Do you have a love of wedding trends and a knack for organising just about every type of event? Have you often thought about starting your own business as a wedding planner? We have a few tips to get you on the right track in this fun but competitive industry.
Setting up your own wedding planning business is about a lot more than organising flowers, catering and venues. You will also have to invest in appropriate coverage for public liability and professional indemnity insurance to ensure that you don’t face legal battles down the line. So, use our tips to ensure you get this business right.
Setting Up Your Wedding Planning Business
As with any other type of business, getting into the wedding planning industry can be quite challenging, especially if it’s your first step into what has become a very lucrative market. Our experts have a few pointers worth considering.
Establish Your Niche
Wedding planning has really taken off in the last few years. In fact, very few people have the time or resources to arrange their own lavish dream weddings. This point alone is great news for any prospective business owner.
However, being a generalist wedding planner can leave you stuck in an already saturated market. The trick then is to identify yourself as a niche planner. Ask yourself what it is that sets you apart from all the other wedding planners out there.
Find a particular style of wedding that you specialise in. For instance, garden or outdoor weddings, micro weddings or even location weddings. Creating a speciality (your niche) is an excellent way to attract your first customers.
Get the Right Certifications
While Australian law doesn’t require you to have specialised qualifications to become a wedding planner, it’s a good idea to do some online or short courses to brush up on all aspects of the trade. Additionally, certifications always look good on your resume.
Be sure to check with your local council if there are licensing requirements. While you may not require specialised training, you might need to be licensed to work in certain areas.
Set up a Website or Online Portfolio
These days, everyone wants to see a business website, where they can review your skills, ideas and portfolio photos on their own time. While this may be difficult to create when you haven’t had a customer, it’s essential to create a website that features services on offer with their estimated prices.
Consider the following tips to set up and create an effective website:
- Professional: If you’re not comfortable with setting up your own website, consider enlisting a graphic designer to ensure that you have a professional looking site. Alternatively, consider using website design tools.
- Logo: Choose a business name, logo and slogan that reflects your style. Your business name should be unique and easy to remember.
- Competition: Check out the top wedding planners in your area online to see what types of logos and designs seem to be working for them. Use this information to ensure you stand out from the crowd with your final design.
- Customer testimonials: When you start getting customers, be sure to take photos of the whole process to use as part of your portfolio. Ask customers to include testimonials of their experience with your company.
Create Legal Documents
Wedding planning can involve a lot of work at high costs. It’s crucial to set up legal contracts that will protect you from overzealous brides who may change their minds after your hard work.
For the most part, commercial insurance brokers will be able to advise you of the best insurance types to consider to protect your business. Lawyers specialising in small business contracts will be able to review your wedding planner contracts to ensure they are legit.
Advertise on Social Media
Once you’ve set up the basics, it’s time to advertise your services on social media platforms. Create well-designed adverts that you can share once you’ve created business profiles. Encourage friends and family members to share your pages to get the word out.
It’s also an excellent idea to advertise on online wedding directories. Print leaflets and business cards and attend wedding conventions where you can hand them out. Network with other industry specialists such as photographers, caterers, make-up artists and florists to get referrals and potential future collaborations.
Find Your First Customer
It may be difficult to find your first customer, but our experts recommend looking a little closer to home. Speak to friends, family and acquaintances to refer you to people they know who may be planning a wedding. Explain to them that you’re setting up your business and need a first customer to get your online portfolio started.
Tip: offer a discount price to entice them to make use of your services.
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When done properly, wedding planning can be a lot of fun. You get to make a bride’s special day as magical as she could possibly imagine.
Arranging locations, décor, flowers and catering is interesting and existing. However, to get your business started, follow the basic tips we’ve suggested. Your wedding planner business will be up and running—and safe—before you know it!