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Key Questions To Ask Before You Hire A DJ – Part 2


Unlocking The Secrets To DJ’s Is As Easy As Asking A Few Questions

51: How Much Power and Space Is …….Required For Your Equipment?

Hint: When choosing your venue be sure and set aside adequate space adjacent to the dance floor to allow your DJ entertainment the ability to carry out your needs. Also make sure that your DJ understands how much power their equipment draws and that there is adequate power supplied to ensure that power breakers don’t trip and disrupt your festivities.

52: Will You Be Doing Any Forms Of …….Advertising During My Event?

Hint: It isn’t uncommon for DJ entertainment to have their company logo displayed on their equipment. However, discuss with your DJ in advance whether it will fit the decor for your wedding. There is also a big difference between passing out a few discreet business cards when asked and making self promotion (hire us for your next event) plugs over the microphone.

53: Do You Have Any Recommended Vendors Who You Have Been Impressed With?

Hint: DJs have a unique opportunity to work closely with many vendors and can observe how well they deal with their clients. Pay close attention to what vendors your DJ associates with and how well they seem to work together. To avoid name dropping, check with the vendors mentioned to check that references are valid.

54: Where Are Your Main Offices Located?

Hint: Most legitimate companies will have a business office or store front that you can make an appointment to visit & view their equipment & staff. Knowing where and how to find your DJ may prove to be useful if your DJ fails to show up.

55: What makes you different from your competitors?

Hint: Listen closely to what is being said by the DJ you’re interviewing. This is an opportunity for the DJ to display their pride and confidence in their work as opposed to making disparaging remarks about their competitors. Be looking for innovative and creative ideas that can allow you to personalize your event. Be open about the choices you’re considering and study how each DJ reacts. There is a big difference between sharing “what” to watch out for and naming “who” to watch out for. If a DJ relies on gossip and disparaging remarks about a competitor to build themselves up…they obviously have nothing to offer. Time to move on!

56: Where Do You Obtain Your Music?

Hint: Legitimate and Professional DJ services should have a subscription to an industry music supplier such as TM Century Prime Cuts, RPM, Promo Only, ERG or Core (CMS). Avoid DJs that openly reference access to large libraries of MP3 music using broadband or wi-fi access to download music for your event. Aside from the legal issues that accompany downloaded music. Introducing files during your event could cause a DJs computer system to become unstable and potentially ruin your event due to a Virus, Trojan or non-previewed EXPLICIT content. DJs that routinely and illegally download and file-share music may be on the RIAA’s watch list and may find themselves incapable of performing for you if they are named in a suit.

57: How Extensive Is Your Music Library?

Hint: Whether the DJ boasts a library of 10,000 or 1,000,000 songs…it still comes down the 50 – 60 playable songs during an average length event. Generally speaking, there is a core list of 200 songs that get played most frequently. Be specific about your music tastes and convey them to your DJ. If your DJ seems unfamiliar with your choices in music, investigate further to ensure you have the DJ with the most knowledge to meet your specific genre needs. It is always a good sign when a DJ is willing to purchase music to expand their music library to meet client needs.

58: How Can I View A Listing Of Your Music Library?

Hint: Professional DJ services will have their music library catalogued. Depending on how large and extensively catalogued the music library is, it may need to viewed in person. It is up to you to provide a listing of important song selections to your DJ that includes Artist and Song Name so that they may research their library to better serve you.

59: How do you keep your music collection up-to-date?

Hint: Professional DJ services that maintain active subscriptions via major music services such as TM Century Prime Cuts, RPM, Promo Only, ERG or Core (CMS) should have the most current main stream (radio edited) music selections. Inquire how often your DJ conducts music research and how they implement that research into a benefit for you.

60: Have you played at our reception site before?

Hint: If your DJ does not have experience playing at the venue where you are holding your event, they could face some difficult challenges.

Things that can vary by venue:

Load In Time
Set Up Time
Tear Down Time
Load Out Time
Security Procedures
Potential Personality Conflicts With Venue Staff
Room Size and Configurations
Acoustical Anomalies and Challenges
Electrical Supply and Location of Outlets
Open Ground Issues
Competing Wireless Signals

Your DJ will need to be familiar with your venue to give you the assurance that you won’t have any problems on your event day. Having your DJ do a venue walk through with you and your facility contact to ensure good communication between all parties that pertain to your specific need is a great way to avoid event day problems.

61: What Happens If You Experience An Accident, Illness or Emergency?

