How about offerent different levels of DJ service?

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How about offerent different levels of DJ service?

Postby Joseph Ivy » Tue Oct 10, 2006 6:00 pm

As you may know, I just started my own company this year. I have increased my prices several times since performing my first event for just $50. Now, I am thinking of establishing multiple levels of service.

My question is, what do you all think about offering different levels of DJ service?

Do you think that it is a bad idea?

How could you split up the levels of service?
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Postby djdonny » Tue Oct 10, 2006 7:22 pm

different levels of DJ service


Not sure what you mean by that.

If you mean offering a basic package and a deluxe bells-and-whistles package, that's what I do.

If you mean offering cheaper, less experienced DJs for informal events, I'm not in favor of it, but I know it's done. You may want to consider two separate business names and web sites.

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Re: How about offerent different levels of DJ service?

Postby Joseph Ivy » Tue Oct 10, 2006 7:45 pm

Well, I'm not talking about bells and whistles. I won't be offering to use props, lights, or extra speakers.

Gold might mean that all arrangement after the initial consultation are conducted via email. The clients coule be responsible for everything except the performance. There would be a minimal service gaurantee and they would have to pick songs from my library. I figure that I could do this with less than 10 hours of prep work.

Platinum might mean that they make the basic arrangements and we have a review session a few weeks before the wedding. At that time, I would give my input on making everything work together well. There would be a complete service gaurantee, but not a satisfaction gaurantee. They could ask for special songs that are not in my library.

Diamond would include everythign that I do now. Client meeting are only limited by my availablity. I spend several hours meeting with clients and making sure that I have all of the music that they request. I also give them a lot of feedback on how to make their wedding unique.

The difference in prices would only be about $200 for each level and I expect that most people would opt for the Platinum service.

The idea is to help the people who can't afford my full price without feeling like I am doing more work that I am getting paid for.
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Postby dokai » Tue Oct 10, 2006 10:15 pm

Sounds like pretty reasonable differences between the packages. It's probably going to boil down to the pricing.
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Postby Digital Scott » Wed Oct 11, 2006 5:32 pm

I have one show and one price....

If you have show A, B and C --it will be more likly that everyone will pick show A...

A=100
B=200
C=300

Keep it 1 show for a great price..:)
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Postby msounddjs » Wed Oct 11, 2006 8:38 pm

Digital Scott wrote:I have one show and one price....

If you have show A, B and C --it will be more likly that everyone will pick show A...

A=100
B=200
C=300

Keep it 1 show for a great price..:)

Thats what I say,
I wanted to have 2 different stage packages but i know how most people are and they would pick the basic package.
Im not concerned about not makeing the money from the better package but I am concerned about showing up with too little gear and it looking like Im unprepared vs the client being a cheapskate
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Postby Digital Scott » Wed Oct 11, 2006 10:01 pm

you hit the nail on the head..:)
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Postby djdonny » Thu Oct 12, 2006 12:02 am

Joseph,

I don't like it, but it's up to you. It's almost like you're warning the clients that their Gold Package wedding will be inferior. I wouldn't want to sell an inferior package.
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Postby DJ Daddy » Thu Oct 12, 2006 8:10 am

.

Similar to the above comments, I would stay with your best package. The competition at the lower levels is going to make selling in that price level more frustrating. Rise above it and be one of the premium services in your area.

True, marketing (and selling) premium services requires a bit more upfront work but the market for your premium service is out there. Locally, I see good comments for all price levels which indicates that you must know your customer's expectations at the premium level (actually, at any level). That means: even high prices services (not only DJs) aren't necessarily considered excessive; consider yourself a "luxury" DJ

It's a lot of little things that will make you fitting of the premium level. You would find that you would probably be doing premium work for someone that took a lower level package which, in essense, is a freebie.

Packages based on lights/no-lights, based on the size of the venue (due to the need for multi-amp setups) and other "tangibles" is readily accepted by customers. Many customers will never realize the pre-work that you perform for that relatively short time you are "live" and hence the selling of "intangible" work is difficult and risky.

Remember that the higher your premium, the larger your service area needs to be in order to have a qualified customer base.

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Postby TheBartman47 » Thu Oct 12, 2006 12:11 pm

DJ Daddy hit the nail on the head. Think of it this way... you have a skill worth $500 a day. But, you offer to lower your level of expertise and receive $400 instead. The job you do will go a lot smoother and actually be more efficient for you if you perform at your $500 skill level, so you end up doing that anyway, but since you already agreed to do it for $400... you can see where this is going.
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Postby Joseph Ivy » Thu Oct 12, 2006 5:16 pm

The basic idea is that I would be willing to work for less money if it required less work. Right now, I'm spending between 30 and 40 hours for a wedding without including client meeting or performance time. If I could cut that 40 hours down to 5-10 then I wouldn't have a problem with lowering my prices by a couple hundred dollars.

In any case, I am keeping my pricing schedule as is through the rest of this year. Thanks for all of the feedback.
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Postby DJ Daddy » Thu Oct 12, 2006 6:06 pm

.

If you're like many of us, Joseph, you probably couldn't do less work in planning a reception gig - you just seem to naturally do it to the max... (at least I did).


