Issue 187 - October 2017 - Modern Marketing Mix

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MODERN MARKETING MIX Finding the Right Balance for Your DJ Company


MODERN MARKETING MIX PLAYLIST F E AT U R E . . .................................................................... 6

Redesign Your Website...or Your Routine? By Robert Lindquist F E AT U R E . . .................................................................... 8

Serve, Don’t Sell


By Matt Martindale Audio-Technica




D.A.S. Audio


David Tutera: Keen Eye on DJs

DJ Intelligence


By Michael Cordeiro



Innovative LED


Mobile Beat Las Vegas


Odyssey Innovative Designs




Stage Spot


T H I S I S H O W W E D O I T................................................ 1 2

Online Marketing Choices By Joe Bunn I N S I D E T H E I N D U ST R Y................................................14

F E AT U R E . . .................................................................. 18

What Has Really Changed About Marketing in the Last 100 Years? By Andy Slipher W E D D I N G B E AT.......................................................... 20

Lyle Lovett & Gringo-Friendly Spanish Dance Songs By Staci Nichols F E AT U R E . . .................................................................. 22

Appearance vs. Protection By Stu Chisholm S C O O P ...................................................................... 2 3

American Audio STK106W Speaker System By Marc Andrews T H E S P I N D O C TO R . . .................................................... 24

DJ Injury Report By Mike “Dr. Frankenstand” Ryan

Publisher Ryan Burger Mobile Beat Editor-in-Chief Dan Walsh

Gear Editor Jake Feldman Circulation Manager Kitty Harr

Editorial Assistant / Writer Rebecca Burger Events Director Emeritus Michael Buonaccorso





Redesign Your Website... or Your Routine? GETTING THE MOST OUT OF YOUR WEB PRESENCE By Robert Lindquist however, has created an opportunity for you to cut out the middle man. You now own the media. It’s time to stop thinking in terms of “How can I reach more potential clients?” (brides, for example) and start thinking, “How can I build the image of my business in the area I serve?” This is where you may need to rethink your online marketing and redesign your weekly routine. Posts to social media come and go, and, while it’s great to get a bunch of likes and comments, users are finding it increasingly more difficult to sift out the useful information. Why not use the website you already have to blog information that will stay fresh for as long you decide? Regardless of the size of the area you serve, you should always be able to post one or two new items a week. The most effective websites are not about animation and But what do you talk about? You will probably want to stay interactivity; they provide useful information. An extreme example away from politics or commenting on any local issues, but that’s is Craigslist. While I doubt anyone reading this would take such a your call. Most of your blog posts will be softer news such as your brutally minimalist approach to the design of their website, Craigslist impressions of a new venue where you just performed, a review of a has consistently proven that people prefer sites that help them get new local restaurant, news of a charity event coming up, quick notes things done. Have you ever gone to a restaurant’s website and not from a recent day trip or maybe you want to help promote a local been able to find the menu? I have, and it’s frustrating as hell. If the band. You’ll also want to talk about things new in your business. If menu is not easily accessible on my iPhone, I’ll probably just go you just added a photo booth, use your blog to describe what it is somewhere else. and how it works—and then wrap in a one-time discount for anyone Likewise, there are mobile entertainment services that are who books your new service before a certain date. You can do the woefully lacking in terms of content that helps their prospective same with uplighting or gobo projection. If you are planning on customers understand what they do. The majority of people who attending an event like Mobile Beat Las Vegas or the Photo Booth shop for a DJ or photo booth service online have little idea what Expo, post something about it on your blog. It shows your prospecthey are shopping for. In a phrase, “They don’t know what they don’t tive clients that you are not only connected locally, but nationally know.” They equate hiring a DJ to simply needing music for an event. as well. Anything that’s new to you your business is fodder for your When you use your website to educate them on what you really do, blog. People like reading insider information. you’ll change their perception of what they should pay you to do it. When you just can’t think of a topic, the new buzzword is “curate,” The internet runs on content. The web has democratized which means carefully selecting interesting info from outside sources. information—what you have to say is just as important as what For example, there is a wealth of information online for brides. All you anyone else has to say. Unfortunately, many mobile entertainers (as have to do is craft a headline, write a short synopsis of a pertinent well as owners of other commercial enterprises) have made social article and include a link. As your archive of posts grows, your website media their main online marketing focus. While posting images of will go from being little more than an electronic brochure to something various DJ setups (good and bad), running live videos from events that people will go to more frequently. Be sure to promote every blog and offering opinions on various post using your social media topics common to others in the channels—it’s a great way to After a 20-year broadcast radio career, Robert Lindquist built biz is fun, it’s not marketing. At grow your site traffic. Even if your a successful mobile DJ business, and by the late '80s he had least not if you are prospecting numbers increase by only a small also written his first book, Spinnin', a DJ how-to. In 1990, he for clients beyond the border of percentage each week, that’s still became the founding publisher of Mobile Beat. With the your friends and followers. more people learning about your Live2Play Network (, aimed at the business, and while they may not In the past, if you wanted to live sound realm, he has pioneered online publishing. Along need your services today, they with being a broadcaster, publisher and Internet pioneer, attract new business, you did it he's also a sax player, writer, gear reviewer and one of the may know someone who does. by advertising in a media owned regulars behind the board at his local church. It’s all about the buzz. by someone else. The internet,


e live in a time of accelerating rate of change. We can’t assume that the marketing strategies that worked a year, or even six months ago, will produce the same results today. Technology is constantly revealing new opportunities in social and online marketing, and each one merits consideration. While it often seems like we’re fighting a losing battle to stay ahead of the game, one online marketing rule has remained consistent: Functionality trumps fancy.