Hint: Full-Time Professional DJ Entertainers are not immortal. Career DJs are meticulous about their planning and preparation. Career DJs will network with other Professional DJs in the regular course of business. Should an unforeseen accident, illness or emergency occur – responsible professionals have carefully planned backup strategies to initiate should this situation ever arise.

62: What Type Of Formal Training Have You Received As A DJ?

Hint: In 1999, Shawn Fanning (creator of Napster) inadvertently made it more difficult to obtain a qualified DJ for an event. P2P file sharing enticed several DJs to amass large libraries of illegal music and to build sub-par DJ systems in search of a quick buck. The number of Mobile DJs has more than tripled since 2000 and the majority of those DJs have no formal DJ training. The majority of DJs that chose to forgo traditional means of Mobile DJ training exert a negative effect on the Mobile DJ Industry by ( practicing rather than performing for clients ) not having been pre-screened by apprenticeship under established DJ companies capable of separating the “wheat from the chaff“.

63: How Are We Guaranteed That You’ll DJ My Event?

Hint: Many single-op DJs use this tactic in an attempt to bolster confidence in their personal abilities. In reality, many of those DJs lack the necessary training and experience to back up their claims. Generally speaking, this claim can be validated by price. A single-op DJ relies on revenue generated by one event per day. If a DJ uses the “If You Hire My Company, You Get Me” pitch and they price themselves among the lowest prices in the market, they’re admitting they’re not that good. Time to move on! However, if a DJ uses the “If You Hire My Company, You Get Me” pitch and they price themselves among the highest prices in the market, they’re worth meeting in person.

64: Do You Perform For More Than One Event In A Day?

Hint: Handling an event from load-in to performance to load-out can be physically exhausting. Staying alert and energetic takes disciplines that are lost when you’re being pulled in multiple directions by multiple events. It is best to hire a DJ that performs one event per day. They can give you the undivided attention you deserve.

65: What Is The DJs Personal Philosophy On DJing? Why Are They In The Business?

Hint: DJ entertainers sacrifice their social lives and weekends on a regular basis to allow you to enjoy your social life. Discover what motivates the DJ that your considering to take time away from family and friends. Put yourself in the DJs shoes: Imagine an event that is so important that you would do anything to attend. ( concert, family get-together, reunion, sporting event) Will the DJ that you’re considering honor their contract…or will they try a wiggle out of it? The lower the contract price, the greater the odds of having a DJ try to back out of their contract.

66: What do you do to motivate the crowd if nobody is dancing?

Hint: Professional DJs that have actual “in the field” performing experience create a “bag of tricks” to motivate guests. Ask for specific examples of what they do and have them explain “in detail” how they would implement their plan to benefit your your event and make it successful.

67: Does it make sense to risk my whole event on a cheap, inexperienced DJ?

Hint: Consider the amount that you are spending on your overall event. Then consider what the DJ is telling you about their service and abilities in reference to rate they are quoting you. Higher end Professional DJs can always limit what they do to help you stay on budget, however, you can’t take the “cheap” out of cheap.

68: How Long Have You Been DJing and What Are Your Credentials?

Hint: Do your homework and check credentials.

Check into the credentials of the:

Person You’re Speaking With
DJ That Will Be Handling Your Event

Pay close attention to what:

Related Work Experience
Continuing Education

Don’t be fooled by fabricated credentials. You’re conducting an interview / audition. If you don’t take the time to dig deeper into the DJs credentials, they could make any embellished credential claim and mislead you into a purchase that doesn’t meet your needs.

69: How Many Hours Of Preparation Will Go Into My Event?

Hint: Pay close attention to how much prep time will be related to your event. Be wary of DJs that attempt to downplay prep time as not being important to your event. Your event is unique and it requires preparation and practice specific to your needs, which includes a multitude of various skills, to ensure that you receive adequate value related to your contract.

DJs that reduce the importance of prep time for events are more likely to take advantage of their clients by neglecting their clients needs and by providing an inferior quality performance.

70: Why Is A Personalized Event So Important?

Hint: Events are a living thing.

Any event can be defined by three things:

Organization and Information

Events evolve uniquely and can function independently as a social society. Events require “planning energy” and “performance energy” to create “party energy”. None of which, can be achieved, without information and pre-planning.

Take into consideration what type event you are planning and find a DJ that can reflect your unique personality and style. Recreating and fulfilling dreams does not happen by accident. Working one on one with a Professional DJ that is interested in you and your event can allow you a stress-free day giving you the opportunity to enjoy your special occasion and your guests. Select a DJ that has the desire to assist you in making your individuality a part of every aspect of your event.

71: Tell Me Why I Should Hire You?

