Why can't I get people to realize we are woth our fee?

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Why can't I get people to realize we are woth our fee?

Postby hyperon » Wed Nov 22, 2006 6:59 pm

I feel like running outside and sreaming at the top of my lungs'"Why do you not respect my profession!!!!??"
I am a full timer and rely on my trade to pay my bills. Have many of you taken a hit in November?
I just want to show people we are more important than the ice sculpture. Please help ease my pain
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Re: Why can't I get people to realize we are woth our fee?

Postby dokai » Wed Nov 22, 2006 7:49 pm

I feel your pain. And yes, November is usually slow for me, as is January.

People don't respect our profession because there are too many people out there doing it poorly. If they've seen those wannabes, and also have seen me, then I have a lot less trouble getting them to pay my rates. However, unless they've seen the difference a GOOD DJ can make, it's a much harder sales job.

Try to not annoy your neighbors with the screaming. :wink:
"You are what you do when it counts."
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Re: Why can't I get people to realize we are woth our fee?

Postby hyperon » Wed Nov 22, 2006 9:44 pm

Thank you! No offense to the fine part time Dj's out there, but if they would price themselves closer to us lifers it would help us all. When we are over 80% of the memories, they had better be great ones. I wish you a very happy Thanksgiving, and may the Lord keep you safe. R.
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Postby TheBartman47 » Thu Nov 23, 2006 1:13 am

Interesting... I'm super busy this November. I've even got a gig this weekend right after thanksgiving. I'm charging $2,550 for a 3 day event.
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Re: Why can't I get people to realize we are woth our fee?

Postby hyperon » Thu Nov 23, 2006 1:30 am

I am happy for you. I guess different areas of the country get it. Ohio is different. Don't burn yourself out and best wishes for a successful event.
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Postby djdonny » Thu Nov 23, 2006 11:46 am

they would price themselves closer to us lifers


What would that be? My prices range from $750-$1500 as a PT'er.

I honestly don't believe the full-time single-system weekend DJ business model works (with maybe a handful of exceptions nationwide). If I were to give FT a serious shot, I would need to expand to a multi-op.

Note: My gauge for a model that "works," is one in which $100,000 in revenue can be generated every year, and at least half of that revenue ($50,000+) is paid out to the owner/DJ as income. If I can't make at least $50K a year running my own business full time, I might as well earn it as a salary (which I do, as a high school teacher). As a part-timer, my revenue is in the $30-$50K range each year, of which about 25% is paid out as income to me and goes directly to a savings account.

I'm going to throw an opinion out there for discussion: I honestly believe that a majority of the single-system DJs who brag about working "full-time" do so because they have either recognized they are unqualified to, failed at, or were overwhelmed by the pressures of earning a decent salary as an employee. Not all, but certainly a majority. For most, I believe, DJing is a "fall-back," not really a decision. That is, few DJs find themselves in the position to decide between earning $50K as a competent, successful employee or giving that up and working as a full-time DJ, and then choose to DJ. Usually, they either (a) find themselves unqualified to earn that kind of salary, (b) have a hard time keeping a job, or (c) are overwhelmed by the pressures of the job, especially having to work 40+ hours a week.

OK, let the flames begin! :!:
Last edited by djdonny on Thu Nov 23, 2006 12:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Why can't I get people to realize we are worth our fee?

Postby hyperon » Thu Nov 23, 2006 12:04 pm

Sir, your price range should be a standard for all Part Timers. I commend you. Now as far as the insults to full time professional entertainers go, well that's another topic. I put 80 hours a week into my business. I have been very successful as an employee in the job market. I operate a complete planning company which has staff in many of Columbus Ohio's major convention centers.
I no longer work a"real" job because this is my real job. Please do not lump professional entertainers into a can't cut it in the real world category. I give you praise for being a teacher, and enjoying your music business. I don't know how discipline is like in New York, but here the students get away with most everything.
If I did something wrong in school, I received the board, today you get sued.
I was told an old piece of wisdom by a very successful CEO,"Never argue with a fool. They will drag you down and beat you with experience."

I wish you nothing but success today, and for as long as God grants you the talent. Happy Thanksgiving.
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Postby djdonny » Thu Nov 23, 2006 12:31 pm

Hyperon,

They are certainly not insults. I do respect the DJ industry, but I find that simply working as a full-time single-system DJ won't cut it most of the time.

You say you put 80 hrs a week into your business. That's great, if you're making 100K a year in personal income. A 40 hr / week worker should make 50K a year.

Also, you say you "operate a complete planning company which has staff in many of Columbus Ohio's major convention centers. " This means your full-time income doesn't come from only doing one weekend DJ event at a time, so I'd call you a multi-op owner (or at least a planning company owner), not just a single-system DJ company. So, you're not the subject of my discussion anyway.

There are VERY few single-system company owners who are really very successful. Either they do other things to supplement the income (eg, your planning company, or some other business), or they become multi-op. Are there any single-ops on this board who take home 50K a year ($100K a year revenue) without supplemental income? If there are, they are the exception. (And I would expect the exceptions to be in places like this board.)

