Alan Sands Entertainment


I spent three days in my IAFE booth promoting myself to fairs, exhibitions, and a variety of other industries that wander through this trade show. This was my 25th consecutive year as a member, 21st or 22nd year exhibiting. Hypnotist James Szeles asked me on Facebook if it’s worth it...

...and I replied that I might get nothing for years but then land an exciting or exotic gig, so it’s a game of odds sometimes. Exotic can mean a lot of different things, like getting a gig in a state I’ve never worked in before (there are only four left!) or an event with a notable name (I just applied to perform at Groundhog Day in Punxsutawney, and I got to go to the United Arab Emirates for two weeks, plus sold Ron Severini two acts for Epcot Center (Tesseract and David Rosdeitcher, Zipcode Man).


I raffled off an iPad this year as a promotion. It didn’t get the return or quite the attention I was hoping to get because I paid IAFE $1,100 to stuff a raffle card into 1,300 really nice tote bags they were giving away. It can work, I just need to refine the method a bit.

I think direct mailing postcards is still one of the best methods of promoting, but it all depends on two things: name and brand recognition, plus timing. In another way of saying this: We all know who Jiffy Lube is, and if they send you a post card with that discount offer, you are only going to use it if you get it or can find it when you need it. Timing! Sure wish I had bought myself an iPad instead, but congratulations to the Eastern Idaho State Fair!