the dj checklist

When it comes to booking a DJ or Mobile Disco for your Wedding, Birthday Party, or a Kids Party most people simply don't actually know what they're looking for, and to make things even more confusing there's often many DJ's in the local area.

Most people will get a few quotes from DJ's in the local area and then go with whoever's the cheapest, but for a special occasion is that really the wisest decision? But as the old saying goes, "you only get what you pay for" and with Discos and DJ's the same old saying is true. If you've spent money on a venue, catering, decoration and dressing up, there is no point in settling for less than you deserve. 

The other approach a lot of people go for is: A friend tells them they know someone who does Discos, who can do it cheaply, thus leaving more money to be spent on other things. This often turns out to be a very bad decision, as not only do you not know anything about the person doing the disco and hosting your evening, but you know very little about the person, only that they apparently do Discos. This then leaves the risk of will the person turn up? Will they provide the required equipment or is it just some speakers and a microphone they've grabbed down from the loft? Don't leave your event feeling like you could have done a better job yourself.

I don't claim to be the cheapest DJ in the Hampshire and Isle of Wight area, however I'm certainly not the most expensive, offering a high quality service at a very reasonable price. I don't add unnecessary charges or hidden costs in and only charge you for exactly what's required, which includes the preparation for your event, the travelling, setting up and packing down of equipment and of course performing. Hosting events is something I love to do and if I could do it for the love I simply would, but in reality with expensive equipment, music costs, fuel for travelling and the running costs for vehicles etc. and all the other costs that sit alongside running a business, I need to make a living.

No matter what budget you have allocated for your event, you deserve to get value for money, but sometimes it's well worth paying a little extra on a good disco, as it can make or break any party you host. The DJ is the main entertainment at your event, so don't settle for less.

If you require a professional Disco service with backup equipment, a written contract for your peace of mind, public contact details and a website where you can see who they are, what they do, and read genuine reviews, plus someone that's at the end of a phone seven days a week to answer any questions you have, then drop me a message.

so what do i recommend to check when booking a dJ?

1) Chat with your DJ

Simply speak to you DJ. Using email or picking up the phone is the best method to get a quotation from your DJ, or to let them know what it is you require from them (eg. When is your event? Where is it? How long do you require the DJ for?). Does the DJ sound helpful and knowledgable in what they're saying and do they come across as confident to host your event? Make sure you tell the DJ exactly what you're looking for and expect from the DJ, and if you're stuck for advice, drop me a message, even if you're not booking with me, I don't like to see any party go wrong or anyone worrying unnecessarily. 

2) ask about their experience

Lots of DJ's have different specialities. Especially when it comes to a Wedding, you need to be making sure you're choosing the right DJ. Wedding's include First Dances and many special moments that you want to ensure aren't spoilt. My speciality is Weddings and parties for example, but if you wanted a DJ with a speciality of drum and bass, that simply wouldn't be me. 

3) Is your booking confirmed in writing? 

Always ensure that any DJ Booking you make is confirmed in writing or preferably a written contract. It's essential for you that all details of your occasion including the set up times, start and end times and all of the essential information is set out in a contract and that you've discussed the music you want played, what you'd like the DJ to wear and you're left feeling confident in your choice. Don't just settle for having Dave's Mobile Number.

4) does your dj require a deposit?

This is common practice for most professional DJ's. Your venue will often require a deposit and shows both your commitment and the DJ's commitment to your event. The deposit should often be around 25% of the total fee and an email confirmation and invoice for the deposit should be sent. Remember, by sending your DJ a cheque you're also confirming their address.

5) are playlists accepted?

Some DJ's don't accept requests or playlists, whereas others may take your request, but not have the correct tracks on the night. I offer a great online portal that you both you and your guests can submit tracks in advance of the day, so I can ensure I've got the music with them, and I'll then play them at the appropriate time during your event. I'll also try my best to accommodate any requests on the day.

6) can your dj supply testimonials/references?

All professional DJ's should be able to supply you with some testimonials from previous clients, whether it's a Facebook review, written letter or an email from a client. All of my testimonials from both Facebook and needadisco can be found here. If you're still not satisfied, I'll try and put you in touch with some of my previous clients, so you can talk directly, should permission be granted.

7) will your dj meet you before you book?

Most professional DJ's will be happy to meet you before you book them. If not why not? Some have the fear that if they meet you they may lose the booking. If you ever want to meet me, I'm more than happy to, especially for Weddings where there's a lot to discuss including playlists, first dance, type of music you require, sound, lighting and technical aspects as well as the flow of the evening including the buffet, speeches and the cake cutting. It also gives me the perfect opportunity to answer any questions or queries you may have face to face for a stress free party experience.

8) what happens if my dj's equipment fails? is my party over?

Hopefully not...I mean I always carry backup equipment, so should anything go wrong, I  can often get a system set up and running with very little, if not noticeable effects. However, the thing to be aware of is there are no recognised qualifications to be a DJ, so just be careful when booking your DJ. There are awards schemes, however always research the legitimacy of these too to see how accredited they really are.

Hopefully, this helps you to book a DJ for your Wedding or party, and of course if I can help any further or you're feeling a little uneasy about your hoice of DJ please do not hesitate to drop me a message and I'll try my best to be of assistance to you. I do of course wish you the very best for your event.

Josh x

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