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Postby SteveCie » Thu Oct 12, 2006 10:32 pm

Let's try to get smart on this one.
You still have the same equipment to unload and set up.
You still need to do a great job in order to possibly get a 'gig from a member of the audience.
You still have to invest a week's worth of work to prepare for the event.

In other words---the work load is the same---but you are going to offer a lower price?

Quite honestly, I would prefer to do less 'gigs for more money per 'gig, than do more 'gigs for less money per 'gig.

So if times are tough.....and they are....RAISE YOUR PRICES--don't lower them!

Now as far as offering a lower priced package...think about how angry you are gonna be at yourself when you book a wedding at a reduced rate, and then have to turn down a late caller who would pay top price.
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Postby yourdjbuddy » Fri Oct 13, 2006 5:40 am

I agree with what has been said. People are going to have a hard time paying an additional $200 for your opinions. People understand extra equipment costs more, but unless you're giving them a line item sheet of your personal expenses, including time (I don't recommend this whatsoever), then selling at levels like this is tough.

It hurts us to turn down business that can't pay our prices becasue we think of that as a loss for a night, but by lowering prices for those customers you put yourself in a lower class of DJ. Keep the prices up, keep the good service up, and hopefully your business will prosper!
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Re: How about offerent different levels of DJ service?

Postby jbrown157 » Fri Oct 13, 2006 7:26 am

I am offering a lower priced alternative to those calling for simple parties. I'm sending out a young, less experienced DJ (who is gaining valuable experience) for music and minimal interactivity. This is really fine for birthday parties, etc. We make it very clear to the client what they are getting - it isn't me! It it were, they'd be paying the full rate.
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Re: How about offerent different levels of DJ service?

Postby SteveCie » Fri Oct 13, 2006 9:29 am

Jack, I'm gonna have to disagree with you on this one. You are simply creating competition at a lower price. I realize you can't see it this way, but nonetheless, this is exactly what it is.

For my first twenty years in business, I had to contend with offering a lower price than a band would offer. This fostered the attitude that if you couldn't afford a band, hire a deejay.

This killed me, since I know that my show is better than any band.
I give the people the actual music they want to hear, by the original artists. No band can do that. It took a long time to establish deejays in clubs as opposed to live bands. It took even longer to establish the actual worth of a deejay.

Through persistence, we have accomplished the goal....nearly.
Deejays today are getting paid appropriately, for the most part.

I truly believe that it is a mistake to offer lower priced alternatives to hiring an experienced professional deejay.

I know, people are going to say but where can a novice deejay perform and polish his act?

The same way we all did it. Small private parties, community events (free), charitable events and such.

Let's leave the professional work to we professionals. And lets collectively keep the prices up where they belong. To the folks who can't afford to have a deejay at their affair....simply stated...for me to play you have to pay!
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Re: How about offerent different levels of DJ service?

Postby jbrown157 » Fri Oct 13, 2006 10:40 am

Steve, I understand where you are coming from, but for me (and the clients) this is a win-win scenerio. It might not work for everyone. We generally don't offer the alternative unless I am already booked or otherwise unavailable. It may just be a party that I simply don't want to do. Competition? Maybe for my competitors, but not for me. We book the party for the "understudy" DJ for decent money (at least $500 - which is more than a lot of bottomfeeders charge anyway!). He gets experience, the client gets what they needed and we make a few dollars. As I said, we make certain that the client is aware of exactly what they are getting.

I have no doubts about his ability to do a good job at these kinds of parties. I'm talking Birthdays, Graduations, backyard BBQs, etc., nothing extremely demanding. If I didn't think he could do what the client needed, I'd refer them to someone who could. After getting him some seasoning, I'll be able to get full rate (same as I'd charge if I were doing the party) for his jobs starting probably next spring. I am hoping to develop him into a second wedding-capable performer and this is great experience to help him to do that. He's been shadowing me for three months as a roadie - you can only learn so much from that. I still have him tag-along with me on occasion. He comes up with some pretty intelligent questions and sometimes good ideas based on the experiences he has had on his own gigs.

If and when he becomes capable of doing Weddings and other events that command the higher price, I wouldn't hesitate a second to find and train another enthusiastic beginner in the same manner. All I'd need to do is find the right guy... that's the hard part!
Last edited by jbrown157 on Fri Oct 13, 2006 10:51 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby SteveCie » Fri Oct 13, 2006 10:46 am

$500 is not too shabby!
I misunderstood you. Although many of us command double that amount, i have no problem with anyone commanding $500 for a low keyed gig.

It is similar to our rates for a simple birthday party compared to a full blown wedding event, Of course our price for the birthday party is less than the wedding.

Good luck to your novice!
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Postby djdonny » Fri Oct 13, 2006 4:31 pm

Joseph Ivy wrote:Right now, I'm spending between 30 and 40 hours for a wedding without including client meeting or performance time.


I'm curious about what you could be spending that much time on. Is there any way you could hire an assistant and pay him/her that $100-200 per week to reduce your own personal workload on each job?
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Re: How about offerent different levels of DJ service?

Postby davidjones@a2zmobilemusic » Mon Oct 16, 2006 12:10 am

go with th $500 all inclusive package and raise your rates as you gain exp.

invest in a good music service, build your library, and work at being a better dj. the more comfortable you feel the better your crowd will feel. i spend 1 day a week just learning names. so i look that much better (no cheat sheet) the little things will separate you.
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