Tag Archives: Increase Business

Rip Off The Rearview Mirror

By Mitch Taylor:

Out of the blue the other day I got a call from a fellow DJ and his statements somewhat surprised me.  He said biz had slowed down and he was struggling a bit.  He blamed it on himself first saying he hadn’t been beating the pavement as much as he had in the past but then, after suggesting a few thing he could do to better his situation (after all he did call me, right?), the verbal posturing began and suddenly the blame is placed upon the multi-ops who send out $500 DJs, payola in our business and everything else.

Why am I sharing this with you in this space?  Because I’m sure that you have been in this same place at one time or another.  I know I have.

Look at yourself in the mirror.  Dead in the eyes.  Realize YOU have the power to control your life.  We live in the land where dreams are made, during a technological revolution.  Stop making excuses and take advantage of the incredible opportunity that lays before you.  Seize it.  TODAY.  Right Now.

Where do you draw your inspiration?  I write this coming back from a conference of my peers and being around them inspires me to do great things, better things.  What inspires you?

For me, it’s my kids.  It’s the look on a bride’s face, that genuine smile of knowing from a mother when you put your heart and soul into an event and everything turned out better than they could have imagined.  It’s the knowledge that I continually need to improve and step up my game because some young buck is coming up behind me somewhere, hungry to take over my business and get his cut.

Rip off the rear view mirror.  Don’t look back.  Always keep improving.

If you need help with motivation and things you can do to be better, check out fellow Promo Only columnist and person that inspires me Mike Walter’s book “10 Things You Can Do To Have A Better Day.” A great read.

I’ll let you in on another little secret.  You know someone else that inspires me?  Go look in the mirror.  It’s you.  You, your passion, desire and drive for this business.

Now go out and make someone’s day better!

About: Mitch Taylor owns and operates Taylored Weddings and can be reached via email at mitch@mitchtaylor.net. For more info about his Creating Connections books and workshops visit creatingconnections.biz

Ask Questions: Get Better Every Day, Your Way

By Mike Walter:

If you’ve read my first few posts for this blog you’ve noticed I have talked about health and fitness. And if you know me, even casually through social media, you may ask why I am qualified to speak on this subject. After all I’m a middle-aged man in average condition. My height and weight (6 foot, 190 pounds) actually put me at the high end of average and I’m certainly no Adonis with my shirt off. DJs like Marcello or Jay Sims or Rob Snyder have to be more qualified to talk about fitness, right?

Perhaps. Or perhaps it’s like sports where the best athletes rarely make the best coaches. For a great athlete things often come naturally which means someone like Michael Jordan probably never over analyzed his game in an effort to get better. If you look through the list of best coaches in any sport, they are usually athletes who struggled to make an impact or even remain on the roster. Those are the guys who spent countless hours breaking down every nuance of a skill in an effort to improve. And though that rarely made them superstars it left them in the unique position to teach the game to others.

It’s in that struggle that coaching and managing and educating often comes from.

So I’d argue I’m probably the best guy to talk about fitness because I struggle with the topic as much as most people. As I walk the hallways of every DJ convention, for every lean and fit DJ I pass, there are twenty just like me, guys who find it hard to resist every temptation and who struggle to maintain a consistent exercise regimen.

I would also use a similar argument for explaining why I’ve been such an effective DJ trainer through the years. I am not a natural talent when it comes to entertaining. I have pretty good pipes for sure but I’m not a great dancer and my beat mixing skills have been honed from years and years of practice. I think that’s what makes me such a good trainer. I can relate to most struggles that a DJ or MC might go through and help them with first hand advice as to how I overcame something similar. I can break down most tasks that we have to do as entertainers and explain it to someone because I’ve probably had to break that same process down for myself in order to improve. Those are the things that have helped me train my own DJs for over 20 years now and those are the reasons I’ve been able to help so many others set up their own training programs.

It’s also why I’d love this blog to become as much about performance as it is about fitness. And I’d love you as the reader to direct it. Please ask away.   Let me know what future topics you’d like to see me cover and I’ll be happy to write about them.