Serve, Don’t Sell ...AND DO IT WITH PASSION! By Matt Martindale


very DJ can be great if they remember one simple thing: Life is a performance—just like your actual performance at an event—and YOU are in charge! You have a role to play, and if you are true to yourself, and you know who you are, then that role becomes second nature. You know what you want. That allows you to tap into an inner resolve because you never have to change who you are. In Mark Sanborn’s book, The Encore Effect, he talks about what it takes to ensure a consistently fantastic performance in every aspect of your life. In fact, “every remarkable performance: • • • •

Moves us to act. Makes us feel good. Causes us to laugh. Stimulates us to think”

Is your show performance only competent and courteous? If so, then it’s routine. Is your performance consistently exceptional and enthusiastic? If so, then it’s remarkable. Performance counts. If you want to win the loyalty of past clients and be showered in referrals, then the consistency of a strong performance is a must. What’s awesome about what we do in our profession, is that different DJs, with different personalities and different styles, can all be very successful, in very different ways. My copy of The Encore Effect is littered with tons of highlights, personal notes, underlines and folded pages that I’ve added over the past decade or so. I’ve read it several times—and love it! I began really pondering who in the DJ industry “gets” this concept. So, I left for a quick jaunt to Minnesota to interview DJ superstar, Bill Hermann. Bill opened up our interview with one simple question: “Why do guests leave a wedding early?” Then a flood of information came… “Is it because they’ve already read that book, they’ve seen the movie and they know the ending?” Bill asked. “Do they know how everything is going to happen, and when? Have weddings and DJs become that predictable? “The truth is, most guests believe that a wedding is just another wedding...and once you’ve seen one wedding, you’ve seen them all. It’s not the once-in-a-lifetime celebration that was finely tuned, perfectly personalized and custom crafted exactly to the married couple’s wishes to personalities, heritages, likes, tastes, etc. A few are, sure, but let’s face it, 98 percent aren’t and 8

most DJs don’t really care. They are content with cookie cutter, fast and easy, ordinary and plain—because that’s the way it’s always been done. Wedding guests are expecting not to be surprised.” Performance is about a lot more than just what we know. Rather, a remarkable performance is about what we do with what we know. In The Encore Effect, Sanborn says, “It is difficult, if not impossible to be remarkable at doing something you don’t have your heart in.” It’s that deep commitment to always be better. To be relentless. To continually strive and demand the very best in every moment, because you genuinely care. Do you love what you do, or does your performance show otherwise? Describing the general DJ state of affairs, Bill said, “From the guests’ perspective, pretty much they’re all the same. All the DJs say same things; they play the same music; tell the same jokes; basically, they all have the same shtick. They have done everything possible to condense it down to plain and ordinary.” Why is that? Simple. DJs focus on selling, not serving. There is no passion, just a paycheck. Okay, hang on tight because here where it gets really good. Bill said continued exposing the difficult truth: ”DJs have a musician mentality. They don’t talk about how the act is, but rather, they feel the bride is hiring THE act; and they think of themselves as the act. DJs think they ARE the personality. Which means they sell what they know, and only what worked


