When it comes to hiring a DJ, doing your homework is the name of the game. After all, your DJ is the one who stands in the background, but makes the magic happen in the foreground. And, not just anyone with big speakers and a wide selection of music can deliver those desired results. That assurance only comes with a professional reputation, great referrals and plain ol’ good chemistry. Professional DJs will tell you that doing their job well means planning and customizing a play list that suits the wants and needs of the host.
Here are five things you should consider when hiring a DJ:
1. Does your venue have a preferred list? If you don’t already know a trusted DJ, ask your venue for their preferred list. Using one of their recommended DJs will ensure they are familiar with the venue and are therefore better prepared to deal with known issues with the event space. Perhaps they will know better where to set up, what specific power source is acceptable, etc.
2. Can you meet the person? When you hire a DJ company, you may speak with the owner and have someone else spinning at your event. You would hate to spend an hour with one person and then have another show up at the event. Make certain your contract spells out exactly who will be your DJ. That’s who you want to get to know.
3. What are your options? Don’t rush to pick your DJ. Check out more than one. These days, you can watch videos to see their work. You can also ask to attend an event for a short time to see them in action. The good thing about this kind of prior research and legwork is that you can discover things that you would or would not like at your own event. Do random song requests bother you? Would you rather NOT be called up on stage? Do you want the DJ to keep the talk to a minimum and the dancing to the max? Or maybe you feel just the opposite, but seeing them work will give you a base for understanding what they do and how they do it. And that helps everyone out.
4. How involved do you want to be? Some DJs want to control the bulk of the play list and then supplement their choices with a few specific requests. Others would rather let the client choose the majority of the list, and then use their expertise to make it all work out. You want a DJ who is eager to accommodate your requests and who you can trust to create a desired mood.
5. What about the what ifs? What if your DJ can’t make it to the event? What if they have to leave? Most responsible professionals have a backup strategy in case some unforeseen event arises, but others don’t. A respectable DJ company has a plan for these cases and reserves a specific DJ for every date, ensuring that backup is available and prepared in case of an emergency.
Make sure that happens by doing your homework and choosing a DJ with a plan. If you don’t hire a professional, communicate your expectations and make a joint plan of action with your DJ (eh hem ‘do and don’t play lists’), there’s no guarantee your guests will get-down.
Here is a comprehensive list of forty questions you should ask when shopping for a DJ from MyDeejay.com.
Got any other tips to share about hiring a DJ?