money jar

When we started out as brand new, rookie wedding DJs, we set our base price at $700. We picked the price our DJ Godfather and mentor was charging, mainly because we had no idea how much we were supposed to charge.

A month later we got a call from DJ Godfather. “I’m not sure I’m comfortable sending you referrals at that price,” he said.

The idea of being cut off from what was our #1 referral source at the time was terrifying. It was true that he had decades of experience and way more leads than he could book, while we had a few months of experience and no leads to speak of…except the ones he was sending us.


We didn’t drop our price, but we didn’t raise it, either. For years we were afraid to increase our price, even as our reputation grew and the leads came pouring in.

Until one day we met with a couple in our living room. We had perfect rapport and I was certain they were going to book us.

The groom leaned back, crossed his arms and said,

“Everything looks good. You guys seem great. So why are you so cheap?”

We vowed that would be the last time we’d ever get that question.

We’ve raised our price again and again over the years. As our rate approached $1,000, our DJ Godfather called us again. “No DJ is worth $1,000,” he said, because he wasn’t charging that much.

Guess what? We raised our price again. And again. Until our couples were paying an average of over $1,800.

Did our clients think we were worth that much? Absolutely! In post-wedding surveys, they told us we were worth MORE.

The Uncomfortably High Price

I’m going to make a bold statement:

If you’re not at least slightly uncomfortable with what you’re charging, it’s time to raise your price.

Why do I say this? Because almost all of us undervalue what we do, which means we’re not charging enough.

I’m including myself in “all of us,” by the way. It’s a work in progress. :)

Every time we’ve raised our price, my heart pounds. My legs go weak. Still do.

What if I’m not worth it?

Here are a few of the lame reasons we tell ourselves we can’t raise our prices:

  • “No one is going to pay that much for what I do.”
  • “They’re going to hire someone cheaper.”
  • “It’s not worth the price.”

It all boils down to FEAR and INSECURITY.

I’m not saying you should just raise your price and hope that you’re worth it. Raise your price and BE worth it.

We all suffer from insecurity and not valuing ourselves enough. It’s human nature to think that what you do is “easy” because you already know how to do it.

That’s just your brain playing tricks on you, telling you to play it safe.

Something really powerful happens when you raise your price to an uncomfortable level.

1. You feel tremendous pressure to be worth it.

2. You work harder, give more and exceed expectations. You stretch and improve.

3. You can choose to work only with your ideal clients and do the work you love because you can afford to take fewer jobs and make the same money, or even more.

Charging more makes you Harder. Better. Faster. Stronger.

Find Out What You’re Worth

If you’re scared to raise your price, try out this idea inspired by Sean D’Sousa of Psychotactics.

Create a brand new package at a higher price and put it out there. Just do it.

You’ll be shocked when someone goes for it, and you’ll know for a fact that you are worth the price because someone is paying it.

I once heard someone say, “Wanna know how much you’re really worth? Don’t show up for the wedding and see how much the couple sues you for.”

What do you think?

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Stephanie Padovani

Stephanie is a Hudson Valley wedding insider, blogger, writer, and wedding business coach. Want to book more weddings at higher prices? Quit dealing with price shoppers? Transform your wedding business so that it supports the life you really want? Look her up! They don't call her the Wedding Business Cheerleader for nothing. :)

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9 thoughts on “Why You Need to Raise Your Price Today”

  1. Chris Byars says:

    to figure out a great base price I look at the territory I’am in look at the time involved and the cost of equipment to be used to come up with a price for a wedding reception multiply that by 150 per hour and that is the cost so a reception is four hours that is 600 plus my prep time normally two to three hours that also includes gas insurance and drive time and set up time so total cost would be around one grand and that is how I break it down to a client and go from there to come up with the cost factors if they say to much, pick a smaller sound system no lights will save you some cash and so forth, that why I will not do a wedding without meeting the couple to understand were there coming from and what they want.

  2. Jared says:

    Great post! I’m raising my prices TODAY!

  3. Alan Berg says:

    Great post, Steph. I recently told one of my DJ clients to stop offering his lowest priced package. He’s barely making any money on it, he just wanted to show that he did more weddings every year. I told him that it feeds his ego but it doesn’t feed his family.

    None of my friends or clients have ever been upset after they raised their price, except for the fact that they didn’t do it sooner.

  4. Mark says:

    If your “scared” to raise your price. Do it on a date when your already booked. If you start double booking regularly, make your new higher price your regular price & keep going untill you find out what the market will bear.

  5. Steph, you are right on the money (pun intended!) The other often overlooked bonus of raising your prices is that you start to attract those who are highly committed to their wedding vision. They tend to be lower maintenance clients who ‘partner’ with you AND appreciate everything you do for their big day. Love that!

  6. Dave says:

    I’m a mechanic, and I struggle with the same issues. Your words are inspiring, “to exceed expectations”. This will be my goal from here on out. I don’t charge what the big shops do, and probably never will, but I will feel better about what I charge if I keep some of your advice in mind!

  7. Rosanne says:

    As soon as a client says to us, “Your prices are reasonable.” I know its time to put them up. In fact, I take that as my signal for a price rise. I never want to hear those words.

    1. Veronica says:


      You are so right! It happened to me just starting out. During one of my first wedding consultations, I had a Skype call with a bride. When I told her what we were offering and the investment, she was like “wow! that’s very reasonable!” I thought I had her almost ready to book, she said she needed to discuss it with her fiancé and she would call me back. I didn’t hear from her, I followed up and she said she couldn’t book me. I found out later on that she had hired another photographer in the area for a bigger package and at a higher price. Lesson learned, I’m not the cheap photographer anymore. My prices are not still where I want them to be, but I’m regularly revising them and bringing them up a notch.

  8. Kirsten says:

    Talk about the right place at the right time! I’ve been agonizing over this for weeks (months? years?) and this is really the push I needed to move forward! I’m scheduling a coffee date with myself to sit down and figure out the details.

    One of my biggest hurdles to overcome is to realize (even though I’m always telling myself) that I’m not my ideal client (or rather past-me, when I was planning my wedding).

    Great post! Insightful and something every small business owner (weddings or not) needs to really think about.

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