FEATURE in the last performance. They haven’t something completely different been taught how to think, how to that is both engaging and personal. create a unique entertainment expeSomething truly unique and customrience and those moments and trancrafted just for their wedding. Yes it sitions customized to their specific takes work. It takes creativity. It takes desires. They need to take on the a commitment to serve. (I personally responsibility that every event will get this call all the time: “Matt, create go the way they say it will. Either something for my wedding that their events are successful and you’ve never done before.”) At the memorable, or they aren’t. end of night, I always have wedding guests coming up to me and saying, “Why aren’t they then? It’s “That wedding was so...them!” It because DJs are afraid to upset other should be! wedding professionals. So, they rely on being common and familiar. Too “Brides honestly change the same many DJs don’t (or won’t) accept things every other bride changes the fact that they have power, or because that’s all they think they can embrace the belief that they are change,” explained Bill. “Pinterest is empowered to act, or make a differfull of that, yet brides get the same ence. DJs have a voice.” result. Worse yet, venues and other vendors accept these changes as True. normal and ordinary, swapping out For example, take the room wedding colors, the style and colors layout. Do you intentionally design of the flowers, dress and cake, then the room layout with your bride and pander to compliment them on how venue in a way to maximize the celunique their wedding is because they ebration’s potential and create the aren’t willing to embrace her vision of precise atmosphere according to creative, unique and different. Brides her vision? Or, do you rely on setting are taught to think that that’s all they up your gear wherever the venue or can change.” For those interested, Bill Hermann planner wants you set up because So, shake it up. Be different. has a great workshop called The “that’s where we always put the DJ?” Serve, don’t sell. Create an entertainEntertainment Experience. Check it out at: It’s the same with the sequence ment experience just for them that and flow of events. I recently had this reflects them! very conversation with an aggressive Bill continued, “I get to be an day-of-wedding coordinator, simply explaining that our mutual bride has seen me perform as a guest artist. I get to express myself to guests. If I’m an artist, then I’ve and a bridesmaid twice in the last year. She has certain expec- been commissioned to create a unique ‘piece of art’ by my client. tations, based on those very different performances, and they It’s the same with a wedding. That means they trust me, and with are even heightened with her role as the bride. There are certain every word I speak, every song I play, every transition I make, it’s things I do in preparation, practice, polishing and final delivery an expression of their vision for their day that I’ve been hired to for her event specific to her vision, wants, wishes and desires, so do. I’m using my skills to do that for them.” the coordinator can’t dictate to me what I will do, or how I will Do all wedding receptions have transitions? Sure. prepare. Period. Uniqueness is in how you present it to guests. Create an enterWhen you first meet with your couple, ask questions. Lots of tainment experience to generate an encore effect based on serving—not selling! questions, and get to know them. Seek to serve them. Bill closed with another way to think about creating a truly Ask questions like: unique reception experience: • What is the function of your party? “Every time you transition, create a way for guests to be • Do you want an amazing dining experience or do you surprised and to look forward to the next surprise. DJs need to want guests to stay and party?” create a room of surprise, where the guests get to be engaged • What is it that you want and look forward to the next from guests? moment. If they don’t, the only thing the guests look Hopefully not a newsflash: Matt Martindale has been a professional forward to is when they get Brides don’t really don’t know DJ and MC since 1989, performing at more to leave.” what they want. They think than 1,400 wedding receptions since then. Shake it up. Serve, they do, but they don’t. (See Along with running his award-winning, don’t sell. Think differently. my article “Decoding the multi-DJ company, Amoré DJ Entertainment Create a unique entertain(, he has Millennial Bride” (MB #179, ment experience. Be bold. Be accumulated extensive entertainment experience Feb. 2017, p.20). including training in audio production, sound different! Instead, show them something guests are expecting, then show them


engineering, lighting and design, improv comedy, voice over artistry, magic, and much more.





ased on the number of Facebook messages I got from DJs around the country this past week, I can attest that it is most definitely renewal season. In other words, it’s that time of year where the reps for Wedding Wire and The Knot (the two most popular sites for couples getting married) start hitting up wedding vendors asking them to either renew or to start advertising with them. First and foremost, just to be clear, Bunn DJ Company does do paid advertising with both The Knot and Wedding Wire. We have had success with both and therefore continue to renew each year. Based on your area and the reach of the listing, prices can vary, but it’s definitely not cheap to advertise with these companies. In fact, if you want to be at the tip top, it’s downright expensive. However, if these listings lead to more inquiries and your sales skills are up to par, they are going to lead to more shows and more money…right? Let’s dig deeper! Before you spend any sort of money on online marketing, do me a favor, stop and think for a day or so about your decision. Let’s say that between The Knot and Wedding Wire, you are going to spend $600 a month. That’s $7,200 a year. The way I look at it is that means those ads need to generate me about $14,000 a year in business to make it worth continuing to do. Seeing as how our average wedding ticket is around $2200, if I book only seven shows, I’m golden. I know that we book way more than that off Wedding Wire and The Knot, therefore, the ad fee becomes a staple in my yearly budget. But what if you’re new to these sites and they’re asking you to become a paid advertiser. I don’t have a clear cut answer to this question, but I do have some suggestions. First, ask some other wedding vendors in your area if they are on either site and if they are getting a good number of inquiries from it. Secondly, think (again) about the money. Can you actually afford $500 a month? Again, that’s $6,000 a year! Not exactly chump change! Is that money going to take money away from your family, or jeopardize the future of your company if no leads start trickling in? If you answered yes to that, then it’s not the time for you to start spending your hard earned money on digital marketing! 12


I also don’t have a clear cut answer to the other question I get all the time, “Hey Joe, which do I pick? The Knot or Wedding Wire?” I really can’t answer that, especially based on different markets and different couples seem to favor different sites in different cities. If you have the funds, try both for a year. If you don’t, again, do some market research and see what other pros in your area are having success with. As with any marketing, you MUST track where your leads are coming from once you start advertising with anyone, be it radio, TV, postcards or online. I’m even guilty of not doing the best job at this, but am going to get better! When someone calls, after getting their name and event date, go ahead and ask “So how did you hear about us?” We all have a contact page on our website, make sure that at least one of the fields says, “How did you hear about us?” and make that section mandatory! If you don’t track where leads are coming from, how are you going to decide if you want to renew your online listings next year at this time? Don’t email me asking again!!! Recently, I had my right hand man Randy go through and put everyone that filled out our contact form on The Knot into a spreadsheet, the same for Wedding Wire. He simply had three columns on it-name, event date, and then a column to check off if they booked with us. After the names were in the sheet, he went into DJ Event Planner where we book all of our shows and looked up their names. If they had booked, he put a tick mark by their names. Surprising to me, The Knot leads had a lot more booked than Wedding Wire. However, remember that a ton of folks go on these wedding sites and then hyperjump over to your actual website and fill out your personal contact form. So even though Wedding Wire or The Knot procured that lead, it’s a little harder to track. That’s where a look at your Google analytics can help. Check out your “top referrers” list. If The Knot and Wedding Wire aren’t consis-

