Corporate Entertainment: A Step By Step Guide

The Company Men - Corporate Entertainment - Banner Photo on stage - Funny Business Agency

What is Corporate Entertainment?

Corporate entertainment refers to a special group of performers who’re hired to entertain guests at private events such as company retreats, holiday parties, sales meetings, industry conferences, and the like. Basically, if a corporation (or any other kind of business entity) is hosting the event and hires a professional act to entertain guests, said act is corporate entertainment.

The purpose of corporate entertainment is to keep guests engaged and having fun. For example, many events start with a general session that includes some kind of performance, be it a quick comedy routine, magic display, or gameshow-style activity in order to intrigue guests. Events that include dinner sometimes offer pre-meal entertainment to help set the mood and give guests something to chat about.

It’s important to realize that corporate entertainment has changed over the years. Whereas in the past, it mostly referred to food and alcohol, corporate entertainment is now widely understood to mean a performance of some kind, hopefully delivered by a talented and experienced professional.

These folks have a unique ability to make events more enjoyable and memorable and many corporate event planners realize that the value of booking a pro is quite high.

To read more about corporate Christmas parties and entertainment from days gone by, click here.

Why Use Corporate Entertainment?

At work, there always seems to be more things to do then there are hours in the day. This causes elevated stress levels—even for the workers who are passionate about their jobs. By adding corporate entertainment to your next business meeting or company-wide event, you’ll allow your staff to relax and enjoy themselves. When this happens, team morale will rise.

There’s also the employee satisfaction element to consider. Employees who don’t feel appreciated often feel unsatisfied in their work and are much more likely to seek alternative employment. Turnover is an expensive problem—one you’d be wise to avoid if at all possible.

By booking quality entertainment for your staff to enjoy, you’ll increase the likelihood that they’ll feel satisfied in their work and loyal to your company, which will save you loads of money in the long run.

What Are the Benefits of Corporate Entertainment? 

We’ve already touched on a few benefits of corporate entertainment, but here’s a more comprehensive list. Corporate entertainment is valuable because it can:

  • Engage Your Guests
  • Increase Customer Retention
  • Build Camaraderie Between Staff
  • Make Employees Feel Valued
  • Increase the Energy at an Event
  • Help Guests Focus on Event Content
  • Boost Morale For All Team Members
  • Build Anticipation For Upcoming Events
  • Help Lure Top Talent to Your Company
  • Create a Positive Company Culture
  • Build Important Relationships in Your Industry
  • Build Brand Authority in Your Niche

To make sure your employees and/or customers have a memorable experience at your events, select professional entertainers who are suited for your specific audience and the tone of your event.

What are the best types of corporate events?

The types of corporate events vary, based on the needs of the business. Corporate events can be large and held in convention centers and large hotel conference rooms. They can also be smaller, held in restaurants and smaller event facilities. The best corporate events will offer some type of entertainment and drinks/snacks. That part of the event is also known as corporate hospitality, which is the process of entertaining guests at corporate events.
 

What entertainment is best for Conventions & Conferences?

Any situation where you have a larger number of people congregating – focused on learning and networking – will benefit from some “downtime” where they can relax. Corporate entertainment is a great way to engage the audience while also giving them a break. It creates good vibes and typically leads to higher satisfaction from event attendees. Corporate entertainment energizes convention/conference attendees.

What is the best entertainment for Award Banquets & Celebrations?

These festive events are the perfect place to host some great entertainment. It increases the good energy, it offers something fun for your guests and it makes the event more memorable – creating conversations that last long after the event is over. Musical entertainment, or magicians and comedians work well at events like this. The high energy of the performer matches the celebratory vibe at the event. 

Why use corporate entertainment at Sales Meetings?

Breaking up a long meeting with some quality entertainment is a great way to ensure the meeting time is more focused and productive. It also shows the team that you care about them having a good time and it’s not all business.

Why offer entertainment at Corporate team building events?

After a day of active physical or cognitive exercises, it is nice to offer some entertainment so everyone wraps up the day feeling relaxed and happy. It’s a final experience for the day that your team can enjoy without any pressure or stress.

