Q. Describe the most common types of jobs you do for your clients.
A. Ice Cold Entertainment has done literally thousands of jobs over nearly 20 years. We do virtually every type of party and we do it to perfection! We have entertainers that are the perfect choice for your affair whether its a wedding, bar/bat mitzvah, sweet 16/la quinceanera, anniversary, birthday party, prom/project graduation, corporate event/fund raiser, etc.
Q. Describe three recent jobs you've completed.
A. 2 highly successful proms and 1 equally successful wedding at: The Pleasantdale Chateau, West Orange, NJ - The Short Hills Hilton, Short Hills, NJ - The Crystal Plaza, Livingston, NJ
Q. What advice do you have for a customer looking to hire a provider like you?
A. Ask questions. i.e. What experience does the entertainer have? Are they insured? (Do you REALLY want to be sued if a DJ's speaker falls on one of your guest's head during an event?) Are they affiliated with reputable companies and/or organizations? Do they have professional equipment as well as equally professional back up equipment? Do they have reliable, well maintained transportation? (You don't want your DJ breaking down en route to your affair because he's driving his '95 hatchback with 400K miles on it!) Also give some detailed information about your event. (This will help give an accurate quote.) Above all else, be realistic with your budget. A true professional is not going to accept $500 or less to provide quality entertainment at any affair. Do you really want to trust the success of a "once in a lifetime affair" to an amateur with substandard equipment? (Many of these bargain basement DJ's use equipment which in NOT built for the rigors of transporting. How would you like to have your DJ's system break down 5 minutes into your event without any back up systems? What does that mean? It means your party is over!) What if your DJ does not even show up? Don't think it can happen? I've heard it happen MANY times! For your own sake people, spend the extra money and ensure the success of your affair!
Q. If you were a customer, what do you wish you knew about your trade? Any inside secrets to share?
A. Many people think that the DJ business is made up of people in formal wear who show up and play music for 4-5 hours and nothing else. This is a fallacy. The true professional entertainer probably spends 10 or more hours in addition to the event between initial meetings with the customer, gathering of information, proposing ideas, preparing music and paperwork, preparing the necessary equipment, travel, assembling the appropriate staff, load in/out, set up/break down, and any number of other things that go into providing the best entertainment experience. The true professional is going to own a minimum of $50,000 in professional equipment, legally obtained music, and dependable transportation. Considering costs such as insurance, equipment/vehicle maintenance, music subscriptions, paying for websites, clothing, and any number of misc. items necessary to properly run a legitimate company, a quality company may have $20K or more in annual expenses. That company is NOT going to offer event services for less than $500. If you see anyone offering ANY kind of service in that price range I would be VERY careful before you hire a substandard company just to save a few dollars. Afterall, the ultimate success (or lack thereof) is going to depend on your entertainment. Do you really want to risk ruining a "once in a lifetime" event by hiring a bargain basement entertainer? I'm often asked by customers what is the difference between the pro and the kid down the block who will DJ their party for $300 or less? Afterall, they only need the DJ to play music for 4-5 hours and nothing else that is fancy. Well would that customer be happy if the DJ doesn't show up? You'd be surprised how often that happens. How about if he shows up and his substandard equipment malfunctions and he doesn't have a backup? Your party is over. What if he is dressed inappropriately, or gets drunk and uses foul language, or plays music with vulgar lyrics, or doesn't even have the music that the customer requested, etc.? Don't kid yourself if you think this won't happen to you! All of this happens with frightening frequency. More and more banquet halls are also requiring DJ companies to carry liability insurance. How likely is it that the "kid down the street" is going to have business insurance? BTW - Banquet halls LOVE DJ companies that don't have insurance since they will just require that you pay extra for it or your DJ won't be allowed in the doors. (Many times at the cost of several hundred dollars for your event.) Even if your facility does not require insurance, remember that YOU are the de-facto employer of the DJ during your event. If the sub-standard, uninsured DJ's speaker falls on one of your guest's head during your event, then you can be sued! I liken entertainment service to food. An exquisite filet mignon is going to cost more than the dollar menu at McDonalds. Do you really want the "big mac" for your DJ? It always shocks me to see how so many people have no problem spending hundreds if not thousands of dollars on items such as: flowers, invitations, table settings, and other items that, while are a nice touch to an event, really aren't anywhere near as essential to the success of an event as the entertainment. If your DJ is awful or doesn't even show up do you think that people will be talking about how great the event was because of how beautiful the flowers were? Of course not. If people don't have a good time, dance, etc. the event is going to be a major disappointment. And yet so many people are willing to spend more on their floral arrangements than on their entertainment!
Q. What important information should buyers have thought through before seeking you out?
A. I would advise that buyers have a well thought out budget for their entertainment and that they post that budget. As I have said before I am networked in with a dozen or more of the area's top entertainment companies and NONE of them supply a DJ entertainment package for less than $500 for a small event. So if your budget is less than that you really should either reconsider your budget or realize that the only "DJ" that you are going to get in that price range is someone in the amateur ranks. This means an individual with little experience, less than professional equipment which is much more likely to break down, little (if any) back up equipment, music with explicit lyrics, and no insurance which can put you in a bad situation.
Q. Why does your work stand out from others who do what you do?
A. We do a HUGE amount of planning with our customers. We go over every aspect of your event in the planning stages so there are NO surprises and NO mistakes. We also put together a back up system for every portion of your event. (I.e. backup laptops, speakers, amplifiers, mixers, microphones, along with a CD AND ipod backup for all of the customer's requests!)
Q. What do you like most about your job?
A. I get paid to go to a party every week! :o)
Q. What questions do customers most commonly ask you? What's your answer?
A. The most common question is "How much do you charge for a party?" My answer is "I'd need to know a little more about the customer's needs to appropriately answer that question!" A 4 hour event where I'm providing ONLY music and nothing else for a small crowd is going to cost a LOT less than a 7 hour, upscale event for a crowd of 500+ guests complete with a $10K sound system, a $25K lighting and visual system, photobooth(s), photography, dancers, and an elaborate party favor package!
Q. What do you wish customers knew about you or your profession?
A. I wish people knew exactly how much work and expenses go into doing this job properly and professionally. There are so many amateurs in this business who have done a lot of damage to the quality and overall reputation of my profession over the past few years.
Q. How did you decide to get in your line of work?
A. I have performed in various bands from the time that I was in my mid-teens to present. I sing lead vocals so I was always comfortable being in front of a crowd with a microphone in hand hence the transition to the DJ business was very natural for me.
Q. Do you do any sort of continuing education to stay up on the latest developments in your field?
A. We are a member of both the National Association of Mobile Entertainers and the NJ DJ Association and attend meetings regularly where we exchange ideas and experiences as well as stay current on the latest cutting edge equipment and music. I also run several blogs and facebook "members only" pages where the same as above takes place. I regularly attend at least 2 DJ conventions per year as well to keep current.