Till then, just keep trying to get better everyday: Keep moving and burning those calories and keep practicing your chosen craft.

Mike Walter is the proud owner of Elite Entertainment, a Multi-System DJ Company in New Jersey that was recently selected by TheKnot.com and WeddingWire.com as a top Entertainment company in the country.

“I Turned Down My First Client”

By Brian Buonassissi:

 

Here’s a statement I never thought I would make: After some 22 years of business I turned down my first client. Last year, I was listening to one of the PHDJ podcast episodes hosted by Mike Walter and Joe Bunn (if you’re not subscribed to it, you need to be) and the question came up if either of them had ever turned down a client? Like me, up to that point, neither of them had. However, the question gave me serious pause to think about clients that were “questionable.”

I can think of a handful of clients our company has taken on where, when we went to contract, I had a feeling they were going to be trouble clients. In the end, they all ended up to be exactly that – every single one of them. In some cases, we had to give a partial or full refund. Listening to the podcast, I began to ask myself, “Why did we take these clients on?”

The reasons varied. Part of me didn’t want to feel defeated. I wanted us to take on the challenge of making these clients have the party of their life. Another part of me may have wanted to make sure our DJs were working and there was fear that another booking may not come. And then there was another part of me that wanted to bring in the revenue.

As my DJ profile and demand has grown over the years, I’ve had the luxury of being able to pick and choose which clients are “the right fit” for me. If a client wasn’t a good fit, I’d send it down the chain to one of our other guys. That type of client didn’t really affect me as our other DJs had to deal with it and I masked it by saying, “It was good training” for them.

It hit in me in the face that I was being rather selfish. That started a process over the last few months of 2017 in identifying just who our ideal client was. I’ll share some of that with you.

Our ideal client:
*is between the age of 22-35
*is kind and generous
*is creative – loves uniqueness
*is cutting edge – enjoys social media and mobile apps, open to incorporating the latest and greatest
*Loves a variety of different music or at least has an appreciation for many different genres
*has an awareness that a DJ can make/break their event
*easily recognizes and appreciates value over low quality
*is willing to collaborate with us (there’s a mutual trust between us)
*has a crowd that loves to dance any chance they get
*communicates well and appreciates timely responses and reciprocates

That’s our Top 10 list. Once I identified our ideal client, it really put me (and our sales staff) in the driver’s seat and we found ourselves interviewing our clients just as much as they were interviewing us before taking on a job. There is still nervousness that I may lose out on revenue but the negatives of taking on a client that isn’t a fit completely outweigh any positives.

Back to the client I turned down…in a nutshell, they didn’t pass muster on 5 of the 10 on our list. It was enough of a warning sign for me that I knew this wasn’t the right client for us. I sent the client a contract anyway. However, when they came back with changes they wanted to see to the contract, it was like a little nudge from the heavens telling me to abort.

I spent some time thinking through how to communicate that I was going to rescind the contract offer; the last thing I wanted to do was for the planner to stop sending referrals (some of our best parties came from her). I talked to the planner first (over the phone) and she totally understood and even said she wished she had done the same. I tried calling the client twice but got v/m both times, so I drafted a nice email and sent it off. I never heard back. Again, more confirmation that I made the right call.

Have you ever had a trouble client? What have you done? It’s not a matter of if you’ll ever have one but when. If you take one thing away from post today, I would encourage you to identify your ideal client with no more than 10 bullet points. The process challenges you to real drill down. I think it will do wonders for your business. It has for mine.

Based out of NYC, DJ Brian Buonassissi is a successful internationally traveling DJ/MC specializing in luxury destination private events. He runs a multi-city mobile DJ/event business with offices in Southern California, Destin, FL and New York City. You can connect with him at brian@djbrianbofficial.com

New rekordbox lyric Plus Pack brings world’s first lyric visualization in sync with DJs’ tracks

Pioneer is releasing rekordbox ver 5.1, a new version of their music management software. The update enables a brand-new optional Plus Pack, rekordbox lyric, for displaying animated lyric visualizations when using the rekordbox dj Plus Pack.

