Like most dj’s I started off as a hobby and soon after slowly began to turn the hobby into a business. At the time I had a passion for music and dj’ing but I wasn’t getting a constant flow of gigs. The biggest mistake I made was I didn’t have a brand, because I never focused on the business side just the music. I created my name, had a logo designed to fit my style, and marketed myself with a new strategy.
When building your brand you first need to look at the business you’re trying to establish and who your clientele is. Next part I feel is broken down into separate parts. Some steps are very easy and cost little to no money. One step the will take time and will change from time to time is marketing the brand.
Whether you’re starting out as a beginner Dj or looking to make upgrades in your equipment, one thing you should always ask yourself is whether what you’re about to purchase is a necessity or just something that you want. Like most hobbies/investments the audio/lighting world is very expensive so you have to be wise about your purchases.
So you want to get into Dj’n but you have no idea what to buy, what brands are used by most clubs, venues or favored by some your favorite Dj’s? My recommendation would be to ask yourself two important questions. What do you feel most comfortable using? What are you able afford?
For those Djs who are already established and are just looking to make upgrades, I would recommend asking yourselves one question, What are you lacking at the moment in terms of setup? Do you need more lights, speakers, a wireless mic, etc… ?
Social Media Sites
This is free to do, make sure all social sites have the same username for example all my social media sites have @djswiftmusic.
Depending on your budget you know how much you can spend. One tip I suggest is having something designed that will look good today and 20 years from today.
Setup an email with google, yahoo, etc.. for example when I started the email I have is firstname.lastname@example.org. It allows you to keep your personal and business work separate.
Extremely affordable for about $20 you can get anywhere from 250-500 cards if not more. The information on the card should include your logo, your name, contact number, email and social media tags.
What to look for if you’re a beginner
I touched on two questions so now I want to break down those questions. If you have no clue as to how to begin, I would honestly tell you to make friends with a Dj or go out and watch how other dj's do it and what they're using. If you live near a Dj store or some type of Guitar Center where they have multiple controllers and cdj setups, go and spend a few hours there and get familiar with the equipment. Bring a flash drive with some music you like and learn the tempo and play with all of them. See which one you pick up on the quickest and easiest.
My second question ties right into the matter of price. Can you afford it? If you can buy in store and get the warranty while you’re at it that’s great. If you can't afford it then check online with craigslist, offer up and all those other sites and see if you can find the setup you liked for a cheaper price. You might get lucky so be patient.
What to look for if you’re a beginner
For the established guys, chances are you have everything to get you gigs, but more than likely you need to upgrade your equipment. This requires more time looking over at what you already have and not so much at what’s new or what you want. I know as soon as a new turntable is dropped you want to buy it but a lot of times what you already have is still functional. For mobile dj's, presentation is everything and a lot of times you need to focus more on scrims for speakers, light stands, L.E.D. lights or dry ice machines. You need to focus more on what will give you a faster return, will it be a new mixer or having more lights?
If you’re a club Dj more than likely the only thing you need to focus on purchasing is a mixer and turntables/cdj's. Depending on the clubs you're playing at I would buy what ever they're providing so you can become more familiar with the gear.
TO SUM IT ALL UP
I grew up in Dj atmosphere since my father was a Dj. He also owned a retail Dj store at one point. So fortunately for me I understood how most of the gear worked and had enough people around to seek advice about what was good and what wasn’t. My advice to anyone really wanting to become a Dj is to look for a mentor and ask questions and do your homework on the gear you want to buy. For my established DJ’s, I’m on the same boat as you at this point, which is learning where I need to invest my money into and realizing what I’m still lacking at this point. Right now I take the time to look at the gigs I have and see what I’m missing so that I am able to go after larger or higher paying gigs. Invest in what will make your mobile Dj setup look/sound better. For my Club or non Mobile Dj’s who don’t have to invest as much gear, I would recommend you invest in what the industry is using.
Thanks for checking out my post. I hope it was helpful and you enjoyed the quick read. If you have more questions or would like to see a post on something specific feel free to contact me.
Once your established:
Invest in a website (cost about $150 a year for a basic website and domain)
Perfect place to showcase videos, pictures, mixes and much more for future clients to see what you can provide for them.
Always good to try and give something away for your clients to remember you by.
People will automatically know who you are without having to ask. When I arrive to gigs, and have to setup gear I wear a shirt with my logo. After which I change into clothing suitable for the event.
To wrap it up:
Its taken me about 6 years to get to where I am today and Thank God it has been paying off. I have hundreds of past clients that continue to refer me to friends and family. I have times where random people stop me, because they recognize my logo. My advice to anyone starting off and buildings brand is give it time and structure yourself. Be professional and building something professional, you're going to slowly start networking and eventually that leads to success. I would appreciate to hear your feedback and if I missed anything let me know. Thanks and I hope this was helpful to you.
KEY ITEMS ALL DJ’S SHOULD HAVE THAT ARE AFFORDABLE AND EASY TO DO:
Feb. 19, 2019