Everyone wants the most bang for their buck when it comes to planning events. Particularly with event entertainment, there are many ways to save money without having to settle for what’s cheap.
1. Customise an existing show rather than create a new one from scratch.
Many professional event entertainment vendors will have a wide repertoire of performances you can pick “off-the-rack” for your events. Unfortunately, these shows may not always fit your budget or venue, or perhaps your boss absolutely wants to see your company’s branding within the performance. When faced with this predicament, consult with your vendor and identify whether any of their performances can be adapted to your requirements. This avoids the costs of creating a brand-new performance from scratch – something you may not always have the budget, venue or lead time for!
2. Don’t wait until the last minute
If you can help it, avoid booking your entertainment vendor at the last minute. If you do, everything associated putting the performance together for your event date will cost significantly more once the word "expedite" is mentioned. This is reflective of the extensive work that goes into making a performance stage-ready – from the “off-the-rack” routines to the newly customised ones too. The more lead time the better – and the more you can be assured that you will get the most talented performers, well-rehearsed choreography, gorgeous costumes… the list goes on!
3. Get a package discount.
If you find yourself in a tight spot with your event budget, but really love a particular performance for your event, talk to your entertainment vendor and see if you can negotiate a package discount for booking multiple performances. This can mean booking a few performances for the same event, or they may even be able to accommodate packaged performances held for entirely different events.
4. Involve your own staff as performers.
A recent trend at corporate events is companies using their internal staff as the event’s entertainment. The execution cost of these “staff participation” performances will be significantly lower than that of hiring a professional dance group because the only fees would be for choreography, training, on-site coordination and costumes. Not only does this help slim down the event budget, staff will also get unique, interdepartmental team-building skills out of the experience.
5. Book local.
No matter where you hold your event, always aim to book local people to bring your event vision to reality. If you are holding an event interstate or overseas, once you add travel and accommodation costs for performers – prices skyrocket. An experienced entertainment provider usually has an extensive contact list of creative folk across many cities, and will endeavour to hire local performers and production personnel wherever possible to keep costs low. Others have business models that enables them to produce the same shows with local performers in almost any city.
6. Don’t be afraid to go full service.
Sometimes it pays off better when hiring an established, full-service show production company that creates the shows in-house instead of a smaller independent artist or freelance producer. These vendors will usually have a greater ability to accommodate your budget due to their larger teams, wider skill set and more diverse range of performance material. So don’t let any preconceived notions about what you think a show production company may cost – you may be shutting yourself off from a long-lasting, mutually profitable relationship with an experienced event entertainment provider.