17 thoughts on “An Interview With Comedy Booking Agent Eric Yoder

  1. Derik Boik says:

    Thanks Eric,

    Lots of good info. Can you talk a bit more about referrals? I have worked with club owners and bookers that would surely give me nice references but what exactly do I do with them? Would I have them write formal letters that say, “To Whom it May Concern?” Or are they supposed to be more personal? And should they be hard copies? Emails? Phone calls? I imagine that having someone make a bunch of referrals on my behalf would get annoying for them. So what’s the best way?

    And should I send my Promo Packet with the referrals included? What’s your idea of the best possible Promo Packet? I have the basic idea of what should be included and how it should look but what will increase its chances of being looked at? Oh and, in regards to the DVD, any “no no’s” as far as what might make a booker turn it off without really giving it a chance?

    Thank you,
    Derik Boik

  2. Hi Derik,
    Good questions.

    For references, do a little research and pick the most suitable for who you are approaching. If you are reaching out to a booking agency with mostly rooms in the Pacific Northwest, using a reference from someone in south Florida may not be as effective as a club owner or agency more recognized nationally or in that section of the country.

    Touch base with the agency/booker BEFORE you start sending them references or promotional materials to. Ask them whether or not they are taking submissions, perhaps who or where you came across the agency and whether or not it would be ok to send them an email with links, references, etc. Nothing will put a bad taste in a booker’s mouth like receiving promo kits or “mass emails” or facebook messages from someone they have never even conversed with.

    If you know a comedian with a long history with the booker, or a well established club owner or booker, have them email them a quick note just saying they are familiar with you (and stand behind you as a strong performer) and ask if it is okay for you to contact them.

    It always goes further to have your reference contact the booker directly, whether it be by phone or email. This shows they feel strongly enough about you to take some time out of their day to help you out. If it’s “annoying” for them to write a quick email, then maybe you need to look into other references.

    Having an Electronic Press Kit (EPK) is best. Being able to click once on a link to see a video/website and email references is more likely to move along the submission process than having a booker rip open a packet, search through the materials for a references contact info, find and type in the url or search for a youtube video, etc.

    Sometimes, especially for corporate, college and headlining work, after reviewing your EPK, the booking agency or booker will then ask for a DVD to see a longer set. If they review your initial promo kit and aren’t interested, you’ll probably be happy you didnt ship off one of your DVD’s for no reason.

    But again, always ask the booker or agency whether it is ok to email or send them your materials for review, or have a suitable reference touch base on your behalf.

    Some DVD don’ts.
    – Montage. It warrants the question – What are they cutting out of the bit or set? Did they have a 6 min silence after their one bit that got big laughs? Give them a solid 10-15 min clip to see what you are all about.
    – If you question what you are going to send them, don’t send it. First impressions are hard to break. Wait until you are very confident with it. Ask for advice and feedback from other working comedians.
    – Don’t send video with shotty sound or grainy, fuzzy video that has half of a head from an audience member in front of it. If I hear your video cut out or get fuzzy, Im stopping watching. Same with if I can’t even make out the details in your facial expression. I want to SEE and HEAR what you are like on stage, not try to imagine what it’s like.

    Anyways, hope that helps some.


  3. Derik Boik says:

    Thank you. So the clip of your set in the EPK is different/shorter than the one on your DVD? Also, is it a good idea to put two clips on a DVD? A short one and a long one, so that the booker can choose one from the DVD menu?

  4. Depends what you are going for. Typically when a booker asks for a link to clips, they don’t want to watch a full 30-45 min set. If you filmed or have a DVD, I’m assuming you have a full feature or headlining set on it?

    Sometimes with DVD’s , comedians will put a 30 min “clean” set, and a 30 min “club set” – that isnt necessarily clean. Being able to showcase both styles can be helpful, especially if your regular set is blue.

    If you were looking for college or corporate, I would suggest having a clean 45-50 on a dvd.

  5. Frankie Pace says:

    Want to learn about the business learn from the old school comics I interview on my show…www.thefrankiepaceshow.com
    This week funny lady Carrie Snow takes the mic…Carrie has written for Roseanne Barr’s hit show “Roseanne”

  6. Joel Pace says:

    What other bookers do you love? Wink Wink

  7. Derik Boik says:

    Hey Joel,

    Not sure if you remember me but you booked me to feature in Johnson City a few years ago. Had a great time, so thank you. Moved back to NYC shortly after so we lost touch. Hope everything’s well with you.

  8. Stacey Stacy, Comedienne/Actress says:

    Thank you for the advice.

  9. Great advice given….even as a seasoned vet, it made me look harder at my own stuff and scratch my chin. Back to the drawing board.

  10. Doc Holiday says:

    I need a agent is that simple its time for me 2 start using my gift that God gave me so can u help me

  11. Mike Storck says:

    Another thing that helps a booker to remember you is to show up at their head office completely naked and sit down in their favorite chair.

  12. Greg Roy says:

    Great info! I wish I had read it a couple of years ago!

  13. Teddy-Boo W says:

    Hi i am a stand-up comedian,a background-actor,i am in “need of an “Agent or “Manager so i can take my “Comedy to another good “level” i am in Albany,New york ,i am “Ready to “Perform,cell:518)380-8871,eve)518)253-5308,Thanks for your “Attention

  14. michael washington says:

    Hi I am interested in finding out if I have the potential to pursue a career in comedy. To see if you are willing to consider me, are you able to have a representative see me at the funny bone at Newport on the levee. in Kentucky on november 28, 2012
    Thank you
    michael washington

  15. Luke Francis says:

    I think Teddy-Boo is ready.

  16. I’m an older guy who combines funny songs on my 12 string guitar with standup. I’ve had professional gigs for six years just playing mostly regular songs without the comedy but would like direction on pursuing my new path. Would a video of me doing a complete set NOT at a club be desirable. All the open mikes here give you just a few minutes.


  17. Luis Powell says:

    Luis Powell Moreno,worked with a few hot comedians such as AJ Finney,Russ Rivas,Luke Francis,Mike Baldwin..and a few other in the Midwest… I’ve worked countless clubs across the us with no manager…its time to do this…YODER!! Get at me..lets talk.

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