What is the best entertainment for Corporate Parties?

Corporate entertainment will make the event more enjoyable and memorable for your guests. Schmoozing over snacks and cocktails is a great way to start a party – and it’s a nice way to cap things off. In the middle, to keep guests engaged and interested – host a comedian or magician. Something unexpected to add something extra to the event. Your guests will love the corporate entertainment and will feel valued and important because you arranged it for the event.

What entertainment is best for Fundraisers?

When you’ve gathered a group of people to ask for money and support you better plan to feed and entertain them! Creating conversations and positive buzz about the event will pay off down the road, when people are clamoring to attend your next event. The best entertainment is often music, to allow them to let loose and dance. Magicians, comedians and mentalists also offer guests a great time and work well in a fundraiser event. Just remember, if you are hosting a silent auction, don’t let it run while your entertainer is performing, it becomes a distraction for everyone.

Do you need entertainment at Trade Shows?

Much like conferences and conventions, you’ve got a group of people that need a break and want to be entertained.  Gone are the days of a lounge singer, in a sparkly gown in the corner. The music was often a distraction that people raised their voices to speak over. A comedian or magician can capture the attention of your audience and offer them a good time. It’s important to schedule the entertainment to stand alone, so the performers aren’t distracted and the guests are free to enjoy it.

What is General Session Entertainment?

Any event that has a general session, whether it be at the start, middle or end of the event, can use that time to offer entertainment to energize and engage guests. A break to enjoy some music or laugh at a comedian or even marvel at a mentalist or magician makes the event fun and a little different for guests. Guests will gather to be entertained and will walk away talking about how great it was.

Should I hire entertainment for Product Launches?

If you are hosting a larger meeting to launch a product, you want to ensure that your guests are energized and enthusiastic. There is no concern about the entertainment detracting from the event. Start the event with your entertainment to get guests fired up. Much like many events have a hype guy to get the audience revved up, your entertainment can set the mood and get everyone jazzed up. Follow it with an informative and exciting product demo and you’ll be sure your event is memorable. 

Can I hire entertainment for an Open House?

A corporate open house is a different type of event as there are often people coming and going. For this type of event, musicians are a great way to go, or you can also hire a roving performer – a magician or mentalist that will work the room and engage and entertain guests. This keeps it fresh and interesting and allowing people to come and go as they need to, but also ensures they have a blast.

 Corporate Events FAQs

To help you understand the various kinds of corporate entertainment available to you, how each can benefit your event, and more, take a look at these frequently asked questions.

Set Meyers - Clean Comedian - Funny Business Agency

What are celebrity comedians?

Celebrity comedians are comedians who are widely known around the world. They’re the perfect fit if you’re looking to add that “wow factor” to your next gatehring.

Some of the more popular celebrity comedians include Jay Leno, Seth Myers, Wayne Brady, Jim Gaffigan, Sinbad, Trevor Noah, and Kevin Nealon. Each of these entertainers is available for Corporate Events, as well as Fundraisers, Conventions, Annual Meetings, Private Parties, and Trade Shows.

What types of speakers are available?

There are a variety of speakers available to you: motivational and/or inspirational speakers, funny speakers, business-oriented speakers, etc. The type of event you’re hosting and the guests you plan to invite will help you determine which keynote speaker is best for your gathering.

Just make sure you hire someone who’s dynamic and engaging on stage. Audience boredom leads to restless, which results in a subpar event. Book a speaker who can hook your guests and keep them entertained. Not sure who to book? Give Funny Business staff a call and we’ll put you in touch with amazing speakers, regardless of your event type of budget.

Lachlan Patterson - Clean Comedian - Corporate Entertainment -Funny Business Agency

What are clean comedians?

Clean comedians offer material that is fresh, funny, and on point—just like traditional comedians do. The only difference is clean comedians don’t tell dirty jokes, swear on stage, etc.

It is a common misconception that clean comedy isn’t funny. Some of the funniest comedians alive keep it clean. These professionals have perfected their art, from the jokes they tell to the way they deliver them. 

What types of Musical Acts can I hire for my event?

