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How to Start a Wedding Planning Business: A Step-By-Step Guide
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If you love love and have stellar organizational skills, you may have considered starting a business in the wedding industry. When it comes to how to start a wedding planning business, it pays to keep calm and carry on. In fact, these very qualities have helped generate a growing income stream for Eileen Kaden Dean, owner of a successful wedding planning business in the New York City and New Jersey area.
“To be successful in this business, you have to stay calm and realize that a wedding emergency isn't your emergency. You can’t make the stress about you because it’s not your day,” says Kaden Dean, owner of An Affair to Remember and a go-to wedding planner.
Kaden Dean, who opened her company more than a decade ago, is among the many small business owners who make up the nearly $60 billion wedding services industry in the U.S. The lucrative industry covers an array of wedding service providers, including wedding venues, apparel retailers, florists, photographers, and wedding planners, according to market research firm IBISWorld.
The average wedding in the U.S. cost over $44,000 in 2018, according to Brides.com. Wedding costs vary greatly depending on where you live and your budget, but Manhattan is the most expensive place to get married, with the average couple spending a whopping $96,910 according to The Knot.
Although websites like The Knot and WeddingWire make it easier for couples to plan their big day themselves, many still turn to professionals like Kaden Dean. An Affair to Remember helps plan the wedding, deals with vendors, and coordinates the chain of events at the wedding and reception to make sure the day goes off without a hitch. In a nutshell, wedding planners are in the business of creating happiness and keeping everything organized, so the couple doesn’t have to worry about all the little (and big) things, says Kaden Dean.
If you're wondering how to start a wedding planning business, know that there are many moving parts, from picking out a bridal dress and venue to choosing invitations, to hiring a band or DJ, to selecting a menu. And the list goes on. Even small weddings—in vogue right now—aren't as simple to plan as you might think.
“There’s a need for wedding planners as couples are busy doing other things, like looking to buy a house and working long hours in their careers. Having someone to manage things is attractive, and this way couples can enjoy themselves and be present on their wedding day,” says Kaden Dean.
How to start a wedding planning business in 7 steps
There are a ton of different ways you can learn how to start a wedding planning business, but we'll give you a few steps to help you get your business started.
Step 1: Choose the type of wedding business you want to start and a name
Before you can do much else, you need to decide what kind of services you want your wedding planning business to offer. Wedding planners can offer all types of different services, and you should pick which ones you'll offer before you get to the nitty-gritty of planning your business and setting it up. You should also choose a business name during this step, and check with your state's Secretary of State resources to make sure that the name you want is available. You can usually do this using an online database on their website.
Kaden Dean started her wedding planning business out of a bridal dress store in New Jersey and expanded it from there. Her business offers everything from the full package to smaller day-of planning.
Although her clientele is in the greater New York area, Kaden Dean recognizes that not all couples can afford to spend upward of $50,000 on their weddings, which is part of the reason she offers several packages. Deciding what types of services and packages your own wedding planning business will offer will be important as you plan the business, market your services, and meet with potential clients.
For context, An Affair to Remember offers three pricing packages:
1. Full planning
For this most expensive option, Kaden Dean will plan the entire event from soup to nuts. This includes helping couples find the perfect venue, lining up all the vendors, helping choose invitations and centerpieces, and just about everything else. “Sometimes I even help pick the colors of the ties.”
The cost: about $5,000 and up.
2. Day of the wedding
This least expensive option is ideal for couples who want to do the planning themselves, but need some organizational help on the day of the wedding. For a typical wedding where Kaden Dean is hired for the day only, she creates a minute-to-minute timeline of when events will happen, like the hour the flowers will be delivered to the site and the exact time when the bridesmaids will arrive. On the big day, Kaden Dean is there to ensure that all goes according to plan.
She also handles any snafus. “One time a couple in the wedding party left a diaper bag in a taxi with their passports in it.” She went to work and tracked down the diaper bag, so that the couple could participate in the wedding stress-free. An hour later, the bag arrived at the venue.
The cost: about $1,750 to $2,250. The exact pricing depends on the amount of time Kaden Dean puts in, the number of assistants hired, and so on.
3. Day of “plus”
This is An Affair to Remember’s most popular offering. Couples hiring Kaden Dean for this package will plan their own weddings but rely on her to handle events on the wedding day, as well as any last-minute planning issues. “I take everything they have, shake it out, and see what pockets are missing to make sure everything is cohesive.” This package usually entails five hours of consultation time, 12 hours on the day of the wedding, one hour for the rehearsal, and 15 hours of virtual legwork to put all the ducks in a row.
The cost: about $2,500 to $3,000.
How Much Do You Need?
Step 2: Choose a business entity
The next step in starting a wedding planning business is deciding how you'll structure your business for legal and tax purposes. You'll likely want to choose a business entity that protects you personally from any legal ramifications your wedding planning business might face. A great option for this would be to choose a limited liability company (LLC) as your business entity. An LLC is a registered business in which owners are not personally liable for the business's debts or obligations. You might also choose a limited liability partnership if you want to have a business partner but the protections an LLC can offer you. Once you choose a business entity you can move on to step 3 which is writing your business plan.
You'll also want to register the business with the state once you have the entity and name decided on. Now would be a great time to consult a business attorney familiar with your type of business who can help you make sure everything is up to par and that you aren't missing any steps. This person can also help you choose which business entity is best for your wedding planning business.
Step 3: Write a detailed business plan
If you're starting a wedding planning business, hopefully, you're already a good planner and this step should come naturally to you. You'll need to write a business plan before you can get your business up and running. You can use a business plan template or business plan software to make the process easier, but there are some specific things you should be sure to include in it, no matter how you write it.
You should include a summary of your business in the plan as well as a market analysis, a detailed list of the products and services you'll offer, your marketing and sales plan, your financial plan and projections, and more. Think of your business plan for a roadmap that will lead you through the early stages of building your business and making it profitable.
Your business plan should also include some of the vendors and any other businesses you plan on working with. During the first year of starting her business, Kaden Dean focused on developing such relationships. “It was a challenging first year, but I spent the time introducing myself to the local wedding vendors so I could find people to recommend and work with. I set the groundwork for my business and established myself.”
An Affair to Remember’s start-up costs the first year maxed out at $10,000, including the rent and furniture for the small space in the bridal shop, along with signage, business cards and brochures, a website, and advertising on WeddingWire. Kaden Dean also had to pay to attend bridal shows, hire an assistant to help her track advertising inquiries, and cover her childcare costs. The costs Kaden Dean had are the kind you should plan to face and include in the financial section of your business plan.
Step 4: Get an EIN
If you plan to hire employees to help run your wedding planning business, you'll need to obtain an EIN, also known as an employer identification number. However, even if your business is a one-person show at the moment, you'll likely want to get an employer identification number for your business to make things easier on yourself down the line. The good news is that it's fairly easy to apply for an employer identification number and you can apply online through the IRS' website and get one in a matter of minutes.
An EIN comes with a number of benefits and can be extremely helpful for your business. It can help you when it comes time to file your business taxes, get a business credit card, open a business bank account, or any other number of business necessities.
Step 5: Get a business bank account and business credit card
Now that you have an EIN, you'll use this number when applying to open a business checking account and business credit card . This next step of starting a wedding planning business is crucial, as you'll want to keep your business finances separate from your personal finances. When you're still working on setting up your wedding planning business maybe you'll be working out of your house as a home-based business or maybe you'll have a small storefront. Either way, you'll probably want to spend on some decor, or at least on some marketing products, and you'll likely want a credit card to use for that.
Keeping the business finances completely separate from your personal finances will be huge when it comes time to file your taxes and it will help you boost your business credit score as well.
Step 6: Get any funding you need
The next step in starting a wedding planning business? Funding your new venture. The startup costs associated with opening a wedding planning business don't have to be too high, especially if you're working out of your home or another business's space. However, you will still have some upfront expenses you may not have the savings to cover. In that case, this is the time when you might need to work on getting a business loan or other funding option.
And because you have a great business plan already, you can use that to show potential investors or lenders that you have a well thought out business and a plan for turning a profit quickly. Of course, getting a loan as a new business isn't always easy. If you're finding your options to be limited, you might turn to a 0% introductory APR business credit card as an interest-free loan of sorts. With this type of credit card, you won't pay any interest on the balance you carry over for the length of the introductory offer (this will depend on the card, but at most will be 12 months). Just make sure you have a plan to pay off your balance by the end of this intro period, when a variable APR will set in, or this won't be the most effective funding tool.
Step 7: Market your services and start doing business
Once your wedding planning business is up and running and have the services you're offering laid out, you can start marketing them and hopefully bringing on new business. Consider marketing at trade shows and with any bridal boutiques in your area, or forge relationships with wedding venues to find clients. Once you get your first client, you're off to the races and can consider yourself fully in business.
The brides and grooms you work with will be grateful for your services and you can help them make their special day as stress-free as possible.
"Hiring a planner is so important to your big day," says Kaden Dean. The last thing a bride needs is for someone else to show up to handle the details: “They trust me. When you hire me, you get me. I’ve never missed a wedding.”
And keep in mind, happy customers can provide referrals and word-of-mouth marketing that can give you business the boost it needs to take off.
ZenBusiness: Start Your Dream Business
The bottom line
If you want to survive and thrive in the wedding planning business, you’ve got to put on a happy face and mean it—all the time. Also, you’ve got to be nice—all the time, says Kaden Dean.
It might seem like a simple recipe for success, but if you do a great job and you’re happy and people know it, the referrals will flow and you’ll stay busy, she says.
This article originally appeared on JustBusiness, a subsidiary of NerdWallet.
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OK – you've made this HUGE decision that you want to start a wedding planning business. But not just ANY kind of wedding planning business. You want to build a business that gets amazing clients, is successful, and allows you to build and grow something that's YOURS.
You want to plan gorgeous weddings, work with incredible clients, get featured in magazines, and spend your days obsessing over linen swatches, pretty flowers, candles, and of course, the logistics that make all the pretty happen.
In this blog post, I've put together my 12+ years of experience in running a profitable, multi six figure, multi-country wedding planning & design business so you can learn how to start a wedding planning business you love quicker, faster, and better.
First, let me say how delighted I am for you. In other words, when I started my wedding planning and design company back in 2007, I had the same feelings you did about creating the life and career I wanted.
I was excited, nervous, energized, and willing to consume any information on starting a wedding planning business.
(Back in 2007, that information was hard to come by. There were not a lot of resources on how to start a wedding planning business. However, you've got a lot of information on hand to guide you.)
I'm going to break down how to start a wedding planning business–but not just any kind of wedding planning business–one that will be profitable and scalable.
Here are the 11 steps you need to take to start and grow your new wedding planning business:
Step 1: Know What Kind Of Wedding Planning Business You Want to Build
Before you do anything, knowing what kind of wedding planning business you want is the first step. I've got an easy exercise for you to figure this out, too.
We call it vision casting.
It's important to know what kind of business you want, which will help you write strategies to make that business come to life.
In addition, we can't know what we're really building until we see the destination we want to arrive at, right?
That's what vision casting is. It's knowing the destination you want to arrive at–the business that you want.
To make this even easier for you, I've recorded an entire podcast episode on how to vision cast for your business. 👇
Episode 42 of my podcast for wedding pros, The Power in Purpose Podcast gives you step-by-step guidance and action on how to start your wedding planning biz with vision casting.
Everyone is building a different kind of business under different circumstances. For instance, you might want to have a career that allows you to raise your family at the same time. Or, you might want to build a million-dollar empire.
This is why it's important to know what kind of business YOU want so that you can reverse engineer the strategies that it will take to get there.
Don't skip this step. And listen to this podcast episode to get started.
Step 2: Write A Business Plan For Your Wedding Planning Business
Yes, I know you wanted to skip this part–biz plans are so 2007, aren't they?
No. They're essential. To build the wedding planning business YOU want (the one you're going to vision cast for!), you have to write a strategy to get there.
That's what a business plan is: an overarching strategy for getting from where you are today to where you want to go. And it cannot be overlooked.
Writing your business plan doesn't have to be challenging or overwhelming. You don't need an MBA or a fancy degree to start a business.
Instead, you just need to discover a problem that needs solving, and then your business becomes the solution.
With that said, I know that writing a business plan isn't the easiest (or sexiest) task.
That's why I've created my Free Business Plan Outline + Guide , a way to jumpstart your efforts and get you to write a plan for your wedding planning business.
Write a wedding planner business plan with this free guidebook and outline. It'll take you from stuck to start. I take all the guesswork out of how to write a business plan and even teach you some strategies. Plus, it's free! That's why I want to make sure you grab it.
Step 3: Know The “Ideal Clients” Your Wedding Planning Business Will Serve
The #1 reason why businesses fail is they don't know who their customers are. They don't really, truly, and personally know their customers.
