Insights | May 30, 2024

Turn Ordinary Into OMG: The Importance Of Finding The Right Event Talent

How can you transform the ordinary into OMG to create events that leave long-lasting impressions? You harness the power of entertainment, and that starts by booking the right talent for your audience and event. But how do you identify the right talent? Is it like true love—you’ll know it when you see it? G7’s SVP, Rick Whetsel, and executive members of our Talent Booking Team, Michael Boltzman and Christian Henderson, participated in a roundtable discussion on this topic that answered this and other questions. Below are some highlights of what they shared. 

In most business scenarios, being a middle person doesn’t benefit both sides, but in the case of talent buying, it does. G7 is an independent middle buyer which means we aren’t tied to a specific talent roster. We’re not biased towards any artists, and we don’t represent talent. Other agencies will drop a contract on a client’s desk and say, “It’s done. Now you can take it from here.” But we don’t do that. We’re a 360-degree agency that works with the client from start to finish and we stay focused on their best interest throughout the entire process. 

Booking the right talent requires listening. It’s a 2-way conversation that needs to happen early in the process. It’s important for the client to share their goals for an event and what success looks like to them. At G7, we like to get involved in the planning stages, so we can help with strategy. During the Covid shutdown, we were forced to try new things with talent. As a result, experiences are more flexible now than they were a few years ago, so there are opportunities to create something unique with the right talent. 

Maya Angelou once said, “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” Using entertainment can move people to tears, make them cheer, or laugh. Evoking these emotions results in an engaged audience, and this speaks volumes for what the right talent can do to help stretch the attendee experience, not just onsite, but beyond the event itself. It’s about creating that connection between the brand and the artist in the audience’s mind—to utilize the attendee’s emotions that they feel towards the entertainment and redirect it so it becomes associated with the client and event. 

Because of our experience, we’re aware of all the potential challenges that can accompany talent booking. Our job is similar to a school’s crossguard. We’re constantly on the lookout to prevent our clients from veering into dangerous waters. Sometimes artists who are booked receive bad press for something they did or posted on social media, and it’s our responsibility to raise those red flags to clients as they come up. Additionally, you have to be ready to pivot. No matter how well you plan, things happen, and you have to be prepared to help clients through last-minute situations. Often it feels like our jobs are 50% planning and 50% crisis management because we’re dealing with highly driven people from both the artist and talent side to the client and business side.

The culture at G7 revolves around knowing what’s happening in the industry. Not only are we constantly talking to business professionals, we also sit on boards, keep in touch with agents, and maintain what’s prevalent with brands. Because we do this, people bring us opportunities like possible talent partnerships. 

Are you planning an upcoming event? Tell us about it here, and we’ll share how you can take it to the next level by integrating entertainment.