Joe Bunn started his DJ career over 30 years ago. His company has four offices and now does over 1000 weddings a year and another 400 private, corporate and charity events. He still DJs almost every weekend, but also helps other DJs grow their businesses as a consultant, writer, and speaker. Visit www. to learn more or purchase any of his products.

tently in the Top 10, it might be time to reassess. Instead of getting into Facebook, Instagram and Google ads in this article, I’ll save that for another time, but I will leave you with this, if you don’t know how to properly run an online ad campaign and track the results, you are throwing money into the wind. There are companies that can do this for you! Good luck deciding on your renewals this year. Let me know how it goes!






is name is synonymous with celebrity events and high-profile weddings. David Tutera’s room designs, attention to details and event planning skills are quickly becoming legendary. He has hosted several television shows, created events for rock stars, hollywood elite and royalty. And this October, he will be the keynote speaker at the Wedding MBA conference in Las Vegas. David gave me a sneak peek into his upcoming keynote speech and his thoughts on Mobile DJs. Mike Cordeiro: It really is a big honor to speak with you today. David Tutera: Thank you, it’s my pleasure. MC : So you just got married this past April, right? DT : Yes. MC : What were some of the challenges you faced planning your own wedding? Was it easier or more difficult than the planning you have done for your clients? DT : Definitely harder. I found myself scrutinizing my decisions more for my own wedding. Small decisions became big ones and big decisions became huge. In the end it was about sticking to our message: ”Love is Love.” I let go of some things and it all worked out perfectly. MC : How did you go about choosing the entertainment for your wedding?


DT : For us, entertainment was number one. Most people would think it was the design, but we had this mass diversity of entertainers at our wedding. A choir, a singer, a DJ. We had this whole dichotomy of sound to match the different elements of our reception. MC : Do you prefer bands or DJs at events? DT : Both. To me it’s a 50/50 split. It really depends on the event and what type of entertainment environment the client is looking for. MC : What qualities, in your opinion define a great DJ? DT : A DJ can make or break a party. The DJ can either miss the clients expectations of what could be a successful event and turn it into a failure or the DJ can elevate the party to something really amazing. I’ve seen some truly incredible DJs and some incredibly bad DJs. I think you’re at a juncture in your industry where it’s almost a 50/50 split, which a does a big disservice to the really good DJs. The bad ones are bringing your industry down. Not too long ago it was a pretty clear choice for most parties to get a DJ. Now, the client and the planner have to really question, do I want a band or a DJ? We also have to work harder to find the right DJ for the event. MC : What criteria do you use to hire a DJ for one of your events? DT : I find that when we’re hiring DJs that have great reputations, some are younger and some older. Some are new or they’ve been around for a while, there’s no real formula to it but the criteria or should I say “recipe” is always the same. The DJ who listens to client and the planner—I mean really


these old school event people about what we are comfortable with and what is appropriate. Events need to be more organic. MC : I’d like to switch topics to lighting. Architectural lighting has become pretty much standard at events. For some reason many venues don’t get it. We set room and the lighting temperature, then the banquet staff comes in and turns up the house lights full on. Do you have those issues? DT : I find lighting incredibly important. I don’t over use light, I just don’t focus it either. I don’t use much pinspotting. I would probably have a problem with that staff. I would go right back over and turn them down. MC : So do you ever get push back from the banquet staff or do they just say “David Tutera’s here, get out of the way?” listens—and works to understand what the client wants and just doesn’t go into autopilot.

DT : (laughing) They probably

MC : Great point. A good friend in our industry said, “A great DJ does a thousand different weddings. An average DJ does the same wedding a thousand times”. (Editor’s note: Big Daddy Sean McKee said that.) DT : Exactly. I’ll give you an example. We had a DJ at a big wedding last November. The bride and groom had a choreographed first dance to a specific version of a song. The DJ, for whatever reason, played the radio version. The bride stopped her first dance and really couldn’t continue. It ruined the whole night. The bride never really recovered from that to enjoy the rest of her reception. I think preparation as much as possible for a professional DJ is important, as well as reading the room. MC : What other qualities do you look for when hiring a DJ? DT : I request when I hire DJs that they speak as minimally as possible. I don’t need them to make multiple announcements or say the same things over and over. I hire them to spin great music. That style of overly talking is a little too old school for my personality. The DJ should help make the event seamless. They should be like an orchestra and underscore the event. Lay the soundtrack. MC : One of the challenges we face is old school venues that constantly want us to make announcements. Silly things about the coatroom, parked cars, headlights and last calls. How can we get around that? DT : I know, it’s not funny, but it is kind of funny. It’s almost like a skit for SNL. It really comes down to all of us educating