However, this isn't going to be you; you're here to learn how to start a wedding planning business–and a crucial step is knowing your ideal clients!
Instead, you're going to create a business that fully understands who your ideal clients are so that you can solve their problems quicker, faster, and better than anyone else.
You must get specific about your ideal clients and why they need you to solve their problems. Knowing more about what motivates them, what they value, what challenges they face, and yes, what problems they have means you can position yourself as the solution.
I want to clarify that knowing your ideal clients is more than knowing what kind of car they drive, their favorite color, and their age range. Moreover, those things are essential but only tell you part of the story.
If you want to book high-end clients in the wedding industry, you need to check out The Client Cocktail . In this mini-training, I teach you how to call in dreamy clients and magazine-worthy weddings.
When you start your business, you'll be tempted to serve everyone and anyone. That's one of the biggest mistakes new entrepreneurs make: they reason they'll cast a wide net, increasing their chances of customers. After all, the wider the net, the more you can catch, right?
What ends up happening is you become too watered down, too unspecific, and too generic. However, by appealing to everyone, you appeal to no one because no one can really connect with your company.
They don't look at what you offer, your message, and say, “This is for me.”
Step 4: Create A Wedding Planning Brand That Gets Noticed
There are a lot of wedding planners out there. What makes you different?
One of the cornerstones of marketing is that people buy with their eyes, and your brand–aka the visual manifestation of your company–is what sets you apart.
You need to create a visual brand that gets noticed.
One that makes YOUR ideal client stop in their tracks.
One that makes your perfect client buy with their eye.
Your visual branding helps to accelerate the know/like/trust factor with your customers. The couple who wants to hire someone like you lands on your website or sees some of your marketing, and because of its polished nature and overall experience, they want to know more.
After you've set a vision and written your business plan, don't let it all fall apart by having a bad logo and website.
Your clients will notice immediately that your business doesn't live up to what it offers. And they will click off.
You have a matter of seconds to capture someone's attention (sometimes, it's a fraction of that number!). How will you capture the attention of your ideal clients with your marketing and branding?
Here are some quick resources for you to start creating a kick-ass wedding planning brand from DAY ONE (bc that's how we roll!)
- Showit Website Platform : To create a GORGEOUS website (it's my website platform!)
- Sourced Co : For incredible stock images created JUST for wedding pros. You can find images for marketing and your website, making it easy to start without a portfolio. Use code PLAYBOOK to get a special discount.
- Hautestock : Use code CANDICE for 15% off gorgeous stock images that don't look stock. Firstly, Hautestock's images are great for your website to fill in the gaps where you might not have a portfolio. Secondly, they make perfect social media posts so you can start marketing TODAY – even if you don't have any clients or work!
- Styled Stock : Another fantastic styled stock membership for beautiful stock images that don't look like “stock images.”
Step 5: Work More On Your Wedding Planning Business Than In It
You had the idea to start a wedding planning business because you want to be a wedding planner. However, when you decide to open up your own company, you're a business owner first. Wedding planner, second.
They say that businesses fail not only because they don't know their ideal clients but because the owner of that business doesn't work on their business.
You toil away at being the best wedding planner, focusing all your time on planning weddings and serving your clients, but what about the business owner side?
I want you to work more ON your business than IN your business. Consider yourself a business owner above all other roles you might have in your business.
Owning a business is like having a classic car: it needs love, care, and attention. It needs you to tune it, fix what's broken, and invest in its care.
If you're serious about owning a wedding planning business, consider yourself an entrepreneur first and a business owner second.
My advice? Seek education to help you build and grow your wedding planning business from the ground up correctly. Find mentors and business owners who are where you want to be and hire them to help you.
In addition, you should invest in courses , conferences, and other educational avenues to learn all you can and speed up your results.
Always learning, always moving forward. That's my motto.
Step 6: Network With The Right People
The wedding industry is mostly about connections, and some of the most incredible business comes from referrals (if you sign up for The Client Cocktail , you'll know how important this is!).
You have to seek out new connections as much as possible–but not just any old “links”–and focus on the right ones.
As you set out to market your business, you must get in front of the right people. Ideally, the people and companies that are already in front of your ideal clients.
They have the power to refer to you and to help lift your business alongside theirs.
Do you want to know one of the first things I did when I started my business?
I networked my butt off. Networking with the right people was one of the first things I did when I started my business, which paid off. I was armed with my biz plan, a vision for the future, and a nice-looking brand/website. I sought out businesses that were already in front of my ideal clients.
And it paid off in dividends.
Step 7: Know Your Marketing Message And Market Your Wedding Planning Business As Much As You Can
Marketing is simply sharing your message so that it reaches the right people. What's your message?
Your company's mission, vision, and purpose are vital. They connect you to your customers and ground you when the going gets tough.
You need to have a clear, concise message about what your company does, how life looks for your customers after you do it, and why you do it in the first place.
Step 8: Make Mistakes, Try New Things & Do It Your Way
When you start a business, you follow the same path as those you admire. No doubt you've rapidly followed a bunch of people on the ‘gram who are killing it in their wedding planning biz right now.
And you're probably thinking: I need to do it this way too.
Maybe. Or maybe not. Don't fall into the trap of copying what other folks are doing. That's their business–their vision–not yours.
I want you to feel empowered to do it YOUR way. Sure, you can seek out roadmaps and blueprints on how to build your business, but make sure you adapt what you learn as it fits your unique circumstances.
Don't build someone else's business. Build yours.
If you want to hear some of my epic wedding planning mistakes, check out my tales from the clipboard email series.
Step 9: Give Your Business Time To Grow & Take Root
As a business coach for wedding planners and pros, I've seen biz owners quit just when the going gets going. Owning a wedding planning business is a marathon and not a sprint. It takes time for your efforts to start to take root.
When I started my company, it took me six months to land my first client. Imagine if I had quit five months and two weeks in?
I want you to know that things take time. Give your business time to take root. It will happen with consistency and perseverance. Don't quit at the first failure.
Remember, your failures lead you toward your successes.
Patience is necessary for business (just like with most things in life). The strategies you implement today may not show results for 3-6 months. But they will see results if you give them a chance.
Step 10: Hire A Wedding Planning Mentor And Learn, Learn, Learn
Let me ask you a serious question. Why not hire someone to help you do all the above and teach you the ropes so that you can accelerate your business quicker and faster?
There is no greater gift you can give your biz than enlisting the help of someone who has been where you want to go.
As a wedding industry business coach and mentor , of course, I will advocate for what I do. And that's because I've seen the results my expertise brings to those that I humbly help.
If you're serious about starting a wedding planning business, pay for an expert to teach you the road to success.
I want you to be open to learning as much as you can from trusted sources as you navigate the tricky road of entrepreneurship. Recognize that you don't know everything, be 100% coachable, and apply what you learn in your business.
The truth is, you'll achieve the results you want quicker, better, and faster than you had expected.
Step 11: Believe In Yourself
Finally, I want you to believe in yourself because you were put on this earth for great things.
No, seriously, I want you to believe in your abilities to design a business you love, a business YOU want. While you may lack experience in certain areas, you have a wealth of knowledge about how things work.
You're smart. You're driven. And you're here for the right reasons. Believe in your abilities to learn as you go and apply your knowledge and unique life experiences to the services and products you provide.
For instance, too many people quit because they lack the confidence and belief in themselves to do what they want to do. I don't want you to be one of those people.
I believe in you. So believe in yourself. All things are possible, and you CAN design a business that you love–and one that gives back to your meaningful life.
And if you're ready to take your wedding planning dreams to the next level, I want to invite you to check out my coaching program for wedding planners .
The Planner's Playbook is your secret weapon for planning, designing, and coordinating high-end weddings like a pro. The doors to this program are open now for a limited time. Click here to learn more about The Planner's Playbook!
Not ready for that? Then grab my free course on how to start your wedding planning business!
Let's summarize this post so you can start your wedding planning business:
How do I start a wedding planning business?
Follow these steps to start and launch your wedding planning business:
It's important to know what kind of business YOU want so that you can reverse engineer the strategies that it will take to get there. Don't skip this step.
Every business needs a strategy to grow and scale. Sit down and write your business plan using your vision as a guide for the strategies you'll create in marketing, sales, services, and pricing.
Businesses exist to serve their customers. Who are you serving? Know your ideal client as well as you know your BFF–and then create products and solutions that help them.
The wedding industry is a saturated market. You'll need to create a brand that stands out from the competition and gets noticed. How will you be different from the rest?
Initially, it'll be easy because you won't have many clients. But as your business grows, it's important to continue working on it more than in it.
The wedding industry is a people industry. Form relationships and connections with the right people–the businesses already in front of your dreamy clients–and watch your biz grow.
Marketing is simply sharing your message so it reaches the right people. Know your message and watch your ICAs start knocking on your door.
Resist the temptation to copy others and be confident that you can do things your way. A signature way of doing anything for your customers will set you apart from the competition.
Nothing happens overnight. It could take months to land your first wedding, so give your business time to take root. Don't rush the brush, so to speak. That moment you feel like quitting? Keep going.
Why try and figure this out all on your own when you could hire someone to help you achieve your goals quicker, faster, and better? Hire a mentor who has been where you want to go and watch how quickly you scale.
A little confidence goes a long way. Believe in your worthiness, experience, creativity, and capabilities. You can do this.
If you're serious about starting your wedding planning business, here are some resources I offer to help:
- Free Business Plan Outline + Guide
- Free Course To Launch Your Wedding Planning Business
- The Client Cocktail
- The Planner's Playbook
- WeddingPro Insiders
- Wedding Planner Business Tools
Know that I'm cheering you on and believing in you.
Explore More Wedding Industry Resources
- How To Become A Wedding Planner With No Experience
- 9 Mistakes to Avoid When Starting Your Wedding Planning Business
- How To Build Your Portfolio As A Wedding Planner When You’re Just Starting Out
- Why You Need To Create A Client Journey As A Wedding Planner
- How To Get Wedding Clients When You’re Just Starting Out
- Day of Coordination: The Pros and Cons as a Wedding Planner
- How Much Should You Charge As A Wedding Planner? Learn How To Figure Out Your Wedding Planner Pricing
- 5 Contracts Every Wedding Planner Must Have To Be Legally Set
- The #1 Reason Why You’re Not Booking The Right Wedding Clients (And How To Fix It)
- 5 Online Wedding Planning Tools You Need to Use
- How To Become A Destination Wedding Planner
- 4 Strategies That Will Help You Book MORE Of Your Ideal Clients
- 5 Tips On Crafting a Business Plan To Book Out Your Biz With Your Ideal Clients And Get Paid
- What A Business Plan Will REALLY Reveal About Your Business
- 6 Reasons Why I Recommend Asana for Wedding Planners
- Are You a Disorganized Wedding Planner? Let’s Fix That With These Organized Wedding Planner Tips!
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✨ A quick recap of my trip to San Fran for the @honeybook educator summit! ✨ I had the amazing opportunity to spend two days with an incredible group of fellow educators + the Honeybook team! We masterminded, connected, and learned all about the amazing new features Honeybook is rolling out next year! (WAIT until you hear about them!!) Getting to fly to San Francisco and visit the Honeybook offices was a ✨ highlight ✨ of my career. I’ve been a loyal Honeybook fan since I joined the platform in 2014. Back then, there wasn’t anything on the market for wedding planners to manage their clientflow! I was using a software created for photographers to help me track all my leads and manage the client experience. It was AWFUL! Then Honeybook came along - and I decided to make the switch. Little did I know that not only my client flow would change - but my entire life - especially over the last 3 years! The team at Honeybook invited me to speak at the summit this past week to share my experience as the highest grossing and referring partner of Honeybook - ever. 💁🏼♀️ This is something I’m so proud of because I believe SO MUCH in this company and the tools it gives independent business owners. In fact, out of all the conversations and connections over the last week, my biggest takeaway was how much of a people first company Honeybook is. 🏼 Stay tuned for an upcoming blog post on 2024 Honeybook features coming up next week. And if you’ve been thinking about switching over to HB - now is the time. Comment SWITCH and I’ll send you my special 50% off discount!! Thank you to @ktdeloachen and the entire community/educators team for an amazing, memorable and generous trip!!!
