If you want to close deals and get the gigs you are pitching for in the bag it can help to take a moment to define the possible concerns your target customers could be fixating on, either real or perceived. You can then position yourself, and your services, as the solution to these concerns which will go a very long way in convincing them to choose you for their special event.
It is said that sales is all about positioning your goods or services as the solution to the problems or concerns that your potential customers are faced with. If you can’t put your finger on these issues, you will be less able to demonstrate yourself as the solution to them effectively and you may end up wasting their time, as well as your own.
Looking at a situation through the eyes of another is not a straightforward exercise and, as an outsider looking in, it takes some practice to be able to think through all of the pressing problems or concerns that any potential customers could have on their mind. However, as luck would have it, this is where experience can come to the rescue and provide context to the situation.
Assume for a moment that you are pitching to a potential customer for a certain gig. The type of gig is not of huge importance – it could be a wedding, school prom, birthday party, or corporate event – the methodology is the same. In this situation, hopefully, you will be discussing a unique and one-off event where the stakes will be high for the customer to deliver a fantastic event for their guests that will be remembered (for the right reasons) for years to come. Some of their more pressing concerns regarding the provision of the entertainment at their perfect event could well be as follows:
Concern 1: DJ fails to turn up on the day / equipment breaks
Concern 2: DJ talks across the top of each track
Concern 3: DJ attempts to make themselves the centre of attention
Concern 4: DJ ignores all music genre suggestions and just plays what they want
Concern 5: DJ plays songs the client(s) specifically doesn’t want to hear
Concern 6: Guests become bored / don’t dance
Now that you have a rough framework to work from, you can set about steering the conversation towards these problems and concerns having taken the time to position your offer to directly counter them. This will assure the customer that you have got all these things well under control so they have no need to worry. By identifying the specific concerns that your potential customers might have and, more importantly, then letting them know that you have the ability to solve them quickly and efficiently you’ll help them to relax safe in the knowledge that everything will be in hand when they choose you to provide the entertainment for their event.
Solution 1: Focus on your 100% attendance record at every gig you’ve been booked for, as well as outlining worst-case cover options and all the backup kit you carry.
Solution 2: Be clear that you are not a radio DJ and reassure them that when playing any gig you find it best to let the music do the talking by mixing between tracks.
Solution 3: Remind them that making their event a success will be your focus and you are there to guarantee this, after all, this is in your best interests also as the customer will be more inclined to book you again next time or recommend you to their friends.
Solution 4: Outline how you can get music choices from them, and their guests, ahead of the event and that you will also be happy to take requests on the day.
Solution 5: Explain that you’ll be happy to take a DO NOT PLAY list from them and perhaps even go as far as outlining the process of ‘red-flagging’ undesired tracks ahead of the event on your DJ software so they understand you have a failsafe in place.
Solution 6: Talk them through your knowledge of the ebbs and flows of the event, especially important if you’re taking on the role of the MC, to show that you’ve got any potential ‘lulls’ in energy level well covered. (And, if possible, ask them to put the dancefloor in the same room as the bar!).
It’s important to remember that just because a solution to a particular problem or concern seems obvious from your perspective, that does not necessarily mean it is so for everyone involved. Be sure you put it beyond doubt and spell it out during the consultation stage when you are pitching for the gig. Of course, none of the solutions listed here as ways to resolve potential concerns of the customer are necessarily anything new, many could even be considered par for the course. The point is that by repurposing your existing experience and knowledge and putting yourself in the mind of your potential customers, you can position your services in a way that allows them to see clearly how you will deliver the event they are hoping to achieve and so put their minds at ease.
The same theory can be applied to your website and other promotional material. Include information that positions your service as the solution to the concerns that customers are likely to have when planning a party and booking a DJ. Try not to focus on what you are most proud of about your business, or that you think customers should be concerned about, but what is actually likely to be of importance to prospective clients (from their point of view).
Putting yourself in the mindset of the customer who is planning an event and viewing it through their eyes so you can focus on what their concerns and potential problems might be, will give you a great opportunity to assume the role of problem solver when talking the event through with them so you can get that booking in the bag.
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The full review can be found in Pro Mobile Issue 84, Pages 40-41.