Five More Commonly Ripped-Off Magic Tricks

In our first article, Commonly Ripped-Off Magic Tricks we talked about bootlegged and outright rip-offed items. The post was so popular I thought we should list some other commonly ripped-off items.

Here are four more items we distribute that have been stolen more than any others in our inventory. I have included links so that you can be sure to stock authorized copies for your customers.

11-1793pLightning by Magic Smith

Chris Smith, owner of Magic Smith, revolutionized light bulb magic with Lightning. It wasn’t long before illegal copies hit the market. At one point Chris told me that he was getting dozens of broken knock-offs from China every week. Now, magicians who want to do this amazing demonstration of mind over matter can get Lightning at the same price as the knock-offs! Get authorized copies of genuine Lightning by Magic Smith at the new low price.

Zip Tie Escape! by PoorBoyziptieescape-full__45304_zoom

As the name implies, the idea behind the PoorBoy line is to make great cost effective items that don’t put a big dent in your wallet. But this has not stopped China knock-offs from hitting the streets with copies of Aaron Smith’s instructions! Aaron has been praised all over the internet for this genius escape from plastic shackles. Have members of your audience tie you up tight in seven heavy duty zip ties and escape on command! Get copies of original Zip Tie Escape!

impcard__13544_zoomImpossible Card in Bottle by Gerald Kirchner

Talk about big in Japan! This was such a big hit, almost every novelty and magic shop in Japan made their own version. With all the unauthorized copies of Impossible Card in Bottle, it is hard to believe the idea ever had an inventor in the first place. The genuine trick and prop was a signature of so many magicians—some of whom are big names in the industry—that Card in Bottle became associated with each of them in its own way, providing a mythical license to thieves. Here is the original by Gerald Kirchner.

Show_OFF_1_2_Brian_Tudor__57439_zoomSHOW OFF 1 & 2 DVD by Brian Tudor

Brian’s DVDs are HUGE! This combo may be among magic’s largest selling DVD of all time! And if you have downloaded this project from the internet, it was probably stolen. This title has never been offered as a download. This includes the original volume #1 or #2.

The title combined his flourishes from Show Off #1 and Show Off #2 all in one place.  Want to learn Brian’s awesome flourishes and Show Off like a pro? Pick-up legit copies today! Stock Show Off 1&2 on DVD by Brian Tudor.

 

When you get a chance, check out infringement is accidental.

Talk Back Questions: What tricks do you see knocked off the most? Have you ever bought a knock off product? Share your experience in the comments below.

Magic Stores Report $6000 in Revenue!

icone-downloadWholesaleMagic.com launched the Royalty Free Program last month, and magic dealers have already reported combined revenue in excess of $6000.

And that is with only 40% of stores reporting!

Think about it for a moment: six thousand dollars magic dealers kept without paying a dime of it back to a jobber or vendor or shipping company; SIX THOUSAND DOLLARS in total profit that did not exist before our Royalty Free Program.

If you are in the magic business, then you know nothing much is selling right now unless you push it hard. So why not push products with 100% profit?

The pie is getting bigger! Here’s how you can enjoy a slice…

Select from any of the products listed below or from our Royalty Free product page. Add the item to your site and feature it. Send it to your list and push it relentlessly. When a customer purchases the item, you keep all the money. The buck stops with you!

I asked one of my dealers what the Royalty Free Program means to him and his business. He said, “To me it’s an endless inventory. A year-long, profit-laden revenue stream. After just thirty days my bestsellers are mostly royalty free.”

He nailed it.

He understands the program.

He sees the value in generating royalty free profits in this economy.

It is never too late to join the party. The program is scalable for any size business. Every magic store, no matter how large, starts with one Royalty Free product. Don’t just add it to your site—push it! Sell it. Keep all the money!

Complete Course in Pick Pocketing

Derek Dingle Last Notes by Simon Lovell 

Dracola by Gerald Kirchner

Burning Up by Nathan Kranzo

Bob Hummer’s Devastation Principle

Cups and Balls by Senor Mardo

Dotcha! by Gerald Kirchner

Flipper Coin Repair by Roy Kueppers

From the Stall Booklet

Interlocked Card Production

Pop-Card by Steven Pignataro

Expanded Shell Repair by Roy Kueppers

Mark Cannon’s Great Escapes Convention

If you have questions about the program, feel free to contact us. We also set up a FAQ page here.