Well, there are almost 10,000 new friends following me on here (um, hi👋🏻) so I thought it might be time for a little #FridayIntroduction I’m Candice! I’m an American living abroad in Barbados with my husband. I love all things home decor, island life, skincare, and business. ❤️ FUN FACT: In middle school I was voted “most talkative” - a superlative I literally campaigned for. I walked around class talking people into voting for me 😛 Now, I get to talk all day for a living (and people actually want to listen to me! Hahaha) By day I’m a business coach and educator for wedding industry pros, and by night I’m usually in bed by 9. 💀 On IG I talk a lot about two things - business and Bravo. I’m an OG housewives Stan and have been following these bitches since day one. Here you’ll find a mix of personal stuff, day to day, business coaching, and island life. I hope you’ll stick around! Where you voted something in school? If so, vote and comment below! . . . #fridayintroductions #honeybook #businessbestie #communityovercompetition #weddingpros #weddingindustry #weddingexperts #candicecoppola #weddingplanner
Christmas at my home in the day vs night 🤩 I’ve finally finished putting together our home for the holidays. What do you think of our 2023 look? Almost all of the decorations - from candles, ornaments, garlands, and trees - I already had in my collection. This year I just styled it differently and added a few pieces (like the flocked garland 😍). I’m so excited to host friends and family for the holidays in the space. Stay tuned 💁🏼♀️ . . . #christmastree #christmasdecor #christmasmood #christmasdecorating #christmasornaments #christmasiscoming #holidaydecor #christmasinspo #christmasdecor2023 #christmaslights #christmasdecoration #christmasideas #christmasinspiration #christmasstying #christmasmagic #christmashome #ba lsamhill
✨ it’s time ✨ I still have lots more to share, but I couldn’t wait to show you our Christmas tree for 2023 (at least the main one in our living room!). I 10/10 recommend putting a mirror behind your tree to add some extra sparkle! I love how this tree turned out this year. ❓Which ornament is your favorite?! Stay tuned tomorrow to see how I transformed our living room into a snowy glam wonderland 💁🏼♀️ . . . #christmastree #christmasdecor #christmasmood #christmasdecorating #christmasornaments #christmasiscoming #holidaydecor #christmasinspo #christmasdecor2023 #balsamhill
Want more? Check out this video on my YouTube channel ↓
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Wedding planning business can be very successful career, if you work properly before establishing it. Many people learn the basic etiquettes about wedding planning while event planning course. If you want to get basic knowledge you can also get a course from a good institution and start up your business. Though it is a very interesting and joyful business for those, who love thrill and fun, but at the same time it demands commitment lots of energy and stress. Before starting up your business for wedding planning if you follow some important points, you can get better result in start and get good grip over your business soon.
Great post! I read your blog fairly often and you’re always coming out with some great stuff. I shared this on my Facebook and my followers loved it! Keep up the good work. 🙂
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How to Start a Wedding Planning Business
7 must-do steps, step 1: decide on service offerings by doing market research.
Start by researching other wedding planning businesses in your city and state to better understand what types of services and packages are available near you. You can also take note of their pricing if it’s readily available on their websites. From this, you can determine if you’d like to offer event management, partial planning and/or full-service planning.
Step 2: Identify your target client
To identify your ideal client, you’ll need some wedding planning experience. Consider taking on three or four family members’ or friends’ weddings to determine how you work best. This can also show you what service offerings people need most. By taking on a few test weddings, you can learn if you prefer more DIY weddings, elevated weddings, adventure weddings, intimate elopements, and more.
Step 3: Select a company name
Next up is the fun stuff! Come up with a company name for your wedding planning business. I recommend brainstorming a few you like and polling friends and family to see what rolls off the tongue best or what others think resonates best with your target client. Also, don’t forget to do your research to make sure the name you’ve chosen is not taken by someone else already.
Step 4: Form your LLC or sole proprietorship
Now that you’ve determined your company name, it’s time to legally register your business. Requirements vary from state to state, so I recommend starting with a quick Google search to determine exact steps. The U.S. Small Business Administration has great resources for entrepreneurs, too. You’ll likely need to fill out a form and pay a small fee to register. You’ll do this each year to keep your business registered with your state.
Step 5: Set financial goals and determine where to best spend your money
After your business is established, it’s important for you to set financial goals for the business. These goals should have a set time frame and should be measurable and achievable. Setting goals can also help you allocate where to spend your money. You can budget for things like advertising spend, wedding expos, hiring assistants, and more. Whether your business is part-time or full-time, it’s important that you set realistic goals and hold yourself accountable as you reach for your dreams.
Step 6: Set up your website URL and social media links
After you’ve set the foundation for your business, it’s important to set up a URL and social media links for your business. There are quite a few options for URL registration, but I recommend GoDaddy. They typically run promotions for your first year, and you can sometimes get a URL for under five dollars. For social media links, I recommend keeping the handles consistent across the platforms so that potential customers can find you more easily.
Step 7: Get started and join The Planner’s Vault
Now that you know how to start a wedding planning business, it’s time to dive in and get started! If you’re feeling overwhelmed by it all, consider joining The Planner’s Vault. The Planner’s Vault is an online education platform and membership community just for new wedding planners. It’s part business coaching, part online course, part template library, part community of business besties, led by a wedding industry expert. Learn more about the membership and sign up for our waitlist to be notified when the doors open next here !
Need individual help? Consider 1-on-1 coaching from wedding planner business coach Megan Gillikin.
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How to Start a Wedding Planning Business: A Step-by-Step Guide
Do you love all things romance, follow the wedding trends, and pay attention to detail?
Starting a wedding planning business could be just the thing for you.
The event and wedding planning market’s having a moment right now, and roughly 66% of millennials are willing to employ wedding planners for their special day.
Need help to get you on the right track?
Get your budding wedding planning business in full bloom with our comprehensive 9-step guide.
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How to start a wedding planning business in 9 steps 💒
How to start a wedding planning business is all about detailed planning, the right training, and good people skills.
You want to make sure you’re doing the right things to help your new business stand out from other successful wedding planners, right?
By not taking shortcuts you will be able to talk to your potential clients confidently and plan stunning weddings of the century.
1. Get the necessary training
For starters, if you don’t have prior experience in wedding planning, you should take the time to learn the necessary skills of a wedding planner.
There are many platforms to help you out. Search for online courses or enroll in educational programs hosted by professionals in the field. Consider joining organizations that offer certifications, e.g. the American Association of Certified Wedding Planners.
Pro tip 💁 – Look for internships to gain some experience in event coordination. Contact your local wedding planners and let them know you want to assist with upcoming events and bridal shows (those are never stress-free, so it’s likely that most wedding planners will appreciate the extra pair of hands).
Since you’ll be running an event planning business, consider learning about marketing, finance management, customer service, and other relevant topics as well.
Consider joining networking events for wedding professionals and event planners to meet with other business owners and learn from them first-hand. This might require you to travel to big nearby cities (think New York City, San Francisco, Miami, and so on), but if you plan ahead, you can save on travel costs.
2. Draft a solid business plan
Once you’re confident with your skills in the wedding planning business, it’s time to create a business plan and start building your own business from the ground up.
A business plan will help you determine your goals, target audience, and financial plans. It will also help you understand your business structure, whether you need a business license.
And if you’re looking to open a business bank account, or use a business credit card, chances are that your bank will require you to have a business plan in the first place.
But how do you start?
First and foremost, you should come up with a business name.
If you’re stuck, try using the Zyro Business Name Generator to help you out. After entering your keywords (related to terms such as a wedding, events, planner, and so on), memorable business name suggestions will be presented to you.
When you pick the right name, make sure it’s available as a domain and business name in your region. This way you’re able to build a strong brand that’s easier for your clients to remember.
Your business plan should cover your business information, services, marketing plans, and financial strategy. Use a free template if you don’t know what business accounts and aspects to include.
3. Define your wedding planning services
We get it – you want to become a successful wedding planner.
In order to differentiate yourself from the other small business owners in the market, you can offer one, a selection, or all of the following services:
- Full wedding planning. You’ll plan the entire wedding from the first consultation to the day of, including designing the concept and coordinating with the vendors.
- Partial wedding planning. Typically, the paying client will only hire you to help with their timeline and manage the wedding day.
- Wedding consultation. You’ll only give recommendations on engaged couples’ event plans.
The service fee usually gets higher as you get more involved in planning the event. This means that full wedding planning is the most expensive of all options. Be sure to include your services and pricing in your plan.
As your wedding business grows, so will your business plan and the services you offer. In the early stages, it’s better to set out realistic expectations for your small business. After all, you don’t want to be working all the hours of the day simply because you didn’t realize the workload.
Once your business has expanded, adjust your future goals and ideal clientele accordingly.
4. Take care of legal documents
Next, it’s time to become a legal entity and sort out the legal documents to run your business.
For this, consider hiring an attorney to consult on a suitable business structure . The structure you choose determines your taxes and the protection of your personal assets.
In the US, small companies like wedding and event planners are recommended to go with a limited liability company, an LLC .
This way, you’re personally not at big financial risk if your wedding planning business venture goes under for any reason.
When you’ve decided on a structure, register your business name with your state and local governments.
If you’re a US citizen, make sure to sign up for an Employer Identification Number as well. This will enable you to file taxes, open a bank account, and hire assistants for your business.
Also, remember to get business insurance in case of disasters, accidents, or any other risks.
Don’t forget to take care of your client contracts for when you get hired. Generally, the contract includes terms for services, payment, cancellation, and termination, among other things.
5. Understand your finances
On average, you can expect to make an average of $49,370 per year in the U.S. when you’re starting a wedding planning business.
But in order to get to those figures, you need to be sure you have enough cash available to cover your initial costs.
While it’s possible to get your wedding and events planning business started for less than $1,000, you might want to play it safe and have a few thousand dollars available for your startup costs.
At the very least, you will need a computer, a phone, some software licenses, business cards, and office supplies to get your event planning business up and running.
Make sure to network and build a strong, marketable brand to turn your business profitable in the long run.
6. Create your own wedding planning brand
A successful wedding planning business is based on a unique brand.
With so many wedding planners constantly appearing on the scene, having a particular niche and a brand help you to catch the engaged couples’ eye.
You could focus on working with clients who want a big wedding with hundreds of guests or cater to people who want to get married in a nature reserve.
- Your niche. What sets you apart from the other wedding service providers and makes you the wedding planning business someone should choose?
- Your logo. A good logo is simple, easy to remember, and unique.
- The overall visual look of your wedding planning business. This includes other web design elements like the color palette and typography you will be using.
- The tone and voice of your brand. How does your business sound like when you talk to potential clients or the people visiting your website?
7. Find trusted vendors
Since you’ll be coordinating with various vendors (think florist, catering company, furniture rental, and so on) for your events, you should establish a professional relationship with these service providers, especially reputable ones.
As a new business, you might not have an existing pool of business partners to tap into.
Look for vendors at online directories like Wedding Wire . The wedding website features a review system so you know which suppliers are trusted. Contact them to set up a meeting and get to know each other’s business.
Cooperating with trusted vendors can help you along the way. If you hire the right people, your clients will acknowledge that you’re knowledgeable in your field.
Additionally, when you maintain a good relationship with these suppliers, they can recommend you to their customers if they need a wedding planner.
8. Create wedding concepts
As a novice wedding planner, you probably don’t have enough content for your portfolio. That’s OK – many wedding planners start their careers by creating mock-up wedding plans to use as marketing material.
First, research current wedding trends . Find out what the most popular themes and decorations are, and what kind of locations and venues are hot among successful wedding planners.
For example, if your business focuses on cultural weddings, look for such decorations. Gather what you’ve found and design several wedding concepts.
Next, contact vendors. Ask if they’re willing to work with you in creating the concepts. You’ll probably need a vendor for flowers, food, decoration, and lighting. Also, get a professional photographer to capture the entire setup.
To make your own mockup designs, get inspiration from Pinterest and similar sites – feel free to set them up in your own home.
Try making several mock wedding timelines for different occasions. This will help potential clients visualize their wedding day when they are deciding whether to hire you.
9. Promote your wedding planning business
To attract new customers, you should advertise your wedding planning business online.
Focus on creating a website to show off the previous weddings you’ve organized, as well as include testimonials of your services. You should also make use of word of mouth and social media platforms when you’re starting out.
How to start a wedding planning business is just as much about marketing as it is about the wedding planning itself.
Create a professional website
Since most people use search engines and Facebook pages to find services , it’s important that your business has an online presence. Make sure to add your business to platforms like Google My Business to maximize the probability of potential customers finding out about your wedding business.
A website can also provide business information to users. When you put up online ads on search engines or wedding marketplaces, link them to your small business website where visitors can learn more about your business.
Unsure how to start a business website?
The Zyro wedding website builder makes the process easy for any business owner. With its AI customizations and ready-to-use templates, you won’t need any technical knowledge to design a stunning wedding planner website.
Promote to friends and family
Another way to market your business is by telling your family and friends. And tell them to tell their friends and family, and so on.
Send them an email about your business information or promote your services during a hangout or gathering.
If some of them or their friends are getting married, offer to plan their wedding day at a discount.
Use this opportunity to build your portfolio and gather testimonials. These will come in handy later on in your wedding planner career.
Share on social media
Lastly, it’s important to create social media accounts for your planning business on platforms like Facebook and Instagram . These sites can help with marketing your services to the right people – without you needing to whip out your business credit card to pay for ad space.
