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Entertainment & Events

Comedy Club

People can always use a laugh. Keep them smiling by giving comedians an outlet for their material.

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Business At A Glance

Comedy Club

Startup Costs: $10,000 – $50,000
Online Operation? No

Business Overview

Comedy clubs are a very popularentertainment venue, and there are a few approaches that can be takenin terms of starting a comedy club. The first and most costly option isto open a comedy club from a fixed location. The second and cheaperoption is to establish a mobile comedy troop and book performances forthe troop across the country for nightclub engagements, seminarperformances, weddings, universities, colleges, and many other specialoccasion events. Regardless of which approach is employed to establishthe business, comedy clubs and acts are extremely popular as more andmore people are seeking to reduce stress in their lives through humor.

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Entertainment & Events

Event and Party Planner

If you have a knack for planning and parties, this could be the biz for you.

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Business At A Glance

Event and Party Planner

Startup Costs: $2,000 – $10,000
Home Based: Can be operated from home.
Part Time: Can be operated part-time.
Online Operation? No

Business Overview

If you love to plan and host parties and special events, then startingan event and party planning service will be right up your alley. Eventand party planners share common personality traits; they aredetail-oriented, well-organized, good communicators and very creative. In a nutshell, event and party planners are responsible for organizingand hosting special events such as wedding anniversaries, birthdays,graduations and award ceremonies for their clients.

Duties can includecreating and sending out invitations, selecting event locations,decorations, arranging for entertainers and speakers, selectingcaterers and menus and just about everything else that is required topull a special event together and put it on without a hitch, includingarranging to get everything cleaned up after all the guests have left.Networking, networking and more networking will be your main marketingtool for attracting and keeping new business, peppered liberally withadvertising in newspapers, the Yellow Pages and direct-mail fliers. Youwill also need to build a reliable team of contractors; businesses andindividuals who you can call on and rely on to supply products andservices required for hosting events on time and on budget. The morereliable your team is, the more successful and profitable your eventand party planning service will be.

The Market

Businesses and individuals who are planning special occasions and events.

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Entertainment & Events

Online Wedding Service

Busy brides often turn to the web for convenient shopping and planning. Create a directory of vendors and services.

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Business At A Glance

Online Wedding Service

Startup Costs: $10,000 – $50,000
Home Based: Can be operated from home.
Online Operation? Yes

Business Overview

Starting a commercial website venture solelydedicated to wedding could potentially make you the next onlinegazillionaire. The site can be indexed by state or even city and bebroken down into subsections featuring every imaginable wedding-relatedproduct or service including:

  • A directory of wedding photographers and videographers
  • A directory of wedding singers, DJs and bands
  • A directory of wedding planners and caterers
  • A directory of formalwear and rentals for both men and women.
  • A directory of limousine services <BR>Site visitors would simplyselect the geographical area they live in, choose the topic ofinterest, and start to view the listing and information. Anyone gettingmarried would be able to log onto the site to find a photographer, plana honeymoon and book a reception hall all with the click of a mouse.

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Entertainment & Events

In-Store Demonstration Service

Do you know how to hold a crowd’s attention? Create in-store demonstrations.

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Business At A Glance

In-Store Demonstration Service

Startup Costs: Under $2,000
Home Based: Can be operated from home.
Part Time: Can be operated part-time.
Online Operation? No

Business Overview

If you’ve got a flair for demonstrations, people skills and the gift oforganization, then an in-store demonstration service might be thebusiness for you. You’ll contract with food brokers and other suppliersand manufacturers to show off their products via your own on-call,personally trained demonstrators.

People are more likely to purchasegrocery products after tasting them, and customers of other types ofgoods can also be enticed by something they can see in action, feel,hear or smell, all of which makes the demonstration business valuableto brokers and manufacturers as well as store owners. You can startsmall and grow big–some demonstration companies manage as many as2,000 to 20,000 demonstrators in several states.

You’ll probably startoff by doing the demos yourself and hire others as your company grows.The advantages to this business are that you’re always on the go sothere’s no time to get bored, you can work from home, and your start-upcosts are minimal. Many owners of in-store demo businesses have abackground in the grocery industry. This is helpful but not an absolutemust. The must-haves are strong organizational skills to keep track ofyour demonstrators, their assignments and the materials they’ll need tobring to each job; and top-notch administrative skills for paying yourpeople and making sure you get paid. People skills are anothermust–you’ll be dealing with lots of personalities, from store managersto food brokers to your own demonstrators. You’ll also need a flair fordemonstrating products and for teaching others how to do the same.

The Market

Yourbest clients will be supermarkets and warehouse superstores like Costcoand Sam’s Club, but you can also sell your services to departmentstores. Offer free demos to supermarket managers. Once they see howwell you do, they can connect you with food distributors andmanufacturers or hire you themselves–some stores offer demos of theirown recipe ideas. You can also contact distributors and manufacturerson your own–if you’ve got access to a computer or a typewriter, makeup a letter describing your services and requesting an appointment,then follow up with a phone call. And don’t forget companies other thangrocers–lots of products lend themselves to demonstrations.

Needed Equipment

You’ll eventually need a computer with a laser printer and a faxmachine, but to start with, you don’t really need anything but a phoneand a car to get to your demo sites. You can hire your staff asindependent contractors or as employees, depending on the laws in yourstate. This can be a sticky area as far as the IRS is concerned, so besure to check with an accountant when you reach the hiring stage.
Sincedemonstrators supply their own equipment, you’ll need an electricfrying pan or griddle for serving those hot tidbits, a card table onwhich to operate, and a wastebasket for used paper napkins andtoothpicks.

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