I honestly don’t think we have any competition.
Before you take me as an egomaniac, let me explain…
There is no one, and I mean no one, in our market who does exactly what we do exactly the way we do it. Because of that it’s impossible for us to have competition.
If you can make your service completely unique and different from everything else out there, then you “beat” the competition without even trying. The easiest and most effective way to do that is to target a very specific, small section of the market and specialize in it. Own it.
For example, you can specialize in certain types of music (Latin, Polka, country) or events (corporate, proms, weddings) or even types of clients. Over the years we’ve identified our ideal wedding couples: they are age 27-32 with advanced degrees, live in Manhattan, work in finance, have eclectic hipster taste in music, and choose non-traditional weddings locations.
When they find us, they immediately know we’re the right ones for them.
Which brings me to my second point. There are a few DJs in our area who have a similar style to us. Rather that whining and complaining about them because they are our “competition,” we make those closest competitors our allies.
We send them referrals. They send us referrals. Because our markets are a close match these are extremely warm leads in both directions. Our competitors make money for us, and we make it for them.
Quit worrying about the competition and win them over instead. And if they don’t bite, focus on making your service so different that your competition doesn’t even exist.
Proudly proclaiming that you specialize in “all occasions” on your website is a badge of mediocrity. What you’re really saying is that you’re not special at anything at all.
The best advice I can give any DJ is to focus like a laser on what you do best or the market you want to work for. Steer your message to this market and you won’t have any competition. Become the best at serving that market.
If you want to do weddings, pick the type of wedding. Are they low end or high end weddings? Do they want a club type atmosphere or a lower profile DJ who just plays great music?
What’s authentic to you? If you’re not good at being a club DJ and you pretend to be one, everyone is going to notice.
Then turn your competition into fans. Help them.
Do something nice for your competition and you’ll be amazed at how it will come back to you.
I regularly hear my DJ brothers and sisters complaining about the competition. It’s time for a perspective shift.
Stop looking at them as competition and look at them as potential partners.
Start thinking about how these relationships can lead to better profits for you instead of all the things you don’t like about how they run their businesses. You can only work a finite number of jobs in the year. You might: sell your leads to your competition, exchange dates when they are booked, contract them out for services you don’t offer.
Stop worrying about Craigslist DJs because there’s nothing you can do about them. They’re not going away.
Rise above them or get buried by trying to compete with them.
Don’t just BE different; make sure your difference is consistent in your message and expressed in all your marketing. It’s not enough for you to know what your specialty is; you need to clearly communicate it to your potential customers.
Take an honest look at yourself, your website and your marketing. Does it look unique? Does it look homemade? Does it solve a problem for your client?
Or is it just good enough?
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