’t fulfil all these criteria.

Say you drive a nice car and the clutch goes on it, you could spend a weekend with a friend who has some tools attempting to jack up the car on your driveway, but it’s more likely you’ll take it to a qualified mechanic.

People are willing to pay for a professional service

From the first instant a potential client comes into contact with you, you must have an air of professionalism that gives people the confidence to book you.

The professionalism comes across as your tricks, props, patter, website, pictures, videos and marketing materials.

(The How To Be A Professional Magician courses cover all of this, and more!)

Being a full-time professional magician gives you freedom

You are your own boss, and you control your destiny.

Monday to Friday is not spent commuting in rush hour, to work for someone else. A professional magician with a smartphone can run the admin side of their business from anywhere. I have successfully operated the “business end” of my business whilst on a cruise-ship for ten days, only using my mobile for brief internet access when in port.

It does take hard work to set systems up and create the professional act, but once done you are only limited to the times and places you book into your diary.

You have direct control of your income too. Once you get established and your marketing is bringing in a constant flow of enquiries you can book as many, or as few, bookings as you wish.

Being a professional magician is a lifestyle career.

You still have to turn up and provide the shows; but you decide which ones you take, how much you charge, where they are, and when you do them.

Does this sound better than spending 40 hours a week in an office, directly trading your time for money, and ultimately using your skills, talents and resources (time is a resource, and you only have so much of it) to make money for someone else?

If you are going to make some changes to your life, or embark on a big project (such as becoming a professional magician) then you are going to be going outside your comfort zone. It won’t be easy.

Being successful has requirements, often taking you outside of your comfort zone

So now you know the advantages to being a professional magician, and why to need to act like a professional magician.

This article is a based on a lesson in the “Turning Professional” section of the How To Be A Professional Magician course, as well as the abridged versions

Learning more

The How To Be A Professional Magician Courses cover everything you need to know to set up a business as a professional magician. The Full Course contains all the information (as well as 30 minute Skype consultation to help you get your business launched), and the abridged courses also cover business set-up.