Posts Tagged ‘wedding DJ’

November 21, 2013 10:21 am

How Much Is a Wedding DJ Worth?

Wedding DJ

We’ve all heard that familiar commercial come-on, “Now how much would you pay?”

A better question to ask a bride after a bargain-basement DJ ruined her wedding is, “How much would you have paid?”

When a bride tells us she found a cheaper DJ on Craigslist, or one of those directories that promise a hundred price quotes, we ask if we can follow up after her wedding and ask her to share her experience with her DJ. Those brides have been remarkably candid about what they paid for, and what they got.

Here are just a few of their comments:

  • “He showed up an hour late, and wearing a t-shirt and jeans to our formal wedding reception.”

  • “He must have ordered a dozen or more beers at the bar, and he appeared very drunk by the end of the night.”

  • “We were promised a specific DJ, but a total stranger showed up instead. He didn’t have our reception information, or the music we specifically requested.”

  • “He ignored our music request list and the requests by our guests, and played his favorite music instead.”

  • “He mispronounced several names while introducing the wedding party.”

  • “He played the music too loudly, and refused our repeated pleas to turn it down.”

  • “Our wedding venue refused to let the DJ perform because he didn’t have the required liability insurance; so we ended up with no DJ and no music.”

  • “He announced the Father-Daughter dance without checking to see that my father was in the room, then stopped the party for 5 minutes while we all searched for my dad.”

  • “He started our First Dance without checking to see that our photographer was in the room (he wasn’t); so we have no pictures of our First Dance.”

  • “He had the nerve to say: ‘What do you EXPECT for such a cheap price?’”

  • “We tried to reach him several times during the planning stage, but he took days or even weeks to respond.”

  • “I just assumed that all DJs were alike, and the cheapest one was the best value.”

So we asked those brides, “Knowing what you know now, would you have paid extra for a professional DJ instead of a cheap amateur?” The answer was a resounding “YES!” Not a single bride said, “No, our DJ did a horrible job, but we’re happy because we saved $300.”

Too many brides who choose their wedding vendors by price alone learn too late that there’s a reason the cheap ones are cheap: they simply don’t provide the level of service professionals provide.

So how do you avoid a DJ disaster?

Check out the DJ with the Better Business Bureau. If he’s not rated “A+” or “A” – or worse, if he’s not rated at all – RUN! If the BBB has never heard of him, it’s a big red flag that he’s not a legitimate wedding service provider.

Check for reviews on sites like Wedding Wire and Yelp. Bad DJs get bad reviews – or no reviews at all.

Take the time to actually meet with the DJ. Yes, it’s one more thing you have to do on top of a thousand other things as you plan your wedding, but you’ll feel a lot more confident knowing you’ve gotten to know the man who holds the fate of your reception in his hands.

You get only one chance to have a great wedding reception. Make it count. Do your homework. And don’t get cheap when it comes to your entertainment. It’s the one thing your guests will remember most. And they’ll remember whether you cared enough about them to hire a professional.

Jay Congdon is president of Fourth Estate Audio and a professional Chicago Wedding DJ since 1965.

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