Hint: Every form of employment has it’s own unique set of dues that are paid when experience is being earned. Within the DJ industry, the dues that are paid define the character, caliber and capabilities of the DJ. If you don’t feel that the DJ has paid the necessary dues to handle your event it’s in your best interest to keep searching for the right fit.

72: Are You The Best Mobile DJ Entertainer In The Region? If So, Why?

Hint: Every DJ thinks that they’re the best, however, many lack the skill sets that provide the “why”. Don’t accept vague answers that attempt to sidestep your questions in an appeal to get you to book. Ask for specific information and examples until you’re satisfied.

73: List 5 Examples Of Unique Things You’ve Done Recently?

Hint: DJs that have legitimate performing experience should be able to rattle off 5 unique things they’ve done, upon request. If they seem evasive or unsure of themselves, they’re not being honest with you. Time to move on!

74: Does Your DJ Seem Rushed On The Phone?

Hint: Your event is important. Professional DJs should take the time necessary to understand your needs and offer suggestion when necessary. If your DJ is unable to take your call immediately, they should set aside a time to give you their undivided attention. Part-Time and Hobbyist DJs may not be able to handle personal calls at their day-job. This situation won’t change for better and could leave you constantly inconvenienced.

75: Does Your DJ Seem Genuinely Interested In YOU?

Hint: There is nothing more distressing in the entertainment business than indifference. Planning an event requires the building of relationships that work towards YOUR common goals rather than making you just a number on folder and date on a calendar. From the moment you call, your DJ should have your best interests at heart to ensure that you‘re treated fairly and that you receive the highest caliber of service for an appropriate price.

76: How Is Your DJs Phone Number Listed?

Hint: Determining how your DJs phone number is listed in the phone directory and online could save you headaches in the final weeks before your wedding. Legitimate businesses make their number easily available and searchable for customers in phone directories and online. Cell phones are vital fixtures in the business world, however, directory listing of cell phone numbers is tragically inadequate. DJs that neglect to maintain a prominent phone listing are likely to neglect other areas that are important to your event as well. Choosing a legitimate DJ starts with a legitimate business listing.

77: Are You Really Endorsed By…?

Hint: Be cautious of DJs that make “Endorsed By….” statements to increase your confidence in their company. Statements such as “Endorsed by Coke or Endorsed by Pepsi“…etc, could be a false claim. Always contact the “endorsement source” to verify whether or not the “endorsement” is untrue, deceptive or misleading.

78: If You Received A Referral – Is The Referrer Doing You or The DJ A Bigger Favor?

Hint: There is an unprecedented amount DJs entering the DJ Industry. These Disc Jockeys have a great network of family, friends and co-workers rallying support for them. This can put event planners in an awkward position of choosing between a Qualified Professional DJ or an unqualified DJ with little to no training. It’s YOUR event, take control and resist the peer-pressure of making the wrong choice.

79: Why Are You Offering A Discount Before I Know What You Can Do For Me?

Hint: There is a difference between slashing a price and offering an upgrade. DJs that are over-charging for inferior services usually use a variety of schemes to bait the purchase. “$100 off”, “FREE dinner music”, “free time with minimum purchase”, “no time limit for one low price”…the schemes are never ending. There’s a simple rule of thumb to spot con-artists. Incentives should add value to your purchase…not decrease the value of what you’re purchasing. Genuine offers will always contain a time limit.

80: How Will Your Equipment Be Displayed, Presented and Placed In Our Event?

Hint:Generally speaking DJs enter the industry with nothing more than their love for music and little to no business sense. One of the first decisions that any DJ owner faces is choosing solid commercial sound and lighting gear, which requires a substantial business decision and investment. “Sticker Shock” compels many to use home stereo equipment or purchase inferior equipment to “get by” until they can afford equipment that’s adequate for commercial equipment. However, DJs with inferior equipment generally have inferior rates which prevents them from ever attaining the proper equipment necessary to handle your event or improve their overall show appearance.

Other things to consider is “how well” the DJs equipment is cared for and maintained. Weddings and Corporate functions are a different environment than a college, bar or barn dance. Professional DJs have multiple systems, each with a specific purpose in mind. Bringing stale beer soaked audio equipment, speakers and cables smelling of smoke or farm animals into a formal event can ruin the atmosphere that you’re trying to achieve.

Make sure your DJ keeps their equipment well maintaining and physically appealing for the venue where you are holding your event.

Ensuring that you and your guests won’t be embarrassed or offended by the DJs can be as easily addressed by a few simple questions.

For Booking or Additional Information: 701-234-9492

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