Comedy and tragedy are synonomous. Just ask my hairdresser. He's embarking through a journey as a part-time stand-up comedian. Not one to just "wing it" he chose, instead, to take classes and study with some of the best writers and professional comedians in the Los Angeles comedy scene. Considering he's performed about 30 times over the last year, not once did his act bomb. Until this month. There he stood, joke after joke, folllowed by the excruciating sound of silence, asking himself, "Do I stop now? Should I continue with the joke or just walk off?" Well, he did finish his act, whereupon, shot immediately to the nearest exit door backstage. He'd done the very same act a few times before with positive responses from his audience. So what happened?
- Location and Choice of Material. Usually perfoming in L.A. this was his first time in Orange County. Though only separated by approxamitley 50 miles, it might as well be cross country. Different crowd, differerent vibe. What's funny in L.A. isn't so much in the OC.
- Demographics and Wardrobe Malfunctions. The name Sally Struthers isn't going to resonate with a younger, college-age crowd even if you do use Brad and Angelina within the same joke. In L.A., one could care less if a comedian is dressed in a silver jacket and boots. The OC? Their idea of ecentricity is a loud Hawaiian shirt.
My hairdresser is amazing. And very, very, funny. This coming from a woman who lives in Orange County. Like him, I, too, must know my audience. Advising grandma with her listing isn't quite on the same page as helping granddaughter navigate her first home purchase. My Gen-X'rs interest in discussing the cultural breakthrough of the push button phone is greeted with about as much enthusiasm as my older seniors curiosity of texting on an iPhone.
As I move forward in my business, flexibility and adaptability are key components is gaining trust and respect from my clients. I have much to learn about the basics of real estate transactions; purchase agreements, disclosure forms, etc. I have much to learn about negotiation and my local market. Mostly though, I had better be aware of my audience no matter what city I perform in. There is one caveat: In no way am I giving up my flip-flops.