Jonah sits down with Zivi Kivi for episode 140 to talk the business of performing. Zivi is not only a children’s entertainer, but he operates several podcasts like the Balloon Artist Podcast, Generous Podcast, and the Magician Business Podcast while also instructing with the Kids Entertainer Academy.  

Zivi’s interest in magic started while he working in Japan as a software developer sent over from Israel.  While in a toy store, he saw the invisible deck performed and immediately purchased the trick. On the plane ride home, he discovered the instructions were all in Japanese; he ended up sharing the experience of learning the trick with a passenger who spoke Japanese and English. Over time, his interest in magic and performance developed.

Soon, magic became something Zivi wanted to pursue full time, so over the next eight years, he slowly built a reliable business. With a background in business, Zivi thought he was set to succeed in the entertainment world, only to quickly learn that the business of magic is drastically different from selling marketing software solutions. His journey to improve led him to discover the  Magician Business Podcast which radically changed his approach to marketing his services.

The Ten Percent Rule

As Zivi continued developing his business, he realized that applying an extra ten percent of his time to a task would scale the vale he received from said task. For example, if he is performing, he can film and edit a quick summary of the event which he can send to future clients. By applying an extra twenty minutes, he is able to create an additional resource for marketing his business. Zivi emphasizes that there is always one more thing you can do to achieve this ten percent.

Ten Hour Principle

Having worked with performs from around the world, Zivi noticed that everyone shares the same problems. He began to note how people approached solving the issues and began to apply these tactics to his own teachings, which led to him developing the eight marketing tactics:

  1. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
  2. Ad words
  3. Paid and unpaid Facebook marketing
  4. Instagram
  5. Email
  6. Champion building system tactics (focus is on creating and driving fans)
  7. Cold calling and outreach
  8. Ninja tactics (leveraging connections and networking)

The ten-hour principle comes into play when you choose one of these tactics and focus on it for ten hours each week. By spending ten hours a week on one thing, Zivi says, you can reach a tipping point with your marketing where you’ll begin to see results; he says that most people follow marketing tips but don’t apply enough time to see see results. He goes on to say that if you’re not happy with the results, you can always change next week, but you need to focus and get to the point where your marketing is productive and efficient.

Eventually, as you learn what does and doesn’t work for you, you will have developed processes and systems that will allow you to achieve the same results in an hour; you just need to learn what works for you first. You will need to measure your results and understand the numbers to figure out where your time is best spent. By measuring what you get out of ten hours, you will understand where to focus.

Failure Marketing & Ten Mistakes

You need to plan for failure, Zivi says. By embracing the things that don’t work, you can learn from your mistakes and improve your approach to marketing. If you don’t see results after spending a few ten-hour slots on something, then go back to the list of eight to find an approach that may work better for you.

Zivi goes on to break down the ten mistakes he made when he was starting out, reminding the audience that what didn’t work for him may still work for you.

  1. Branding his car: the branding on his car had no call to action and no way to track how many people were actually seeing it.
  2. Purchased too much: he had to throw away thousands in materials because he overestimated the amount of time he would have for tricks and what he would need.
  3. Ad words: he entered into a competition with his friend to see who could get the higher ranking. They spent a fortune during the competition buying competitive ad words rather than focusing on cheaper, niche keywords.
  4. 90-day social challenge: he did a 90-day social challenge where he posted for 90 days straight. While he had nice graphics and stories, he wasn’t being social in his posts and interconnecting with people on the platform.

  5. Water bottles: he had a plan to hand out silicone water bottles with his branding so that kids would be hydrated. The bottles got confiscated at customs which would have required him to pay a hefty fee to prove they were safe. 

  6. Not practicing practice: he was not practicing in an effective manner to truly improve his skill to amaze his customers.

  7. Not developing one more skill: he wishes that he could add one more amazing skill to his repertoire to accompany his balloon and magic skills.

  8. Backlinks: he didn’t understand the importance of backlinks for SEO and how 25% of your SEO should be dedicated to legitimate backlinks.

  9. Health: up until six months ago, he wasn’t being conscious of his body’s importance.

  10. Balancing wife and kids: he realized that fixing the balance between his work and home life gave him a sense of security.


What do you like about magic in 2018? What do you hate?

Zivi isn’t actively looking into the magic trends. However, he has been interested in and enjoying close-up magic.


Matan Rosenberg

Take Home Points

Jonah enjoyed the part about diving into magic full time and taking an honest look at how you spend the hours in your day.

Zivi enjoyed the overall theme of being an eternal learner and being open to new concepts.

Resources Mentioned

Smart Passive Income with Pat Flynn

The One Thing by Gary Keller

Willpower Doesn’t Work by Benjamin Hardy




Influence Marketing: 10% Principle

Magician Business Podcast

Kids Entertainment Podcast

Generous Marriage Podcast

Balloon Artist College

Kids Entertainment School

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