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How Value Is Defined When It Comes To Hiring Your Wedding DJ

04 April 2024

Somewhere along the way as it pertains to the history of wedding DJ businesses, someone came up with the idea that modern brides and grooms wanted all their services bundled together. Perhaps this person wanted their packages to resemble Happy Meals at McDonalds. Maybe they wanted their company to feel like you were ordering a pizza, so when you called up, you were offered "add-on" services.  The last time I ordered a pizza I got somewhat irritated when the person on the other end of the line kept asking me if I wanted breadsticks, some chicken wings, or even a two liter bottle of Coke. No, I just want a pizza. I mean, that's what a pizza place sells correct? All of those other items on the menu were designed to increase the total amount of money that a customer may spend on their visit to the restaurant. So, your favorite pizza restaurant decided to offer chicken wings. Here's the deal. Do you think those chicken wings will be the best you've ever eaten? Probably not, because remember you called a PIZZA place, so pizza is their specialty, first. Are you beginning to see where I am headed with this? I believe the year was 2019 when I opened up about the fact that I did not offer any add-ons like uplighting or a photo booth. I believe it's time once again to try to illustrate why I am still not interested in giving in to carrying these add-ons. I believe that modern brides and grooms could be thinking more about "convenience" of services, rather than hiring a true professional wedding DJ. Sometimes "convenience" is not the best decision, thus derailing your wedding day.  Remember this. "A jack of all trades is a master of none".

The wedding industry in Charleston is full of professional companies that are loaded with top tier talent offering diverse services. In the time I've been booking weddings in Charleston, so many talented individuals have emerged on to the industry scene with great ideas and niche services designed to make every wedding day truly one of a kind. Some of these companies were fairly new when I started and I can honestly look at them today and say they are some of the best wedding vendors in the market. As a matter of fact, you can see some of these vendors on my Suggested Vendors Page. In today's day and age, if you are in business, it's important for you to carve out a niche. You have to let future clients know what it is you stand for. What have I stood for since Day 1? My niche is fairly simple. It involves being a "wedding DJ". No, I'm not trying to be a Mr. Wise Guy here, I am being serious. That's truly what I set out to do when I invested in my company many years ago. The only thing I am concerned about as it pertains to your wedding day is making sure we attain absolute perfect execution as it pertains to your wedding playlist. The other thing I am concerned with is making all the necessary announcements (in a professional emcee voice) at the right time if need be. The only thing I am concerned with is executing the music and sound for your wedding ceremony to perfection. Anything else is a distraction for me because it gets in the way of my passion, and more importantly, my business plan.

You Can't Do EVERYTHING Perfectly

You see, like I said up above, someone made a decision years ago to start bundling services. That someone allowed the wedding DJ to sway away from what DJs are famous for; music. Instead of doing one thing excellent, they now offer 4 or 5 services. Let me ask you this question. Can anyone or any business really manage to do 5 things "perfect"? I am willing to bet that at least 1 or 2 of those services would be presented to the client in an "average" way. I don't think its possible and when you've been in the Charleston wedding market as long as I have, you've seen attempts to be all things to all people blow up in the face of the business owner. Unfortunately, it's the client who loses in the long run. They'll tell 20 of their friends and leave negative reviews, thus damaging the reputation of certain segments of the wedding industry.

Niche Services Are All Over The Place Due To Market Saturation

Back before COVID 19, I wrote a post about wedding market saturation. <-----CLICK HERE to read about my thoughts. Regardless of what your total wedding budget is, you are spending hard earned resources on your wedding day. Marrying your best friend will become the best day of your life.  What modern bride and grooms need to know is due to market saturation, the options for wedding services are so plentiful you can hire everyone who has a speciality. The key word being "specialty". These special, niche wedding businesses will be practically guaranteed to provide you the best service of their dedication to the one service they provide. In recent months, I've been hearing that couples want less points of contact when it comes to the planning of their wedding. One thing is for sure, every successful wedding comes with it a lot of moving parts. If you have hired a top notch wedding planner, why would the modern bride or groom actually be concerned with an excessive amount of contacts?  I believe this excuse is a bit lazy, and if more and more couples go that route, they will most likely miss out on a wedding business whose service is one of the most important; the music. Whether you hire a band or a wedding DJ, it will be the music that you and your guests will remember 5 years after your wedding.

Offering One Service Is Far From Being Lazy

Perhaps there are some wedding vendors out there who might call me lazy for not offering uplighting or photobooths. Well they would be wrong. As an owner-operated wedding DJ service, I'm not only the owner of the company, but I will be the one sweating as I load my gear into Lowndes Grove for your July wedding or the one having to carry my hundreds of pounds of gear up the stairs because some of the old Charleston venues have no elevator.  I am in better physical shape than some of my 25 or 30 year old counterparts. You'll never see me post about the food at a wedding venue, because I am there to provide music for your wedding, not eat food, which is one of the tackiest things I've ever seen posted on social media.. So, for anyone to call me "lazy" is pretty lame, but we live in an era where companies enjoy tearing each other down, rather than reaching out and attempting to collaborate.

The truth of the matter is I am nowhere close to being lazy. Unless you call having strong convictions "lazy", my atttitude is not one of laziness, but one of "passion" and I am focused at helping modern brides and grooms put together the best mix of music for their wedding day. When you look at the history of wedding DJs, this is what the great DJs did - we live and breathe music and aren't swayed by other distractions that will end up taking the focus away from the music. "Music is my specialty and it's the very thing that will make you and your guests have the time of their lives".

