How do you deal with a potential client who wants a price quote right away?

MIXMASTERMACHOM

DJ Extraordinaire
Oct 16, 2011
1,151
60
Sometimes I run across a potential client who wants a price quote off the top. They give you a little bit of info about an event that they are looking to book a DJ. Do you give them a price quote off the top or do like to speak to them before giving a price quote?

Personally I like to communicate with a potential client first to find out as much as I can about the event before giving a price quote. I like to know besides the music side of things what else are they looking for the DJ to provide? Also the location of the event can make a big difference in a price quote.

One other thing is I like to get a feel for the potential client to see if I want to be bothered with even doing the event. The thing for me is I don't really care to give a potential client a starting price because they may think that is the price you will be willing to do the event and if you give them a higher price quote they will think you're gouging them. In other words in their minds they will be stuck on the starting price.
 

steve149

Veni, Vidi, Lusi
Staff member
Sep 26, 2011
33,817
Prospect, CT
Mix, as Taso spelled out, the vast majority of what we do is pretty consistent, and it's not hard to peg a starting price (along with proper restrictions) for a "typical" event ... "For a 4 hour party within a 30 mile radius with our base system, our pricing starts at $300. Optional services vary and I'd be glad to work up a quote for you". Or say $500 and work down if your clients prefer to bargain.
 

wifedj

DJ Extraordinaire
Mar 20, 2008
1,618
How do you deal with a potential client who wants a price quote right away?

Sometimes I run across a potential client who wants a price quote off the top. They give you a little bit of info about an event that they are looking to book a DJ.
In the spirit of cooperation and ignoring my disbelief of the alleged circumstance, I submit the following answers to the questions that have been re-re-re-reasked:

Do you give them a price quote off the top...
I cannot quote reliable, complete fees without information I've yet to obtain.

If pressed, I respond with an absrud fee range, "My fees range from $0 to $10,000". Doing that requires them to ask start asking questions and the dialogue has begun.

]Do you...like to speak to them before giving a price quote?
I love to talk with people.

Regarding the other statements subject to address:
One other thing is I like to get a feel for the potential client...
I reject the allegation of any intuitive abilities/capacities.

to see if I want to be bothered with even doing the event.
"bothered"...
37005
The thing for me is I don't really care...
..as could be logically assumed.

...
37007
 

Valerie Hicks

Moderator
Staff member
I don't even understand how this is a question. A prospect wants a price you give them a price. It's not hard at all.
"generally you can expect to pay $100-200 for that type of event, do you have a date set?" then you get the ball rolling. If I give them a price and it's way out of their budget, the conversation will end shortly after. If it's not a 'no' we'll check a date, talk about location, maybe number of guests, and gradually more into what details they are looking for (whether they realize it or not...that's what I'm there for is to help them make decisions and learn what's available)
 

Scott Hanna

DJ Extraordinaire
Oct 25, 2006
6,112
53
Cleveland, OH
www.djincleveland.com
Like reading a crowd, I think it's important to able to read a client, even over the phone.

I ask questions that most likely affect the price.

"Would you mind if I ask you a few questions so I could give you a detailed quote?" Is a typical starting question if they ask for a price right away.

If they are just looking for ballpark figures at this point, I give it to them. I usually give them a typical price. If I am giving them a starting price, I make sure they understand that.
 

djtaso

DJ Extraordinaire
Apr 4, 2017
4,660
32
NJ
www.djtaso.com
It’s an old school mentality of thinking certain clients you can quote one number vs another client who you’ll have to charge less right away cause they sound price conscious, or you think you can get more bc the venue is more upscale. In a sense it’s profiling. Many djs here used to do it up here since there’s such a wide range of budgets and clients, but most of that has stopped as we’ve shifted to more online communication and with djs posting pricing online.
 

sawdust123

DJ Extraordinaire
Nov 10, 2006
299
56
Ventura County, CA
I dealt with this a lot with my old job. People tend to ask about price up front because they are either price sensitive or they have no idea what else to ask about. Either way, I quote a realistic range (my prices ranges from X to Y depending on the needs of the event). This is not secret information that I need to protect and avoiding a direct question will never endear me to the prospect. This type of answer begets two reactions:

1) Oh wow, that is way too expensive.

2) What kind of things does it depend on? (or some other question regarding my services)

The first answer tells me this person is not a qualified prospect. If my lowest price is too high for them, I don't want them as a client. I am not going to negotiate below my lowest rate. At this point I can continue the conversation any way I want or not continue it at all. There is nothing to lose. Chances are that I will express curiosity as to how they set their price expectations. I may offer some advice (e.g. caveats to watch for with cheap DJs) but I will not suggest that I will negotiate any lower.

The 2nd response tells me I am not too expensive and that are ready to learn more. They have just taken the first step in qualifying themselves. It is possible after further discussions I give a firmer price at the top end of my range that is too expensive for them. Not everyone will pay what I want. Or, maybe I'm just not convincing enough and they tell me I'm too expensive because it is a less personal reason than saying "you just don't feel right for us." It really doesn't matter, at least I didn't waste my time engaging with someone who would never pay my lowest rate.
 

Proformance

DJ Extraordinaire
Nov 6, 2006
3,331
I think we start by having the right perspective and using honest language to represent a given situation.

A "client" is someone with whom you have an existing and perhaps long term relationship. A person who contacts you having received a recommendation from a client is called a "referral." A person who contacts you in response to your advertising is a "prospect."

Any one of these people may want and need an immediate price quote, and each requires a different kind of response.
 

Bob Kreider

DJ Extraordinaire
Feb 12, 2016
117
Kennewick WA
It's not really all that difficult to set a rate that is "close enough" to fit pretty much any event. And that's what I have done. So the first thing I tell a potential inquiry is the price and follow up with what I provide. After 40 years and around 8000 events I can easily predict an amicable cost without much guessing. I charge the same for a wedding as I do for a school dance as I do for a corporate party.

The sound system and lighting are equal and I always bring out enough equipment to do a larger audience, plus I quote with no time limits, so really its quite simple to quote in advance of knowing much.
 

MIXMASTERMACHOM

DJ Extraordinaire
Oct 16, 2011
1,151
60
A friend who is helping in the park told me what he does. He said he quotes a price a little bit above the price he really wants and let them negotiate down to the price he wants them to pay. I thought that was a good idea because if they agree to the first price quote then you're getting more than what you originally wanted.
 

djtaso

DJ Extraordinaire
Apr 4, 2017
4,660
32
NJ
www.djtaso.com
A friend who is helping in the park told me what he does. He said he quotes a price a little bit above the price he really wants and let them negotiate down to the price he wants them to pay. I thought that was a good idea because if they agree to the first price quote then you're getting more than what you originally wanted.
And that’s an old school way of doing it. It doesn’t fly much anymore as people want to see actual pricing ahead of time and in a more formal manner. You can’t just throw a number of what you feel you want for a certain event. But he’s probably not booking weddings or any events that pay over $750