Diversification for the Maturing Wedding DJ

by Alan Dodson

Back in the 1970’s, I did live remote broadcasts for a 5000 watt AM radio station.

I hauled a “portable” mixing board, cases of 33 1/3 vinyl albums and 45’s to car dealerships, malls, store grand openings, etc.

When I began to work as a party and event DJ, I still had turntables, mixers, amplifiers, huge speakers and many crates of records to carry around; however, as the music industry began to change and CDs became readily available, it did make the transport of music much lighter.

One thing all of us can count on is change — and both technology and our industry keep doing just that!

Keeping Up and Staying On Top

I had to update my gear and music with technology changes but today’s DJs have it much easier. There are many professional audio options from which they can choose, and the weight of an external hard drive that carries MP3s can hardly be compared to either CDs or records. The general public is also much more tech savvy and demanding than ever before.

As a sixty year old mobile entertainer who is a wedding specialist, I face the challenge of keeping up with my younger counterparts on both musical, technical and physical levels. One of the biggest obstacles I face is a perception among prospects that I may not be able to relate to the younger guests (18 to 25) at a wedding reception. I am usually the age of their parents or grandparents, and they sometimes mistakenly assume that I am out of touch with their generation.

Diversification Was My Answer

So, to keep my business profitable and satisfy the demands of my target client base, I have recognized the need to diversify in order to compete and thrive.

What is diversification? It is including additional options to your basic DJ services from which clients can choose, and that increases your income streams.

One of the most popular options to add is lighting. This can range from sound activated, to intelligent lighting, lasers and uplighting. Adding big screen video or becoming a VDJ is another option. A major purchase I made to diversify was to add a mobile photo booth.

Hello Mr. Picture Booth

Beyond purchasing just one for my DJ service, we actually purchased a company called “Mr. Picture Booth,” which we operate as a separate division of the company. I did a lot of research with both clients and photo booth companies before making a decision, and I advise other DJs to do their due diligence before making a decision, as well.

When we acquired Mr. Picture Booth, it was to not only to bring in additional revenue as an upsell to our existing services, but also to market and license this unique, turn-key product to other DJs across the country.

I have read that by 2012, nearly 75% of all weddings will have a photo booth at the reception. Based on our personal bookings and response to Mr. Picture Booth, that seems like a very realistic number to me.

Bridal Shows & Fairs

Another way that you can diversify your DJ/Wedding business is by producing bridal shows and fairs. In our market, we co-produce two shows annually, and our show has been in operation for over twenty-five years.

You can also partner with other show producers to expand operations into areas that currently do not have a bridal show. Not only does this give you great access to brides, but it also provides a solid income stream during the months when parties and weddings are less popular.

These are ideas that have worked for me. Your results may vary based on locale and other factors including businesses providing the same services in your region.

Keep in mind that whatever you do to diversify your business, do it with style and class, and make your offerings the best available in your area!

If you’re interested in learning more about Mr. Picture Booth, please get in touch with me via the contact info. below!

How do you diversify your offerings to add to your bottom line?

Alan Dodson – “Wedding Wizard”

Alan Dodson is the Entertainment Director of An Unforgettable Event (ThoseWeddingPeople.com), and has been entertaining at and producing events since the early 1970’s. He has also worked as a voice talent on radio and television, nationwide. Alan specializes in weddings, and is a co-producer of the Tri Cities Bridal Show (tricitiesbridalshow.com) as well as producer of bi-monthly workshops for grooms (aPerfectGroom.com). He has written numerous articles for business and trade magazines, and has been a speaker on implementing social media into wedding DJ businesses. Alan is a founding officer of the E. TN Chapter of the ADJA (adja.org/chapters/etenn), where he now serves as Secretary. He maintains an informational wedding blog on his website, TopDiscJockey.com. Alan can be reached by email at alan@topdiscjockey.com. View posts by Alan
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