Musical acts are a popular choice for corporate entertainment. Fortunately, there are plenty of performers available to you! All you have to do is choose the right act for your unique audience.

Looking for a suggestion? Consider booking a musical comedian, i.e. a performer who combines the fine arts of music and joke telling to create a one-of-a-kind act your audience will love. 

Can I hire Variety Acts like the ones seen on America’s Got Talent?

Variety acts are very trendy right now—for good reason.

These performers offers something a little unexpected and audiences love it, as evidenced by the popularity of America’s Got Talent. Treat your guests to incredible corporate entertainment that has to be seen to be believed. Talk to the Funny Business team to discover the type of variety acts available.

Are Mentalists good for corporate events?

Mentalists bring surprise, awe and laughter to events of all types. If you’re not familiar with what a mentalist does, here’s a quick rundown: mentalists use a highly developed set of skills to “read minds.”

One of the biggest benefits of booking a mentalist is their flexibility. These performers can perform from a stage or as they roam through a crowded room. The choice is yours. Either way, book this kind of corporate entertainment with Funny Business and watch your audience marvel!

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Why are Magicians good for corporate events?

Whether you choose a stage show or a roving magician, your guests will delight in the illusions, which are often coupled with comedy. Just don’t be surprised if your guests continue talking about your magician’s performance for weeks after it happens and speculate on how each trick was accomplished.

Magician are a safe and successful choice for just about any event’s corporate entertainment needs.

Are Ventriloquists still popular?

Ventriloquists have been around for a long time, so it’s perfectly reasonable to ask this question. Here’s the truth: ventriloquism is a great corporate entertainment option if you’re looking to entertain stationary guests with comedy. Just remember, the allure is not in the puppet, it’s in the ventriloquist. Choose a performer who’s funny, both with their words and their physical comedy, too.

Can A Game Show make a good corporate event?

A game show is a great way to ensure your audience gets involved and has a great experience. Game Shows are ideal for Conventions, Trade shows, Sales Meetings, College Competitions, and more. Expect your guests to laugh, strike up friendly competitions, and have lots of fun.

Can I use Circus entertainment at a corporate event?

What’s Circus entertainment? Think Cirque du Soleil type acts like fire breathers, acrobats, and aerialists who wear bright costumes and perform jaw dropping feats. These performers work well for corporate events, as their performances can be tailored to any audience size.

Note: It’s important to confirm whether or not your venue can accommodate this type of corporate entertainment before booking. If it can, your guests are sure to be thrilled with the show.

Is a Roast Master good corporate entertainment?

Roasts are a lot of fun and a professional Roast Master will create custom material to poke fun at your boss, office manager, or whoever else you want them to. Don’t worry, though. The Roast Mater’s jokes will get everyone laughing, but no one will feel truly shamed. It’s all in good fun.

Note: Input from your organization will help your Roast Master come up with custom material.

Is a Casino Party good corporate entertainment?

Whether your guests are seasoned gamblers or new to the pastime, a casino night is a great way to get everyone dressed up and excited for fun. You can book professional dealers, poker tables, and more. You may even want to hire a few Vegas-style show girls for your guests to take pictures with during your event.

Corporate entertainment should wow and impress your audience. Something unexpected like a casino night will go a long way toward accomplishing this goal.

Are Dueling Pianos good for corporate events?

A Dueling Pianos performance is a sight to behold. High-energy pianists play off each other, often adding elements of comedy to their acts and ensuring all guest have a good time. It’s a great way to help your staff take a load off, laugh together, and forget about work for a little while

How About a Celebrity Impersonator as a corporate entertainer?

You bet! Everyone loves celebrities, which is why impersonators make fantastic corporate entertainment. These performers can mingle with the crowd, joking and creating photo ops. They may even sign autographs! Elvis, Oprah, Trump, Michael Jackson, any of the Royal Family—you can find lookalikes for everyone out there. Surprise and delight your guests with celebrity impersonators. 

How do I choose the right venue?

There are a lot of things to consider when choosing a venue for your corporate event. For example, what’s your budget, where will your event be located, and how many guests do you expect to receive. Furthermore, what’s your seating arrangement look like and will you be serving food?

