Springfield, MO

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SPEAK UP: Dennis Cox handles about 20 DJ and event bookings per month.
SPEAK UP: Dennis Cox handles about 20 DJ and event bookings per month.

Business Spotlight: A Voice to be Heard

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The voice of Dennis Cox is a big asset in his business.

As owner of Live Events Missouri LLC, Cox uses his voice in addition to customer service skills, market knowledge and informal partnerships to run the DJ and event services business.

“He’s got that smooth voice that broadcasts out really well and kind of draws people in,” says Angelia Oliver, a client as owner of Mrs. Oliver’s Weddings and Event Planning. “He gets people excited and having fun.”

Cox owns all of the equipment required to make a wedding or event run smoothly – video, sound and lighting. Working from his Springfield home, he also can emcee or rent event equipment, such as projectors, speakers, lettered light projections, soundboards and microphones.

Cox self-financed the $150,000 to get the business up and running in 2015 and he generated $90,000 in revenue in his second year.

His DJ experience started young. Cox began playing for a local church in high school, and he fell in love with it. From there, he worked in the live event industry, spinning at concerts and corporate occasions before deciding to go out on his own. He says those experiences spiraled into the start of his own company.

“I worked for several of the largest DJ companies in the area over the years and I picked up knowledge from each of those,” Cox says of the undisclosed companies. “I put it all together in my own style and I made a career of it.”

With about 20 event bookings per month, Live Events Missouri has received multiple awards from national wedding magazines. He’s been in The Knot’s Best of Weddings the last two years and was in the Couple’s Choice by Wedding Wire this year.

Customer service is king, Cox says.

“We do not keep an 8-to-5 schedule. All of our contact information,” Cox says, “forwards directly to my personal cellphone. So if a bride has an issue at 2 in the morning, I tell her, ‘Call. Don’t lose sleep; don’t worry about it, just call. We’ll set your mind at ease; everything will be OK.’”

Lindsay Murphy was one of the first brides to book with Live Events. Murphy hired Cox for roughly $550 to DJ her January 2016 wedding.

“It can be very easy to go overboard as a wedding DJ,” says Murphy, who works as a Shelter Insurance agent. “Some try too hard. It’s very natural and easy for him.”

Since Lindsay and Clay Murphy’s wedding, Cox has booked nearly 10 events through her recommendations.

Live Events recently partnered with Mrs. Oliver’s Weddings and Event Planning as its go-to event DJ. Oliver hires Cox for all of her wedding shows – in Lebanon, Joplin and coming soon, Springfield – and she recommends Live Events to her bridal clients. So far, Oliver has booked Cox for five weddings in 2017, but says there likely is more to come as wedding season moves into full swing. Oliver typically plans 20 to 30 weddings per year.

“As a wedding planner, my job is to kind of keep all the vendors moving along, but if I needed to rely on him for something I know that he can make it happen,” Oliver says of Cox.

Life Events will take gigs as far as central Missouri and northwest Arkansas. Cox says his traveling inventory comprises JBL and Mackie speakers, Epson projectors and Chauvet lighting.

“A lot of things as far as equipment have changed in the last few years, like LED lighting, for instance, makes life so much easier,” Cox says. “Self-powered speakers and audio systems that don’t require bulky amplifiers, it’s so much easier to maintain and bring that around.”

As business grows, Cox says his biggest challenge is finding qualified employees. He has one other DJ in training and hopes to hire two more in the next year.


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