Is Royalty Free Right For Me

Batteries Not Included…

Batteries_Not_IncludedI stumbled upon this trick by accident and it quickly became one of those “gems” you find yourself performing at every opportunity. It is contagious. Whenever I teach a fellow magician “Batteries Not Included,” they end up performing it just as often.

When I perform the trick, it is usually because there happen to be two batteries lying around; a friend is changing out the batteries in a remote for instance. Double A are best, but you can sometimes do the trick with D’s and C’s too.

You can carry a couple of batteries in your pocket to perform anytime.

“Did you know those batteries are magnetic?” Pick them up and lay one next to the other lengthwise. Nothing happens. “Oh wait, you have to rub them together to get a static charge.” Now, hold one battery and the other is magically – supposedly magnetically – stuck to it. When your friend tries it, there is no such magnetism.

If you would like to learn how the trick is done and share with your friends and family, Click here and place a FREE ORDER of Batteries Not Included.

Dracola: A Bloody Good Trick!

dracola_gerald_kirchnerIn the late ’90’s, everyone in the world had their eye on newcomer David Blaine. Including me.

One night, as I watched Blaine’s newest television special, I waited anxiously to see what amazing thing he would do next. He picked up an empty, crushed beer can and was like, “Look, look!” I looked. He moved the can around in a circular motion and it popped back into shape. He waved his hand over the can—the opening resealed—and the can was brand-new again. He cracked it open and handed it to one of the spectators, who took a refreshing swig of crisp beer! The spectators totally freaked! And rightfully so.

My first thought? Camera tricks.

My Second thought? Gross!

He found the can on the ground and asked someone to drink from it—that’s disgusting! Plus, “discovering” the can is weak in my opinion. I knew there was a more dramatic way to perform the trick, so I tinkered around with the idea: is it possible to “resurrect” a can from the dead?

After developing the final routine, my first victim—Ahem! Spectator—stopped by the warehouse to pick up his order. I showed him the trick, which now included the unexpected draining of the can, Dracola style. He was floored! And he was familiar with Blaine’s performance, so it was even better. He said it was like two different tricks—Blaine’s routine just sort of happens. Dracola explodes!

Later, I learned the version Blaine performed was a culmination of ideas from John Kennedy, Anders Moden, and Tim Ellis, who later produced the trick in booklet form, calling it “Healed and Sealed.” Other magicians came up with similar ideas as well, but Healed and Sealed was the best known at the time.

Unlike Healed and Sealed, you can perform Dracola impromptu with a can right out of a vending machine. Thanks to one of magic’s favorite tools, I was able to eliminate many of the weaknesses of the effect—namely, starting with an empty can. The routine itself plays a part too. The vampire theme offers the freedom to drain the contents of the can and to “revive” the soda by returning it back to its original state, inside and out, right in front of your spectator.

Try it yourself and see firsthand the power of this amazing trick. Get Dracola for less than 10 bucks! You will enjoy fooling your friends and family, convincing them you are the true Dracola! Do you hear that? It’s the children of the Sprite. Bwahahahaa!Picture 1

 

 

Is Royalty Free Right for Me?

icone-downloadIf you haven’t already taken advantage of our Royalty Free Program, then you are leaving some serious money on the table. While writing this article, a dealer called eager for the next download. And for good reason: he sold twenty-eight Derek Dingle’s The Last Notes in twelve hours!

That is $318.60 the first day! His license is for another 364 days!

He didn’t have to ship any products or pay his jobber a royalty. It’s gravy. Bonus cash he can use to advertise his business, promote his other products, or pay his bills. He has a whole year with the product, zero cost per unit.

You can get started right now, or if you need more information read through these frequently asked question:

What is a royalty free license?

A royalty free license is a yearly agreement that provides you the right to sell as many units of a licensed item without paying a royalty for each unit sold. For most items you only need to sell 4-6 units to make your money back. The rest is TOTAL PROFIT! Cheaper than wholesale. Better than jobber rate. You keep 100% of the money.

Is there a fee for the license?

Yes. To purchase a license visit Wholesale Magic, add to cart the royalty free items you want to license and checkout. Download the files, upload them to your site along with the sales graphics and product description. You’re ready to go! Sell the items and keep 100% of the revenue.

