The Photographer/DJ Relationship – Why it matters when choosing your Wedding Pro Team
Let me start out by saying that I get it. Planning a wedding is not easy. You’re expected to hire, arrange, and coordinate several different services that you’ve likely never had to hire before, and don’t even know the first questions to ask when vetting the different professionals you find.
Often times the first question one thinks of is, “How much do you charge/What is your rate?” That’s a perfectly acceptable question, and one that has to be answered at some point, but I’m going to give you something to consider today that will help alleviate the stress associated with finding your Wedding Pros, and we’re going to focus on the two most important professionals you will hire – your entertainment, and your documentarian. In most cases that’s your DJ & Photographer.
Why are they the most important professionals you will hire? One is responsible for crafting the experience that will greatly impact the memories you carry with you for the occasion, and the other will vividly document those memories so you can see, in detail, what that day looked like to help jog those memories. The memories, and the commitment you made on your wedding day are the two most valuable things you will have after the day is done, and no one I know ever wants to have mediocre or stressful memories on that day, and they don’t want their documentarian to miss anything either. This is what leads to the importance of the Photographer/DJ relationship.
These two professionals work as a team very closely to achieve the result described above. Therefore, coordination between them is key. SoundFire DJ, my company, has received high praise, and a solid reputation among the photography community for two major reasons:
- We communicate before, and during, an event to make sure we are coordinated.
- We don’t get in the way of each other’s work.
The benefit of line 1 is that it makes for a smoother event, pictures are not missed at key moments, and it takes that burden of coordination off of the couple so that they have less to stress about. One of the goals we hold high at SoundFire DJ is we want our couples to be able to enjoy their wedding without having to run their wedding. That’s why we offer coordination between their hired professionals, and act as a central hub for communication during their event.
Line 2 is important for a very simple reason – you want the person with the strongest skills completing the right tasks. You likely didn’t hire your DJ to be a photographer, and you didn’t hire your photographer to lead the reception and rock the party. We have heard the gripes of photographers who have worked with other DJs that are running around with a camera. Even if the DJ is saying they do this free, and give all the photos to the couple, it doesn’t give the couple added value because they have, more than likely, got in the way of the qualified professional that the couple hired to document their event with pictures.
So, how do you make sure that your photography/DJ team is going to run smoothly? This all boils down to who you’ve selected, and if they are actual professionals or hobbyists. Ask your pros if they’ve worked together before, or when you’ve chosen your DJ ask who they recommend for photographers (or vice versa). Since your DJ is largely responsible for working with you to create the timeline for the reception, ask your DJ how they will work with the other professionals you have hired. Do they communicate with them before the wedding? I’ve had lots of photographers tell us here at SoundFire DJ that they’ve never been contacted prior to the day of an event by a DJ, and we have heard overwhelmingly how much photographers appreciate being able to review the timeline and coordination of services in advance.
Simply put, hire competent, proactive professionals that you feel you can trust with the success of your event who will work well together. Anything less is a waste of your time, money, and memories.
Lastly, I’m going to leave you with a radical idea – do you want to really make life easier when wedding planning? Hire your DJ & Photographer first – before you have a venue. Want to know why? That’s for another article. To see more wedding pro tips, visit our website at www.soundfiredj.com, and look for our “Wedding Pro Tips” blog under our “Weddings” category. Thanks for reading, and thank you to Kristin Reuter Photography for inviting us to contribute to her blog!
At your service,