And before the flames grow too high, I did say MOST, NOT ALL. So I'm not lumping all "professional entertainers into a can't cut it in the real world category." I just think that to be successful as a full-time DJ, you need to either become multi-op or supplement your income with another business.
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Postby djdonny » Thu Nov 23, 2006 12:33 pm

PS. I teach in a Catholic school, not public, so the discipline is still very good. I agree, most public schools (especially here in NYC), have let discipline fly out the window.
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Re: Why can't I get people to realize we are woth our fee?

Postby hyperon » Thu Nov 23, 2006 5:32 pm

My friend I hear what you are saying. When I first started HyperSounds I was just a DJ. I was able to make more money being my own boss than working a job plus I was doing something I truly loved. I then got to thinking if I offer my clients a one stop shop it will be a benefit to them. I was right.

Yes You can still crack the whip in Catholic school. Thank the Lord.

Have a wonderful day and thanks for putting in your opinion. Please don't mark me down too far for my speeling of worth.
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Postby DJ Daddy » Fri Nov 24, 2006 10:36 am

.

Roger,

Due to the wide range of services offered, you are going to see customers gyrating to their "comfort" level. Some, as you are well aware, go for low price. Others go for services, others for image. Often the automobile industry is used as an analogy which is easy to understand.

If you find yourself starting to lose more and more due to price issues, you probably should step back and make sure you are marketing to the right "class" of customers (a totally different thread theme). This might also require a large radius of service area in order to aquire the necessary number of customers (gigs) to meet your revenue requirements. You might consider a different type of "all-in-one" service which might include your own venue (a whole new can of worms, I'm sure).

Move on; don't view the lost job with more than statistical value. That means that even lost gigs can be a marketing asset - you see a trend and can react to it. The most bueatiful girl in the world is unknown unless she gets out away from the secluded farm. Your business needs to be visible to that group of customers that understand and appreciate the value of your services. As a former part-timer whose day job was selling large capital equipment ($250K to $5MM), it is standard to except competition for most every gig/job opportunity. And I have personally seen gigs/job awarded to the bid that is 50% higher than another just because of the comfort factor the customer perceived.

So, don't cloud your work with setbacks; you are wasting valuable marketing time for the next one. I know, you probably weren't - you was just posting your thoughts. But at the moment of defeat, establish the why and look forward to the next opportunity.

.
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Re: Why can't I get people to realize we are woth our fee?

Postby hyperon » Fri Nov 24, 2006 1:55 pm

Thank you. Yes I was just letting off steam per say. It just irritates me. To give you an example: I had a prospect inquire about a college graduation party. Their class had just completed a course in optometry and wanted to celebrate. They wanted 8 hours of entertainment and wanted to spend $300.00. I asked the prospect you would not want an inexperienced Optometrist working on your eyes would you? Her reply was, "Your profession is not as valuable as an Eye Doctor." in so many words. We Entertainers whether full time or part time need to be respected. We are after all very good at what we do.

If I ever get to MO. I would love to shake your hand. God bless and keep making people smile.
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Postby dokai » Fri Nov 24, 2006 2:46 pm

It's true, nobody ever went blind from hiring the wrong DJ. Of course, nobody ever danced all night at a major event because there was a good optometrist in the crowd, either. Comparing the two professions directly is just BEGGING for a snobbish response. But the context COULD have helped make your point:

"Imagine this: you're scheduled for an operation on your eyes. You only have one chance to have this done right, and if done poorly, the results are going to be very disappointing, to say the least. Are you going to go out and hire the cheapest surgeon you can find? Of course not! This is important to you, after all. You're going to find someone that you KNOW can do the job in such a way that you're going to be happy with the results. It's the same thing here: you only have one chance to celebrate your graduation. You all worked hard for this, and deserve a great party! Do you really want to focus on being as cheap as possible, with that much on the line? Or do you really need to focus on making this a memorable event worthy of your accomplishments? It's time to stop thinking like 'poor students' and time to start thinking like professionals who understand and value performance."

If they STILL want to be cheap by that point, then they get what they deserve when you send them down the street to the $20/hr dj-wannabe. As Ron said above, those aren't the clients you're interested in attracting anyway.

For a GREAT example of targeting a specific demographic, look at DJ Marcello's website. He begins his introduction with "If you've ever flown first-class, stayed at a five-star resort, or driven a luxury automobile..." and ends it with "If you believe that entertainment plays a significant role in the success of an exceptional event and are willing to invest accordingly, please contact us." THIS IS GENIUS! Marcello knows EXACTLY who his target audience is, and makes it clear right from the beginning that if your focus is low price, then he's not the DJ you want to engage. He also confirms in the mind of his target audience that they are in the right place, since he's discussing with them premium services and items with which they're personally familiar: resorts, luxury cars, flying first-class. By framing his service within the context of these familiar premiums, he's already building a case that basically says, "Well, I pay extra for first-class all the time. Do I want "coach class" entertainment? Do I want a "Hotel 6" entertainer? Or do I want the best?" Genius, I tell you! :wink:
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Re: Why can't I get people to realize we are woth our fee?

Postby hyperon » Fri Nov 24, 2006 4:57 pm

It is great having these forums. I am so glad I posted the topic even if I cannot spell! I feel like I finaly have folks who get it! I will pray for all the companies that have responded, and if you ever need a good ear, I am here. Roger
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