By DJ Rachel Lynch
After years of trial and error I became frustrated with my stagnant business. Customers slipped through my fingertips, as my competitors seemed to book gigs with ease. I have always been a responsive, polite, and talented DJ. So, why was it so hard to make that sale? What was I doing wrong? Something needed to change, and I realized it was me. My “a-ha moment” came from a casual conversation with a respected colleague. We challenged each other, with some humorous DJ related role-playing, to simulate a sales call. After a few chuckles and some painfully awkward dialogue on my end, I realized what the problem was: I was “corporatized.”
This exercise had highlighted the fact that I had carried over robotic habits from my day job into my DJ business. By being so laser-focused on professionalism and efficiency, I was treating customers like contracts and profits, rather than friends who I would be celebrating. My communications were sterile, filled with information about services and pricing. There was no personality, humor or warmth in my messages. This was very hard to swallow, but I realized that I had adopted the tone of an office worker, not a caring DJ who people trusted with their once in a lifetime event.
The significant change I made, was to stop running my business like a business. Some of you may be rolling your eyes at this comment, but understand that I’m not dismissing the importance of basic economics and sensible business practices. However, I am suggesting developing a business plan around Emotional Intelligence. Emotional Intelligence is the driving force behind connecting with customers, and earning their trust. It is a trait where most fall short, and it is often overlooked in most professional settings. In an industry that is highly competitive and sales driven, personal touch matters.
Understanding your motivation is key.
When a client front-loads you with questions about pricing, it’s easy to focus on the finances. However, to be persuasive, bookable and sought after, a DJ must focus less on the economics of DJing and strive to build meaningful relationships with their customers, the community, and DJ industry contacts.
Profits will come if people want to connect with you. It’s that simple.
The takeaway? If the foundation of your business model is to make more than you did last year, by crunching numbers and budgeting for the latest and greatest gear, clients will run in the other direction. I’m living proof. I am energized, busier, and more connected than ever, due to the changes I made to become more emotionally intelligent with my business.
Next month: Rachel’s 10 Steps to be more emotionally intelligent with your business!
Fun, creative, and ambitions, DJ Rachel is making her mark as one of the top mobile DJs in the tri-state area. Her diversity as a DJ allows her to play at events that include MetLife Stadium (for the New York Jets) and serve as opening act for George Clinton Parliament Funkadelic and Gloria Gaynor. For more info visit https://www.facebook.com/DJRachelRLynch/