For how long is the license valid?

All royalty free licenses on Wholesale Magic are valid for one year. There is no obligation or requirement to renew the license. Expired products—their files, promotional graphics, and text—must be removed from your website be the end of the last day. Failure to remove the content simply results in the purchase of an additional license for the same low price.

Since it’s digital, why can’t I have the item free?

Because it has value. You, the content creator, and the distributor all deserve to make money from this product. As a magic store owner, the industry needs you to help magicians recognize the value of information—this ethic reduces theft.

Can I pay you after it sells?

If you have thirty-day net with Wholesale Magic, then yes, choose that option at checkout. If you do not have thirty-day terms, you will need to pay for this merchandise in advance just as you would any other product.

Why doesn’t Wholesale Magic take a piece of the action?

It’s your money. Magic shops need to make—and keep!—all the money they can right now. Programs such as this provide magic stores with royalty free working capital. As a jobber and part of the community, Wholesale Magic has an interest in helping you succeed even if it means less revenue for us.

Do I pay the license fee per customer download?

No, you only pay for the license once a year and it is a set price.  Sell as many units as you want, keep 100% of the money.

Do customers download the file from my website or from yours?

From your website. We do not ask you to send us your customers. They buy from your site and stay on your site. Wholesale Magic doesn’t want to be in the retail business, so we don’t want access to your hard-earned retail customers.

How do you determine the cost of the license?

The license fee is based on several factors, including suggested retail, the age of the product, popularity, and focus group interest.

Do I have to take all the downloads?

Royalty free. Royalty freedom. Pick and choose only the downloads you feel are the most profitable for your company. Keep the ones that work, exchange the others out at the end of the license term for new products you want to try.

What if I don’t make my money back?

The risk is small. You only need to sell 4-6 units on most downloads to recoup the license fee—over a period of a whole year! And it only gets easier. As you add more royalty free products, you will acquire a reputation for having quality downloadable content. Eventually, magicians looking for instant delivery will think of you before your competitors.

What if I have technical questions?

Contact Wholesale Magic by email or phone and we’ll walk you through the process. You can add this feature to your site and start making money today.

Can I participate without a website?

Yes! Unlike affiliate programs, you can distribute royalty free digital materials without a website. There are two options: 1) Your license permits you to have one hardcopy in your store at a time. You can print it out for a customer or copy it to a disc. Sell this item just like you would any other tangible product. 2) Email a direct link to the file to your customer after their purchase in your shop—a great way to build your mailing list. There are a number of services online for storing and sharing files, free.

Should I promote the product?

Yes! Do not just load your site down with a bunch of downloads that don’t sell. Add them one or two at a time and promote each one. Grow this part of your site. Make this a fundamental part of your business model, one product at a time. Send an email to your list each time you add a new royalty free item. Create demand among your customers for these products… after all, you keep 100% of the money!

My shop is outside the United States. Can I participate?

Yes! Anyone in the world can participate. We want shops from around the world to enjoy the spoils. If you need to translate a PDF or video, let us know. We want you to succeed.

With which license should I start?

So far, the highest converting book in the Royalty Free Program is Derek Dingle’s The Last Notes.

Are Magic Shops Ripping You Off?

RipoffFrom time to time, we all encounter someone who is convinced that, “Magic dealers are ripping off magicians!”

The reasoning goes something like this:  If a shop can afford to run a sale, then the shop’s regular prices are too high.

I have heard this claim firsthand from magicians in person and I have seen similar comments online. Recently, on a popular magic forum I read about a shop running a 40% off sale and the commenter said if the shop could afford to sell merchandise at 40% off, then retailers in the magic business must be making a killing.

FORTY PERCENT OFF!?!?!

I was intrigued, so I checked it out and sure enough the magic shop was running 40% off their catalog of magic tricks, books, and DVDs. It excluded any of their special-priced or one-of-a-kind items, but still, so much good stuff on sale! A lot of the discounted items were from WholesaleMagic.com.

Magic shops don’t make the high profit magicians think they do.

