GUIDE: How To Choose Your DJ

DJ Vibe Mixing table

Making the wrong choice in hiring a DJ can make or break your night. Take some time and make the right choice!

Finding the right DJ for your event can be fairly tedious, and daunting. Here’s a complete guide on how to get the right DJ for you! 

1. Experience

Hire someone with experience.

A newer Dj may not know the “ins and outs” of how to properly conduct an evening, miss important cues, or not be able to do something needed on the fly.  This can make or break an event.

Skills like how to read a crowd, know when requests  should be played,  and when to transition from one song to another in a seamless manner are just some traits of a pro DJ. These all come with time.

Most pro DJ’s would have been doing this for more than 10 years. 

2. References

References are very important. 

The BEST way to get references is to check their Google reviews, or other means of reviews such as The Wedding Wire, The Knot, or Facebook.

Most pros however stick to Google Reviews. 

 Also, ask them to provide references to clients they have worked with in the past that closely relate to the the type of event your planning. 

3. How's The Social Media?

Look the frequency of how often they post on social media, such as Facebook, and IG.

Have a look at the types of events they post about,  this will give you some incite as to their style, whaty type of events they typically do,  and wether this Dj is right for you.

It’s also a good idea to see how often they’re posting. Most DJs will post events at least 2 -3 times a month. 

4. How Much??

I See this mistake all the time….

The cost should not… I repeat should not be of the first questions that comes to mind.

I say this because most professional Dj’s will all charge around the same amount.  Within a couple hundred dollars or so.

 Shopping by price, as the ultimate deciding factor can lead to disaster!  I’ve seen countless times where someone decides to hire the “Friend of a friend” or “Super Cheap DJ” only to be left high and dry just a few weeks (Sometimes days) before your event. 

If you hear things like “It’s just a hobby for me”, or “my equipment is all paid for, that’s how I keep my prices low”, this should raise a flag

5. Time for YOUR event

Ask your potential DJ how long they spend on each event.

A good Dj will spend a considerable amount of  time (10 – 15 hours) to prepare your music and discus the  lighting arrangements, schedule, and how you’d want the event to roll out. 

Professional Dj’s know and understand the importance of you having successful event. Proper planning is crucial! 

6. The FINAL Decision

Once you identify the final candidates, it’s best to try and  arrange a person to person interview. Make sure to ask questions specific to your event and the types of music you need for your event to be a success.

I say to do it in person so you’re able to get an idea of their mannerisms, professionalism, as well as their overall personality.

How they answer your specific questions should give you an incite as to wether or not they have the music and experience necessary for your event.

 Questions to keep in mind are:

  • Can you “Beat-match” or play “Club Style”?
  • Are your comfortable speaking on the mic?
  • What happens if your equipment fails?
  • What’s the Caliber of the equipment you’re currently using?  Is the equipment of a professional grade?
  • Are you comfortable playing these specific genres needed for my event, and is your catalog diversified enough to play other genres should they get requested by guest?
  • How do you keep your music up to date? Are you a member of a reputable music pool?
  • Do you have any examples of your work?
  • How many gigs do you do in a year?
  • Have you played at our venue before? If not, can you meet with us (Or the site manager) there?
  • Do you have insurance? 

7. Now Talk Price

So you’re happy with all the answers now would be the time to talk about pricing. 

Keep in mind that generally speaking, the more in demand they are, the more likely they are to charge a professional rate.

Most good DJs work repeatedly with clients that are happy to pay the price. Repeat business is a clue that the Dj is dependable. Also, word of mouth carries quickly about a great Dj.

We can also akin this principle to the workplace…

Great employees with tenure, proven performance, and experience usually get paid more than new employees who have not yet proven themselves.

8. In Closing

Research your potential Dj and make sure they have the specific music and personality you need for your event.

Not all Dj’s are cut from the same cloth. They’ll all have different strengths and weaknesses.

Make sure you know what’s most important to you. Use these tips as a general guideline, and you should be able to find the right DJ for you.