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Okay... if you read my diary you'll find most of this out anyway, but for those that don't I figure I'd ask here and see if anyone can help. I've just finished my fourth year booking MAW. I'm at Regional, with the following popularity: Mid Atlantic: D+ Great Lakes/South East: E Tri State/Puerto Rico/Ontario: F Everywhere else is F- Now, the last year and a bit, I've been running weekly small shows in the GL/SE areas, in addition to the twice monthly Mid Atlantic shows. This is the pattern I followed in '07, where the Internet allowed me to rapidly build up popularity. My usual routine, then is: Wk1: GL(s) Wk2: SE(s), MA(m) Wk3: GL(s) Wk4: SE(s), MA(m) In '08 - and mainly because I've been writing a diary game, and have thrown in odd challenges - it's a lot harder to break out of Regional. I'd like to make it to Cult, but I understand the running costs are a lot higher there. In the last two months, I've lost Steve Flash, Chance Fortune, Ernest Youngman and Hugh de Aske from the face side of my roster, and Jay Chord from the heel side. I've been able to sign Wanda Fish as a face, and Nathan Coleman, Shady K and Knuckles on the heel side. Match quality has... suffered (again, partly because of diary booking). In November, I had to book an extra Medium show in the Mid Atlantic to cover the departures, so I booked three medium and four small shows. I made a $200 profit. In December, I booked two small 'touring' shows in the GL/SE areas, then booked the next two shows as medium size. The two shows I normally book as medium size ran as normal, but in the second one I had to move back from the 2,000 seat arena to the 1,000 seater because I barely broke the 1,000 attedance. I lost $24,000. Key differences between the two months were: Nov: +92k tickets, -98 workers, -31k show costs Dec: +63k tickets, -107k workers, -17k show costs I don't know if I should be running more shows, less shows, using more workers, less workers, sticking to the Mid Atlantic, touring more... Since the roster shakeup, I [I]do[/I] know that not one of my shows ahs increased my popularity - but the MA shows have been 2.5 hours rather than 2 hours, so have had more midcarders on, and so have had lower ratings. I also know that the South East (visited with the small shows wks 2 and 4) is death for me - for whatever reason, I only ever draw about a 1/3 of the projected attendance. I know about the end-of-the-month effect, but I also know that the first SE show of the month (in the second week) also suffers. I'm happy to give any more information that I can, but for the first time I've dipped under the 50k in the bank mark, and don't want to drop any further. My top draws are: Randy Bumfhole, Kirk Jameson, Wanda Fish, Aaron Andrews and JD Morgan. Any help, advice etc. gratefully received - and you too can help Rip Chord fulfill his dream of being head of a major company :D
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I'd advice you to stop the small shows with your undercard. I've always wondered why you keep doing those shows as IMO those shows are the thing that's holding you back. If I was booking, I'd stay in Mid Atlantic as long as I'd get the spillover effect in 41.1% (or 65.1%, seems quite far). But oh wait, you are over it. the 41.1.. I'd say to start holding your shows in Great Lakes but go with the finances. You don't want to rise to Cult only to go bankrupt. So just one by one up your popularity in the biggest regions without going into Cult until you can afford it. Less workers, more shows.
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I'm doing a total touring schedule with CZCW. I do 2 shows a week and a beginning and ending show for the tour. I do a serpentine tour SW/MW/NW/NW/MW/SW I hit each place 6 times a tour or three times a month. The beginning part of the tour I had some issues with shows in the south west but still end up goign up 1.6 in the Mid South, 5.6 Percent in North West 9.6 Percent in the Mid West, .8 in South West, 8.5 in Hawaii and 3.6 across the rest of the country. All in all I lost 130k but it was well worth it. SO far I'm 2 shows in each location into my 2nd tour. North West is up 1.8, Mid West is up 3.3, South West is up .6 and every other region is up 1.2. I expect to see some more big gains and hope to be to cult by the end of the third tour.
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It's tough to expand and I recommend doing it one region at a time. Build up your popularity in the Mid-Atlantic region up to the point where you are almost enough to reach cult... then hold regular shows in one area outside there to build up that region until you get to cult. Holding 1 show in your home region each month and then a few elsewhere should help you get the popularity you need to reach cult. And once you are there, you can hold PPVs to recoup the cash you have spent on getting there. Building up three areas at once means you are adding extra time to your roadmap to cult status. Concentrate on two and then work up... and to maximise your money, try to hold your biggest show each month as your first show each month. Seems to boost attendance a bit.
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Economy and Industry are at A and falling nationwide I've been focusing on the GL and SE because they both get spillover from MA, and because I didn't want to be too reliant on two areas Although I'm about midway up the rankings for company prestige, and so am first or second choice for many of my workers, I've still only got the second or fourth Friday where all my workers are available. I have to work to those dates. I may trial one medium two hour show a month in the MA and one 1.5hr show in the GL. Perhaps two GL shows, two MA if that works. Sound realistic? Either way, it looks like some undercard guys are getting canned... Keep the suggestion coming, please. All help gratefully received - and diary cameos can be arranged for especially good answers :D
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Do less shows but do bigger shows out side of the MA, I ran a game with MAW for 6 years and got them to national by doing just that every year I ran the Invitational and W.I.A.B.A. in the Great Lakes and some odd other shows around the year and I was able to survive to jump to cult but make sure you have some cash in reserve for the first months close to 100K.BTW I miss Hugh already.
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It may not be the best idea for diary writing but I usually shorten the show and use less workers. I see more quality and less quanity is better. I also try avoid hitting the same place more than once a month. Unless I am very very close to the next level. I have read about burnout and know if it happens it would probally mean the end of my fed. You could do 2 monthly events one in each region or you could try weekly and hit 4 different areas. Your diary is a must read.
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Thanks for the help, guys. Looks Like I'll be dropping down to two shows a month for the time being - maybe even just booking exclusively in the Mid Atlantic until I get that 65.1% overness bum in the GL/SE. A couple more quick q's, though: I'm not making any noticeable cash off merchandising. If I switch my distribution from DVD back to Internet, will that keep my popularity gains where they are until I'm ready to go back out on the road? Secondly, does the size of the show effect the popularity gain/loss? If I run a Medium show in the GL, I still fill a Tiniest arena right now as I won't pull in a big enough crowd for a Tiny arena - so am I better off just running Small shows for the time being? Thanks again for the help :)
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Wk2 - 1 hour (small) = switching between GL and SE every month Wk4 - 2 hour (medium) = keep exclusively in MA I'd stick to that personally, 2 shows is plenty at Regional and should see you make profits each month if you maximise the roster costs. I'd go through and cut anyone you pay too much too or don't use and try to make sure anyone you have or bring in is worth what you pay them. I leave production and merchandising on default settings, only changing merchandising to just in time and putting the ticket prices up by +3.
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