This made me think that magicians really don’t understand what their local and online shops are going through post-recovery. Brick-and-mortar shops should be on the endangered species list. We’re talking hen’s teeth. And online stores come and go all year long, with only a scant few making it to five years. Selling magic is a tough business. I am always heartened by the shops that continue to push forward, against the odds, to be there for their loyal customers, and to spark the imaginations of the new generation of bearded hipster buskers, illusionists, and conjurers.

Margins are razor thin.

How much does a shop make when it sells a magic trick?

Answer: about 15-20% of the trick’s retail price.

Are you surprised?

If the shop sells you a $35.00 trick, they really only make about six bucks. Not a lot of profit considering labor costs, payment fees, insurance, rent, shipping to and for, server fees, utilities, and the time and expertise shared while selling you the greatest magic trick ever. By the way, that $6 profit only appears in the shop’s coffers if the magician paid full retail. Toss a 40% off discount into the mix and the shop just lost $7 on that $35.00 sale.

At 40% off, the customer is purchasing merchandise at the same price as the magic shops, but with zero risk.

So how can a “real” shop have a 40% off sale and make money? It can’t. The shop is not making any money on sale items at all. In fact, it is losing money. Its fervent hope is to make it up when the customer’s gaze falls upon a one-of-a-kind item that is exempt from the sale. There is also the hope that the sale will lure in new customers, be they pros or neophytes.

Magicians, take advantage of sales!

But remember whenever you buy anything over 15% off, the shop really isn’t making a profit. Consider also picking up an item exempt from the sale, or forgoing the sale and supporting the shop without a discount. C’mon! Throw the shop a bone once in awhile. Magic shops need your [full-price] support.

And magic shop owners, if you made it this far, congrats on not ending it all! Seriously though, I do have some great tips to share on how you can stay competitive and make the most of what you’ve got:

Shipping Secrets & Your Competitive Edge

Want Volume Profits? Setup an Entry Point

Cornering the Market on Best Sellers

On Location at MagicDealers.com

magicdealers-300x170MagicDealers.com is a directory of magic related websites. I’ve had the pleasure to work on the site and help out with promotions. With my help, MagicDealers.com has skyrocketed back to the top of search engines and is getting a ton of traffic. If you get a chance, check it out.

Recently, the buzz peeked the interest of Vanish Magazine. They came to our offices for an interview. You can get a copy here: Vanish Magazine #10

Below is our interview:

Gerald Kirchner, CEO of one of the largest magic distributors in the world, made it his mission to find potential customers and deliver them to magic stores. The result is a website that is quickly becoming popular among magic suppliers.

“I go to bed each night thinking about magic shops,” Gerald said. “These places are owned and operated by people who work hard to deliver magic to every inch of the Earth. I wake up in the morning and imagine ways to make life better for that community.”

Gerald isn’t alone. There is a growing number of magic store owners who understand the value of networking. Those of us in the magic business—my fellow dealers, wholesalers, and manufacturers—are a family of distant relatives. Gerald’s new directory, MagicDealers.com, is like a family reunion, or an ongoing dealers room from your favorite convention.

“I go to bed each night thinking about magic shops…”

I visited Gerald at his office at Magic City—wholesalemagic.com—two massive warehouses filled from top to bottom with millions of dollars worth of magic books, DVD’s, the latest tricks and classic staple magic. It’s aisle after aisle of the world’s best magic.

Hanging on the wall behind his desk are Gerald’s favorite tricks—items he produced in his twenty-one years at Magic City—now celebrating their 40th year in the magic business.

I said, “Gerald, it’s like the most creative magicians in the world exploded in your office. There are cool toys and magic everywhere.”

“Yes, there’s a lot of history in this room,” Gerald said. “My dad, Chuck Kirchner, sat in this chair for over thirty years. He helped mold the magic business as we know it today.”

“I hate to reveal this to you,” I said, “but after listing my site in the MagicDealers directory, it quickly became my number one magic-related traffic source.”

Gerald explained, “That’s not a surprise. I hear that from many of the certified dealers listed in the directory. The website gets a tremendous amount of targeted traffic and we aim it at magic stores who want new customers.”

“Gerald, it’s like the most creative magicians in the world exploded in your office. There are cool toys and magic everywhere.”

“How do you deliver results so quickly? What makes people click my link?”