Since we released rekordbox video in 2016, we’ve continued to develop the video functionality within our performance software and, now, rekordbox lyric offers a brand-new form of expression. Its lyric visualization feature, co-developed with COTODAMA, enables you to display visualizations of track lyrics on the fly via monitors or projectors when using the rekordbox dj Plus Pack. Animations are created automatically by the software and you can customise them to create your preferred look. rekordbox lyric is the first DJ tool in the world to visualize the lyrics of songs being played.*1

How to use rekordbox lyric

Subscribe to one of the following plans available from 18th January 2018:

  1. Lyric Plan ($6.90 per month)

If you already own a rekordbox dj license, you can subscribe to this plan to use rekordbox lyric.

  1. Premium Plan ($14.90 per month)

In addition to rekordbox lyric, you’ll get unlimited access to all the features and functions of rekordbox dj, rekordbox dvs, rekordbox video and RMX Effects.

30 day free trial of rekordbox dj

If you use the rekordbox dj trial version, you can try all Plus Packs including rekordbox lyric for 30 days. During the trial period, you can try rekordbox lyric’s features using sample songs that can be downloaded through rekordbox.

Find out more about the rekordbox Plus Packs and watch our rekordbox lyric introduction video.

*1 First application service in the DJ application market (according to research conducted by Pioneer DJ Corporation, 11th January 2018).

* Lyric Plan and Premium Plan are available in limited countries only. Find out more.

* In some cases, lyric data may not be acquired from tracks.

* If you already subscribe to the current rekordbox plan (now known as Base Plan) and would like to subscribe to Premium Plan, you’ll need to cancel your current subscription and take out a new subscription for Premium Plan.

KEY FEATURES OF REKORDBOX LYRIC

  1. Lyric visualization in sync with tracks

Thanks to COTODAMA’s Lyric Sync Technology, the lyrics of the tracks you play are sent via your laptop’s video output (HDMI, etc.) to a connected screen or projector. Just play music that’s been pre-analysed by rekordbox and smooth, dynamic motion graphics based on the track’s mood and structure will appear when rekordbox lyric is enabled. You can perform with your tracks normally (for example, adding FX) and the visualized lyrics will appear automatically.

  1. Customizable visualized lyrics

You can change the tone and type of motion graphics generated by rekordbox lyric. And, with the flexibility to customize font colour and transparency of the background individually, you can create visuals on the fly to match the crowd’s vibe.

  1. Compatible with rekordbox video

Use rekordbox video with rekordbox lyric to apply its Transition FX to visualized lyrics and to layer lyrics over videos and images. By combining various elements using both Plus Packs, you can create unique visual performances to accompany your DJ sets.

About Lyric Sync Technology
rekordbox lyric utilizes Lyric Sync Technology that automatically visualizes lyrics beautifully. Lyric data is acquired from the database of over 2.59 million songs provided by Sync Power Corporation. The music analysis technology of the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) automatically analyses the lyric data to determine the atmosphere and composition of the music, and its Expression Engine generates motion graphics for each song using the Morisawa font.

rekordbox lyric Specifications

Compatible OS Mac macOS High Sierra 10.13 (updated to the latest version)

macOS Sierra 10.12 (updated to the latest version)

OS X 10.11, 10.10 (updated to the latest version)

Windows Windows® 10, 8.1, 7 (the latest service pack)
CPU Intel® processor Core™ i7, i5, i3
Memory 4 GB or more of RAM

 

* Disclaimer: specifications and price are subject to change.

* rekordbox is a registered trademark of Pioneer DJ Corporation.

* rekordbox lyric displays lyric information based on the license of LyricFind.

* Mac, OS X or macOS are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the US and other countries.

* Windows is a registered trademark of Microsoft Corporation in the US and other countries.

* Intel and Intel Core are registered trademarks of Intel Corporation in the US and other countries.

* The names of companies, product names and technology names mentioned herein are the trademarks of their respective owners.