INSIDE THE INDUSTRY are a little scared of me. I’ve never had that problem. I think it just comes down to educating the venue as to what the client’s expectations are. MC : There’s been a lot of talk in our industry about technology replacing much of what DJs do. What effect do you think technology will have on the future of weddings? Especially with music? DT : I think technology will continue to make it easier for DJs. I don’t think it will replace you. In all my years doing this it’s always the same question with a bride: band or DJ? A lot of that has to do with what is the right choice for that particular event and budget. I’ll give you an example. If you’re planning a big wedding in Manhattan and you want a ten-piece band, that’s going to cost you $20k. A good DJ will be significantly cheaper. So I don’t think DJs are going away, but I do think you have to spend more time educating your clients about the difference of what you bring to the table. To me bands should be more worried than DJs. Not just from a budget standpoint, but because more couples are

planning their weddings instead of their parents helping them. Kids want DJs, the parents want bands. MC : Great point. What about Millennials? How they consume information and entertainment and their views on relationships are vastly different from baby boomers and Gen X’ers. Do you foresee a decrease in weddings or a major shift in the industry? DT : I don’t really see a decrease in weddings. I think the styles may change. What’s important is communicating with this generation how they want to be reached. MC : What tips would you give to DJs that want to work with you and do the type of high profile events you do? DT : I think in the upper echelon of events the consumer views a DJ as a budgetary savings. If you’re going to go in and try to book that event, you have to remind them of your services and convince them that a DJ just doesn’t equate to cheap, it also could mean something more spectacular. MC : The Wedding MBA is coming up October 2-4. Can you give me a little inside hint about your speech? DT : Sure. Some of it will focus on things we spoke about today. Mostly I will be focusing on how you create the heartbeat to your celebration. How to bring in the right vendors to work together. I’ll also focus on how you create the thread that tells the story of the wedding couple.

planners? DT : No, it’s open to anyone in the event industry that truly wants to excel. Book early though, there is limited seating. MC : David, thank you so much for today. It’s been an honor speaking with you. Will you be talking with guests in Vegas and hanging out? DT : My pleasure. I will definitely have some time to chat with people. Make sure you come by and say hi.

MC : Sounds great. I think vendors tend to focus on their individual roles at an event instead collaborating together to blow the client away. DT : Exactly, it’s comes down to the main planner and the client making sure the vendors collaborate before the event. MC : You have a big event coming up in January, right? DT : Yes. We are hosting another Event Planning Symposium in Santa Monica. ( MC : Is this event just for event 16


Michael Cordeiro is the owner of M.C. Entertainment, a small multi-op in Rhode Island. He has been on TLC’s Four Weddings, hosted an episode of Toddlers & Tiaras and has opened for many celebrities. He has a degree in Entertainment and Event Management from Johnson and Wales University.


What Has Really Changed About Marketing in the Last 100 Years? By Andy Slipher

So prolific is the role of technology in marketing that it has become, for some, an alluring distraction.





HBO’s innovative move would have a ripple effect that would spill over onto the landscape of marketing. Soon, satellite networks proliferated, and with them, marketers’ ability to target in ways that were never previously possible. Since that time, there has been so much technological innovation that marketers are faced with choices beyond measure. It can be blinding and bewildering for anyone charged with allocating marketing dollars on behalf of a business. And, this very issue is what has caused marketers to go awry. This is an age of unprecedented communications, and yet many still struggle to connect with one another. But this problem is not the real problem. The true problem is that too many marketers have failed to recognize that only one thing has changed in marketing in the past 100 years—technology. That’s it. Yes, you now have social media and tweets and followers and apps and branding and remarketing and analytics and focus groups and ROI and CRM and customer personas and digital and so on. It’s all certainly true. Yet what has enabled nearly every bit of it is technology. So prolific is the role of technology in marketing that it has become, for some, an alluring distraction. Panic and peer pressure set in, and organizations pursue the latest and the greatest technology-based marketing tactics without taking the time to thoughtfully consider a strategic approach. But as legendary philosopher and strategist, Sun Tzu once put it, “Tactics without strategy is the noise before defeat.” Marketing must ultimately get the product or service into the hands of the customer—a real person. Marketers need to realize that it is way too easy to distract ourselves (via technology) from what is centrally important in marketing—generating a sale to a real person and, hopefully, repeating that process again and again to her or his delight. Marketing strategy is not so much about a plan, but a system. Build your marketing (including the sale) around a strategically-based, customer-centric system, then technology becomes a true and valuable tool, and not a distraction. If you want to plan your marketing communications on a more strategic level and with a more integrated and seamless approach, consider the following methods and means to do so:


n 1975, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) issued a largely overlooked ruling that allowed earth-orbiting antennas—satellites—to be used for broadcasting television over large areas. Around that same time, a little-known regional broadcasting network called Home Box Office (HBO) took notice, and decided to use the FCC’s landmark decision to begin distributing its own programming via satellite.

Full-on marketing guidance means someone asking the right questions and enabling you to think critically about your industry, business, customers, competition, brand and marketing activities. A strategic marketing plan answers both, “What are we trying to do?” and “How are we going to achieve it?” in a thorough, resolute way that doesn’t miss a lick (broad-to-specific). It facilitates a systematic way of measurably and methodically moving your business’s overall marketing activities from point A to point B. Marketers love to talk branding these days, but few truly understand what a brand is. At its core, a brand is simply a (strong) promise. Everything after that is embodying the promise or not. A brand plan helps an organization answer the why’s and how’s of their brand in a way that actively demonstrates its value.

BRAND LANDSCAPE A collaborative document and process that combines visual (graphic, photographic) and distilled conceptual elements (written) to succinctly express what a particular brand is, and what it is not, to a broader internal audience. At its core, it’s a reference and training document. It serves to familiarize an organization’s management on the concept of their own brand, so that they themselves can more consistently demonstrate and articulate it to others.