For instance, Facebook’s Audience Insights provides some key information about your target market, so that you can create better advertising and content overall.
Instagram can also offer analytics about your audience to help you with your small business marketing strategy.
Why you should start your own wedding planning business
Starting your own wedding planning business can be both exciting and profitable. Today, the wedding industry is a lucrative business.
In the US, about 2.4 million weddings happen each year. Furthermore, the “wedding planner” remains the top wedding-related search term .
Regarding startup costs, starting this business is quite affordable . You can basically work from anywhere on your computer and smartphone.
If you’re passionate and multi-skilled, this job could be for you. As a wedding planner, you need to be good at customer service, event coordination, management, and design.
Risks wedding planners should be aware of
Before starting a wedding planning business, you need to know the risks of becoming a wedding planner.
Since most weddings happen during weekends, event planners do sacrifice some of their free time for work. Consider scheduling some days off during the week to minimize burnout.
Furthermore, you can’t build a loyal clientele from a wedding planning business. Your past customers might recommend you to their friends, but it’s not likely that those who have worked with you will hire you again.
As a wedding planner, you also need to market your business more during low seasons when your business bank account might look grim. Craft a strategy that encourages more people to wed in other seasons. Otherwise, you might risk losing income during idle times.
Becoming a wedding planner
The wedding industry remains a profitable business – but it takes a dedicated and multi-skilled person to become a wedding planner.
Before you start a wedding planning business, consider the time and money needed to invest in being a wedding planner and running your own business. You will have to work weekends and holidays, and market harder during the off-seasons.
Remember that as a wedding planner you will also need to have great people skills and be able to pay attention to detail, no matter how tiny they may seem. Since weddings are a once-in-a-lifetime event for many, your customers will expect to be able to have a say in everything.
If you think you can easily handle a bridezilla, and want to help create real fairytale weddings, starting a wedding planning business could be just the right career move for you.
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Matleena is a seasoned eCommerce writer, with a particular interest in emerging digital marketing trends, dropshipping, and growth hacking. She’s addicted to coming up with new eCommerce business ideas and making them a reality; she deserves her nickname of ‘print on demand business mogul.' In her free time, she enjoys cups of good coffee, tends to her balcony garden, and studies Japanese.
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How to become a wedding planner
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Weddings are big business. In fact, the UK wedding industry is worth an eye-watering £10 billion a year, with each individual wedding day and honeymoon costing nearly £27,161 according to hitched.co.uk .
With such a high price tag, and a lot of pressure placed upon the couple to tie the knot in a picture-perfect way, it’s not surprising that brides and grooms are turning to the professionals to help them organise and manage their wedding.
So if you’re considering setting up a business as a wedding planner, here’s everything you need to know…
Why setting up a wedding planning business could be a good idea
Today’s bride is too busy to pull off the perfect wedding on her own.
Friends and family members may typically live too far away to pitch in, and plenty of couples feel the pressure to have a fairytale day thanks to the rise of social media. As a result, many couples are turning to professional wedding planners for assistance.
A wedding planner’s calm disposition, head for organisation and eye for detail helps to dial down the stress any couple might feel in the run up to their wedding day.
So, if you’re willing to put your skills and experience to good use, you can help your clients to make it down the aisle feeling cool, calm and collected.
What does a wedding planner do?
No two days will look the same for a wedding planner. One day you’ll be meeting florists and designing table settings, and another day you’ll be liaising with caterers and sending rehearsal invitations.
Some of your duties will typically include:
- meeting with a couple to discuss their ideas and budget
- helping to decide upon a theme and colour scheme
- contacting suppliers to discuss availability and prices, negotiating on your clients’ behalf
- booking suppliers and coordinating them to ensure it all comes together for the big day
- managing the day itself to ensure everything runs smoothly
- offering emotional support to the couple throughout the process, and on the day
Every wedding is unique. So, answering the question, “what does a wedding planner do?” is never as straightforward as it sounds. Your duties will always change, but one thing you can count on is variety and excitement.
The potential costs and earnings of a wedding planning business
The average wedding planner in the UK can expect to earn in the region of £21,000 a year. However, there’s no reason you can’t earn more than this, particularly if you have the tenacity to stay in the industry for a little longer.
With five-plus years experience and a sizeable portfolio, you could command a much higher salary, working with couples with larger budgets and earning referrals through word of mouth.
And once you’ve been in the industry for ten years or more? Well, the sky’s the limit and it simply depends how many weddings you can juggle at once.
The costs of setting up a wedding planning business aren’t as high as other types of businesses.
You’ll certainly need a laptop or computer and perhaps some software to keep track of your clients and the details of their special days. A mobile phone with significant quantities of data and minutes is a good idea too, just so you can always reach your clients or find your way to a supplier’s premises.
But beyond this, your overheads are fairly modest. Just consider taking out insurance for your business for extra peace of mind.
Who’s suited to starting a wedding planning business?
Do you see a empty room and see its potential for a candle-lit reception dinner? And do you care about every last detail that will make your client’s day unforgettable? If so, you might have what it takes to become a wedding planner.
It almost goes without saying, but anyone setting up a wedding planning business needs to be passionate about weddings. You should be a die-hard romantic, a champion of marriage and someone who’s ready to throw themselves into a couple’s special day as if it were your own.
You should also enjoy variety, responsibility and unpredictability. Wedding planning is dynamic and exciting, and perfect for those who want to feel that there’s a real sense of purpose to their work: there’s nothing more rewarding than the heartfelt thanks of a couple who’ve enjoyed a truly perfect wedding day.
Key practical skills
- Problem solving
- Excellent communication skills
- Ability to stay calm under pressure
- A positive attitude
- Ability to see someone else’s vision
- Patience (for clients how have a difficult time making decisions or feel easily overwhelmed).
Ultimately, you’ll need to be able to discern what the bride and groom truly wants, and use a little bit of magic to turn their dream into reality.
You’ll need to be every bit as passionate about the 100th wedding you plan as the very first one. You must also be willing to work hours beyond a standard working week: weekends, evenings and holidays (particularly throughout summer) are typical of the wedding planning industry.
And if you can do all of that while maintaining a cool head and remaining calm under pressure? Well, you’re a born wedding planner.
Do you need any experience?
There’s no strict requirement that you have any previous experience of planning weddings in the past. But, it will certainly help to secure contracts with clients if they know that you’ve planned a few weddings before.
See if you can plan a wedding for friends or family members for a discounted fee, and remember that you can count your own wedding too if you can highlight how you learnt from it.
Considerations for a wedding planning business plan
Like any other business, your wedding planning business is going to require a business plan . But, you’ll need to write it in light of particular factors unique to the wedding industry.
Firstly, consider the fact that the majority of your work will be seasonal. Summer is the most popular time of year to get married, whereas significantly fewer couples choose to tie the knot in winter.
You’ll need to consider the fact that you won’t be relying on repeat business… hopefully! But that said, second and even third marriages are becoming more commonplace, but generally not for many years down the line: so you will have to write your business plan knowing that you’ll be scouring for new clients constantly.
As a result, word-of-mouth recommendations are going to be particularly important for your business, so it could be worth considering devising a referral programme of some sort to bring in new clients.
You’ll also need to consider whether or not you’ll be charging an hourly rate or a fixed fee. Some wedding planners charge a percentage cost of the overall wedding at 10 or 20%.
Finally, work out a few packages to offer your clients. Some will want a full wedding planning service (including everything from the initial consultation to managing the big day), whereas others will require assistance for day-of coordination (which includes managing the venue and caterers, seating guests and even rounding up the groomsmen).
Regulations and qualifications for starting a wedding planning business
There are no set entry requirements or qualifications needed to become a wedding planner. But, it will certainly help if you have some real-world experience of planning weddings or other large events. Perhaps you planned your own wedding? Or maybe you’ve been working for an events management company and have some transferable skills?
Whatever the case, there’s no need to take a wedding planning course, unless you want to.
A degree in communications, marketing or events management may prove useful, but again, remember they’re not essential. Building a portfolio of clients by organising weddings for friends and family members will see you off to a good start when it comes to finding paying clients.
Setting up a wedding business – the marketing
Finally, if you want a successful wedding planning business, you’ll need to make sure couples can find you.
One of the best ways to do this is to have a strong website and social media presence showcasing some of the weddings you’ve planned and managed. It will be especially convincing if your website is full of testimonials from previous clients as it will help to build trust with prospective clients.
But just remember – clients will form their first impression of you based on what you’re showing them online. Paying attention to beautiful presentation, including the photography and typography (as well as perfect spelling and grammar), will suggest that you’ll pay similarly high attention to their special day.
Also, contact bridal blogs and websites to see if they’re willing to list you as a professional supplier, and be sure to attend bridal fairs – it’s precisely the kind of place your clients will be hanging out.
Traditional methods of marketing such as business cards are essential too, and there’s no substitute for building relationships – getting to know other wedding businesses (be they caterers, dressmakers, florists or something else) can lead to mutually beneficial relationships… something that’s invaluable when you’re building a business of your own.
So, you think you have what it takes to become a wedding planner?
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Day in the Life
Wedding Planning 101
How to Become a Wedding Planner
Becoming a wedding planner is an exciting and rewarding career choice. Wedding planners spend months working with their clients to plan and coordinate the perfect wedding day. They feel privileged to work with couples on one of the most important days in their life.
Being a wedding planner comes with great perks such as attending event industry parties, touring gorgeous venues and hotels, tasting sumptuous wedding cakes, and playing with beautiful linens and flowers. Many event planners enjoy setting their own schedule and the freedom of being creative in their career.
As a successful wedding planner and event planner for more than 10 years, and a mentor and coach to other wedding planners for the past 7 years, I have seen all of the ups and downs of starting a wedding planning career. I’ve assembled my best tips, tricks, and resources for you in this article.
How To Start Your Wedding Planning Business
Starting a wedding planning business is an exciting adventure! Careers in wedding planning are popular and appeal to many people. Many wedding planners start their own business as a part-time side gig and build it up to a full-time career.
Before you can take on clients, you want to learn all you can about planning and coordinating a wedding. If you do not have much experience in this area, consider building relationships with experienced planners and inquire about assisting at their events. You can also hire a wedding planner business coach and use tools such as the Wedding Planner’s Toolbox to guide you and give you the confidence to plan and coordinate events. You don’t want to risk ruining someone’s wedding day (and your reputation) because you promised more than you could deliver as a planner.
In addition to learning how to actually plan and coordinate a wedding, you may be learning how to start and run a business for the first time.
Here are the basics that you need to have in place to start your own wedding planning business:
- Purchase a domain name with web hosting
- Register the business with your state and obtain necessary licenses
- Name of your business that isn’t already trademarked or in-use
- Open a business bank account
- Obtain business insurance
- Decide on wedding planner service offerings and pricing
- Hire someone to build and launch your website
- Get a professional wedding planning services contract
- Decide how to accept payments for your planning services
- Market your business
These are the absolute basics of starting a wedding planning business. There are many other considerations such as trademarking, marketing strategy, branding, creating a solid business plan, accounting and bookkeeping methods, choosing the best type of legal entity (LLC, sole proprietor, etc.), business systems, planning process with clients, budgeting for business investments, tax planning, education, and much more.
If you are feeling overwhelmed with all the details involved in starting a wedding planning business, you can invest in the guide 25 Steps to Start Your Wedding Planning Business to help you through each step, provide advice, and give you additional resources that might be needed.
Income as a Wedding Planner
Your income as a wedding planner will depend on your experience, education, and how well you market yourself. For more information, check out my in-depth wedding planner salary post.
4 Key Personality Traits You Need As A Wedding Planner
There is a huge range of personalities and styles in the world of wedding planning professionals. There isn’t a particular personality that is better than others, however, there are a few key traits that many successful wedding planners have in common.
Planning a wedding is one of the most stressful and emotional events in life. For many engaged couples, having a planner who has empathy and understanding for what they are going through is the key to a stress-free and happy engagement.
A good wedding planner will also understand how important the wedding is for the parents of the engaged couple and will listen and understand their concerns and desires for the wedding as well.
2) Ability to listen more than talk
As wedding planners, we need to tell clients about what we offer and our experience but we should also be listening and asking questions during consultations. A great wedding planner wants to make the wedding all about the client. To do that, we must get to know our clients on a deeper level and listen to their spoken and unspoken feelings.
3) Good mediation skills
A great wedding planner will mediate issues that arise with clients, vendors, and venues, then come up with a win-win solution for everyone. You may also be asked to mediate between what your clients want and what their parents’ desires are for the wedding.
4 Things to Consider Before You Decide to Become a Wedding Planner
Before you choose to become a wedding planner, there are a few questions to ask yourself.
1) Do I want to work evenings and weekends?
