A recent Facebook post in a busy DJ group prompted me to examine the question “How important is my gear to my client?” In said post, the DJ in question swore up and down that the new column array speakers (such as the EV Evolve 50s) make a DJ seem less professional; that by using this type of speaker enclosure they weren’t delivering a “big enough” product to their client and they would be perceived as less valuable.
How many times have you heard this on the web? Probably too many.
So let’s be real for a second; how much does the specific equipment you use matter to your client? In my opinion, not a whole lot. Let me explain.
For years I sold my services on the equipment I owned. “Awesome sound system!” and “Great light show!” were common phrases in my sales consultations. In those days, I booked maybe 1 out of every 5 calls or meetings that I had. As I’d describe my cool new gear to brides and grooms, their eyes would begin to gloss over and they would politely nod as I excitedly spilled my guts on just how epic my speakers and lights were. And then I’d ask for the sale and get denied.
Over the last year, I’ve changed course. After studying and learning from some of the greatest minds in the industry, I came to the realization that I was the best product I could sell. Not my speakers, not my lights, not my clean cables; ME. Not only me, but the experience that I delivered that was packaged with myself. The gear we use is simply a means to an end. It serves to supplement our professional talents, habits, and appearance. The equipment we use are our tools, and no one hires a handyman for the brand or shape of his hammer.
Looking back over the hundreds of consultations I have been apart of, I can’t recall a single time a bride has asked for the model of my speakers, the peak wattage, or the projection angle of my gobos. Why? Because your clients are far more concerned about the end product you will provide than the means you will provide it with. I would rather my client testimonials read “Our night was absolutely unforgettable!” than “He had a cool setup!”
Coming to this realization was so freeing. Instead of constantly talking about my fog machines and lasers (which is what the majority of DJs are doing), I simply spoke about reducing the stress on their wedding day. I sold off gear I didn’t need that was overkill for the events I was doing. Don’t get me wrong; a DJ should still always have professional and reliable equipment. But maybe the bride for that small wedding would be just fine with a pair of speakers, a simple light show and a one of a kind experience (instead of the dual 18″ subs and 16′ of effect lights).
I’ve simplified and reduced my set up and preparation time. I’ve spent my money and time smartly on training and education, which are the things that have truly transformed my business. Since doing so, the number of events I do and the price I command for each one has increased many times over.