VISION Your organization needs to aspire to something greater in order for its marketing to become something that inspires others. Sometimes there is no unifying or inspiring vision—an expression of what an organization aspires to reach or become in the next five to ten years. Other times, a vision reads as flat, academic or long-winded. A good vision statement isn’t fluff. Rather, it helps all stakeholders reach for something higher.

PUBLIC OUTREACH STRATEGY Address and formalize a communications approach for the public-at-large. This does not necessarily mean customers. Rather, it’s about respecting and interfacing with the general public as influencers, opinion holders, social activists and supporters of personal, political or economic interests. This type of strategy addresses a need for responding to criticism, opposing or competing points of view. Its purpose is to build and demonstrate credibility and to authentically communicate it. In conclusion, plan your marketing. Don’t be led by technology, or allow it to distract and overwhelm you. Know who you are, what you want from your marketing and how you’re going to achieve it. Only then will technology become a navigable means to achieve your goals.

Andy Slipher is founder of Slipher Marketing, a consultancy where strategy comes first, followed by tangible marketing results. He is an accomplished strategist, interim CMO, speaker and writer on marketing strategy. He is marketing segment lecturer for SMU’s accredited Bank Operations Institute for professional bankers, and for the Independent Bankers Association of Texas (IBAT). Andy’s forthcoming book is The Big How: Where Strategy Meets Success. For more information, visit




Lyle Lovett & GringoFriendly Spanish Dance Songs By Staci Nichols


nce in college, I met a Kardashian-esque LA princess. She said, “You like country music? So, like, Lyle Lovett, right?” I thought to myself, “Who the hell is Lyle Lovett? I bet the only country song she knows is “Achy Breaky Heart”...sigh.” I told her, “No, more like Garth Brooks,” who she’d never heard of. The extent of her knowledge about country music had come from what she’d read about Julia Roberts’ ex-husband in Us Weekly. After I presented at the 2017 Wedding MBA, and had mentioned my “magic pin” -“34 Gringo-Friendly Spanish Dance Songs for an Intercultural Mexican Wedding,” -- I realized many of us gringo DJs feel like this lady when it comes to Spanish music. We are pretty sure that at a Mexican wedding, we’re going to do the equivalent of playing Lyle Lovett at a country wedding. I brought up the pin to help teach Pinterest marketing, but, after my presentation, I was bombarded by gringo DJs who needed help with Spanish music. For starters, it’s important to study which genres of Spanish music originate in which countries. If you play banda at a Puerto Rican event, and you’ll get booed 20


off stage. My specific area of expertise is with Mexican music since I lived in Mexico for seven years; so this article will focus on Mexican weddings. But do familiarize yourself with the origins of cumbias, banda, salsa, merengue, reggaeton, rock en español, zapateados, norteños, bachata, mariachi, boleros, rancheras, corridos, duranguenze, and tribal. Based on what I heard from DJs, I talked to, we are playing a lot of reggaeton, salsa, and merengue at Mexican weddings because they strike us as good dancing tunes. Unfortunately, when I DJ’d alongside a Mexican DJ the first year-and-a-half of my DJ career, at almost exclusively Mexican events, I never heard him play “Gasolina” once...nor did I ever hear anyone request it (again, reggaeton is from Puerto Rico). To be honest, I have more gringos requesting reggaeton than Mexicans. (Likewise I have never heard a Spanish-speaking client request songs like “No Hay Nadie Como Tu” by Calle 13 or “Me Gustas Tu” by Mano Chao—these songs are

the Payaso de Rodeo line dance. Another question I heard frequently was how do I “keep up” on what’s hot with Spanish music. The answer is: I really don’t. Why? Because secondgeneration Chicano millennials getting married today do NOT listen to Mexican music (9 times out of 10). My clients frequently don’t even know the difference between mariachi and boleros. They say, “Staci, we need you to know the music our parents and tios will want to dance to because we don’t even know.” The only Spanish music these guys recognize is what they heard their parents listening to when they were growing up. Yes, their parents may appreciate you playing what’s hot on the local Spanish radio station, but it really isn’t crucial. Parents liking “oldies but goodies” is fairly universal. I encourage you to google “gringofriendly Mexican wedding songs,” and check out my playlist. It’s not just a list of songs, but it walks you through my entire wedding dancing recipe. ¡Disfrútalo!

DJ Staci Nichols is based in San Diego and specializes in spinning “country fusion,” Latin/Spanish, and mainstream music. Her know-how has appeared in San Diego Style Weddings, Offbeat Bride, Wedding Planner Magazine, and Book More Brides. She offers consulting at or check out her DJ biz at IG/ FB/Pinterest/Twitter: SanDiegoDJStaci

gringo Spanish music.) I understand we feel semi-comfortable around merengue, salsa, and reggaeton (thanks, Pitbull), but that is not what you will hear at a Mexican event. You’re going to have to leave your comfort zone and play some music that, to you, may not seem danceable; I’m talking about cumbias (and some banda). Cumbias are the majority of the music you will hear played at a Mexican event. Yes, “Suavemente” is likely to happen with 3-4 salsa, bachata, and merengue songs; however, the bulk of the music will be cumbias. Less Americanized crowds will want some banda (and possibly zapateados). Familiarize yourself with Sonora Dinamita, Vicente Fernandez, Banda el Recodo, and




