Promotional Help and Guidance for FUNdrai$ing events

This page will make your life easier. Trust us. We've done this for decades. We don�t expect you to be a tech savvy expert in comedy show production and marketing. That�s been our job for decades, and we�re enthusiastic about sharing what we�ve learned after 200,000+ shows.

The process of having a successful show involves four steps:

  1. Gather promotional materials
  2. Spread the word and generate buzz
  3. Maximize $$$ raised
  4. "Laugh all the way to the bank!"

1. Gather promotional materials. We handle the hard part

The success of your event depends above all on promotion. Not only do supporters need to know about the show, they need to know why this is a show they don�t want to miss. We will provide full color posters and graphics for online use custom designed for your event. Just print the posters. Here are a few examples.

Also, if you need tickets, those will be provided as well.

tickets example

2. Spread the word and generate buzz

Now that you have graphics, people need to know about your event and where they can buy tickets.

Tickets

Supporters need the option to be able to purchase tickets online. Some will also need paper tickets. If your school doesn't already have its own ticketing system, Easy printable tickets can be found at Amazon. Other alternatives include the Huddle Ticket Program which provides free tickets to your school. Huddle makes their income by selling advertising on the tickets.

Online ticket sales can be sold through the school's pre-existing online shop. If that's not an option, you can sell tickets online via sites like PayPal or EventBrite.

Creating Buzz

Now that you've got tickets to sell. It's time to create some interest in your show. The best way to create a buzz around the school is to get staff involved in the show. Have students use a "penny vote" to determine the funniest faculty member(s) who will do five minutes of stand-up during the show. If the chosen faculty member needs some assistance, then our Underground Comedy School will freely offer guidance.

Article: Top 10 Best Practices on How to Use Social Media to Promote Your Event.

Part I: #1-5
Part II: #6-10

The links above cover Facebook and Twitter. If you have another social networking site, you'd like to use. We'll be happy to offer assistance on those as well.

Creating and Editing Facebook Events

Tip: Assign someone to the Facebook event page. He/she should post something daily so that the event stays top of mind. These can be YouTube clips of the comedians, photos/headshots of the comedians, or in the case of a fundraiser, give real examples of why the money is needed: "the gym floor needs repair," "the baseball team needs new uniforms..." Keep people engaged, and encourage them to share. If your Facebook specialist needs any help filling that event page, have them contact Adam at Comedy Caravan Talent.

Add the links to each of your school's organizations' Facebook pages and other social media. Email, text, and/or tweet the links to staff, students and PTA members, providing them with the opportunity to preview the artists, ensuring everyone knows about your event well in advance.

3. Maximize $$$ Raised

Sponsors:

Ask a local printer to be a sponsor by printing programs and a few banners: one to be seen by students, one for the school parking lot and one for a drive-by traffic non-students/parents).

Solicit other sponsors to buy ads in the program and/or provide $$$ so that underprivileged students and their families can attend.

No need to reinvent the wheel when it comes to alternate sources of income on the night of the show:
  • raffle
  • silent auction
  • split pot

Here�s how easy it is to sell 600 tickets.

Identify 100 families that are REAL supporters of the school. Ask them that in addition to attending the event, they invite two other couples that are friends of theirs to join them for an evening of healthy humor with the funds going to support their local school. That�s 6 tickets X 100 people = 600. At $10, that's $6000. At $20, that's $12000 gross. AND that doesn�t consider anyone else who may want to attend.

Other ways to get parents involved

Suggest parents that may own or manage businesses to provide tickets for their staff to use. After all, in times like these, EVERYONE could use a dose of some stress-relieving humor therapy.

Ask parents to post information about this on their Facebook pages.

Forward an email to online tickets sales with a personal note explaining the importance of raising money.

Offer VIP tickets for higher prices. Offer VIP tickets to businesses in exchange for large/generous donations.

Programs are perfect for selling ads to local sponsors.

Example of the outside cover of your program.

Example of the inside (to be printed on the back of the outside cover.)

4. "Laugh All the Way to the Bank!"