We suggest either choosing your venue first and selecting corporate entertainment to fit, or starting with the exact performer you want to book and choosing a venue to accommodate them specifically. To learn more about event venues, please visit our venues blog post.

How do I create excitement for my event?

There are a lot of different ways you can generate excitement for your event and increase attendance. Explore our popular post on promoting your event.

Why Work With an Corporate Entertainment Agency?

Planning a corporate event, whether it’s a conference, sales meeting, customer appreciation event, or corporate party, is a lot of work. Most event planners don’t want to add tasks to the to-do lists—especially ones like booking quality entertainers. Because of this, many people work with entertainment agencies.

Working with an agency will reduce your stress levels and save you time, while ensuring your event is as successful as it can be. To put it simply, agencies have the tools, resources, and knowledge to pull off a great event that guests remember for years afterwards.

Additionally, agencies like Funny Business have worked hard to develop strong working relationships with top talent. This allows us to book just about any act you may be interested in.

Standard acts that you can hire are: 

  • Headline Entertainers
  • Musical Bands and Singers
  • Magicians
  • Dancers
  • Face Painters and Caricaturists
  • Acrobatic Acts
  • Casino Tables
  • Comedy Acts
  • Mentalists
  • Jugglers
  • Performing Artists
  • Variety Acts
  • And More

All you need to know is what kind of performer you want to book. The agency you partner with will then connect you with the best option for your event. A corporate entertainment agency like Funny Business Agency can help you with all your options. 

When you are ready, here’s how to work with a talent agency:

  • Provide details like the date of your event, your venue, and the estimated number of guests.
  • Determine what type of entertainment you want to book for your event.
  • Your agency will then get in contact with a performer who fits your needs and budget.
  • Once you select your performer, your agency will handle the contract details.
  • Leading up to the event, your agency will help you finalize any and all details.

Protection and Peace of Mind for Your Corporate Event

Things happen…

Talk with your corporate entertainment booking agency about potential problems and how you’ll remedy them. That way you don’t let your audience down when issues arise.

This is another benefit of working with a professional agency. They’ll have experience working in a variety of different scenarios and can help you through any rough spots you encounter. In fact, your agency’s professional advice, organization skills, and can-do attitude will likely be invaluable to you during the event planning and corporate entertainment booking process.

One more thing: when you work with an agency, YOU will get to enjoy the event, too, rather than stressing about every minor detail. That’s why you hired professionals, right?

Of course, you can definitely book corporate entertainment on your own, too. Here’s how:

How to Book Corporate Entertainment

If you’ve decided not to work with an agency, these are the six steps you’ll need to go through to book top-quality performers for your event:

  • Determine which type of entertainer is right for your event.
  • Research various acts by reading online reviews, watching video footage of their performances, talking to people who have worked with them in the past, and reading their bios. 
  • Once you’ve selected your entertainer, reach out to their agent. The agent will handle the business details and negotiate the contract with you. Make sure your request is concise and includes all relevant details. Then be prepared to follow up in a timely manner. 
  • Confirm every cost. You’ll need to pay your entertainer, of course. But you may also need to account for lighting, sound, stage set up, and other expenses related to the performance.
  • Confirm any and all special requests. Everything should be covered in your contract.
  • Make sure you understand what happens the day of, protocol if there’s a problem and your entertainer can’t make it, and every other detail that pertains to your corporate entertainer.

Your contract should be clear and adequately protect both parties.

Wrapping Up

Hosting an event is hard work, but it’s also exciting and deeply rewarding—especially when you know your guests enjoyed themselves. To make sure this happens, invest in corporate entertainment. More than that, consider working with a professional agency to help you turn your event dreams into reality.

We’ll be honest, finding, vetting, and negotiating with performers can be stressful, confusing, and time consuming. By working with Funny Business, you’ll avoid all of these unpleasantries!

Contact us today and we’ll use our three decades worth of experience to help you choose the right entertainer, negotiate your contract with them, and make sure their actual performance goes off without a hitch.

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