Appearance vs. Protection By Stu Chisholm


ne of the facts of life for a busy mobile DJ is the need for good protection for our gear. Just last weekend while oofing my Rock-N-Roller up the ramp of my truck in the rain, one of the wheels slipped over the edge and I dumped the entire load on the pavement roughly two feet below. If it hadn’t been for the tough road cases I had my amp and other gear tucked inside, it would’ve spelled disaster. Shock (such as that), rain, direct sunlight, dust and other equipment killers are an inescapable part of mobile DJ reality. CONFUSING PROTECTION FOR PRESENTATION (AND VICE-VERSA) Accepting this fact, equipment manufacturers such as Gator, Odyssey, Grundorf, Anvil and others have met our needs with an amazing array of cases designed for just about anything we’re

how your rig looks on-stage, because it will get beat up. That is as it should be; your cases take the abuse so that your gear doesn’t. The approach some DJs have taken is to hide that ugly case behind a façade, which of course adds even more weight and work (and another case)! Naturally, at one point or another, clients and guests are going to walk around to the business end of our rigs anyway, so who’s foolin’ who? As is my habit, I took a different approach. My vision was a console case that looked like a quality piece of furniture, at home in the most formal of settings. Like a concert grand piano, or a nice, polished bar, my gear would be housed in a custom-built console with discreet airflow and cable management pathways, with all the “guts” concealed. Resting on a keyboard stand, this gives me the option of carrying several tablecloths of various colors, so that I can match any room décor or color scheme, and drape it over the stand, thus hiding power and signal cables. The console is beautiful, and while functional, looks are given equal priority. This is where protection is now required, the only way that having a case over a case makes sense! The outer

+ likely to carry. In their unending effort to attract our dollars, however, they have combined form with function, making cases that also serve as work stations. This allows us to simply pop open (or slide) a cover or two, hook up to electricity and we’re off and running! Ideal, right? Well…not so fast. When I was redesigning and upgrading my playback systems, I noticed that the entire industry seemed to be pushing this trend. I also noted that some DJs on numerous forums expressed concern that their road cases would end up looking bad over time, prompting serious conversations about cases for cases! Yes, they were actually talking about putting a bag or case around an already heavy (duty) road case! This isn’t a bad idea, it’s just the wrong approach.

case takes the abuses and “road rash,” while the inner console attractively houses the gear and allows ergonomic access to help make our job easier.


This last point is the toughest one, as few manufacturers are thinking along these lines. It is fairly easy to find a furniture builder, handyman or other artisan to make a beautiful console, but it is going to cost you a bit more money than something purchased off the shelf. Even harder, if it is a non-standard size or shape, then finding a road case will be difficult at best. Custom suppliers and manufacturers seem to be a tiny minority, especially if you’re looking for something like a soft-sided bag as opposed to a full flight case. To any manufacturers reading this, I would A BIT OF STAGECRAFT encourage you to consider these options. Even better, work with Another drawback of the current industry offerings is the utilitar- DJs to create console/outer case packages that would meet the ian look of most DJ gear, which has its genesis in band and AV demands of both presentation and protection in a matched flight cases and truck packing system. In the meantime, the containers. Sure it’s rugged, but rest of us must work with those Stu Chisholm had been collecting music since he was when you’re setting up for a craftsmen and women who about age 8 and began his DJ career in 1979. After a formal wedding or anniversary can whip-up what the industry stint at the Specs Howard School of Broadcast Arts, he party, having gear that looks will not. If you know any such studied the DJ arts with famous Michigan broadcaster like something from a Metallica artisans or companies, drop a Bill Henning, interned at Detroit's rock powerhouse, tour is less than desirable. Your line and I will feature them in a WRIF, and later added voiceover work and club gigs at protection has crossed the follow up! Until then, safe (and Detroit's best venues. He has shared his extensive DJ rubicon into presentation, and experience through MB columns, as a seminar speaker beautiful) spinnin’! if your protection does its job, and through his book, The Complete Disc Jockey: A Comprehensive Manual for the Professional DJ. then it will negatively impact




Stick It to the Crowd WITH AMERICAN AUDIO’S STK106W By Marc Andrews able. 500 watt amp on the 10” sub and a 250 watt amp covering the 6 2” drivers has this well put together. The only trouble I had with the STK-106Ws was their sensitivity to picking up feedback. The wireless microphone was noticeably touchy as compared with my usual 2-way powered speakers. Overall, the sound was fantastic. At a great price point of under $500 each, you can have a nice sounding, flexible sound system for events with around 100 people for around $1,000. The next step up is for this to become battery powered and then you are set for a ceremony just about anywhere.