 

Social, Mobile and You (Second in a Series)

By Mitch Taylor:

Last month we talked about how the vast majority of people have their smartphone within three feet of them at all times and the three important items you need to be sure you have on your mobile website to capture their attention.
This month, we’ll be highlighting the social side of social media (Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, LinkedIn, Snapchat, Pinterest, etc.). For this article’s purposes, we’ll be focusing on the biggest of the social media platforms, Facebook.

The best way to navigate Facebook is to hire a professional to handle your contests or at minimum consult with one to find the best contest app for your desired outcome. Why? You must be careful with the methods you use to generate “likes.” Facebook has rules, especially regarding contents, and failure to adhere to those rules can get your page taken down, requiring you to build your entire Facebook presence again.

Taylored Weddings has recently consulted with Caryn Terradas of SpeakEasy and has had great success with her abilities to increase our exposure and outreach on our Facebook page. That said, do your due diligence in consulting an expert; there are many fly by night companies trying to get into the game of social media management.

Okay. You’ve consulted with an expert and determined what you want to achieve with your page. Now what do you say? My good friend Brian Kelm, Master of I Do, has a great approach and one that I have adapted to my business with great success.

1) Be sure to friend your clients on Facebook. This will allow their friends to see your postings when you tag them in one.

2) Every 30 days leading up to your client’s event date, go to their profile and find a picture that best represents them, then click “share, along with a comment about couple and their upcoming event; i.e. “@YourCompanyName is looking forward to celebrating with @Heather Smith and @John Johnson in just four weeks from today. Surprises galore in store with fun and smiles all day! So glad they chose @YourFavoritePhotographer to capture their moments!”

By including the venue and other vendors you actively promote them as well. It’s a win-win for everyone! You may also want to try a Vendor Of The Week Bridal Tip Tuesday, Wedding Wish Wednesday, Tradition Thursday, or Friday Fun Facts. I know one company that does well having a trivia contest and others who put up YouTube videos on their wall and have their fans post their favorite clips as well.

The bottom line with any social media is that you must be GENUINE and interactive. Today’s clientele can spot a phony and a sales pitch from a mile away. Provide value first, cultivate the relationship and the referrals will come!

About: Mitch Taylor owns and operates Taylored Weddings and can be reached via email at mitch@mitchtaylor.net. For more info about his Creating Connections books and workshops visit creatingconnections.biz

Book More Events By Spreading Out Your Reviews

By Brian Buonassissi:

A wise businessman once told me, “To book more business, be everywhere.” These days it’s never been easier or more affordable to be everywhere — that’s why reviews are so great! They don’t cost you anything and with a ton of third-party review sites out there, your chances of clients finding you go way up the more places those reviews can be seen.

Just like social media, some will gravitate to certain platform over others. Very few (that I’ve seen anyway) use multiple review sites. I also think asking clients to leave reviews on multiple review sites comes across as a chore (even if it is just a copy and paste) and does nothing to motivate them to jump on a computer and start cranking out a review.

One of the biggest changes we’ve made in our business to increase the number of places where we can be found is to ask clients what reviews sites they use on our client intake form. We’ve struck the verb “review” from our company vernacular (it’s such an ugly word) so the way we phrase these questions (we feel) helps us get those answers.

Here’s the verbiage we use…
*Have you set up a Knot Profile?
*Have you set up a WeddingWire Profile?
*Are you a frequent Yelper?
*Do you use Google Reviews?
*Do you use Facebook Reviews?

If there are other sites you use which have an option for reviews (i.e. GigMasters, Thumbtack, etc.), you might want to add those to the list above. By asking these questions on a client intake form, it is much more disarming. That said, if they don’t fill this out before our “creative planning meeting”, we’ll do it in person when we meet. It gives us a good idea of not only the effectiveness of this strategy but also gives us direction on where to send them when it’s time to send them a request to “share their experience”.

This is important for Yelp especially. With that particular site, if they aren’t a frequent Yelper, it doesn’t do any good to send them there because their review will be posted under the “unverified” category and those reviews are not easy to find. Yelp (as do all these sites) want it to feel organic and not as if the company asked for it. If they are a frequent Yelper, send them there. Those reviews won’t get flagged and you should be fine.

