I read a lot of magic books – but The Wealthy Magician is fairly unique within that genre. It is a book not about tricks (so I know lots of magicians won’t read it!) but about the business and commercial side of magic. As such, I have only read one or two things to compare, which makes it pretty well placed for a proper review.
Do you want to be a Wealthy Magician?
One of Roy’s main arguments is that a magician should be properly valued. So much of the first section of the book is a sustained plea to ask for higher fees, not lower, and to hold out for better quality gigs rather than being involved in a race for the bottom.
In fact, the first section is a little repetitive, and a significant amount of it could be summed up in the following two sentences. Richy Roy thinks a magician is worth $2000 (Canadian Dollars – for my UK audience – that is about £1100) for a gig. And if you want to earn that, you have to ask for it!
Much of that section is about self-belief – and actually asking for what you think you should be worth – rather than what you think they might be prepared to pay.
If you read any good books on business (negotiating, marketing, advertising etc.) then many of the concepts here will be familiar to you. What Roy so helpfully does is apply the principles specifically to the context of the performing magician.
Realistic and (mainly) up to date
It is filled with illustrations from his own experience which brings the book to life and eloquently make the points.
Part 1 – then – is about Price Tag. Part 2 is about Marketing and Part 3 is about Sales. Some of the ideas will need a little contextualisation for a UK audience – but most I would say are broadly applicable.
I found The Wealthy Magician easy to read and full of helpful advice. There are some brilliant ideas here for diversifying and for building your brand.
It is ‘up to date’ in the sense that it does have an awareness of Social Media and the impact that is having on advertising and marketing. However, perhaps inevitably with a book, it already feels slightly out of date in that regard. Since I would say that the dominance of Facebook is already reducing – no doubt there will be another big thing before long.
With this small caveat notwithstanding, I would suggest this is compulsory reading for anyone contemplating the move to being a full time professional magician. If that is one of your aspirations then this book would greatly help you take the right approach from a business point of view.
I would recommend reading it alongside a book which might help you think through the more performance related side of things – and my top recommendation there would be The Approach (you can read our review here).
You can pick up a copy of the Wealthy Magician from the Merchant of Magic for £38.50 (at the time of writing).
Or possibly ever so slightly cheaper at Amazon.
Review copy kindly provided by Murphys Magic to whom dealer enquiries should be directed.
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