have found a nearly perfect little sound system and it performed amazingly at a wedding last week. The wedding reception scene was a nice rusticstyle but modern nature lodge in a large park. So it involved around 100 people in the mood for a fun wedding reception party and not a lot of space to work in. My gear for the event consisted of a standard DJ rack with MacBook, DJ controller and mixer, two STK106Ws from American Audio and some basic lighting. The speaker system comes packaged up in a nice slip-on case with a pocket for cables. The unit comes apart with the stick portion of it coming out of the back of the sub, along with its mounting pole, which is adjustable for height. Simply plug an XLR cable into to the first port on the little mixer that is built into the sub, adjust the control on that part of the mixer and the master volume to reasonable levels, mount the stick on the base with the pole, hook up the cabling from the sub to the “stick,” plug it in, and you are set to go! While I didn’t use the mixer built into the base unit other than for a pass through, it offers a generous six channels with a basic reverb effect, XLR/line inputs, 1/4” and RCA inputs and an 1/8” plug for digital music players. Additionally for the wireless fanatic, it can take bluetooth input and also pair to another STK-106W unit for audio. ADJ only recommends a 6-foot distance between the speakers, so I don’t see a ton of usefulness in that feature. Under 50 pounds per side, well organized and transportMO BI LE BE AT.COM ▷ OCTOBER 2017



DJ Injury Report THE PHYSICAL STRESS OF MOBILE DJING By Mike “Dr. Frankenstand” Ryan “I’ve been spending at least an hour a day practicing, making mixes etc. but I have found that I’m really limited in the amount of practice I can actually do. After one or two hours of playing I start to get a really painful stiffness in my neck, which slowly worsens to the point of having to stop for the day -- very aggravating! I’ve heard of people complaining about this before, and it’s not surprising really, as DJs are often in a hunched over position (i.e. head down looking at decks) and I find the unstoppable head-bopping that keeps me in time only aggravates it.” - Marzipanman “I have not been injured “on the job” per se, but I think my recent meniscus knee operation may have been due, in part, to standing for hours at a time while DJing at over a period of years. [Also] in an event planner group I’m a member of, there have DJ equipment reviewer DJ Brian Redd also suffered a stroke been discussions about the next-day “event hangover” and what leaving one side of his body partly disabled. Brian is a trooper to do to avoid it. “ -Bill Goode and still DJs (I made him a custom pair speaker stands that are “Not on the job but after. Both hamstrings locked up on me shorter to help him lift his speakers onto the stands) after I helped set up a show. Since then I try to drink lots of water, Obviously, there are right and wrong ways to lift DJ eat bananas and take calcium, magnesium and zinc suppleequipment. (Disclaimer: I AM NOT A REAL DOCTOR so consult ments. I found some “leg cramp” pills with active ingredients of your chiropractor or trainer.) I would just say try to focus on your Acacia Gum and Lactose, manufactured by Hylands, Inc. actually legs when doing heavy lifting. And as I age I consider all of my DJ works really fast.” - Mark Evans equipment heavy, LOL. Also because I often get leg cramps after “I too get leg cramps all the time. Welcome to the club. And a hard night’s work, I have been searching for the best potassium I’ve had two hernias probably job-related. Once while loading “medicine,” ranging from bananas to pomegranate juice to after an event, I fell down a steep set of stairs at a Burbank, coconut milk/juice to “Hyland’s Leg Cramps” pills, which seem to California hotel and broke my foot. I actually sued the hotel and work the best and only cost around $5. won because they lacked proper lighting. I didn’t get a ton of The worst injury I ever received was from kids! I was DJing money, just enough to pay the medical bills. (By the way, there an outside school event when I thought it would be fun to let was no elevator access for the staff; stairs were the only way in the kids make shout-outs in my microphone as they returned and out).” - Scott Favor, The Game Master to class. (I can hear the groans) bad idea -- really bad! I caught “Be aware that poor-quality sound can give you that “postabsolutely the worst cold in my life! It pays to have a supply of gig” short-term tinnitus that signals hearing damage just as easily windsocks to throw away after being use by young guests ...and as a great PA system skillfully driven to high volumes...good DJ don’t let kids use your mike. headphones won’t only help you to be a better DJ, but will help Many people fail to realize the physical demands of DJing. you to preserve your hearing. One thing your doctor will tell you Loading and unloading your equipment. setting up your is that by the time you notice it, it’s too late.” - Phil Morse, founder equipment, breaking down your equipment at the end of the of Digital DJ Tips. event and loading it back into your vehicle again and then Often I find myself vulnerable to injuries IF I rush whatever it unloading it all back home -- it’s like being a furniture mover. is I’m doing. There’s an old military saying that applies here “slow And since the work is not a daily occuris smooth and smooth is fast.” Plus I rence I tend to forget how much work like steel toed shoes. it is and I always feel it the next day. The next time someone says Mike Ryan started out writing for Some DJs refer to that as the “event DJing is an easy job you might use news radio, and has been a DJ in hangover.” some of these examples. There are the SoCal radio market on KGB and actual physical hazards to being a KSDS. He mobiles as Mike on the DJ WAR STORIES Mike. He is also the inventor/owner Mobile DJ and I have a few scars to of Frankenstand Powered Speaker In the following, mobile entertainers prove it. Stands. share injuries they received directly or indirectly from DJing...


fter an evening of DJing at the Corvette Diner in San Diego, Ed Bia was walking out to his car and tripped on a parking block, falling and painfully shattering his wrist. At the same restaurant another jock, DJ Daryl, during a Halloween weekend, decided to dance like Michael Jackson in front of the restaurant’s patrons. All of a sudden one of his shoulders popped out of its socket. It was so painful he fell to his knees writhing in pain. EMTs were called and, in front of the whole dining area, took Daryl out on a stretcher. (I recently heard Daryl had a stroke – hang in there Daryl.)



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