Now, going this route may cut down how many reviews you get on a specific site and could put your “best of” awards from those sites in jeopardy by not meeting a certain threshold. If they utilize more than two of these sites mentioned above, we’ll rotate out our review requests every three or so months with which one we push clients to use, assuming they are using multiple platforms.

By doing it this way, it still allows us to hit that magical number to qualify for the awards.

If you have never tried this approach, I encourage you to give it a test run. See if your inquiry sources start to multiply. If your sales pitch is solid, this should hopefully lead to more bookings.

Let me know how it works for you.

Based out of NYC, DJ Brian Buonassissi is a successful internationally traveling DJ/MC specializing in luxury destination private events. He runs a multi-city mobile DJ/event business with offices in Southern California, Destin, FL and New York City. You can connect with him at brianbuonassissi@discjockeynews.com.

Fitness Matters

By Mike Walter:

So last month I wrote my first blog for Promo Only and when it was published I was very excited and I proudly shared it on social media. Only to have the first comment bring me crashing down to earth. Someone wrote “I don’t get it. This is about running.”

It’s true. My first blog was about running. And movement in general. And how staying active can help with your overall fitness. And so this commenter was perplexed as to why a blog on a DJ focused website would be about running and fitness. And to that I reply:

Because it matters!

Let’s start with the part that is universal for any occupation. Generally, the fitter you are the healthier you are. And the healthier you are the better off you are. I say “generally” because you can take care of yourself every day and still wind up with a bad disease or cancer. But barring those exceptions, staying fit helps guarantee you’ll be healthy. And being healthy has tons of advantages: more energy throughout the day. You feel better. You look better. And you’re likely to have more confidence as a result. Oh, and you’ll probably live longer too.

Those are the benefits that everyone achieves when they are healthier, whether you’re a toll taker or a brain surgeon or any other occupation.

Here’s the part that is essential to us as DJs (and I am aware that this is likely to piss some people off but hey, don’t shoot the messenger): Some clients base their decision of who they want to DJ their event on aesthetics . It may even be a subconscious decision but some clients will pick the leaner, fitter DJ if all else is equal.

This was never more obvious to me than a number of years ago when I had to reassign some events here at Elite Entertainment. We had a DJ, I’ll call him Bill (because that was his name) who had played college football. He was blond, tall, good looking and in very good shape. But he had to leave the state unexpectedly and I was forced to call about twenty brides and inform them that their first choice of DJ was no longer available. When I asked them all what they liked about Bill (so I could recommend a similar replacement) some were vague with their answers and others just came right out and said, “he’s hot!” Almost bride had booked him from one of our showcases where, quite frankly, he wasn’t nearly the best or most experienced MC on staff. But they’d selected Bill because they liked his look (whether they admitted it or not).

I witnessed something similar first hand. In my late 30s I was starting to pack on the pounds and my bookings were dropping. Some of my other DJs were getting requested far more than I was. I was chalking it up to my age but then as I approached 40 I decided it was time to clean up my act and get in better shape. All of sudden my bookings picked back up. It seems it wasn’t my age but my shape that was turning some brides off.

When I see DJs on Facebook bitch and moan about losing business I’ll click on their profile sometimes and if I see someone who is out of shape I shake my head in disbelief. There are a lot of factors that are out of our control in this industry, but how we look and present ourselves to our clients and to the guests at their events is something we can control.

And whether we like it or not, it matters!

Mike Walter is the proud owner of Elite Entertainment, a Multi-System DJ Company in New Jersey that was recently selected by TheKnot.com and WeddingWire.com as a top Entertainment company in the country.

Trust

By Mitch Taylor:

I recently wrapped up an event and found myself again amazed by the power of one word.  My clients were Dick and Elga, a couple who had tied the knot in a beautiful ceremony fifty years ago to the day.  Their golden anniversary celebration was well attended, filled with laughter, dancing, a few tears. As the night ended, the one word Dick boiled it down to when thanking me was simply this: trust.  Dick looked me in the eyes and said, “I trusted you to deliver tonight and you came through. You kept your promise to make tonight unforgettable.”

