Magic is a teenie tiny niche — but it’s still possible to generate over a million dollars with one product. I’m not going to tell you how to create a million-dollar magic trick, but I will teach you how to spot them. There’s a formula I’ve been putting to work for the last six years, and it tells you if a trick will become a best seller with surprising accuracy. It’s the same formula I used to decide to invest over a hundred thousand dollars into a magic product.
The amazing thing about niche industries is that good products will find their way. You don’t need to be a big magic company with lots of money and experience and a massive Mailchimp making list. A small creator can release a great product and find great success if, indeed, the product is great. Plus, soon afterwards, the big companies will be swooping in for a slice of the pie. I still get emails from companies wanting to license product rights.
I’m pretty sure Alan Rorrison released Smoke before theory11 swooped it up, and Bizzaro definitely released the Oreo trick by himself first, too. My advice is that if you believe in your product, release it by yourself, and then be in a better position to negotiate when the big boys come knocking.
Ignore Murphy’s when they say they’ll order far less if it doesn’t release with them first because they’re lying — if it’s a good trick, and people want to buy it, Murphy’s will beg you to order as many as they possibly can.
OK, here is my formula. It’s ten yes/no questions you need to ask of your product. Tally up one point for every yes, and if the total is more than 7/10, you have a hit on your hands. It’s that simple. Don’t share this, please; I spent ages on it.
1. Do magicians already own this object?
It’s an easier purchase if you can imagine yourself using/holding the object. It’s an even easier sell if you already own said object and carry it around with you. Doublecross is a trick with a sharpie. Most magicians own Sharpies; most magicians know what it’s like to hold and keep a Sharpie with them. The Turner Watch is a trick with a watch, and most magicians already own and carry a watch.
This can be a little more abstract. I don’t already own small loops of invisible thread, but I already own a wallet where they can be stored next to my credit cards. I don’t already own magic apps, but I do already own a phone.