Why Positioning Yourself As A ‘Budget DJ’ Actually Just Hurts Your Business

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Gather ‘round, gather ‘round, dear readers, DJ class is once again in session. 

Taking on cheap work to scale your business may seem like a good idea – who doesn’t want more work? More work equals more money. 

But – the idea here is to scale – all while maintaining your weekends, your precious work/life balance, and your enjoyment of this unique and awesome profession. There’s no time for marketing and business development while you’re juggling more events than you can handle.

Let’s dive further into my favorite snack – the granular granola of it all. Let’s talk about the top two reasons why positioning yourself as a budget DJ just hurts your business 

Why #1: You’ll attract some lowballers

It’s not a bad thing to want to conserve cash, but if people are coming to you with insanely low budgets – you have to consider if that’s the client that you want to be attracting.


The fear of the ‘wedding markup’

This is wedding DJ class 101: It’s not uncommon for couples to go out of their way to try and say things differently so that they don’t have to call it an actual “wedding.” 

Sounds odd, sure, but this stems from a fear of the ‘wedding markup’ – that once they admit they’re having a wedding, the budget will increase astronomically out of nowhere. Spoiler alert: it doesn’t. 

Sometimes, this means mismatched expectations and poor research on their part – they’re busy, it happens. But it also means you’ll likely find yourself in a position where you’re in a meeting with them when they drop the bomb that they can only pay a fraction of what you charge.

It’s important to remember that if your positioning and your rates naturally cater to those clientele (ie. your website is shoddy or nonexistent and your rates are low), expect lean budgets. 

Remember – you get what you pay for.

As Gucci once said “Quality is remembered long after price forgotten.”

When I DJ a wedding for a couple with a full budget that knows the value of entertaining their guests with an out-of-the-cosmos, bring-the-house-down dance party (complete with Photobooth, Cryo Gun, and insane lighting effects) – they’re getting that premium wedding service and they don’t mind paying. 

A couple with less of a budget needs to be aware that they’re sacrificing the full wedding service – so don’t burn yourself out trying to make it insanely epic. If you want to be that budget DJ, go for it, make it good – but make it reasonable for the price you’re being paid.

Why #2: Cheap services ≠ better value

If you’re cheap and you’re loud and proud about it – everyone says yes. But it’s not usually because of merit, of those glowing reviews, or because of that dance floor genius. It’s because you’re cheap. 

If you operate under this philosophy, you’ll undoubtedly work with clients on events that are not right for you and that clog up that precious free time. 

Choose whether you’ll work harder or work smarter.

Working smarter means raising those rates to price out clients who aren’t your style, it means hiring a subcontractor out to work a few evenings, it’s getting that brand design and website underway, it’s getting granular with your service offering and ideal client so you can better position yourself to actually find them. It’s having the time to do all of this and still sip a beverage on the beach. 

When you take time to work smarter, you’ll also gain a better understanding of your competition. It’ll help you suss out what people are actually willing to pay for their wedding DJs – and it’s higher than you think. 

Plus, hindsight is 20/20 – studies have shown that a massive amount of couples (around 90 percent of ‘em) wish they’d spent more on entertainment. That’s huge – and people talk. If you’re out there charging fairly and providing some killer entertainment for your clients, word’s gonna spread. 

Ultimately, a great meal is, well, great – but what will people remember? The DJ that kept them dancing into the night, and there’s plenty of good money to be made doing that if you position your services right.

Working smarter means raising those rates to price out clients who aren’t your style, it means hiring a subcontractor out to work a few evenings, it’s getting that brand design and website underway, it’s getting granular with your service offering and ideal client so you can better position yourself to actually find them. It’s having the time to do all of this and still sip a beverage on the beach. 

When you take time to work smarter, you’ll also gain a better understanding of your competition. It’ll help you suss out what people are actually willing to pay for their wedding DJs – and it’s higher than you think. 

Plus, hindsight is 20/20 – studies have shown that a massive amount of couples (around 90 percent of ‘em) wish they’d spent more on entertainment. That’s huge – and people talk. If you’re out there charging fairly and providing some killer entertainment for your clients, word’s gonna spread. 

Ultimately, a great meal is, well, great – but what will people remember? The DJ that kept them dancing into the night, and there’s plenty of good money to be made doing that if you position your services right.

Let’s talk!

Selling yourself short is a one-way ticket to burnout town – and you’ll have so much cheap work that you won’t have time to develop your business skillset to attract the clients you want to work with. 

Enter The Lab – the ultimate DJ class. We’ve got four modules full of insights from me – Mary Nisi. I put the work in nearly 20 years ago when it was just me, myself, and I – and now I have a team of 25 kickass DJs and a business that pulls about 2 million dollars per year.

Yet, it didn’t all happen overnight, and I want to help fledgling DJs avoid some of the mistakes I made and scale MUCH faster than I did. I’ve got stuff to teach you. 

The Lab’s videos are hilarious, engaging, and super high quality – seriously, where’s my Oscar? They’re also yours forever once you’ve purchased them. Bonus – our videos include a full transcript, so it’s easy to come back and quickly reference what you’ve learned. 

Ready to build that DJ empire? Here’s our sign-up form here

Not ready to take the plunge? That’s cool. I gotchu. I also offer coaching. Book a one-on-one with me here, we’ll have a little chat over coffee about how I can help.

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