How to Start a DJ Business
If you have a love for music and you have a considerable experience as a DJ, you might want to make more earnings out of your interest by starting a DJ business. Starting a DJ business is easy especially if you have basic entrepreneurial skills. The best thing about starting a DJ business is that you can get more out of your gigs than when you work as a talent for other agencies.
Here are some of the things that you may be interested to know so you can evaluate whether you can start and manage a DJ music business:
Requirements to get started
There are a number of requirements that you will need for you to get started on your DJ music business. The majority of these requirements are tools and equipment that you need to use for your DJ business operation. This includes sound and lighting equipment. You should also ensure that you have a wide array of music collections that includes most in-demand songs for different events. You will also find it very helpful if you have a vehicle to transport you and your DJ business equipment during your events and gigs. While not entirely necessary in your DJ music business operation, marketing materials are important for your DJ business. Marketing materials such as business cards will allow you to advertise your DJ business and help you get clients who will avail of your DJ mixes business services.
Marketing your DJ business
You will find that the most challenging part of starting and managing a DJ music business is getting clients to get your DJ services. It is therefore extremely important that you have basic marketing skills. One of the best ways to market your DJ business is by choosing a target market. Choosing the types of events that you want your DJ business to specialize in will allow you to understand your target market and know the marketing strategies that you need. If you want to specialize in weddings gigs, for example, you might want to establish a business partnership with wedding planners who can refer you to their clients. You must also take advantage of advertising so people will know about the services that your DJ business offers. You can pay for ad spaces in event magazines and distribute calling cards to your DJ business’ prospective clients. Additionally, you can ask friends and colleagues to spread the word about your DJ business.
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Startup cost for Karaoke DJ Business will be in a range of $3000 - $13000(USD). There are various factors involved in figuring the exact money needed to start a DJ business. The most essential in this business is the DJ equipments(http://www.raymardo.com/dj-equipment.html), your startup cost is going to fluctuate with the quality of equipment you buy. You can browse through the catalog to buy your DJ equipment from this site: http://www.planetdj.com
For Logan's question, you need a website and to start marketing to your nitch. At first you've gotta spend money to make money. The best advice I've gotton as a mobile DJ is from the book 'How to be a DJ' by Chuck Fresh.
Pablo's advice can help. Just don't let too many people know that you are working for free because then everyone wants a freebie.
Unless they already have a large clientele, most clubs are interested in you helping to get people in the door if there is a cover charge and keeping people there so they buy more drinks.
Good Luck - DJ Ivan, Takoma Park, MD
I've been in sales and marketing for 20 years and here are some things I would suggest you look at doing:
1. Make sure you register your business with the state (or other appropriate gov't agency if not in the U.S). In my marketplace there are about 20 DJ companies, but only 12 are registered businesses with the State of Minnesota! My one time expense to do this was about $200 total (will vary by state however).
2. Join your local Chamber of Commerce. It's great to join a national DJ association but I honestly don't think that my clients care about that. They do, however, put a great deal a value on us being members of the Chamber. Why? Because of those 20 DJ companies in my market, only 4 (including myself) are members. In today's world of bridal shop closings, photographers going under, and DJ's bailing on the couple at the last minute, PEACE OF MIND IS IMPORTANT!
In my sales pitch I mention the registered business part and the Chamber part and tell the prospective client, "We treat our business like a business. We're in it for the long haul." Ask yourself, all things being equal, would you hire a DJ that's a member of the Chamber or one that's not even registered with the State? Exactly. Total cost: $375 per year.
3. Get a website! In today's world you HAVE to have a website to be taken seriously. It doesn't cost much and if you can use Facebook, you can make a website. A great place to go thru is Intuit.com I use them and it costs me less than $9 per month and I built my own website in about 2 hours and I definitely am not tech savvy. Oh, and DON'T use a "free" email address (@ yahoo, @aol, etc.) We use firstname.lastname@example.org Again, it's about being professional. Also, get some business cards. They're cheap and a necessity for my fourth point.
4. Network, network, network!!! Introduce yourself to anyone and everyone in your area who is involved in weddings. The banquet hall managers, photographers, flower shops, jewelry stores, etc. Think about the flow of planning a wedding...jewelry store (engagement), booking the church/banquet hall, booking photographer, buying dresses, and then they'll get to the flowers/cakes/DJ's. We're the caboose on the wedding planning bookings! Look at all those other opportunities you have for people you network with to mention your business! Many brides will book BECAUSE you were mentioned. They book the photographer, build a good report and trust with them and when they say "Check out this DJ company, they're really good." That carries a TON of weight! Total cost: ZERO! Just some sweat equity.
