Kristin Wilson is a bubble bath indulger, ATV enthusiast and founder and for Our DJ Rocks and owner of Photobooth Rocks. Her passion for music and the stage began in the toddler pageant world. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Advertising and Public Relations from the Nicholson School of Communications at the University of Central Florida. Kristin has elevated Our DJ Rocks to be the only female multi-operation DJ company in Orlando and one of two in the US operating almost 400 events annually. Read our interview with the lovely Kristin below…
What motivated and inspired you to start your own business?
I am continually coming up with ideas. I had so many ideas for the business that I was working for, but because it was corporate, there was an approval process and lots of “no’s”. I love that with my business, as soon as I have an idea I can implement it within minutes and see the positive change!
Tell us about your business.
Our DJ Rocks is one of the two all-female DJ companies in the US based in Central Florida. Launched in 2010 as an independent DJ company, we quickly expanded to offer not only interactive DJ services, MC and event hosting, but also lighting decor and photo/video booth rentals.
- The Knot Best of Weddings – 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017
- Wedding Wire Couples Choice Award – 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017
- Best of Weddings; BOW Awards Orlando Wedding Magazine – 2014, 2015, 2016 (DJ + Photobooth)
- Young Innovators Award by Sensational Ceremonies + Perfect Wedding Guide
- Young Entrepreneur of the Year by Stiletto Woman Magazine
I believe my life itself is an accomplishment. Raised in a blue collar family, we all worked together to live day by day. That experience gave me the fire, passion and determination to create my own future. And so I did. Supporting myself through college, I was the first in my family to earn a degree. When I stepped into the corporate world, I conquered. With no experience and limited resources, I created multiple million dollar accounts. Those successes gave me the motivation to establish my independence.
Where is your business based?
What were the first few steps you took to get your business up and running?
I literally jumped! It’s been quite a journey since 2010 (and even since 2005 when I picked up a microphone for the first time). When I was in school, my answer was never “DJ” when they asked the question: what do you want to be when you grow up? However, through relationships I’ve built and through the art of music, I’ve found my passion, my purpose and path in life. Even more so now than even 5 years ago when this all began.
I will never forget how nervous I was that night in our apartment in 2010 when I hesitantly asked my husband if I could quit my corporate salary with benefits career to start Our DJ Rocks. (I was in LOVE with my job, by the way, so it was a very difficult decision). With no hesitation at all, I’m not even sure I got my sentence out, he said “SURE! Let’s go.” And through every decision we’ve had to make along the way, he has always been the solid rock and support and the one to move mountains when there was to path to get through.
I now have the opportunity to combine two things that I am completely in love with; creating the energy and celebration of love and milestone events, emceeing and inspiring women and entrepreneurs.
What has been the most effective way of raising awareness of your business and getting new customers?
Networking, whether that be in person, at local events or on social media.
What have been your biggest challenges so far?
There are many times that I’ve wanted to throw in the towel… quite a few times. Honestly, there have been SO many challenges so far, but there are two that have been the most momentous for change.
5 months after taking the leap and starting my own business I had a decision to make. My husband and I were coming back from a grocery store run and I noticed that the lock on our trailer where we keep all of my DJ equipment, CDs (yes I was still on CDs) and our photo booth was open. I ran as fast as I could over to it. It was like I was in another world. I looked inside the trailer to find it was completely empty. Wait, did I unload everything last night? It can’t be. This isn’t true. I fell to my knees. Someone had broken into it and stolen everything. At this point in time I didn’t have insurance because I couldn’t afford it since I was just starting it. We had over $10,000 worth of equipment stolen… not to mention it was all the equipment I owned. How in the world do I DJ now? But I made the decision to keep pushing.
5 years into my career, we were booming! We did somewhere around 300 events a year, I had 3 DJs and things were fabulous. All until one of my DJs got ill. To the point where she could no longer DJ. One day she came into work, and 2 days later she was gone and I never heard from her again. She was scheduled to DJ 70 weddings from that weekend up until the next year. I thought to myself, how in the WORLD am I going to replace her on all of these weddings?! And how in the world do I explain this to my couples?! For sure, this was the time to throw in the towel. But, the only thing I kept thinking of was the promise I made to our couples and that no matter what we were going to make that happen.
I’m sure we’ve all felt that throwing in the towel seems like the best idea at some point in time. But the team I have beside me have shown an unshakeable commitment and an unbreakable bond. We were meant to celebrate love and milestones through music and that has always guided us through making difficult decisions.
How did you overcome these challenges?
I have a manifesto and vision that I live by not only in my business but in my life. I surround myself with people who believe in the same things that I do. And in any situation when I’m conflicted on which way to decide, I go back to my manifesto and that has always lead me to the path I’m supposed to go.
We believe that music has a power that is beyond our control. We believe in a life that inspires us to laugh and feel emotions. We were meant to celebrate love and milestones through music and mustaches. We live for unplanned moments.
How do you keep motivated through difficult times?
MUSIC! I have a playlist for just about every situation, celebration and mood!
How do you distinguish yourself from your competitors?
We are one of the only two all-female DJ companies in the US. It’s tough to put into words what we’re like, but here goes. We are uber-organized, easy to work with and like a brief-case-on-a-rope-swing, professional-yet-fun. We are extremely positive, always smiling and tend to add to the energy and excitement for your celebration. We dress professionally and wear glitter shoes when we DJ, making sure to leave a little sparkle everywhere we go.
What is the best advice you have received recently?
You can do it all and everything you want, as long as you set boundaries and are purposeful.
What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs?
Surround yourself with like-minded people who you can lift you up and vice versa. Never burn a bridge and remember that your vibe attracts your tribe!
What is your favorite business tool or resource?
WOAH! So many business tools I’ve used over the years. Currently I am working on taking our business to the next level with social media and SEO, so I would have to say SEMrush and Google Webmasters Tools. I also really enjoy my day designer by Whitney English. There’s no possible way that in any season in business I am in, I could live day by day without it.
What social media outlets do you use? List them below.
What is a good article or book you have read recently?
“Traction: Get a Grip on Your Business” by Gino Wickman.
What are you currently learning about for your business or looking for help with?
What are your goals for the next few months and how are you striving to achieve them?
Get on the first page of google for my key word. I will achieve this by optimizing on page SEO, building backlinks and citations and blogging like a crazy woman!