By Olivia & Travis Gilbert of Fonix Entertainment
Everyone loves a good party, and an excellent DJ can provide a lot more than just tunes. However, many people don’t even know where to begin their DJ quest. Here are some tips to scoring the perfect professional to entertain your guests, convey your personal style and keep the party going all night long!
First things first, leave price out—we, promise we’ll come back to it! Many people overlook a DJ as a valued counterpart to the event and opt for a DJ based on the amount of equipment of service. Think of the best events that you have been to and ask where they found their entertainment. Friends, family, photographers, caterers and your event’s location will have some great referrals. Then check your favorite search engine and local publications for a few more options. Use these resources to start your DJ research. Now that you have some contenders, make contact and ask questions—the response and attitude will help narrow down your list. Most importantly, make sure you talk with the DJ available to avoid a bait and switch tactic. Remember, leave the price out till you narrow your search down because you never know what kind of deals and specials are available, unless you ask. And always ask are there any additional fees after signing the contract. You want to make sure your comparing apples to apples.
Below will help you find the perfect DJ are some ideal questions, in order:
• Are you available for <insert date event>?
• How long have you been a performer/How many events have you performed?
• Do you know who to mix/blend songs? (sadly many DJs now rely on auto mix vs real skill)
• What makes you different than other local DJ’s?
• Describe a typical event and how you perform.
• Do you have any reviews online? And where?
• Have you performed an event at (your venue)?
• Are you insured? (make sure it meets your venue’s vendor insurance requirements)
• Will the same person I talk to before the event be my DJ?
• How long has the DJ been with your DJ company? (high turnover rates are a sign of bad agent or poor business ethics)
• Do you charge by the hour or do you have package plans?
• Do you provide any tools to assist me in planning my event?
• Can we choose our own songs?
• Do we have to choose music only from you library?
• Do you take requests?
• Do you use industry standard professional equipment? (Be weary of the DJ and check pictures of their events; there are DJ’s that use consumer grade blue tooth speakers with short range)
• Do you have back-up equipment?
• How does your equipment set up?
• Do you provide wireless mic’s?
• Do you provide any dance lighting?
• How early must you arrive to set-up?
These are just a few questions be sure to advise any special requirements and/or cultural dances. From here you have a better idea of what to expect from a local DJ. Look at your proposals and weigh out your options. Visit their websites and look for client feedback, photo galleries and videos from events. There are many things to consider before you make your final decision. Your DJ should provide a planning form—this will give you a general timeline, a format of how the event will be run. You are paying for much more than a warm body behind turntables! Do not believe that just anyone can speak in front of people and convey the message with confidence and enthusiasm while also making the message effective. If you’re searching for a DJ for your Wedding, always, always meet the DJ or speak with the DJ via a conference call before you sign any contracts. Never go by a company’s reputation. This is 50% of the process of finding the right DJ because at the end of the day the best DJ for your event will be able to communicate on your level. Listen to the voice of your DJ. Do you like it?
Make your informed decision. Get a contract. Do not be shy—these DJ’s cannot make your event the talk of the town if you don’t talk to them. Be clear about exactly what you want.
For more information and to schedule a consultation with Fonix Entertainment click HERE & fill out an online inquiry form.
Photo Credit: In The Moment Wedding Photography