5. Be smart. Instead of doing a show for free, do it in trade! In exchange for something they have (I like to trade for advertising whenever possible) you'll play at their event. This not only gives you exposure at the event but you also get advertising out of it as well! Cost: Just your time (and gas to get to the gig).
6. Be smart, part 2. Use contracts and have insurance. Insurance won't cost you much and it's DEFINITELY cheaper than paying someone's medical bills or replacing some of your equipment. Those are things that can put you out of business. Contracts spell out everything to my clients. When and where we are playing, what they are getting (# of hours, mics, etc) and most importantly - an agreement on the payment amount and dates! I require a $100 non-refundable deposit with balance paid in full one week prior to the event. I let my clients know (in a nice way) that I don't play if they don't pay. I don't leave the house unless they've got a zero balance. Why? Well, it's not like I can reposes their reception! And who wants to be a collection agent...ugh!
7. Paid advertising. I'm not a huge fan of paid advertising. The amount of money it costs to effectively advertise doesn't merit the investment. Example: if I spend $2400 on an ad campaign and charge $600 per gig, I need to get 4 gigs JUST TO BREAK EVEN! There are better ways. You need to be in the yellow pages. I hate doing it because I think it's over priced but it's a necessary evil. Depending upon the size of your ad you'll spend anywhere from a few hundred to over $1000 per book (we're in two different books in our area).
8. Bang for your buck advertising. The first one is to go to the local wedding expos. This is HUGE!!! I went to my first expo and spent about $500 total ($400 for the booth, $100 on printing for the marketing piece). I booked TEN gigs off of that one 4 hour event! The math looks like this; total expense $500, total revenue $6,000! That's a good return on investment! On top of that, I also got a list of the brides who attended the expo, complete with name, address, phone, email addresses, and wedding date. I can target market every bride and there were over 400 names on the list! How many more gigs do you think I can get from that list? Any gigs I land get added to that $6k I booked at the event.
9. BNI. This is the second "bang for your buck" advertising. It is a networking group that is available worldwide. I'm not going into the details here, but do a Google search for it and check it out. I think you'll find it can be very helpful. Need an example? In my group we have a florist and a hair salon, neither of which attended the wedding expo. I told them I'd put their info out on my table and give them the list of brides if they put a strong offer I can use to attract customers. Here is what we came up with: If the prospect booked their event within one week of the expo they would receive $100 off of their DJ package, FREE 1/2 dozen roses and FREE floral consult, a FREE haircut and FREE bridal hair consult. A total value of $250! My cost: nothing (other than the discount on the DJ package). But it was such a huge impact on the client they went crazy for it! The florist and hair salon owners were thrilled to have the chance to book those 10 clients I booked and they were doing free consults for and also had 400 brides names to target as well! Plus, the florist put out a REALLY nice floral display for my booth...at no charge!
Ultimately, the success of your DJ business will come down to how you handle BOTH sides of your company...the "DJ" side and the "business" side. I cannot stress enough the importance of having good relationships with people. They can be your best friends (or worst enemies) and can get you all types of gigs if you treat them right.
Have other questions? Drop me a line at email@example.com Thanks for reading and I hope you found at least one helpful nugget in there! Marc
1. GET A WEBSITE. I did for free on webs.com. Totally free forever. Great way to reach customers
2. GET GOOGLE ADS. Just look up $75 credit :google ad and there you go! great way to reach customers. Got a few that way.
3. Yes this one is kind of well not the polite thing to do really but hide your age AT FIRST. Make sure you start out very professional and polite. Later on they will realize your age and say WOW! This kid is really professional!
4. Get business cards and the like.
5. KNOW WHAT YOUR doing. Get good equipment and software.
6. Facebook page
7. Insurance and the other stuff. Well I dont have it and i'm not a registered business i probably should be but I have no idea how or when i'ld be able to do that.
People say it takes a lot of money to do that. I spent under $600 to get me going and now i have gigs going on. Look for free stuff everywhere.
If you have questions: Peakdjentertainment@gmail.com or www.peakentertainment.webs.com. GOOD LUCK
Whats the most important? Your laptop. Get a Mac. Some disagree that you need a mac, and think a windows is fine. It's NOT. Windows are such trouble computers, and plus if you're Djing and your windows crashes, how embarrassing would that be? Plus you're not a professional DJ unless you have a good laptop (Mac). Macs don't get viruses. Another thing... Make sure to get your name out there by going to DJ shows/Bridal Shows. Hope this is of help to everyone!
1. Specifically, how much money do I need to buy my equipment?
2. What is the quality brand name of all the equipment I have to buy?
3. And after I've gotten all the equipment, how do I go about obtaining access into Deejaying in night clubs?
I will be happy to get all the information I need. Thanks.
firstname.lastname@example.org || DJ Expert