When it's time to start the show, it's nice to have some high energy music to bring the opening comedian to the stage. Download our traditional Comedy Caravan opening. This mp3 includes a voice over asking people to turn off cell phones, etc. It ends with: "And now on with the show!"

A Few Helpful Hints from Comedy Caravan Talent for a Perfect Event!

Some Sound Advice
a. You'll need a basic PA system with at least two low impedence XLR microphone inputs and a traditional microphone stand on a round, weighted base. Specific details depend on the entertainer.
b. Avoid using the overhead "intercom" speakers and podium microphones.

Lighting
a. Proper lighting makes your performer shine. Make sure there is a light focusing on the stage. You'll want to see the expressions a performer makes. It's all part of the show. The surrounding lights should be dimmed to give focus to your performer.
b. Avoid a room that is either too dark or completely lit with no focus on the stage (too bright of a room with distract guestís attention from the performer).

Seating
a. Have seats placed right up to the edge of the stage. Performers need the energy from a crowd. It also improves their timing.
b. Avoid separating the stage and the audience with a dance floor.
c. Look at Me!!! This sounds like a no-brainer, but many times the seating doesn't actually face the stage. Or there are many distractions nearby.
d. Avoid seating that forces the audience to twist or strain to watch the show or putting the stage in front of a window or near a busy hallway

Food
a. Whenever possible present the entertainment immediately following dessert.
b. Avoid having a performance before or during mealtime.
c. Avoid having a performance while the wait staff is clearing the tables. Knives and forks are loud!†

Who is this Guv?
a. Proper and clear introductions add a little credibility to an otherwise ''unknown'' performer.
b. Avoid "I'm not sure where we got this next guy, I sure hope he's funny!"

Clear The Air
a. If the comedy show follows a really heavy or sensitive subject, have a brief intermission to clear the air.
b. Avoid: "Profits were down 31 per cent and we'll have to lay a few of you off. Now, here to make you laugh ..."

Mood Music
a. Simply plugging a CD player into the PA system will allow you to set the mood for the evening. Light music during dinner, followed by up-tempo music right before the comedy show is best.
b. Avoid a total lack of music, or a Kenny G saxophone solo before introducing the entertainer.

Timing
a. Your entertainment should hit the stage as closely to the planned time as possible. Many performers "gear up" to hit the stage with positive energy.
b. Avoid having an 8pm performance at 9:30, when everyone has been attending meetings since 8 a.m.
c. Always present awards AFTER the comedy performance.
d. Keep it short and sweet: At most corporate events, the employees have put in a full day of work, and may not have the energy to endure a full hour of entertainment. Unlike watching a band, comedy requires active listening. The best corporate shows are between 35-45 minutes.

These show tips (with some editing) were written by comedian Rik Roberts of www.rikroberts.com
Thank you Rik!

The Download Section

We have done a lot of the work for you. Anything you need to download will be found here.
To download a file, right-click (on PC) or hold control and click (Mac), then select "Save link as..."

Comedy Caravan Poster Blanks
Download Blank Color Poster (4.2 MB)
Download Black and White Blank Poster (1.4 MB)
Download Color Poster Example (6 MB)

Comedy Caravan Logos
Download Color Logo for Web Use (PNG file, 72 dpi, 1 MB)
Download Color Logo for Print Use (JPG, 300 dpi, 3 MB)

The perfect music to start off the show
These are links to an mp3 you can use to start the show. It contains The Tonight Show theme. Once it's been tested to make sure it works thru your PA, all that's needed is to hit "play" 7 minutes before you want to start the show. Merely fade the theme away as the emcee walks on and hit stop. It's that easy.

http://www.standupexperts.com/downloads/Caravan_Opening_without_voice-over.mp3
(This mp3 contains no pre-recorded intro, and allows for a live intro to be made over the PA.)

http://www.standupexperts.com/downloads/Caravan_Opening_with_Voice-Over.mp3
(This mp3 asks the audience to silence phones, whisper only, and ends with: "And now on with the show!")

You keep 100% of revenue generated by selling ads in a show program
Download a template for the outside (front and back cover) of the program.
Download a template for the inside panels of the program.