Getting hired in Second Life has evolved as the world has grown. When it was a much smaller community, word of mouth was the only way to get hired for an event. As the world has grown and the tools improved it requires a more work, but the method is the same. As a DJ, you always want others telling their friends about your events. There’s plenty of opportunity to do this, a new club is built every week providing a lot of opportunity and practice. In a few weeks you may be searching for another venue to request your services. The best way to maintain a steady flow of events within Second Life is by generating word of mouth, even if your hired for an event through word of mouth.
Word of Mouth
The best way to be hired for an event is by word of mouth. There are plenty of non-club based events, such as weddings or private parties, that require the services of a DJ. This is how I am hired for a majority of my performances, even for large corporations. Nothing is better than a friend vouching for you as a quality DJ. The hard part is not making your friend look foolish.
The trick about word of mouth, is generating it. For unknown, beginning DJ’s this is the most important aspect in obtaining your next gig.
Offer A Free Gig
Becoming recognized is hard in Second Life, it seems everyone wants to be a DJ. Club owners have shared their frustrations concerning hiring quality DJ’s for their events. Often event owners overpay for a low quality result and restart the process for seeking a new DJ. In the past, I would frequent offer my services for free for an event, usually for an hour. This acted as my demo, and provided a way to generate word of mouth to event attendees, managers and hosts. If they liked me, they would tell their friends, tell other managers of clubs they worked, or were eager to join my event group. Additionally, if the club owner or manager was pleased with my hour performance, they were eager to hire me for a reoccurring event at their venue. Even if your not offered a slot, you’ve put your name out there for the world to hear.
Create Your Own Performance Area
The same way a clothing designer or pose maker requires store space, I believe a DJ requires their own performance space. While many can read this as “create your own lounge/club”, it’s not necessary. you can create a loft, a landfill, a stadium, but some place where you feel comfortable hosting your own. Doing this requires money for land rental or land-tier but it has some long term benefits. In your space, you are in charge, you can obtain sponsorships or sell advertisement for events, and you can perform at your own schedule. This is especially helpful when many events aren’t occurring in Second Life. Another benefit is your creating your own word of mouth, in your own space. Often times I find people hanging out in my performance space when not utilized. They knew who I was from the space alone and began to attend events. This methods takes some time to develop. In the long term, it provides a great avenue for future paying events. You can also invite potential clients to one of your own event.
Search the Classifieds and Places
While the classifieds search cannot search for the term “DJ” (too short of a word), searching for “DJ Club”, “DJ Wanted”, or “DJ Hire” provides enough hits to clubs and venues that you can approach with your services. I would also search classifieds for newly opened clubs, their attendance may be low, but they are always seeking new DJ’s. Performing the same search in places can provide the same results.
Create a Classified Ad
I’ve never had much success with classified advertisements, but they don’t hurt. There are not many classified for DJ’s, and most of them run between 50 – 250 $L (at the time of this writing the highest classified ad for DJ services was $L 1000.) The advantage of classifieds right now is regardless of the price, your advertisement will appear on the first page.
Post on the Forms
The Second Life forums has always been hit or miss, but a lot of eyes look at it. Having a forum post detailing your services does not hurt at all.
There are many Second Life specific social networking sites, advertisement programs and groups that can be used to help generate leads to gigs. Some are very effective, others not so much. The most important aspect is to get your name out in the open, among a group of people who would either attend your events or refer you to those seeking DJ’s.
If you have found success through a method not mentioned above, feel free to share!
I joined the groups DJ World and DJs on Demand in SL and they always send out announcements for job openings and single gig requests for djs 🙂
how do you join the DJs on Demand on SL
Excellent Post Nexeus. I couldn't agree more with everything you've listed. What's cool about Second Life, is it's fun to try new ways to promote and get gigs… as long as it's not too time consuming or too costly, I would say YES to inexpensive adverts.
One initial thing that got the ball rolling for me, was in 2006, I posted an ad in the metaverse messenger where I offered to DJ any art show for free. The art galleries found out about me and began scooping me up, which meant I was playing for crowds, and getting my name and music out there.
Word of mouth is definitely the #1 most effective way to get more shows are get your name out there. Keep performing more and more, and that will snowball.
Offering to play for free (or in exchange for some sign trades or cross-help) always works well too. I've ALWAYS said to any performer that if they like a location ( a non music or non club location ), ask the owner to perform for them. They'll usually say yes… why wouldn't they? Especially any mall owner, they're happy to have shows if they're free.
I've set up and managed the "DJs and Clubs Hub" for 3 years now in SL. SLURL: http://slurl.com/secondlife/Amydria/39/131/525
This location is designed to connect DJs with clubs and events and it's also a way for clubs to find DJs and fans. (IM me and say "Nexeus" and I'll give you a free month for the sign… it's only $20L normally)
Inworld the "DJ" groups usually all permit DJs to post their info. A message in the DJ groups with a "hey, I'm available" with your DJ info is always cool. Meanwhile there's clubs always posting DJ job openings. The two DJ groups I run inworld are:
"Live Turntable DJs" (NOT the one with the apostrophe)
"Live DJ's" (WITH the apostrophe)
both groups have helped many djs connect with clubs.
Another way to get gigs:
Hang around the clubs and DJs you love. Support what you want to be involved in. Become part of the family. If you're hanging out at the places you love and want to DJ at, usually the staff would be glad to have you spin on the decks.
Hmm. I'm likin' those suggestions. I typically have more gigs than I can keep up with, and I did mine pretty much via word-of-mouth. I work for several clubs, and as you mentioned, folks are always building new ones, so often I get solicitations based on owners having been to one of my shows at other clubs.
One thing you didn't mention is having a DJ fanclub. Before any event I play at any club I'm at (unless it's a private gig w/ closed attendence), I always send out an announcement to my group about where I'm gonna be to help promote the venue. This tends to help build a crowd, which club owners like, which makes ya more hireable. In that vein, I run as one part DJ service, one part marketing and advertising service. I've even drifted into full-service event planning at times.
As manager of dogglounge deep house music club in second life, I can tell you that DJ's usually take the wrong approach in trying to get hired.
1. First of all, be sure that you are adept at spinning the genre of music that the club is about. dogglounge is a deep house music club…you would be surprised at the DJ's that contact me that say they don't play deep house music usually but will *adapt* or dont play it at all yet wish to spin there…o.O 2. If a you are interested in spinning in any club, I would suggest spending some time there, getting to know the people, the vibe, and the feel of the music that is played rather then just showing up full of questions, like many do, and without having ever been in the club at all…wanting to spin.
Thanks for your article! I was searching for free classified advertising and classified related articles when I came across your website post on Google. This is exactly what I was looking for. Thanks for the share. I've saved this post for future reference 🙂 Nice comments – Best Wishes
Excellent information and post. I'm a DJ starting out. I love playing blues/rock music in SL and feel I'm at my best playing what I love. I've already joined some of the DJ groups mentioned and will place a small ad etc. Thanks again for such great input.