Bad Things Happen When One Person Is In Charge Of Everything

Imagine if you will, you hired a wedding DJ company who also supplied you your photobooth. What is going to happen when there is an untimely malfunction of the photobooth? You might have to approach your wedding DJ and get them to do some troubleshooting on the photobooth. How is that going to go over if your wedding DJ has a packed dance floor and the music has to stop?  Having a wedding DJ stop the music to go and troubleshoot a malfunctioning photobooth is the very reason why I have never had a desire to learn about photobooths. Wedding DJs offer photobooths not because they are experts, but because they want more money from you. The modern bride and groom is better off hiring a company who specializes in photobooths. Yeah, there are companies who do an excellent job at photobooths and always stay on top of the latest trends and emerging technologies. We have very nice photobooth companies who eat, sleep, and dream photobooths.  For more information about reasons to have a photobooth from an actual owner of a photobooth company <-----CLICK HERE Wedding DJs that think they know more about photobooths than the owners of photobooth companies are not only taking food off the table of the owners of those companies, but they are also marginalizing photo booths all together. Brides and grooms looking to have a photobooth at their wedding will rest easier when they hire a company who specializes in photobooths.  

I Forgot To Finish Talking About Those Chicken Wings

Ah yes, we were talking about ordering chicken wings when you ordered your pizza, weren't we?  I'm not even sure whose idea was it to offer chicken wings as a side dish at a pizza restaurant. Just remember this. Their primary menu item where they make the most of their money is pizza. The chicken wings are a side item that will never be as good as the pizza. If you want great chicken wings, you find a restaurant who "specializes" in chicken wings. So, if I were to provide a photobooth, it would be nowhere near as good an offering as my core service as a wedding DJ.   Ever heard of the saying that a jack of all trades equals a master of none. It's true. Only a few restaurants would ever be able to pull off every single menu item being 5 star quality. The moral of the story is you are ordering a pizza, let's just stick with the pizza, because you know that this is the central menu item on the menu that they do the best at. It's the one menu item that this pizza restaurant probably puts all their marketing dollars behind. It's the one thing that keeps customers coming back for more. And for as long as I've had my wedding DJ business, I've done the same. I've specialized in helping brides and grooms put together the most memorable soundtrack for their most special day. It's a passion of mine that I take very seriously and I don't care to have it marginalized by services I know nothing about. Honestly, I don't need or want the extra income if it's going take me away from being a wedding DJ. If I want chicken wings, I'm going to find the restaurant who makes them the best, not a restaurant who offers some not so tasty ones as a "side" item to get you to spend more money. 

ONE Payment? Why?

So someone else told me recently about the allure of bundling services together having a lot to do with making payments to one vendor Really? You wouldn't be writing a check would you? Ever heard of Venmo? I mean, You could probably Venmo your wedding vendors the rest of their balances due in less time it took to read this blog post. I mean, my wedding business is completely automated down to contracts and deposits. I could completely understand if we were STILL mailing paper checks to one another, but to be honest, you can have all your payments be made from your phone in no time at all. I could not tell you the last time anyone paid with a check. Those days are gone and if that's the reason you'd be agonizing over paying multiple vendors for services, you are thinking about wedding planning all the wrong way.  Actually, in the time you read this one paragraph, I just received 3 depoosits for future weddings. 

Suggested Wedding Vendors (That Come To Mind)

With as many years as I have invested in my career as a wedding DJ, I've come in contact with so many awesome wedding vendors.  While there is a new list of wedding vendors I've worked with in the past and who I might suggest you contact for help with your wedding, some other vendors come to mind who choose to do what I do and focus on one thing.

The Social Spool
The ladies behind this company probably don't even know it, but I created a small commercial about them in some of the early episodes of my podcast. I did this for this very reason. They are full-service textile company specializing in event-draping. I've been following them on Instagram for a while and they always do an amazing. I love it that their focus is event draping.

Coastal Chamber Musicians
Just in the past few weeks, I saw Austin and his chamber musicians at one of my weddings. It's always a nice thing to bump into Austin because he's a such cool guy and you know you are always going to get a professional performance when him and his musicians are booked to perform at your wedding ceremony. His focus on ceremony musicians makes his company an excellent choice for your wedding ceremony.

Lowcountry Photobooth
It's hard its been about 6 years since I met Melissa (the owner of Lowcountry Photobooth) out and about at an event showcasing her "luxury" photobooth. I featured her on my blog and I've tried to send her as many referrals as I can. I've watched her company grow and I notice that she always is staying up on the cutting edge trends as it pertains to photobooths. She's the perfect extension to my company because I'm too busy to learn about photobooths. I believe I saw her talking about "AI" photobooths the other day. Now that's exciting!

Interesting In Speaking To DJ Mike Bills About Your Wedding?
I hope this post allowed me to shed even more light on why I will continue to be the wedding DJ I want to be. Music has always been my specialty and music will continue to be my specialty. There simply is not enough time in a day, a week, or a year for me to become proficient in offering services that I have no experience in. I don't want to ever take the food off table of hard working companies who are well-versed in a lot of these niche wedding services. While it can be expensive to operate a business, I am doing just fine being the music expert I've always been in helping modern brides and grooms put together the musical soundtrack for the best day of their lives.  If this means that I don't book as many weddings as the other guy down the street who wants as much money out of you as they can get, then so be it. You can read my reviews and I can put you in contact from many of my past clients who weren't concerned about the tacky lights, or uplighting or even a photobooth. They came to me, they read about me, and they hired me. And as a result, I rocked their wedding. Thank you for making it all the way to the end of this post. I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Oops! I almost forgot to include my article from 2019 where I began to speak about this topic. Enjoy! ----->CLICK HERE