If you can’t get your show to, at least number three in it’s field, you could be in real trouble. Things aren’t like they used to be. Competition today is global. Here on Princess Cruises I’m not just competing with other magicians that we all know. Nowadays, Princess is receiving press kits from magicians all over the world. Often times, these guys are good, they’re polite and willing to work for less money. You have to be able to stand up to the best in the world, not just the best in the U.S. If your show is not number 1, 2 or 3, it will be on the down-side soon. It must be distinguishably excellent, or it will eventually become a casualty of competition. The goal is to do the work once, and have the money flow in for the rest of your life. This is what recording artists do. They work really hard to lay down that one song that’s a hit. Then they can live off the residuals for the rest of their life. So, for my time, what good does it do to create a great show and eventually have it succumb to its competition? The U.S. Economy is in dire straits, and experts say it’s going to get worse, not better. Will there will be more recessions in the future? Can your show sustain a stream of income for you that will survive ten recessions? When times get tough, agents and buyers gravitate toward quality. Make sure the quality of your show is simply outstanding. Before you design your show, stop and analyze your competition. Ask yourself, how your show compares. This is how companies operate. Bob Welch,the one time CEO for General Electric, has one major tenant: “Whenever we buy a new business, if it’s not in the top 5% in it’s field, we won’t buy it.” You’ve got some illusions. You’re working. That’s great. But it’s not enough. In North America alone, I can name sixty competitors with illusions and a show too. Where would you fall on this list? If you were an agent or buyer, with all of these to choices, who would you choose? You have all of these acts fighting for the same market-share. Magicians so often tell me that they try not to watch other magicians. I think this is poor advise. I watch every magician I can. You should go to their web-sites. Look at their videos. Ask yourself how you compare? What are these other magicians saying? What are their: features, benefits, claims, strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats? What are yours? Only by approaching things from this pragmatic point of view can we hope to be successful in our magic careers.