Wedding planners often work in the evenings to meet with clients since many engaged couples work regular 9-5 jobs and can’t meet their wedding professionals during the day. Since most weddings are on Saturdays, you may be spending your weekends working then taking a few days off during the week.
Depending on where you live, certain months of the year can be significantly busier than others. For example, most weddings in the northern part of the US take place in late spring through early fall. The advantage of having a busy season is that you can take more time off during your offseason.
If you choose to become a wedding planner, does this schedule fit your ideal lifestyle?
2) Can I handle the mental and physical challenges of being a wedding planner?
Engaged couples and their families can be emotional and stressed during the wedding planning process and on the wedding day. As their wedding planner, you must remain calm in the face of adversity, be the voice of reason, and provide comfort and reassurance to your clients. Clients want their weddings to be perfect, which means they can often be demanding.
Coordinating a wedding day involves physical work. During the wedding day, you can expect to be on your feet for 10-15 hours. Physical tasks that a wedding planner might do include setting up decorations, moving boxes, assisting the florist with centerpieces, and packing up gifts and decor after the wedding is over. Typically, you will take the day off after a wedding to rest, recover, and reminisce about the fabulous event you just coordinated!
As a wedding planner, you will be mentally “on” during the entire wedding day. Many of us choose this career because we thrive on the excitement, the challenge, and the madness that happens on the wedding day. We live to solve problems, keep everything on time, and manage 20+ vendors without breaking a sweat. If you can handle stress AND keep your cool, this will be a great career for you.
Do you feel physically and mentally strong enough to plan and coordinate a wedding with potentially challenging couples and families ?
3) Do I want to learn a new career?
Some people plan their own wedding and decide to become a wedding planner the next day. There is a significant difference between planning your own wedding and working with a paying client to plan their wedding. The family dynamics, knowledge of reputable vendors, properly coordinating a wedding day, cultivating an eye for design, creating detailed and correct wedding day timelines , knowing what to look for when reviewing vendor contracts, knowing what to do before/during/after vendor meetings, and creating and managing a wedding budget with someone else’s money are all tasks that need to be learned and refined to be a successful wedding planner.
If you would like to start your own wedding planning business, you will also be learning how to run a business. In addition to ensuring you have all the steps covered to legally start your business, you will learn how to market your business to get clients, be able to price and package your wedding planning services properly , invoice and bill clients, attend networking events, balance your financial records, hire and manage staff, and much more.
Just like any career or new business, it takes time and learning. Luckily, wedding planning happens to be a very fun career to learn! There are many educational resources for wedding planners such as books , online courses , private coaching , conferences, college courses, downloadable templates , and more.
4) Am I naturally good at multitasking and staying organized?
Being a wedding planner takes multi-tasking and organization to a whole new level. Not only will you have to multi-task and remember the many details about your client’s events, you have to think and act quickly.
During the wedding planning process, you could be working with 10-20 different couples at a time. If you aren’t organized, it will show in your work and in your reputation. If you are working with 10 couples to plan their wedding and each couple has at least 10 wedding vendors, you may be communicating with over 100 different people in a week!
In this career, you have to be on the ball ALL the time. Juggling many weddings, each with its own set of vendors, can be daunting for even the most organized of wedding planners.
Do you tend to keep your life and the work well organized? Can you multitask when needed? Do you like to plan events and parties in general? These are important traits to have as a professional wedding planner.
Challenges To Expect as a Wedding Planner
Before leaping into a career as a wedding planner, there are some challenges you can expect, especially if you haven’t worked in the events industry before.
Another challenge is deciding what education you need. There are wedding planner courses, wedding industry conferences , business conferences, marketing classes, coaching and mentoring programs , and many other resources available for your wedding planner education . Take time to evaluate all the opportunities and the investment required for each of them before making a decision.
While certification in wedding planning is not required , it can give you credibility and knowledge if you do not have previous experience in the wedding industry. There is no set path to become a wedding planner. If you ask ten successful wedding planners how they got started, you will get ten completely different answers.
One final challenge you might encounter on your path to becoming a wedding planner is the financial expectations you have for this career. Most successful wedding planners have sustained a long-term career because of their passion for planning events and for helping couples plan one of the biggest days in their lives.
Successful event planners are driven by a passion for what they do, not by financial gain. Many wedding planners support themselves and their families with their wedding planning career, however, it is unusual to become financially wealthy through a career in wedding planning.
You can read more about income as a wedding planner in our wedding planner salary post. It takes years of hard work to build a reputation and strong business as a wedding planner. The good news is that once you build your reputation and network, you will reap the rewards of your hard work for years to come.
5 Ways Start Marketing Your Wedding Planning Business
There are many ways to market your wedding planning business. These are the most common marketing strategies used by wedding professionals.
1) Invest in a Professional Website
One of the most important things to invest in when you become a wedding planner is a professional website. Since most wedding planners start out working from a home office, your website is your storefront. It is often the first impression that a potential client sees for your business. Invest as much as you can afford for your website.
2) Build Relationships
Building relationships with vendors, planners, and venues who can refer business to you is a key marketing tactic for wedding planners. Search online for local event industry organizations to find out about upcoming networking meetings and events that you can attend.
You can also reach out to other industry professionals and invite them to meet for coffee or at their studio or office. During the meeting, you can ask questions about their services and can also share information about your business.
When you are starting out, you will be building a list of your recommended event professionals to use with future clients as well as letting other business owners know what wedding planning services you offer so they can refer business to you.
If there are a few popular wedding venues in your area, call and schedule a tour of each property with the events manager so that you can get a good feel for the venues and introduce yourself and your business to the staff.
3) Use Social Media Effectively
Social media is impossible to ignore these days. Wedding planning is a visual process for most engaged couples. Being active and engaging on social media platforms such as Instagram and Pinterest are great ways to market your business as a new wedding planner. If you have a blog for your wedding planning business , you can use social media to gain more exposure for the content you share on your blog.
Not only can you share your ideas and expertise, but you can also share photos from your events, testimonials from clients, information about a workshop or conference you attended, and much more. Social media also makes it easy to connect with others in the wedding industry.
4) Pay for Online Advertising
Paid online advertising is another way to market your wedding planning business. Websites such as the Knot.com and WeddingWire.com have paid advertising options for wedding planners. There may be local wedding blogs and websites based on weddings in your city or state that have paid advertising options. You can also invest in Google Ads, Facebook Ads, Instagram Ads, and Pinterest Ads.
5) Get Your Work Published
Having your weddings, photo shoots , and events published online and in print is a great way to gain traction with your wedding planning business. Not only do you get potential leads from engaged couples who read the publication, you can gain trust and jump start your reputation by promoting the fact that you have had your work published.
There isn’t a right or wrong way to market your wedding planning business . Try out different tactics until you find what brings you the most business. Keep in mind that building relationships with venues and vendors takes time to show a return on investment. Once those relationships are established and you become a trusted planner in your market, these relationships can provide you with referrals for years to come.
More Tools and Resources For Wedding and Event Planning
There are many great tools and resources available online for wedding and event planners. The Planner’s Lounge is the first place to start. Planner’s Lounge is a community and resource site for wedding and event planners to relax, talk, learn, and inspire.
If you found this article helpful, check out the Very Important Planners (VIP) Lounge ! Inside our private community, you will find more curated content and a group of wedding planners ready to support you!
The Wedding Planner’s Toolbox
Pricing With Confidence: Secrets to Profitable Pricing and Services for Professional Wedding Planners
25 Steps to Start Your Own Wedding Planning Business
The Complete Wedding Budget Guide for Wedding Planners
The Ultimate Business Success Checklist for Wedding Planners
Becoming a wedding planner is an exciting and fun adventure, and I hope I can help you. Take time to read through this article again and click on the links to read more resources to help you start and grow your wedding planner career!
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Having the skill set to be organized, friendly, prompt, and a great communicator are traits that make up the best event planners, and these are the people you want managing your wedding.
Really amazing post i will defiantly help me to move forward in my life.
Thank you for sharing the valuable information.
The job of a wedding planner seems quite challenging. Many women today aspire to take up unique professions and this blog may just inspire some to become wedding planners. It will help to give a clear picture and help them achieve their dream goal. Thanks for sharing such an informative post.
Thank you for commenting!
[…] 10) Advice From The Experts […]
[…] you have a strong desire to become a wedding planner, it can be challenging to gain relevant wedding planning experience in the […]
[…] Being a wedding planner is a fun, challenging, and sometimes stressful career. You are running the business, constantly marketing to entice new clients, planning events for current clients, managing staff, and trying to stay on top of the latest industry news and trends. […]
[…] Being a wedding planner also has great perks such as being invited to all the industry parties, going to uber fun conferences and staying at incredible hotels while you “tour” the event space. We also get to work with wonderful clients on one of the most important days in their life. […]
[…] you become a wedding and event planner and run your own business, there are many things to learn about wedding planner services pricing […]
Wonderful tips indeed! Most planners when they start off do exactly the opposite the tips provided above. I’m so glad we got this clear 🙂
Wonderful tips! I especially love the tip about paid online ads. Most wedding professionals are scared to invest in ads early on and take too long to generate cashflow from referrals alone!
[…] for wedding and event planners to relax, talk, learn, and inspire. Whether you are just learning how to become a wedding planner or you are a seasoned pro, Planner’s Lounge empowers you with the tools and resources needed to […]
Wonderful tips! I’m definitely sending all my colleagues to check out this post 🙂 Great work!!
Thank you for your comments!
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Wedding Planning Business
Back to All Business Ideas
How to Start a Wedding Planning Business
Written by: Carolyn Young
Carolyn Young is a business writer who focuses on entrepreneurial concepts and the business formation. She has over 25 years of experience in business roles, and has authored several entrepreneurship textbooks.
Edited by: David Lepeska
David has been writing and learning about business, finance and globalization for a quarter-century, starting with a small New York consulting firm in the 1990s.
Published on February 7, 2022 Updated on December 1, 2023
$2,250 - $7,600
$36,000 - $120,000 p.a.
Time to build
0 – 3 months
$32,000 - $72,000 p.a.
Oh, that big day that children dream about. The day when they get to be the star and marry the person of their dreams. It has to be perfect! But planning that perfect day can be a monumental task. In comes the wedding planner to (hopefully) make it the best day of their lives. If you’re someone who loves that planning process, why not turn it into money in your pocket? You can start your own wedding planning business for just a small investment.
First, however, you have to go through the planning process for your business. You’ll need knowledge about the process to do so, and it’s your lucky day! This step-by-step guide is chock full of tips and insights to put you on the path to becoming a successful wedding planner.
Step by Step Business values real-life experience above all. Through our Entrepreneur Spotlight Series , we interview business leaders from diverse industries, providing readers with firsthand insights.
Uncover wedding planning tips in our interview with Epic Elopements’ founder, Amber Sironen-Massey.
Looking to register your business? A limited liability company (LLC) is the best legal structure for new businesses because it is fast and simple.
Form your business immediately using ZenBusiness LLC formation service or hire one of the Best LLC Services .
Step 1: Decide if the Business Is Right for You
Pros and cons.
Starting a wedding planning business has pros and cons to consider before deciding if it’s right for you.
- Bring Joy to Brides! – Make wedding dreams come true
- Good Money – Get paid 10% to 20% of the total wedding cost
- Flexibility – Run the business from home
- Bridezillas – The wedding day has to be perfect!
- Weekend Work – Long weekend wedding days
Wedding planning industry trends
Industry size and growth.
- Industry size and past growth – The US wedding planning industry is valued at just under $900 million. The industry has decreased annually by 7% per year for the last five years but is still big enough to offer opportunities.(( https://www.ibisworld.com/industry-statistics/market-size/wedding-planners-united-states/ ))
- Growth forecast – The global wedding services market, which includes planning, is predicted to grow around 5% yearly through 2030.(( https://www.alliedmarketresearch.com/wedding-services-market-A15864 ))
- Number of businesses – More than 20,000 wedding planners operate in the US.(( https://www.ibisworld.com/industry-statistics/number-of-businesses/wedding-planners-united-states/ ))
- Number of people employed – The industry employs more than 25,000 people.(( https://www.ibisworld.com/industry-statistics/employment/wedding-planners-united-states/ ))
Trends and challenges
Trends in wedding planning include:
- Wedding themes are being influenced by pop culture, including shows like Bridgerton.
- Weddings are becoming increasingly non-traditional, sometimes with “wear what you want” rules.
- Unsurprisingly, eco-friendly weddings are trending, with recyclable materials used for as many wedding accoutrements as possible.
Challenges in the wedding planning industry include:
- In the wake of the pandemic, people are opting for smaller guest lists, reducing fees for wedding planners.
- Many online wedding planning sites have popped up, creating new competition for traditional wedding planners.
What kind of people work as wedding planners?
