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Friday, December 16, 2011

Above and Beyond: Wedding DJ Customer Service

Wedding and Special Event DJ's often feel like we're selling an intangible, if not, invisible service when prospective clients don't understand there are real differences among us. On the surface we can all appear similar to brides, grooms and event planners because we are offering mostly just a promise. That promise is to deliver a great entertainment experience. As the client you are really still taking a leap of faith when you believe in the promise.  I love this story because it is a tangible example of extraordinary customer service.  It all comes down to people pleasing. Keeping everyone happy at events is as important to me as it was finding this special song for my client's celebration.

I accomplished this feat of customer service using a little old fashion technology (vinyl records) to help Mother of the Bride, Cheryl, find an old song for her daughter Shelby's wedding day.  It was the song after which she had named her daughter. Finding special songs for clients has long been part of my services. In this case is was not for a dance or dedication but rather just something mom wanted played during the celebration because it had special meaning. Cheryl had exhausted every internet option before she called me. I actually love this challenge because it is a bit like a treasure hunt. I have found every elusive song on my own wish list so I love searching for others. I have many great sources for the absolute most obscure songs ever recorded.

Finding songs is a lot easier in this age of iTunes and digital music. However, as deep as the on-line music libraries have become they still don't have every song ever recorded. Such was the case with this song "Shelby" which was an album track from a rather obscure 1977 LP by Anthony Newley. This album titled "The Singer And His Songs" had long been out of print when Cheryl began her search.

Newley's 1977 album was not much of a commercial success

As soon as I got the call I knew my destination for this album was in Redwood City at The Record Man. This store sits right on the busy El Camino Real near the border of Menlo Park and has a fantastic selection of vinyl as well as CD's and video formats. It appears to be an old house with an upstairs annex you can only access from an outside staircase. Browsing is always an adventure because you must be able to read thousands of record jacket spines. They even have several six foot ladders laying on the floor in order for you to see the top rows.

The Record Man 1322 El Camino Real in Redwood City

The side staircase leading up to the annex with a plethora of old vinyl records

The Record Man claims to have over a million records in stock. Whether or not that's true they certainly had the one I needed and it wasn't the first find I made here. This place is a gold mine for the rare and hard-to-find.

I was the first on my block to be able to record compact discs long before before personal computers had the capability. I still cherish my Marantz CDR600 Professional Compact Disc Recorder. It is free standing and nicely transfers recordings from any analogue source like records or cassette tapes. The Anthony Newley album I found at The Record Man was still sealed so it yielded a nice clean copy. I  delivered a quality version of her song on CD to Cheryl just the day after she called.

When I tell this story I sometimes get blank stares or bewildered looks. The driving distance alone was nearly 150 miles and 3 hours to find this song for Cheryl. She had already hired me months ago for Shelby's wedding when she called for help finding the song. She also offered to pay me extra to solve their missing song mystery but I did it gladly without any additional charge. So you could say I went the extra mile for them. Or should I say the extra 150 miles.

What others may consider too big of a challenge I relished as a great opportunity to help personalize Shelby's reception. Some call this "above and beyond" and it occurred to me that I will now call my customer service posts that too. Stay tuned for my stories about how I love my clients and really love to exceed their expectations.


  1. See? It really IS "All About LOVE!!"

    Your clients are so fortunate to have you. I know they know that! There's no way that they couldn't.

  2. Thanks for your kind comments and continuous reminder that it is ALL About LOVE. The entire DJ industry is fortunate to have YOU.

  3. Carl, thank you very much for you kind review of our store. We too go the extra mile for our customers and therefore we appreciate you and what you do.
    Gary Saxon - The Record Man