“It doesn’t always work that quickly,” Gerald said. “But I try to ensure it happens eventually. Every dollar that comes into the directory is spent in advertising our members. We run Facebook and Twitter campaigns for our dealer pages, plus we tap a few traffic sources I don’t want to make public.”

“Pretend I’ve never heard of MagicDealers.com. What is it?”

Gerald took a sip of his coffee and said, “MagicDealers is the world’s fastest growing magic directory. We don’t have every dealer listed yet, but we’re working hard to find them and deliver them a whole new customer base.”

Aaron Smith: Why should people list their site in the directory?

Gerald Kirchner: Everyone can use new customers, readers, or clients. The directory funnels those prospects to its members. Traffic pours into our site from search engines, social media platforms, and our proprietary sources. Our goal is to deliver actual, paying customers; people looking to buy magic tricks right now.

AS: Who can join MagicDealers.com?

GK: The site is for anybody with magic-related services they want to promote. Performers, dealers, manufacturers, magic magazines and news sites, really anyone in the community. The best part is, you don’t even need a website. You can use MagicDealers as your website.

AS: How much does it cost to become a member?

GK: Right now, you can have a listing in the directory for $99 per year (Magic Shops) $25 per year (Magicians).  That price may go up next year. Additional tools, such as promotional sales throughout the website and key features hidden within your listing, are available for premium members for just $99 per month. Premium members also get a discount from the Acme Magic Banner Exchange, only $25 per month for full rotation. Acme has now served over thirteen million banners on magic websites, so it’s a tremendous offer.

AS: A hundred dollars for a lifetime listing is a good deal. How does a magic shop or magician get listed in the directory?

GK: It’s easy. Go to the website, magicdealers.com, and click “Get Listed.” Fill out the form with your information and submit it for certification.

AS: You mentioned certification again. How are magic dealers in the directory certified?

GK: We verify the information provided by every dealer. I don’t have a way of guaranteeing it at this point, but we make sure the store is legitimate as best as possible. Honestly, not every magic store makes it through. I have to be able to go to your site or visit your establishment and know that you are an actual store. Sometimes it’s obvious the site isn’t real. If they claim to have every product distributed by Magic City for instance, but haven’t ever bought from us, I know they’re not real. Sometimes I have to call around and check references. I do what I can without being overly-demanding for information.

AS: But what if I’m traveling and don’t want to navigate the site to find a dealer?

GK: There are two mobile options to access our complete list of magic dealers in real-time. You can download the “Magic Dealers” app from the App Store on any IOS device, such as your iPhone or iPad, or from Google Play for any Android device. Our app had over 400 downloads in the first week. It’s very popular.

AS: That’s a lot of downloads for a directory app. Congratulations. Other than the app and website, how can I find out about new stores on MagicDealers.com?

GK: You can follow us @magicdealers1 on Twitter and like our Facebook page at facebook.com/magicdealers — we keep both sites up-to-date with the newest additions to the MagicDealers family

.AS: I noticed that MagicDealers.com is sort of it’s own little world. Sites within a site.

GK: Just like Facebook and Twitter, MagicDealers is a form of social media that shouldn’t be ignored. Google, Bing, and Yahoo rely heavily on directories like ours for content and current information. My advice to magic stores, creators, and performers is to get listed in the directory right now. Don’t wait. Join now. Keep your listing updated with all of your current promotions. You have a whole new place from which to draw traffic. To get customers. To make sales.

AS: One last question. Is that a Klingon Bat’leth on your desk?

GK: [smiling] Yes. Yes it is. I use it as a letter opener.

Source: VanishLive.com

 

Dotcha! Magic and Mayhem with the iPhone

iPhoneGif

I love phone tricks. I have five DVDs available on the subject! I also have a book devoted to iPhone tricks and gags entitled, Magic and Mayhem with the iPhone. It doesn’t have a release date yet, but it’s coming soon. Stay tuned!

Since I’m always on my iphone, I thought, why not try and come up with a fun little gag to share here on the blog? I use iMessage a lot and so I decided to play around with that. What’s my least favorite part about texting? The waiting for a reply, of course. You know, the three dancing dots that pop up as the person you’re texting is texting you back. I’ve had to stare at those three dancing dots many times. That got me thinking, wouldn’t it be funny if you could just leave that text bubble floating there? How long would someone sit waiting for a text that wasn’t ever coming? Turns out, people will wait an almost unbearably long time. It’s pretty funny. As you can imagine, I proceeded to torture friends and family with this gif for days.

text1

I created the Dotcha! gif on Photoshop. The initial image was good, but I wanted to see if I could find a better image elsewhere. Google didn’t have the images I was looking for, but I did find a post on cnet by Jason Cipriani describing the same idea. He almost had it right. What’s the difference? His bubble gif does not look like the iMessage bubble gif. So close!

