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pricing for corporate thingies when you are used to small per head thingies

(12 Posts)
gussiegrips Tue 15-Jan-13 11:34:43

I've been doing the pelvic floor parties for six months, and it's going rather nicely, thank you.

Have applied for a venue for the Edinburgh Fringe Festival - going to run it as a show, hope for a review and publicity and get round the lack of advertising funds. And, have a laugh in the process.

As a consequence of the Fringe stuff, I've been asked to meet a commercial company to discuss my being involved with the launch of their new product.

It's a Proper Grown Up Business - with years of design, research and a staff team of PR, professors and folk who know what they are doing.

I know they were looking for a comedian to help with their launch. A professional comedian doing a corporate event would cost about 1k and up, depending on how in demand they are and which agency they are with.

I am not a professional comedian. I am used to getting petrol money and a drink at the bar! Though, I have done a fair bit of paid comedy and public speaking - the most I've been paid is £300 for an evening of comedy based around crafting.

What I have is a unique set of qualifications and skills that won't be matched by any professional comedian. I totally understand their product and their business, and their market - what they are selling fits in completely with my actual job. So, I don't doubt that I'd be way better for the gig than a professional comedian (with apologies to Kevin Bridges et al)

What I need is publicity and contacts. This company could hand me that on a plate. So, I'd do it for expenses!

But, I don't want to do myself out of the gig by seeming too cheap - bearing in mind that cheap = crap.

I'm out my depth with this pricing business. The actual writing, delivering and performing to a large group of professional heroes peers doesn't faze me at all...but, the business side of things? Pass me some crampons, this learning curve is steep!

WilsonFrickett Tue 15-Jan-13 16:56:51

So tell me:
Is it just a one-off performance at their launch or on-going work?
Are you including meetings to discuss/rehearsals/travel in your fee?
How long will it take to write your performance?
Will there be back and forth for comments/sign off etc or do you just write and deliver your script?
How many in the audience?
Are they filming/Youtubing/sharing the performance in any other way, if so with roughly how many people?
Who owns the rights to your work?
Can you quantify the publicity and contacts and actually come at a figure its worth for you?

(Also the 1k thing - yes a professional comedian will appear at an event for that sort of fee but they won't tailor their content at all, they'll just turn up, insert name of company into their standard schtick and make some easy jokes about the industry if you're lucky. For tailored content I'd expect to pay way more.)

DolomitesDonkey Tue 15-Jan-13 17:03:34

I think you may have just landed your first 1000+ gig! grin

gussiegrips Tue 15-Jan-13 17:59:40

Wilson, that's really helpful.

I don't know the answers to any of the questions though - I've tried to draw some information via email and phonecalls, but it's a firm "let's meet and chat"

I presume that's because this is a new, and very clever gadget - I expect there'd be a contract with a bit saying I wouldn't share details. They know I am in touch with other comapnies who make similar (but not revolutionary, that I expect the NHS would buy) I'll write your list out verbatim and just ask them!

And, yes, I agree, standard laughs are about 1k. I know one chap who gets £3k for an hour of the standard schtick I've heard him do over and over and over...yawn.

Would you be able to give me a vague idea of what you'd expect to pay for tailored content? Just so I'm armed.

I'm chuffed you think it'd be worth 1k, Dolomites. It certainly could be lucrative in terms of contacts and ongoing work...which is why I don't want to take the risk of looking like a money grabbing big heid!

Am learning this is a matter of confidence. If you don't ask, you don't get, right?

DolomitesDonkey Tue 15-Jan-13 18:08:38

Too right it is. You have extremely specialised knowledge and the only other two come close are Jo Brand and is it Someone smith?? Can't remember his name.

DolomitesDonkey Tue 15-Jan-13 18:09:29

Remember the woman who called you for an interview? Her rate went from 300 to 1700 a day in a year.

DolomitesDonkey Wed 16-Jan-13 05:43:04

I was thinking about you in bed last night grin - and my thoughts are these.

This is your ultimate "crossroads" moment.

You choose one path and you carry on doing tupperware and you'll do the fringe and you'll be great and next year you do tupperware.


You charge 3k (pulling a figure out of my ample arse) and you do the fringe and you are HUGE and come September you're sat on the GMTV couch and suddenly you're the UK's leading authority on the matter. And you end up with the big gigs on stage and not necessarily just about the ishoo.

In 2014 you'll find your face on these products! grin

WilsonFrickett Wed 16-Jan-13 10:34:29

I would expect to pay a minimum of 1.5k for a live conference host type thing, but this would be when I've written the script. Obviously that would then increase for a name, but equally it would increase for the content provision too.

You do need to balance the desire for on-going work with the initial fee but ultimately you also need to take the leap that you're worth it (as they say).

What I would actually do is go to the meeting, with your questions. Add 'what is your budget?' to the list. Then don't give them a price at the time. Say something like 'obviously keen to work with you etc etc and now have all the information will go back and cost your time and come up with a clear budget'.

That way you're not pulling figures out of your (or indeed me and Dol's bahooky). And also you should cost everything out to then provide a robust budget.

You need to include non-disclosure in that btw - if this is material that you then need to scrap and can't recycle into normal work it should take a cost premium.

Would also ask them if they're considering anyone else for the gig. Handy to know.

gussiegrips Wed 16-Jan-13 12:03:50

Crikey, this is giving me the collywobbles.

Mulling over a notion, making a business plan and what not are all very well - but, this is a bit Gulp Making.

I really appreciate the advice, that's soooo helpful. And the encouragement, my DH is a bit bemused by what I'm up to. Fair enough, he's not really my target audience...


I've printed off all my notes and am ploughing my way through them to get the fringe script fleshed out.

I need to get the prototype crocheted birthing doll (who's left with a prolapse, shame) finished - and start on the stage version.

I gave a phone interview for my professional journal yesterday, getting photo taken this afternoon. Hopefully, I can use that to reel in more publicity, which will help me get a good Fringe venue.

I've entered a couple of comedy competitions and am booking in gigs.

I am going to swoop into every single fanjo thread I can find on MN and see whether I can persuade them to let me do a webchat/seminar with a view to them adopting continence as a campaign.

I'm going to get thinner - if I am to be the face of the pelvic floor, I'd prefer to not add my jowels to the pun' o' mince appearance of pelvic organ prolapses...

I'm going to get this bloody gig, I'm going to be paid appropriately and I am going to save the world. One flappy fanny at a time.



WilsonFrickett Wed 16-Jan-13 12:29:38


Let me know about Edinburgh, I live there and am mad for crocheted prolapsed fannies. For real.

gussiegrips Wed 16-Jan-13 14:41:39

Do you Wilson?

Me too! <waving>

I've heard that there are people who are not interested in yarn based comedy props, but I've never seen one in real life...

WilsonFrickett Thu 17-Jan-13 11:06:25

<waves back>

That cannot be so. The juxtaposition of traditional hand-knotting and side-splitting humour (see what I did there?) simply cannot be denied.

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