Isn’t it amazing how one word can have such a profound effect on how we do business, what we achieve in life and where we go?  Trust is also the ultimate reason a client hires you…or not.

How do you build trust?  

Trust begins with word of mouth about your company. Trust continues when a potential client visits your website and sees the reputation you’ve built reinforced by the online testimonials that appear on your site.  You must then back up the initial trust placed in you by updating your clients throughout every step of planning, by following through on every promise made, and by maintaining your brand’s integrity from beginning to end.

You also need to trust in yourself and in your advisors or coaches.  

What, you don’t have a coach?  Get one.  Someone you trust who is where you want to be, who can help you through the rough patches. Sometimes it’s not enough to trust in yourself, your talent and abilities to deliver; too often we all hear that little voice inside our head that says “no you can’t”. Find someone who believes in you, even when you might not.

For me that person was Kyle Cease, a New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestselling author, whose Evolving Out Loud events and unique blend of comedy and personal evolution encouraged me to take full responsibility for the success of my client’s events. The minute I committed to this my clients were happier, referred my services more often, and even paid more for my services.

All because of one word.

Trust can be the catalyst to providing a better life for you and your family.

Do you trust me enough to take action on the words you have just read?

Because I trust that if you do, you will succeed beyond your wildest dreams.

Mitch Taylor has worked in the Mobile Disc Jockey industry for over two decades, first cutting his teeth as an on-board club DJ for Carnival Cruise Lines. In addition to owning and operating Taylored Weddings in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, he is a sought-after speaker and Gitomer Certified Advisor whose sales training, books, coaching and workshops are in high demand all over the country. 

Communication is Key: Creating Connections w/ Mitch TayloR

By Mitch Taylor:

I don’t know about you but at the age of 42 I find it increasingly difficult to communicate with today’s millennial brides, the majority of who tend to prefer to communicate via email. My assistant (a 24-year-old millennial herself) and I had occasion to discuss this the other day after a bridal show and were amazed that some businesses still use very formal language to communicate with young brides — only to be left wondering why they get no response.

Speak to a prospective bride just as she is speaking to you.  If she’s using short sentences with basic language, do the same. If she mentions descriptive words about her event use those same words in your reply.

Here’s an example of an email recently received and how we handled it to get the appointment:

Hello I am just getting ideas and prices at the moment and I was wondering around what your average pricing would be I would also like the uplighting also an email would prob be the best way to respond thanks for your time.

Amber

My response:

Hi!  How’s your wedding planning going?  I got your email regarding entertainment and uplighting for your wedding.  I attached a photo above to show you examples of our work and how we can transform your venue too.  Feel free to call me anytime and let’s talk about your day.  906.786.6967.  Thanks for contacting me and I look forward to hearing from you soon.

 Mitch

Bride’s Reply:

I am sorry I have gotten your calls but been busy working.  At this time we are going to go with a live band from 8-12.  I am looking to rent uplighting (for the whole night of the reception) and also entertainment from 4:00pm-8pm.  Not many have been willing to do that time slot since it is Labor Day weekend.  Please let me know

My response:

Hi Amber,

Sure…we can do that.  When’s a good time for us to get together to chat about your wedding?

Bride’s Reply:

I work in Marquette at Lowe’s.  My next days off are Monday and Tuesday.  I have a cake appointment in Marquette on Monday at 12pm.  Where are you located and what is a good time for you?

My reply:

Hi Amber,

What about Monday at 1:30pm?  Would that work?

Bride’s Reply:

Yes I think that would work.  What is the best phone number to get a hold of you in case I need too?  I have a cake appointment a 12:00 so I will be in town.

 My next response was to send her an email confirming that date and time with an appointment reminder from DJ Event Planner.

Bottom line: Brides want to do business with someone who understands what they want, gives them the information they need in a timely fashion connects with them.