- Gender – 90% of wedding planners in the US are female, while 10% are male.(( https://www.zippia.com/wedding-planner-jobs/demographics/#gender-statistics ))
- Average level of education – 71% have a bachelor’s degree and 13% hold an associate degree.(( https://www.zippia.com/wedding-planner-jobs/demographics/#degree-level-types ))
- Average age – The average age of a wedding planner is 37 years old.(( https://www.zippia.com/wedding-planner-jobs/demographics/#age-statistics ))
How much does it cost to start a wedding planning business?
Startup costs for a wedding planning business range from $2,000 to $5,000. The largest costs are for a website and an initial marketing budget.
How much can you earn from a wedding planning business?
You can charge between 10% to 20% of the total cost of the wedding, for an average of 15%. The average wedding costs $20,000, so you should earn about $3,000 per wedding. Your expenses will be limited, so you should expect a profit margin of about 90%.
In your first year or two, you could work from home and plan 12 weddings, bringing in $36,000 in annual revenue. This would mean over $32,000 in clear profit, assuming that 90% margin. As you begin to get traction and referrals, that could increase to 40 weddings a year. At this stage, you might hire a staff, reducing your profit margin to 60%. With annual revenue of $120,000, you would make a cool $72,000.
What barriers to entry are there?
There are a few barriers to entry for a wedding planning business. Your biggest challenges will be:
- Having great planning skills
- Facing competition, particularly from online wedding planning services
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Step 2: hone your idea.
Now that you know what’s involved in starting a wedding planning business, it’s a good idea to hone your concept in preparation to enter a competitive market.
Market research will give you the upper hand, even if you’re already positive that you have a perfect product or service. Conducting market research is important, because it can help you understand your customers better, who your competitors are, and your business landscape.
Why? Identify an opportunity
Research wedding planning businesses in your area to examine their services, price points, and customer reviews. You’re looking for a market gap to fill. For instance, maybe the local market is missing a wedding planner who handles deliveries to the event.
You might consider targeting a niche market by specializing in a certain aspect of your industry, such as non-traditional weddings.
This could jumpstart your word-of-mouth marketing and attract clients right away.
What? Determine your services
Make a list of all the tasks that you will handle for the wedding. You might consider making different packages of services at different price points.
How much should you charge for wedding planning?
Generally, wedding planners are paid 10% to 20% of the total cost of the wedding. Your expenses will be limited to marketing and fuel for travel. You should aim for a profit margin of about 90%.
Once you know your costs, you can use this Step By Step profit margin calculator to determine your mark-up and final price point. Remember, the prices you use at launch should be subject to change if warranted by the market.
Who? Identify your target market
Your target market will be primarily brides and parents of the bride, which makes it a very broad market. You should spread out your marketing to include sites like TikTok, Instagram, and Facebook.
Where? Choose your business premises
In the early stages, you may want to run your business from home to keep costs low. But as your business grows, you’ll likely need to hire workers for various roles and may need to rent out an office. Find commercial space to rent in your area on sites such as Craigslist , Crexi , and Instant Offices .
When choosing a commercial space, you may want to follow these rules of thumb:
- Central location accessible via public transport
- Ventilated and spacious, with good natural light
- Flexible lease that can be extended as your business grows
- Ready-to-use space with no major renovations or repairs needed
Step 3: Brainstorm a Wedding Planning Business Name
Your business name is your business identity, so choose one that encapsulates your objectives, services, and mission in just a few words. You probably want a name that’s short and easy to remember, since much of your business, and your initial business in particular, will come from word-of-mouth referrals.
Here are some ideas for brainstorming your business name:
- Short, unique, and catchy names tend to stand out
- Names that are easy to say and spell tend to do better
- Name should be relevant to your product or service offerings
- Ask around — family, friends, colleagues, social media — for suggestions
- Including keywords, such as “wedding planner” or “wedding planning”, boosts SEO
- Name should allow for expansion, for ex: “Dream Day Planners” over “Vintage Vows Wedding Planning”
- Avoid location-based names that might hinder future expansion
- Use online tools like the Step by Step Business Name Generator . Just type in a few keywords and hit “generate” and you’ll have dozens of suggestions at your fingertips.
Once you’ve got a list of potential names, visit the website of the US Patent and Trademark Office to make sure they are available for registration and check the availability of related domain names using our Domain Name Search tool. Using “.com” or “.org” sharply increases credibility, so it’s best to focus on these.
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Finally, make your choice among the names that pass this screening and go ahead with domain registration and social media account creation. Your business name is one of the key differentiators that set your business apart. Once you pick your company name, and start with the branding, it is hard to change the business name. Therefore, it’s important to carefully consider your choice before you start a business entity.
Step 4: Create a Wedding Planning Business Plan
Every business needs a plan. This will function as a guidebook to take your startup through the launch process and maintain focus on your key goals. A business plan also enables potential partners and investors to better understand your company and its vision:
- Executive Summary: Highlight the main goals and strategies of your wedding planning business, focusing on offering personalized, comprehensive wedding coordination services.
- Business Overview: Describe your business’s focus on planning and organizing weddings, including venue selection, vendor coordination, and event design.
- Product and Services: Detail the range of services offered, such as full wedding planning, day-of coordination, and consultation services for couples.
- Market Analysis: Assess the demand for wedding planning services, identifying target markets like engaged couples, wedding venues, or event suppliers.
- Competitive Analysis: Compare your services to other local wedding planners, focusing on your unique offerings like specialized themes, personalized service, or budget management.
- Sales and Marketing: Outline your strategy for attracting clients, using methods like bridal shows, social media marketing, or partnerships with wedding vendors.
- Management Team: Highlight the experience and qualifications of your team, especially in event planning, customer service, and vendor relations.
- Operations Plan: Describe the operational process of planning weddings, from initial consultations and concept development to execution on the wedding day.
- Financial Plan: Provide an overview of financial aspects, including startup costs, pricing strategy, and income projections.
- Appendix: Include supplementary documents such as portfolio photos, client testimonials, or vendor agreements to support your business plan.
If you’ve never created a business plan, it can be an intimidating task. You might consider hiring a business plan specialist to create a top-notch business plan for you.
Step 5: Register Your Business
Registering your business is an absolutely crucial step — it’s the prerequisite to paying taxes, raising capital, opening a bank account, and other guideposts on the road to getting a business up and running.
Plus, registration is exciting because it makes the entire process official. Once it’s complete, you’ll have your own business!
Choose where to register your company
Your business location is important because it can affect taxes, legal requirements, and revenue. Most people will register their business in the state where they live, but if you are planning to expand, you might consider looking elsewhere, as some states could offer real advantages when it comes to wedding planning businesses.
If you’re willing to move, you could really maximize your business! Keep in mind, it’s relatively easy to transfer your business to another state.
Choose your business structure
Business entities come in several varieties, each with its pros and cons. The legal structure you choose for your wedding planning business will shape your taxes, personal liability, and business registration requirements, so choose wisely.
Here are the main options:
- Sole Proprietorship – The most common structure for small businesses makes no legal distinction between company and owner. All income goes to the owner, who’s also liable for any debts, losses, or liabilities incurred by the business. The owner pays taxes on business income on his or her personal tax return.
- General Partnership – Similar to a sole proprietorship, but for two or more people. Again, owners keep the profits and are liable for losses. The partners pay taxes on their share of business income on their personal tax returns.
- Limited Liability Company (LLC) – Combines the characteristics of corporations with those of sole proprietorships or partnerships. Again, the owners are not personally liable for debts.
- C Corp – Under this structure, the business is a distinct legal entity and the owner or owners are not personally liable for its debts. Owners take profits through shareholder dividends, rather than directly. The corporation pays taxes, and owners pay taxes on their dividends, which is sometimes referred to as double taxation.
- S Corp – An S-Corporation refers to the tax classification of the business but is not a business entity. An S-Corp can be either a corporation or an LLC , which just needs to elect to be an S-Corp for tax status. In an S-Corp, income is passed through directly to shareholders, who pay taxes on their share of business income on their personal tax returns.
We recommend that new business owners choose LLC as it offers liability protection and pass-through taxation while being simpler to form than a corporation. You can form an LLC in as little as five minutes using an online LLC formation service. They will check that your business name is available before filing, submit your articles of organization , and answer any questions you might have.
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Step 6: Register for Taxes
The final step before you’re able to pay taxes is getting an Employer Identification Number , or EIN. You can file for your EIN online or by mail or fax: visit the IRS website to learn more. Keep in mind, if you’ve chosen to be a sole proprietorship you can simply use your social security number as your EIN.
Once you have your EIN, you’ll need to choose your tax year. Financially speaking, your business will operate in a calendar year (January–December) or a fiscal year, a 12-month period that can start in any month. This will determine your tax cycle, while your business structure will determine which taxes you’ll pay.
The IRS website also offers a tax-payers checklist , and taxes can be filed online.
It is important to consult an accountant or other professional to help you with your taxes to ensure you are completing them correctly.
Step 7: Fund your Business
Securing financing is your next step and there are plenty of ways to raise capital:
- Bank loans: This is the most common method but getting approved requires a rock-solid business plan and strong credit history.
- SBA-guaranteed loans: The Small Business Administration can act as guarantor, helping gain that elusive bank approval via an SBA-guaranteed loan .
- Government grants: A handful of financial assistance programs help fund entrepreneurs. Visit Grants.gov to learn which might work for you.
- Friends and Family: Reach out to friends and family to provide a business loan or investment in your concept. It’s a good idea to have legal advice when doing so because SEC regulations apply.
- Crowdfunding: Websites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo offer an increasingly popular low-risk option, in which donors fund your vision. Entrepreneurial crowdfunding sites like Fundable and WeFunder enable multiple investors to fund your business.
- Personal: Self-fund your business via your savings or the sale of property or other assets.
Bank and SBA loans are probably the best options, other than friends and family, for funding a wedding planning business. You might also try crowdfunding if you have an innovative concept.
Step 8: Apply for Licenses/Permits
Starting a wedding planning business requires obtaining a number of licenses and permits from local, state, and federal governments.
Federal regulations, licenses, and permits associated with starting your business include doing business as (DBA), health licenses and permits from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration ( OSHA ), trademarks, copyrights, patents, and other intellectual properties, as well as industry-specific licenses and permits.
You may also need state-level and local county or city-based licenses and permits. The license requirements and how to obtain them vary, so check the websites of your state, city, and county governments or contact the appropriate person to learn more.
You could also check this SBA guide for your state’s requirements, but we recommend using MyCorporation’s Business License Compliance Package . They will research the exact forms you need for your business and state and provide them to ensure you’re fully compliant.
This is not a step to be taken lightly, as failing to comply with legal requirements can result in hefty penalties.
If you feel overwhelmed by this step or don’t know how to begin, it might be a good idea to hire a professional to help you check all the legal boxes.
Step 9: Open a Business Bank Account
Before you start making money, you’ll need a place to keep it, and that requires opening a bank account .
Keeping your business finances separate from your personal account makes it easy to file taxes and track your company’s income, so it’s worth doing even if you’re running your wedding planning business as a sole proprietorship. Opening a business bank account is quite simple, and similar to opening a personal one. Most major banks offer accounts tailored for businesses — just inquire at your preferred bank to learn about their rates and features.
Banks vary in terms of offerings, so it’s a good idea to examine your options and select the best plan for you. Once you choose your bank, bring in your EIN (or Social Security Number if you decide on a sole proprietorship), articles of incorporation, and other legal documents and open your new account.
Step 10: Get Business Insurance
Business insurance is an area that often gets overlooked yet it can be vital to your success as an entrepreneur. Insurance protects you from unexpected events that can have a devastating impact on your business.
Here are some types of insurance to consider:
- General liability: The most comprehensive type of insurance, acting as a catch-all for many business elements that require coverage. If you get just one kind of insurance, this is it. It even protects against bodily injury and property damage.
- Business Property: Provides coverage for your equipment and supplies.
- Equipment Breakdown Insurance: Covers the cost of replacing or repairing equipment that has broken due to mechanical issues.
- Worker’s compensation: Provides compensation to employees injured on the job.
- Property: Covers your physical space, whether it is a cart, storefront, or office.
- Commercial auto: Protection for your company-owned vehicle.
- Professional liability: Protects against claims from a client who says they suffered a loss due to an error or omission in your work.
- Business owner’s policy (BOP): This is an insurance plan that acts as an all-in-one insurance policy, a combination of the above insurance types.
Step 11: Prepare to Launch
As opening day nears, prepare for launch by reviewing and improving some key elements of your business.
Essential software and tools
Being an entrepreneur often means wearing many hats, from marketing to sales to accounting, which can be overwhelming. Fortunately, many websites and digital tools are available to help simplify many business tasks.