I’m offering it here to all those who love mischief and pranks for free. Enjoy!

Click Here to Download your copy of Dotcha! by Gerald Kirchner, It’s FREE!

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You Can Quote Me On That…

ghost_it_notes_aaron_smith__92773_zoomA while back, a friend and colleague, Aaron Smith, asked for my honest opinion on one of his latest releases–still untitled at the time. He had done the trick for years, so he already knew audiences liked it, but he wanted my opinion as a magician and as the owner of a major distributor.

Typically, when someone asks for my sincere opinion on their trick, I respond with a somewhat canned, “Looks good.” Obviously, if I refuse to stock the trick here at Magic City, the creator in question knows I don’t like it. But some tricks are just okay, and I don’t like to comment too strongly one way or the other. Who knows? Those tricks might find a big following and be successful–there’s no reason for me to make the magic creator second-guess themselves after a trick is already on the market. During the research and development stage, I’m a bit more vocal.

In the case of the before mentioned trick, I asked Aaron, “Do you really want my honest opinion?”

He said, “Oh no, what’s wrong with it?”

I paused, and said, “This might be the coolest note pad I have ever seen.”

“Can I quote you on that?” Aaron asked.

I didn’t think that quote did it justice, so I gave him this endorsement: “The power of a Swami without the gimmick!”

It really is a clever method for a very powerful trick. And I like that the pad is disguised to look like ordinary Post-It Notes–totally inspectable. We brainstormed a couple of name ideas and Aaron said, “I really like the idea of calling them Ghost It Notes.”

If you don’t already stock these at your store, pick up a supply of Aaron Smith’s Ghost It Notes here. It’s easy to demo and comes with instructions in English, Spanish, French, and Japanese.

Shattered Hearts Blows Minds

Shattered HeartsThose of you who read my article, Card Tricks Make a Comeback, know that I really like card magic. I get excited whenever a new card trick comes along. Seeing the trick for the first time is part of the appeal, especially when it fools me or surprises me–catches me off guard.

In the late ’90’s, my friend Chris Brent created a trick called Shattered Hearts. It fits the description above perfectly. We were hanging out at a magic convention in Dallas, Texas and he says, “Do you want to see a new card trick I’ve been working on?”

Of course, I was intrigued. Chris is super-talented. But I really didn’t expect much when he started off with the standard, “Pick a card.” I did as he asked. I returned the card to the deck and he lost it in the pack. It seemed so simple. Even up to the moment when he revealed my card and asked, “Is this your card.”

“Nope,” I said with a wink and a smile.

What came next was totally unexpected. I have seen my share of pick a card tricks, but this, this was special. “Hold your hands out like a cup,” Chris said. And then he snaps the card and hearts flutter down from the face like snowflakes on a bloody-cold winter’s day. Six hearts to be exact. “Was your card the Six of Hearts?” he asked.

“Yes! Yes, it was,” I said.

I was so impressed. The trick was amazing and I had to have it for myself. Chris and I chatted a bit, and as we turned to go back into the dealer’s room, the one and only Phil Goldstein–Max Mavin–was standing right in front of us. Chris had Max do the same pick a card bit, ending with that incredible “raining hearts” finish. In good Max fashion, stroking his chin, he says, “interesting!”

Max liked the trick just as I had. Magic City inked a deal with Chris that night. Today, every magic shop across the globe has the opportunity to carry Shattered Hearts, a signature trick by my friend, the talented Chris Brent.

Want to get in on the action, too? Amaze your customers and ink a sale every time you demo this killer trick. Buy twelve Shattered Hearts, GET TWO FREE! I’ll call it my “Jobber’s Dozen.” Add a dozen to your cart on Wholesale Magic and the site will automatically give you two Shattered Hearts 100% FREE!

Order today and put “double order” in the comments box and I will send you four Shattered Hearts FREE!

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