“Can you come to our event?”
There are so many car events around the world, I can’t imagine what it would take to do them all — so I can’t. I run a digital marketing business and requires me to limit my time away from the Ofiice.
However, I have done quite a few events in recent years. I’ve been to England, Sweden, Germany, Canada, Thailand, Italy, Japan The Netherlands for car events. I’ve also done appearances here in the USA.
As you can imagine, as a business owner, I cannot hop on a plane to go to a Saturday or weekend car show just for fun. Not only would my business suffer, but my wife would strenuously object.
Therefore, back in 2017, I committed to her that I would only make paid appearances.
That has worked out well. It works out to about 2-3 trips a year and each trip has been amazing. So, with that said, I’ve put together an overview of how event promoters can have me appear at their event and how the most successful appearances work.
At shows, I interact with anyone and everyone. I answer questions, tell stories and occasionally autograph dashboards or collectibles.
I always bring about 500 printed 8×10 pictures of Fast & Furious cars that I autograph and usually, a box of 50 books to sign.
Ultimately, it’s about interacting with the fans. showgoers and sponsors.
I PREFER INDOOR EVENTS
First off, in case you didn’t already know, I sold my movie cars many years ago.
But if you are among the super fans who have been gracious by inviting me to their events in the last 10 years, I’m happy to do so. – under the right conditions.
This is why I prefer indoor events. If you’re running a racing event, your spectators will be watching. the racing, They won’t be walking in the paddock looking at company stands/tents/booths so it really doesn’t make sense for me to stand in a booth for 8 hours a day and try to shout over the noise of racing activities. If people are at an event for racing, having me standing in a tent does nothing for anyone. You need to get your money’s worth. Outdoor events are too noisy, not climate controlled and they only provide me the chance to talk 3-4 people at a time.
The best scenario is one where I’m giving stage time with a microphone and a set appearance time on stage (ex. Craig Lieberman Q&A at 11AM and 3PM) and then someone either interviews me, or I run a Q&A session and tell some stories.
Generally, the best scenario for everyone works like this – let me walk you through a common event setup. (a two-day weekend show as an example).
I fly to your city. I usually arrive in the evening, so I pick up my rental car and go to the hotel. In some cases, I meet the event promoter/staff for coffee/drinks.
If I’m flying to a foreign country, in some instances, I fly on Wednesday and arrive late Thursday.
Go to the event to set up a table for my autographed photos and books. This table is usually IN or ATTACHED to the sponsor’s booth.
Friday night, I usually do dinner with the sponsor and his/her special guests. That usually ends up being a private area of a restaurant with friends or clients of the sponsor.
Show day. Typically, I end up getting on a stage to be interviewed by someone (event promoter, event emcee, etc) and then I take questions from the audience. Often, we do two sessions of Q&A periods. During the rest of the day, I stand in the sponsor’s booth and sign autographs or I’ll walk the show to meet people.
Repeat of Saturday. Sometimes, there’s a post-event dinner to which I’m invited. Happy to do that, too.
MONDAY – Fly home.
Events should be booked 4-6 months in advance. Bookings are first-come, first-serve.
EXPENSES: (Must be booked and paid in full at the time of booking).
FEES & EXPENSES:
$500 for each day of appearances. (An “appearance” is any obligated appearance consisting of two hours or more).
Sponsor dinner – no charge. ( I love sponsor dinners, so I’m happy to hang around with those who set up my appearance.)
The typical total costs breakdown like this:
$300 roundtrip car service home >to/from airport
$225 Transport to and from event taxi/ car service over 3 event days
$300 roundtrip car service airport >to/from hotel
$1200 Hotel 4 nights
Budget $4600 to $5100. Payment is due upon booking. You can pay by wire transfer, Paypal, or credit card.
Generally, you’ll want to make your booking 90 days before your event so that you can market it. You’ll also want to reserve my event appearance as soon as possible to prevent me from booking another event. First come, first serve.
ADDS VALUE TO AN EVENT
Typically, an event promoter will reach out to me and invite me to their event. This works best when they work with a displaying sponsor – a company that has a big presence at the show.
They usually pick up the costs, and host me in their booth. I wear a branded shirt on their behalf. I set up my table in their booth and sign photos or books throughout the show.
When I arrive the night before, sometimes, the sponsor will setup a private meet and greet dinner or cocktail hour (I don’t drink – never acquired a taste for it, but I have no problem with drinking). This is a good time to get some one on one with the sponsor or his/her special clients or friends.
On event days, I’m in the booth for much of the day, breaking away to do Q&A’s or sometimes, car show judging.
The goal here is to provide value for the sponsor – the person or group who paid for me to be there.
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