You may want to use industry-specific software, such as HoneyBook , Aisle Planner , or bloom , to manage bookings, workflows, contracts, and payments.
- Popular web-based accounting programs for smaller businesses include Quickbooks , Freshbooks , and Xero .
- If you’re unfamiliar with basic accounting, you may want to hire a professional, especially as you begin. The consequences for filing incorrect tax documents can be harsh, so accuracy is crucial.
Develop your website
Website development is crucial because your site is your online presence and needs to convince prospective clients of your expertise and professionalism.
You can create your own website using services like WordPress, Wix, or Squarespace . This route is very affordable, but figuring out how to build a website can be time-consuming. If you lack tech-savvy, you can hire a web designer or developer to create a custom website for your business.
They are unlikely to find your website, however, unless you follow Search Engine Optimization ( SEO ) practices. These are steps that help pages rank higher in the results of top search engines like Google.
Congratulations on embarking on the exciting journey of starting a wedding planning business! To ensure your venture thrives, consider these effective marketing strategies beyond the obvious website and networking approaches.
- Social Media Campaigns: Leverage platforms like Instagram and Pinterest to showcase your portfolio, share real wedding stories, and engage with potential clients through visually appealing content.
- Collaborate with Local Vendors: Forge partnerships with local florists, photographers, and catering services, creating a mutually beneficial referral network that enhances your credibility and widens your reach.
- Host Free Workshops or Webinars: Position yourself as an expert by organizing workshops or webinars on wedding planning tips, trends, and budgeting, establishing trust with potential clients and showcasing your expertise.
- Offer Limited-Time Promotions: Create a sense of urgency and attract clients by offering limited-time promotions or discounts for early bookings or bundled services, encouraging couples to secure your services promptly.
- Collect and Showcase Testimonials: Encourage satisfied clients to leave testimonials and reviews, then strategically showcase them on your marketing materials and social media to build trust and credibility with potential clients.
- Targeted Local Advertising: Invest in targeted online and offline advertising in local publications, community boards, or social media groups to specifically reach your target audience in the geographical area you serve.
- Participate in Bridal Shows: Set up a booth at bridal shows to directly engage with couples planning their weddings, offering them a glimpse of your services, and collecting leads for future follow-ups.
- Create a Blog: Share valuable content on a blog related to wedding planning, offering advice, inspiration, and behind-the-scenes insights to establish yourself as an authority in the industry and improve your website’s SEO.
- Utilize Influencer Marketing: Collaborate with local influencers or bloggers in the wedding industry to reach a wider audience and gain credibility through their endorsement of your services.
- Implement a Referral Program: Encourage satisfied clients to refer your services by implementing a referral program, rewarding them for each successful referral, thereby creating a word-of-mouth marketing engine for your business.
Focus on USPs
Unique selling propositions, or USPs, are the characteristics of a product or service that sets it apart from the competition. Customers today are inundated with buying options, so you’ll have a real advantage if they are able to quickly grasp how your wedding planning business meets their needs or wishes. It’s wise to do all you can to ensure your USPs stand out on your website and in your marketing and promotional materials, stimulating buyer desire.
Global pizza chain Domino’s is renowned for its USP: “Hot pizza in 30 minutes or less, guaranteed.” Signature USPs for your wedding planning business could be:
- Non-traditional weddings to fit your unique style
- Eco-friendly weddings to keep our earth healthy
- Short timeline? The perfect wedding on time, guaranteed
You may not like to network or use personal connections for business gain. But your personal and professional networks likely offer considerable untapped business potential. Maybe that Facebook friend you met in college is now running a wedding planning business, or a LinkedIn contact of yours is connected to dozens of potential clients. Maybe your cousin or neighbor has been working in wedding planning for years and can offer invaluable insight and industry connections.
The possibilities are endless, so it’s a good idea to review your personal and professional networks and reach out to those with possible links to or interest in wedding planning. You’ll probably generate new customers or find companies with which you could establish a partnership.
Step 12: Build Your Team
If you’re starting out small from a home office, you may not need any employees. But as your business grows, you will likely need workers to fill various roles. Potential positions for a wedding planning business include:
- Wedding Assistants – assist with planning, wedding setup
- Delivery Drivers – deliver items to weddings
- Marketing Lead – SEO strategies, social media, other marketing
At some point, you may need to hire all of these positions or simply a few, depending on the size and needs of your business. You might also hire multiple workers for a single role or a single worker for multiple roles, again depending on need.
Free-of-charge methods to recruit employees include posting ads on popular platforms such as LinkedIn, Facebook, or Jobs.com. You might also consider a premium recruitment option, such as advertising on Indeed , Glassdoor , or ZipRecruiter . Further, if you have the resources, you could consider hiring a recruitment agency to help you find talent.
Step 13: Run a Wedding Planning Business – Start Making Money!
Making a client’s wedding day perfect can be a very rewarding experience. You take care of the details, and let the bride be the star. A wedding planning business can be a very lucrative venture, and as your business grows you can make some good money. You could even have a whole team working for you while you handle the high-level details and supervise the events from the rehearsal dinner to the wedding day and the next day brunch.
Now you’re prepared, so you can put your plans into action and get ready to launch your wedding planning adventure!
- Wedding Planning Business FAQs
Yes, a wedding planning business can be profitable. You’ll need to market yourself before you start to make money, but once you get some traction, you’ll have very few expenses so most of the money you make will stay in your pocket.
Generally, wedding planners charge between 10% to 20% of the total cost of the wedding. If you charge an average of 15%, for a $20,000 wedding, you’ll make $3,000.
To stay organized and manage multiple weddings simultaneously, create a detailed timeline and checklist for each event, and use project management tools and software to track progress and deadlines. Communicate clearly with clients, vendors, and staff, and delegate tasks effectively to ensure that everyone is working towards the same goal.
The key skills and qualities needed to become a successful wedding planner include excellent communication and interpersonal skills, attention to detail, creativity, problem-solving skills, time management, and the ability to work under pressure.
To differentiate your wedding planning business from competitors in the market, focus on developing a unique brand identity and marketing strategy that highlights your strengths and values. Offer personalized and customized services that cater to the specific needs and preferences of each client, and provide exceptional customer service and support throughout the planning process.
Yes, you can start a wedding planning business on the side by identifying your target market, developing a service offering and pricing strategy, and creating a strong online presence. Build a portfolio of work samples and showcase your expertise through online marketing and networking. Ensure that you can balance your time and resources effectively between your full-time job and your side business, and consider hiring assistants or coordinators to help with the workload.
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- Decide if the Business Is Right for You
- Hone Your Idea
- Brainstorm a Wedding Planning Business Name
- Create a Wedding Planning Business Plan
- Register Your Business
- Register for Taxes
- Fund your Business
- Apply for Licenses/Permits
- Open a Business Bank Account
- Get Business Insurance
- Prepare to Launch
- Build Your Team
- Run a Wedding Planning Business - Start Making Money!
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How To Start Your Wedding Planner Business In 2023?
A Wedding is an important event in which people willingly spend a huge sum of money to ensure everything is in order. Wedding planning involves venue selection, flower decoration, DJ or band hiring, photographers booking, menu selection, bridal dress selection, and a lot more things that are difficult to manage. Here, wedding planners come to the rescue.
In the last decade, the steep growth in wedding planners’ market size is experienced, that’s expected to become $1.2 billion by 2023 in the USA. Post-corona, the wedding market size, and revenue get a facelift but the Russia-Ukraine war influence is projected to revise by 2028.
Millennials and high-class people are increasingly employing wedding planners to make their special day- very special. Have you decided to start your wedding planning business? Do you want to work with big clients, get featured in magazines, and be recognized as one of the top wedding planners globally? If so, you need to learn how to start your wedding business.
Here we have come up with a guide that helps you build a profitable and scalable wedding planning business. Take a deep dive to stay on the right track and grow your wedding planner business gradually.
How can you set up a wedding planning business in 10 steps?
The 10-step guide helps wedding business planners to get started effortlessly and market their business to grow boundlessly. The steps are-
Perform market research to know your ideal client
Establishing the goals for the wedding planning business is all-important as they change over time, which requires plan changes as well. For instance, you are planning for a celebrity wedding, a millennial wedding, a destination wedding, or small-class people wedding business. After selecting one of the options, industry research is vital.
Under the market research umbrella, you should be ready with a list of questions- how can I get the first customers, know the minimum expectations of the target customers, and how to get started? The research help in building a solid foundation for the business. Thereafter select the right business models based on your business needs.
Brush up wedding planning skills
The budding entrepreneurs willing to start a wedding planning business with no prior experience need formal training to acquire the necessary skills to become wedding planners. You can join organizations that provide wedding planner certifications or join online courses for wedding planners hosted by wedding professionals. Also, assisting local wedding planners in their wedding planning events is a pro tip to gain experience.
You need to learn about customer service, marketing, finance management, and other event planning topics. Join networking events organized for event planners and wedding professionals and learn them face-to-face.
Select a wedding planning business niche
The business to plan a wedding comprises different wedding planning services that you should select before you get into the details of business planning and its setup. Majorly, wedding planners opt to provide the wedding planning service in three different packages that are-
Full-Service Wedding Planning
This type of business offers comprehensive planning and coordination services from start to finish. They handle every aspect of the wedding planning process, from vendor selection and negotiation to day-of coordination. Different types of this include traditional wedding planners, extreme wedding planners, and budget-friendly wedding planners.
Wedding Day Coordinator
As the name suggests, the coordinator is responsible for overseeing all the details and getting all the necessary assistance for all the events of your wedding day to ensure that everything runs smoothly. They usually come on board a few weeks before the wedding day to ensure all plans are in place and executed perfectly on the big day.
Partial Wedding Planning
This type of wedding business provides support for specific aspects of the wedding planning process, such as vendor selection, budget management, or timeline creation. This option is ideal for couples who have already completed a significant amount of planning but still need help with certain tasks.
Destination Wedding Planning
This wedding business specializes in planning weddings at exotic locations, both domestically and internationally. They have the expertise and knowledge to help you navigate the unique challenges of planning a wedding away from home.
Luxury Wedding Planning
The business providing luxury wedding planning is an expert in creating extravagant and elegant weddings. They have access to the best vendors, suppliers, and venues, and provide their clients with personalized, top-of-the-line service.
Niche Wedding Planning
This type of wedding business specializes in a specific type of wedding, such as beach weddings, eco-friendly weddings, or LGBTQ+ weddings. They have in-depth knowledge of the challenges and opportunities associated with their niche and can provide tailored planning and coordination services.
Create a business plan
When you have got the necessary training for the business of planning a wedding and decided on the wedding planning services to offer, it’s time to create a solid business plan that helps in building the business from scratch. Basically, a business plan includes- business information, wedding planning services, management strategy, financial plans, and marketing strategies that create a roadmap that helps in making the business profitable.
The business illustrates the goal of starting a wedding planning business, identifies target customers, creates financial plans to arrange funds, revenue models to make money, and much more. The business plan helps in comprehending business structure, which further determines if you need a business license, need to open a business bank account and pick up a business name.
Also Read: How to choose the best Business Plan for your startup?
Register the wedding planner business
The wedding planning business registration is critical to becoming a legal entity to run the business glitch-free. The wedding planner business can opt to register as a sole proprietorship, general/limited company, or limited liability company. Generally, small wedding planner businesses prefer to be registered as LLCs. If you are unsure about this, hire an attorney for the required consultation.
When the business structure is chosen, the business name is selected that’s available as the domain in the region gets registered with local authorities. Not to forget, obtain EIN (Employee identification number) even if your business is a one-person business because gradually as your wedding planner business grows, you need to scale the staff. EIN helps in filing taxes, opening a bank account, getting business insurance, and other business necessities.
Create a business account
Keeping the business account and personal account transactions is healthy for your wedding planner’s business growth. The EIN helps in getting a business credit card or business bank account. When wedding planners need to set up their business, they work either from a home-based office or working out of the house to buy décor or marketing products.
When wedding planners are outside, having a business credit card helps them complete the purchases easily. In the same vein, having a business credit card helps in filing for tax seamlessly and increase business credit score.
Raise required funds
Regardless of the size of the wedding planning startup you are launching and the place from where you are operating the business- a home-based office or business space, you definitely have some expenses to start a wedding planner business. You need funds to start a new venture when you don’t have enough savings to cover the initial cost.
You can opt for getting a business loan, raise funds by showcasing the business plan to investors, and get interest-free APR business credit cards. The latter option is preferable as it allows wedding planners to set up their business cost-effectively without any burden of interest.
Build a wedding planning business that gets noticed and market it
The wedding business requires showing visual proof to the prospects that make customers stop in their tracks. Create and publish a logo on your wedding planner website that’s unique and memorable. Place the design elements aptly that make the brand visually appealing.
