One of the best parts of being a clown or family entertainer is the interaction we have with people; chatting with them, telling jokes, or posing for a picture. Now don’t get me wrong, the stage show, juggling, balloon twisting and such are all fun to do, but spending time and having fun with the crowd is my favorite.
Sometimes when we have that long balloon or face paint line, it becomes difficult to be silly and zany while we are trying to keep the line moving and make everyone happy. In that moment when you feel like you are just a face painting or balloon twisting robot, take a break for a second and talk to the crowd between clients. If you get the whole crowd involved in a joke or ask them to make their favorite animal sounds, it breaks the mode of standing and waiting in line and turns it into a play time and lessens the stress everyone.
Also when we are on stage working a skit with other clowns or a magician performing amazing acts of wonder, we can become disconnected from our audience. We are busy remembering lines or cues trying to make the skit go well and although we are hopefully making the crowd laugh or gasp in wonder, we don’t want our audience to feel as if they are watching a pre-recorded program. Make sure to look at the audience and engage them when delivering the punch line of a joke or pause for dramatic effect as the magic happens. You can take a minute in between skits to ask if they are having fun or get everybody up to do a quick round of the chicken dance, no one said everything we do has to make sense.
A true way to have a connection is with audience participation. Having an audience member on stage can produce some good reactions and really get the crowd involved in your show. Remember to have fun with your helper and not make fun of them. I have had some of the funniest lines come from helpers on stage, be on your toes and roll with the moment.
If time allows, mingle with the guests after your stage performance is over, people love to meet the talent and often get pictures with them. While packing up your face paints and balloons, be available to answer questions; people often wonder if they need special balloons to make those cool creations or is that a certain kind of paint used in your beautiful designs. This one on one time can be a very valuable marketing tool, if people feel they made a connection they will be more likely to use your services again or refer you to someone else.
We want our customers to be happy and that little extra effort to connect with them can be the difference between a good show and a great show.
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