Sinatra stamps

Question: I have a great business idea that’s totally new in my market. How do I know if it will work?

“My background is as a DJ in radio forever and a day and in the wedding biz also.  I’ve DJ’ed hundreds and hundreds of weddings and as I saw in a recent article the older DJ’s worrying about again out of the biz, I understand that.  It becomes harder to stay on top of what’s current.

My personal taste in music has reverted to something I really never listened to before: Frank, Dean, Ella.  Right now I’m starting the groundwork to launch my own DJ company and pitch, “Sinatra and Steak” nights to country clubs, upscale steak houses, resorts (follow the money.)

I would charge a lower fee (first appearance free) so restaurants could afford to book me on a recurring basis and then use leads from the appearances to book private parties at a higher rate???

Is this making sense?  I want to create a market where one doesn’t currently exist.”

Answer: Research and test your idea before investing heavily in a service that won’t sell.

Creating a market that doesn’t exist is extremely difficult to do, even if you have a billion dollar ad budget.  Just ask Coca Cola, Clairol and the inventor of rabbit jerky, whoever that was.

However, I LOVE that you’re taking your new musical passion into your work.  There just might be a more profitable way to do it.

Here’s what I’d do:

  1. Find out where there IS a market in your area.  You want to “follow the money” and perform for the country clubs and resorts with high-paying clients.  Who are they?
  2. Talk to and/or survey these types of venues to find out what they’re looking for in entertainment.  What do they do now?  Do they want to host more events for their guests?
  3. Find out what’s important to them and what their goals are.  Then you’ll discover whether there’s a market there or not.  You also might discover that the market wants Disco Nights or Country Ho-downs, not Sinatra.
  4. Find out if anyone is offering anything like this in your market.  Do you have any competition?
  5. Brainstorm other ways to use your personal taste in music as a strength in your business.  For instance, is there a market for weddings that want this type of music?  Could you compete with the high end clients who hire big band musicians, but want versions by the real performers?
  6. Talk to some couples and survey them about their musical tastes and preferences.  Is anyone interested in a big band vibe at their wedding?
  7. Once you find out what your market wants (and doesn’t want), test out an offer before spending $$$.  Create a compelling offer and present it to your most likely country clubs and see who bites.  You might approach the same couples you’ve interviewed with a Part 2 survey where you present your 3 best ideas and ask them what they think.

I don’t know your local market, but my gut says that Sinatra nights performed at country clubs and venues isn’t enough to build a sustainable business.  But specializing in this type of music for weddings and events…well, that has some potential, if your market has the demand for it.

Definitely do some research first and proceed with caution.

What do you think about this idea?