Be real. Be honest. But most importantly be relatable. Speak to them the same way through email as you would over the phone.

About: Mitch Taylor owns and operates Taylored Weddings and can be reached via email at mitch@mitchtaylor.net. For more info about his Creating Connections books and workshops visit creatingconnections.biz

 

I Like To Move It Move It!

By Mike Walter:

My wife Kelly and I were in Seattle a few years ago and we decided to hike Mt Rainier. On the bus ride out we started chatting with a woman named Hannah who was traveling by herself. She told us she was an epidemiologist (which I found out means she’s a doctor who studies diseases).   Half-jokingly, I asked her what disease was going to kill all of mankind and without missing a beat she said, “Inactivity.”

I have to say I was relieved to hear that because I consider myself a pretty active person but I also have to admit that there have been times since then where I wanted to skip a run or workout or even a walk with my dogs but Hannah’s succinct, one word, spontaneous answer has echoed in my head and got me moving.

When you think about it, almost every major invention of mankind’s has made us more sedentary. We invented the wheel and we domesticated wild animals to help us move things. We created engines to move us even faster. We’ve made everything from Egg Beaters to escalators all in an effort to make our lives easier. But in doing so we’ve triggered a gene inside most of us that loves to relax. And, believe me, there’s nothing wrong with relaxing, but only after you’ve earned it through some hard work and motion.

We as a society, and definitely we as an industry, need to move more. We need to do more. We need to avoid the disease of “Inactivity” and all myriad health issues that come along with it.

Many people know I like to run. It’s my favorite healthy activity. I’ve done sixteen marathons in my life and while I’m not quite in marathon condition anymore, I still love to lace up my sneakers and head out, whether it’s for a short, fast run or a leisurely long jog. Knowing this, many people have asked me how they should get started if they too want to run. Here’s my simple advice: get off the couch. Don’t set too lofty of a goal early on because it’s impossible (and dangerous) to go from couch potato to marathon runner in a few weeks. If you’re currently overweight and inactive my advice would be to seek your doctor’s approval first and foremost and assuming you’re given the green light, go for a walk. Day one, make it a ten minute stroll. Day two, add a minute or two. If you have a track near your home, it’s an ideal place to head. Tracks are softer on your joints and if you get too tired, you’re never too far from your car.

And when you’re ready to speed it up a bit, fear not! Because, here’s the thing about running: you already know how to do it. It’s in your DNA. Remember, before mankind invented all those things to make us sedentary, we moved. We hunted and chased our food down, often after miles and miles on our feet. Or we were the hunted, and those who survived were fast enough to avoid the mountain lion or mastodon that wanted to make us dinner. So once you go from walking to jogging, don’t over think it. Just go a little faster and a little longer each and every day and soon you’ll be logging miles, shedding pounds and most importantly, avoiding all the detrimental side effects of inactivity.

Here’s one of the misperceptions of our industry: events don’t burn that many calories. Sure it’s better to be up and moving on a weekend night than sitting around in a the Lazy Boy flipping channels, but I think too many DJs do an event and think they’ve burned so many calories they are entitled to eat all night and then hit the drive-through on the way home. You’re wrong. Even if you’re a dancer, even if you move around a lot at your events, it’s very doubtful that you’re getting your heart rate up to an aerobic state and burning some real calories. So be careful equating one of your gigs to an increased amount of food and thinking you’ll be even.

My wife and I do a lot of little things to keep ourselves active. Kelly wears a Fitbit and she always strives to hit her 10,000 daily steps. When we go shopping, we usually park as far from the store as possible. We walk our dogs a lot. When we go to the beach, we often take a stroll along the shoreline. These are just a few of the many things you too can probably do just to be a little more active. The pay off in the end is well worth it and when the “sacrifice” is stepping away from the boob tube for a little while and getting some fresh air, it’s even better.
Mike Walter is the proud owner of Elite Entertainment, a Multi-System DJ Company in New Jersey that was recently selected by TheKnot.com and WeddingWire.com as a top Entertainment company in the country.