Take care of the brand’s voice and tone with contextual content even on social media. It is to be made sure that the wedding planner business looks professional and communicates wedding planner services to potential prospects well.
A better idea here is to get an app developed for your wedding planner business that will ensure your customers that every aspect will be looked into in the most appropriate manner.
It will include features wherein customers can check the available options for all their requirements and be timely notified of the preparations made for every wedding function. Thus the app development for wedding planning will strengthen customers’ trust in the brand.
Brand building is accompanied by business marketing to continuously draw in maximum customers and convert them at scale. To summarize the branding and marketing aspect here’s a tried and tested approach to promote and market wedding planner business services-
Get a website built for a wedding planning startup
Enable online presence by opting for quality web development and adding a business name to My Google business page that improves organic traffic. It is suggested to first build a website and get a response on how it is working and what changes are required. Then based on the budget you have in hand you can plan to top it up with a mobile app.
Harness social power for wedding planning startup
Create social media pages on various social platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, or Pinterest where people are searching for wedding planning business services. The insights from social platforms help in improving marketing strategies.
Power wedding planning startup with mobile app
As people spend more time on their mobile phones, event management app development is on the rise. It makes perfect sense to get build a mobile app that enables business owners to view potential venues, manage appointments with calendars, connect with clients, and plan budgets at their fingertips.
Publish reviews of weddings planned
Publish the reviews of the existing customers on the website and social platforms that inform the people about unique services that are well-liked by the customers.
Start a wedding planning blog
Begin publishing blogs on the website or even start guest blogging for leading wedding planner magazines or blogs that helps in spreading the word about your business.
Find Trusted vendors to cater to all needs of the wedding business
When you are starting a business to plan weddings it is crucially important to locate and establish relationships with vendors and suppliers in the wedding industry who can provide the products and services you need to plan and execute successful weddings. These vendors might include florists, caterers, photographers, musicians, and other professionals who play a role in creating the wedding day experience and making the occasion memorable.
Having trusted vendors is important for a wedding planning startup because it ensures that the products and services you offer your clients are of high quality and reliable. It also helps to build trust and credibility with your clients, as they know that they can count on you to provide them with the best possible wedding day experience. Building relationships with trusted vendors can take time, but it is a critical aspect of starting and growing a successful wedding planning startup business.
Create wedding concepts to help clients visualize
When starting a wedding planning startup being creative, innovative, and unique are the utmost required skills that clients ask for before all. So to be a step ahead developing unique and creative ideas for weddings should work well. Creating wedding concepts is an important aspect of starting a wedding planning business not only helps you to stand out from other planners but also offers your clients to visualize something truly unique and memorable.
A wedding concept is essentially a theme or vision for a wedding, which can guide all aspects of the planning process, from the decor and color scheme to the menu and entertainment. Clients often look to wedding planners for inspiration and guidance, and having a variety of well-defined wedding concepts can make it easier to attract and retain clients.
When developing wedding concepts, it’s important to consider your target audience and their preferences, as well as current trends in the wedding industry. You should also take into account the availability and cost of different vendors and suppliers, as well as the logistics of executing each concept. With careful planning and creativity, developing wedding concepts can be a rewarding and lucrative aspect of starting a wedding planning startup.
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Do it yourself- launch your wedding planner business
The business of planning a wedding is a profitable one and doesn’t require you to have any degree to start the business right away. Hold on! To survive and thrive in the lucrative market, you need to have some skills, dedicatedly paying attention to details, and be committed to giving the best shot. With everything ready, launch the wedding planning business step by step to make the ‘once in lifetime event of the people special.
Hire Dedicated Developers team to build Wedding Planning Business Solution
The world is now very much compact, we call it Global Village as a result of digitization and this impresses him! He likes to explore the nooks and corners of the incessantly modernizing world and marvel technologies. He leads the Digital Marketing Team at Prismetric . His passion for digital trends taught him the knack of reaching the huge digital mass to find business opportunities instantly. He writes articles about digital, technical and marketing tactics for business enhancements.
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How to Start a Wedding Planning Business in 2022: A Step-by-Step Guide
Do you love bringing groups of people together, have incredible attention to detail, patience, communication, and love a good party? Then we have a feeling why you’re already here–you want to be a wedding planner.
Many wedding planners think their jobs are the perfect blend of creativity, organization, and attention to detail. There are 4 important steps to take in order to become a wedding planner, but with careful planning and preparation, you can make your dream (and many couples' dreams) a reality.
1. Decide on the type of wedding planning business you want
As with any business, the first thing you need to know is what your ultimate vision for your company is. Do you want to be the go-to wedding planner for your city? Or do you want to focus on destination events across the country or even world? This is entirely up to you and your lifestyle!
There are generally 4 particular types of wedding planning businesses you'll need to choose between.
- Full planning : When you choose to offer full wedding planning, you are essentially becoming a one-stop-shop for couples getting married. A full-service wedding planner joins the couple at the beginning of their planning journey and oversees every decision related to their wedding until the couple is officially married. This includes venue and vendor recommendation, negotiation and communication, transportation oversight, handling hotel blocks, overseeing design elements (sometimes designing themselves!), creating the timeline for the wedding weekend, and overseeing everything happening on the wedding day itself. This type of service usually requires an initial consultation or phone call to make sure it’s the right fit before signing a contract.
- The month of wedding planner : If you want to be involved in the planning process but don't want to take on all of the responsibilities, becoming a month-of coordinator could be the perfect middle ground. This type of planner will come in about 4-6 weeks before the wedding and wrap up loose ends with vendors, create the timeline, and handle anything else that needs to be done in the last few weeks. On the day of, the coordinator is on-site making sure the event runs smoothly!
- Day-of : A day-of wedding planner is exactly what it sounds like—someone who comes in on the wedding day to take the responsibilities to make sure everything runs smoothly. This does not include any of the initial planning stages, such as booking vendors or finalizing the details; that's all up to the couple. As a day-of planner, you would step in that week to get familiarized with all the moving parts and vendors. On the wedding day, the day of the planner will be responsible for carrying out the plan that the couple created!
- Venue Coordinator or Manager : Another option for those looking to be wedding planners is joining a venue as their in-house event coordinator or manager. Here, you’ll meet the couple at the very beginning of their journey as they are selecting their venue. You will be involved on the wedding day itself, but making sure it runs smoothly from a venue aspect!
2. Take care of the legal and financial side of things
- Register your Business . After you decide on the name of your company, you’ll need to register your business to make it a distinct legal entity. We recommend working with an accountant or lawyer in your city to help you decide which type of business (a sole proprietor, LLC, corporation, S-corp, or a partnership) is the right fit. Each of these has its own pros and cons and you’ll need to register this business with federal, state, and local agencies. Here is when you’ll also receive your EIN (employer identification number), which you’ll need for step 2!
- Open a Business Bank Account. It’s important to open a business bank account where you can keep your business bank account separate from your personal account, even if you don’t have employees. Why? Attorney Magi Fisher told us , “Mixing your expenses is not only a bookkeeping nightmare, but it also puts you at risk of losing the liability protection of your LLC.”
- Insurance . There are 2 types of insurance you may need as a wedding planner. General liability and professional liability. If you’ll have employees, you’ll also need to look into workers' compensation insurance. We recommend working with an expert to help you find the right insurance for your business needs! • General liability helps protect a wedding planner from third-party claims of bodily injury or property damage that could possibly arise from venues, vendors, guests, and/or contractors. • Professional liability insurance helps protect wedding planners from claims of negligence or mistakes related to services. If you’ll have employees, you’ll also need to look into workers' compensation insurance. We recommend working with an expert to help you find the right insurance for your business needs!
- Contracts . As a wedding planner, it’s important to have iron-clad contracts that clearly define responsibilities, expectations, and scope of work. This is true for clients and freelancers. You can work with an attorney to customize your contracts or you can look into ready-made contract templates to help get you started. 2 businesses we recommend that know the wedding industry are Legally Se t and The Artists’ Lawyer .
- Financial Tools . Now it’s important to set up processes for the financial side of the business. We recommend setting up a free Maroo account , where you can easily request and keep track of inbound payments from couples and outbound payments to other businesses and contractors. You may also want to set up a Quickbooks online account to keep track of the tax side of things and set up auto-estimates to pay to federal and state governments.
3. Build a unique brand and website
Now that you're legally set up and you know what you're aiming for, it's time to build a brand that stands out. There are a few key things you'll need to consider when creating your brand, but the number one most important thing to consider is your audience! Who are you catering to? What kind of couples would you most enjoy working with? Is it couples looking to splash out on a top-of-the-line event? Or couples looking for a down-to-earth celebration? Or maybe you want to specialize in destination weddings. The options are endless—but you need to know who you're working with in order to build a brand that appeals to the right couple.
Here are some brand elements to consider:
- Your business name : This is one of the first things people will associate with your brand, so choose wisely!
- Your voice : You need to define the voice you use on your website, social media platforms, email marketing. Something fun and relatable? Or professional and respectful?
- Your logo : A great logo is a key to building a strong brand identity.
- Your color palette : Your website, business cards, and other marketing materials should all use a consistent color palette. This will help people to easily recognize your brand when they see it.
Now use your brand to create a killer website. In today's world, your website is often the first point of contact between you and potential clients. It’s essential that your site makes a great first impression and it’s easy to navigate. Your website should be mobile-friendly and should contain all the relevant information about your business, including your contact information, pricing, and a portfolio of your work.
If you're struggling with designing your brand and website, it may be a good idea to enlist the help of a designer and web developer. There are many freelancers who specialize in branding and website development and can help you create a cohesive look for your business.
4. Market, build relationships, and network
This is all about giving your brand momentum to attract clients and grow. Some ideas to get started include:
- Kick-off your social media platforms. Popular social media platforms in the wedding industry include Instagram, Pinterest, TikTok, and Facebook! Using these platforms is a great way to showcase your work and connect with potential clients and build up your brand awareness. And remember—sometimes marketing to customers is more about building relationships and creating trust than selling your services. Offer helpful tips, ideas, and testimonials, and people will begin to view you as a trusted resource, naturally gravitating toward you when it comes time to enlist official wedding planning help.
- Focus on your customer service! Remember that wedding planning is a service and that great customer service and customer relations should be at the heart of your business. If a potential client reaches out to you with a question, be sure to respond promptly and courteously. If a couple has their heart set on a particular venue, come with great alternatives that hit other marks like budget anyway—this shows that you care about their vision and you're dedicated to putting in extra effort to make it a reality. Go above and beyond to make sure your clients are happy, and they'll be sure to recommend you to their friends. Wedding planning is such a personal process; word-of-mouth referrals are everything.
- Network, network, network! Get involved with local wedding industry groups and meet-ups. Attend bridal shows, connect with vendors (to get on their preferred vendor lists), and give your business card away shamelessly! Collaborate with other vendors on styled shoots and connect with bridal salons in your area. This will help you build relationships with other professionals in the industry—and to be honest, the wedding business is all about who you know.
If you're not sure you have enough experience to start a wedding planning business yet, start here
If you're worried that you don't know the ins and outs of the industry enough yet, don't sweat it! Some people begin a planning business after working for another wedding planner or venue for a period of time. Rest assured, it's perfectly okay to obtain some education or hands-on industry experience, before starting your own company. Some ideas are listed below.
- Work as a coordinator or assistant for an established wedding planner. This will give you a behind-the-scenes look at how a successful business is run, and allows you to try various aspects of the job. Maybe you find out that, while you thought you wanted to be a full-service planner, you actually thrive on the energy of the day itself and would rather be a day-of planner instead!
- Look into contract or freelance opportunities at venues, catering companies, bridal salons, floral designers, or even with a photographer or videographer! These positions will not only introduce you to different aspects of weddings, but they'll also give you a head start on developing relationships with other vendors. Remember, as a wedding planner, you'll need to rely on the expertise of florists, caterers, venues, photographers, and more—so it's good to start building those relationships early!
- Get some wedding industry-specific education. There are numerous options available in the planning education arena. You can find online courses, as well as some universities that offer certificates or degrees in event planning. For example, The Association of Bridal Consultants (ABC) offers a certification program that covers all aspects of wedding planning, from business and marketing to etiquette and legal issues. The program also includes an internship component, so you can get some real-world experience. So not only will these courses give you a thorough understanding of the ins and outs of weddings, but they'll also provide you with a network of other people interested in the wedding industry.
- Read up on wedding planning! There are many books available on the subject of wedding planning—so if you're more of a self-starter, this might be the route for you. A quick search on Amazon will reveal numerous titles, ranging from general guides to wedding planning to more specific ones that focus on certain aspects of the job, like marketing or working with clients.
If you're passionate about weddings and think you might want to start a wedding planning business, go for it! There's no time like the present to start learning, networking, and gathering experience.By following these steps and doing your research, you'll be on your way to starting a successful wedding planning business in no time!