Happppy Monday Luvz!!! OMG. The sun is crazy shining today. Will you be out an about?I am preparing for Arkhangelsk blues festival. I will fly tomorrow. There will be other international performers there. I met them earlier this week. We got on a discussion about deposits. I was shocked to learn that some of them do not require deposits from their clients. Does any of my fellow free lance performers require deposits, or is it just me?
The very moment I receive a performance requests, I let my client know that "Without a deposit, the performance date is NOT confirmed. And the deposit is nonrefundable. The dates are non transferable."
It was difficult to start requesting deposits for my performance. I felt deposits were for big corporations, and entertainers in a much valuable tax bracket than mine. I was just a single, independent entertainer. I am not well known, why would they trust me not to steal their deposits.... the self- doubt cycle was endless. But I would be an idiot to give up the benefits that came with with deposits.
Deposits protects your name. Once a client pays the deposit, it´s a promise that my Musicians will be compensated. If I want to continue to work with quality musicians, I must make sure my name is pristine among their colleagues. And It lets the client know that your time is valuable, and will treat accordingly.
Deposits Weed Out the Weak. SERIOUS INQUIRIES ONLY. Those are the most loved three words by every small business owner. Time is an extremely valuable asset. Once it´s gone, it cant be retrieved. If a client decides to cancel my performance, my band and I must be compensated for the efforts rendered to prepare for the show.
Deposits Give Peace of Mind. Once the client pays, I do not need to worry about loosing a job, at the last minute.
Deposits Protects Your Schedule. Without a deposit, my schedule remains open for other clients.
It´s been several years now, since I started my deposit requirement. And there hasn´t been any problems with clients accepting it. Sometimes my repeat clients get a little agitated because I still require a deposit from them. They feel I don´t trust their word. But a deposit is not just about trust. It is also to protect us from unforseen circumstanes that may arise, ie.. Pandemic.* Most importantly, I do not feel comfortable with ever putting my brand on the line, when i am responsible for the well being of my musicians, assistant, and concert coordinator. And lastly, deposits are your best friend, if you perform internationally. Can you imagine me trying to sue somebody from another country? DIVAS DEMANS DEPOSITS...
However, if either party ( I or the client) does not fufill our contract duties, we forfeit the deposit. In a later blog, I will discuss whats in my contracts; how they are created, enforced..and so on.
*There are very few exceptions to my rule. During the Pandemic lockdown, performance dates had to be rescheduled. One of my clients had to cancel her birthday party because she was ill with the virus. Though I did not refund any deposits, the clients were allowed to apply the funds to a later date.