When new DJs meet seasoned DJs, they asked how pro DJs get gigs. However, there’s no straightforward answer to this question. The good news is there are some tips that you can try to get gigs as you are about to start your DJing career.
In the world of DJs, there’s two ways of getting gigs; it’s either the gigs will come to you or you are the want who will hunt for them. Most of the time, DJs begin with going and hunting gigs themselves. But it is essential for you to aim that gigs should come to you later on.
Once DJs became established artists or popular music producers, the promoters will be the knocking on their doors. But, as an unknown DJ and beginners, you need to go out just to get yourself gigs. This means that you need to give a lot of dedication, time, and effort in establishing your name in the industry and becomes a good, successful DJ.
Other than getting yourself a DJ course from reputable DJ courses providers in London like SubBass to enhance your DJing skills and learn something more, you can consider the following tips on getting gigs. So, as you enter the industry, you already have the ideas of where and how to start your DJing careers.
1. Build Your Appealing and Responsive Website
Did you know that the home base of DJs is their website? This is where you can put your promotional efforts aside from your social media channels. Having a centralized location dedicated to your important events and all of your work is an advantage. That is because your potential audience knows precisely where to find you, connect with you, and get updates about your plans or work. Besides, you can put your mixes on the website to give them some hints about your style and how good you are.
To get yourself a good website, there must be a gallery of best, creative photos, and your site should have a mobile-friendly design. It should contain connections to your DJing services like Bandcamp and SoundCloud and how your site visitor can hear your mixes. Do not forget to include your gig calendar, so that interested audience knows where to find your shows. You can also try selling merch on your website.
2. Connect with People through Social Media
Use social media channels as portals in interacting with your potential and existing fans. But you need to keep in mind that the way DJs act on social media is a massive part of their personal brand. Make sure that your profiles on different social media channels, if you have multiple accounts, are up-to-date and running. It is better to update them regularly with high-end, compelling content. Then, make sure to balance promoting yourself, which means that you need to avoid to sound like you are a spammy DJ.
On your profile pages fields, ensure to fill out them with safe and comfortable sharing. You can create varying post types such as images, videos, live streams, polls, texts, and more. You can try interlink and sharing content within a similar social network. Most importantly, ensure that you will engage back or interact with your fans.
3. Create Promo Videos
One of the best ways to get your target audience excited about your work or show is by creating a promo video. Creating short videos can display your talent while introducing your brand. This will also help you stand out and attract more fans. To have a fantastic promo video, the content must be between 30 to 90 seconds and should contain a creative introduction about yourself and your sound or style. If you are a wedding or mobile DJ, you can add client testimonials to create a more convincing factor. You also need to include info about how your fans can follow you on your social media. Then, do not forget to end the video with a strong CTA (call-to-action). You can mention to follow or subscribe on your channels.
4. Prepare A Good EPK
An EPK or Electric Press Kit refers to a particular page focusing on promotional things necessary for promoters and media. Use this page to impress and attract potential bookers. To ensure that you will be having a good EPK, it must contain the following things:
- Some of your best photos
- A short yet interesting bio
- Some of your best mixes or tracks
- Contact and social media info
In case you already a promo video, it is also an excellent idea to include it on your EPK. What’s more, you can also add a short quote. This quote could be something for a previous booking agent or media describing your sound.
5. Research, Research, Research
Be aware that gigs will not just come in front of you by doing nothing – you need to think ahead. Other than spending your time inside your booth, there’s so much you can do to make sure that your gigs will continue rolling in.
Scope Out What Your Town Has to Offer.
Do you wonder why you have a gig drought? It is simply because you are not bothered by discovering every single venue in your area. In short, you need to be familiar with your local music scene, where you need to find other venues or nights that suit your sound. After that, create a list of the usual gig spots like popular bars or clubs, and be a resource to them.
Practice Early Arrival.
Aside from showing your professionalism, arriving early to your show gives you a lot of advantages. This is where you can observe the room’s energy more effectively and decide where you can take it. Besides, you can do a valuable interaction with the staff and patrons while showing your willingness to support. On top of that, you can have a time reacting to some sort of disaster, such as you forget your CDs, vinyl, or headphone, or another DJ did not show up.
Connect with People Who Can Give You Gigs.
You can go out every night and visit more than one club to find people who can help you get gigs. The more you become part and circulate in the scene, the more effective you can make connections with influential people in the industry. Let’s face it – promoters always book DJs that are close to them. But, make sure to play safe and know your limits. Then, continue interacting and communications with these people.
6. Do Not Limit Yourself
Always aim for something big. If you want to get more gigs, then it’s not enough that you are playing on the same kind of gigs. You need to explore and think outside the box. Consider Warm-Up Slots. To effectively make yourself a resource, you can get warm-up slots. In short, you will have an opening show for a more established DJ. That way, you can acquire great experience during early hours with lower-pressure. For an out-of-the-box idea, before the show, you can offer laid-back vibes for the workers or other people present in the venue.
Try New, Unique Gigs. DJ gigs are not only happening in a nightclub or bar. There are plenty of events you can provide your services. So, why not try playing for Crossfit group at the local gym, sports team at the local school district, or customers at the coffee shop. You need to make sure everyone in your town should not miss your services.
7. Actively Pursue You Gigs
As mentioned, DJ gigs will not just knock at your door without pursuing anything. Whether your area DJ playing live sets in nightclubs or a mobile DJ, it is essential for you to outreach for gigs.
Do Pitching Appropriately.
When you are negotiating with a venue owner, event planner, or promoter, make sure to explain the entire concept for your show in not more than 5 minutes. You need to figure out any holes or potential issues in their musical programming. Once you determine them, politely explain how you can help them or give a remedy. Thus, showcase your knowledge about the typical crowd in a venue and then explain why and how you can be ideal for that event. Bring your promo materials, including your business card, and make sure that your site is always ready. That way, the promoters or venue owners know where and how they can reach you.
Do Not Forget to Follow-Up.
One of the common mistakes of many DJs make is forgetting to follow-up after their negotiation. For better results, you need to continue staying in contact with the promoters, club manager, or venue owners. By doing so, these people will feel that you are really serious and passionate to get the show.
8. Collaborate with Other DJ at Shows
A successful DJ is not afraid of helping other people in the same industry. Why? Because it can help them in becoming more successful by association. Remember that, your network can be also your net worth. Being new to the industry, it essential for you to learn how you can network with other DJs. Getting a good collaboration in the local music scene will not only help you get more gigs, but other DJs can benefit, too. So, it’s a win-win situation! Once you reach out to other DJs, you can introduce your brand into a new market.
To have a good collaboration, make sure to figure out the strengths or even the weaknesses that you each have. Other than that, you also need to identify what your common goals are and the reason why are working together and why you fit each other.
Take note that finding a DJ whom you can collaborate with is not easy because not all DJs are not on the same sound, or both of you share common interests or goals. So, it is best for both of you to remain patient with each other. It is also essential to put aside ego. Then, make sure to develop a strong communication to ensure that you will work as true partners while helping each other to be successful.
Your journey to successful DJing will involve a lot of challenges, but once you set your goals, you know where you will land. As a beginner, one of your main focuses to get more gigs and you can only do this if you do and pursue something.
With the above tips, you can get valuable ideas on how you can get or even create gigs. Just maintain a high degree of patience and stay motivated. If gigs do not knock on your door, then be the one who will knock the door. Then, do not forget to take advantage of DJ courses in London to ensure better performances and acquire new DJ skills.