Don’t confuse an inquiry with an offer. I see it done all the time.
Have you ever had this happen to you?
You get a call from a venue who is all excited about the possibility of booking you for an event. You discuss the date, the price and a bunch of other details. It’s looking great and you think, “What a wonderful way to start the day?”
A few days pass, then a week, then a few weeks, and you don’t hear anything more from the person, so you give them a call. And now you begin to get the run-around, the delay tactics and the uncertainty that now creeps in after thinking it was a done deal. Don’t confuse an inquiry with an offer.
Now that sure date, seems to be dropping off the old calendar.
This was after all only an inquiry. This was not something to be counted on, as good as it seemed at the moment.
There were three things that you could have done on that first call to move this from an inquiry to an offer.
- Since you discussed dates, fees and other details, you could have suggested right then that if this sounded good, you could send them a contract.
- If they weren’t ready to jump to a contract, you could have placed a hold on the play date with a deadline for confirmation. Once the deadline was up and no confirmation was forthcoming, then you were no longer obligated to hold the date. Call them to remind them about the deadline and push them along to getting their act together to confirm the date in question. It would also give you a time-frame under which to get back to them and give them little incentives to confirm the date. This also frees you up to move along in case it doesn’t come through. It is much more systematic rather than emotional.
- Or you could simply set a date for a return call during which time they agree they will have an answer for you. I like the first two better, as they remove the possibility of dragging out the process. With number two, if they should happen to not have the ability to confirm when you get together on the agreed upon date, you can tell them you have to move on and find another venue.
An offer, on the other hand, is a solid confirmation of fees, dates, and other details that simply need to be agreed upon. Once agreed, the date is contracted and on the calendar as a done deal.
Don’t confuse an inquiry with an offer. Don’t let your emotions get too excited when someone is simply inquiring about your availability. I know it might be nice every now and again to get a call from an interested booker rather than making calls to bookers all the time. Just don’t get all wrapped up in the fantasy that it’s a booking until the offer is made and confirmed.
Here is a Free Offer form that you could start using NOW: Offer Form
How do you handle your offers? Which one of the three options above have you used?
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