event game show

2018 will mark the ninth year of TrivWorks, as well as my twelfth year producing company team building, trivia for corporate events, and live professional game show hosting.

From those humble beginnings when I was simply a pub quiz host in Manhattan looking to earn some extra money on the side, I have steadily built this brand to become the industry leader in live trivia for corporate and private audiences. With a full roster of professional emcees and a wide range of compelling formats and experiences, TrivWorks regularly produces events nationwide for small businesses to Fortune 500 companies, for groups as small as 15 to 1,500+.

And yet, some clients choose not to hire us.

As a business owner, it is no doubt frustrating for me to have folks walk into my “shop,” so to say, look around, then turn around and walk out. But as I learned one summer in college while working at a shoe store, that’s just the way business is; some customers come to buy, others to browse. While it’s of course in my interest to convert as many of these browsers into buyers as I can, I do understand that this won’t happen every time.

In fact, many have good reason for not proceeding with TrivWorks – and believe it or not, I agree with them! Here are the most common reasons I’ve found that certain people ultimately decide NOT to proceed with TrivWorks:

It’s Not a Traditional Game Show

Our brand is unique in that while we are in the corporate games and activities space, we aren’t really what you’d call a “game show” in the traditional sense. We aren’t coming in with a huge production intended to be a larger-than-life spectacle; we have no giant stage props, lecterns, screens, lights, bells, buzzers, rigging or trusses. We’re not trying to re-create the shiny “tile floor” set people see on TV, nor are our emcees striving to take on the persona of what one might think of as a “game show host.”

Rather, what we aim to create is a raucous, laugh-filled social experience, with a focus on getting people to have an absolute blast together, bonding over a fantastic shared experience. Unlike traditional corporate game show ideas, where a lucky few get to participate onstage while the rest of the audience watches, our events are designed so that EVERYBODY in the room is actively engaged from beginning to end.

That’s all well and good, but the fact is that’s just not what some people are looking for. Certain people DO want that “game show” experience: the lights, the buzzers, the grand display, the Family Feud for company events, the cheesy host (“Let’s see what’s behind Door #1…!”). Or maybe they want an interactive digital experience like this.

While I DO have some things I can offer in this vein, including 1-on-1 trivia formats, a “showdown” grand finale and even real, actual TV game show hosts for corporate events like Pat Kiernan of VH1’s The World Series of Pop Culture and Marc Summers of Double Dare, the full-blown game show for corporate event experience really isn’t my core competency, nor what people tend to look to TrivWorks for. If that’s truly what people are seeking, than honestly, there are other vendors out there who can do this better than I can.

It’s Outside of the Budget

TrivWorks is a premium brand. What do I mean by this? I mean that we offer a high-quality service: our events are tailor-made with custom-written trivia question for each client, our hosting talent are all professional corporate event emcees with years and years of experience, we have unparalleled experience producing trivia parties for corporate groups, and our customer service is top notch.

As such, our fees are commensurate with our service – and ultimately the experience we deliver.

While I am fully committed to working as best I can within clients’ budgets to deliver the greatest product I can, as a top-tier service provider my direct expenses are quite high, and my time is valuable. There is only so much wiggle room I have with respect to my pricing before I have to start watering down the service, which can ultimately impact not only the experience, but my brand reputation.

I’ve addressed the issue of corporate event entertainment and company team building activities pricing several times over the years here on my blog: as with just about everything else, you get what you pay for. Readers familiar with my posts know that I like to use the analogy of cars here. If I run a BMW dealership and you’re in the market for a beat-up used car, I could try to convince you to buy from me until I’m blue in the face, but there’s no way I’m going to ultimately “up-sell” you to what I’m selling. Yes, it’s far higher quality and performance than what you came into my shop looking for, but that comes with a cost – and there’s no way I can discount it to the price point you’re seeking.

While I DO offer a budget service called TrivWorks Express – a turnkey office trivia party with minimal customization – if a client is looking to spend virtually nothing, there are certainly other cheaper (often MUCH cheaper) options out there. But again, be warned: you get what you pay for.

The Situation Has Changed

Oftentimes, the reason a prospective client (or even a long-term repeat client) ultimately decides not to proceed with me has absolutely nothing to do with me. Something beyond the inquirer’s control – a revised budget or modified agenda, perhaps – makes what had once seemed probable now impossible. Or maybe it’s simply a matter of preference: the final decision maker has, for whatever reason, changed his or her mind about what the company party entertainment or group team building activity should be, and trivia’s no longer being considered.

Or maybe the event has been cancelled altogether.

This sort of stuff happens all the time, and while it can be frustrating for the planner/vendor, it’s ultimately one of those things that just has to be accepted. After all, it could just mean that instead of having us produce this particular event, we come in and entertain the next time around.

For the most part, people who inquire with me about our unique corporate game show trivia events and company team building programs generally fall into one of three categories: those who are looking for exactly what I offer, those who have somewhat of an idea of what they want, and those who simply have no idea, but this looks interesting. Because what I offer is indeed proven and compelling, I can oftentimes convert any of the above prospects into clients – however, there are times when people in any of these three categories may decide to forgo hiring TrivWorks, for any of the reasons above.

For another article on this topic, check out