Published July 04, 2018
© victoria /Adobe Stock
Always a bridesmaid but never a bride? Why not capitalize on all that wedding experience and start your own business? Here are the four steps you need to take to go from giving away money for bread makers to newlyweds to raking in the dough yourself:
1. Just Take the Plunge and Get Some Experience
Did you plan your own wedding? Then you have the skills it takes to go full-time. At the beginning offer to work for friends, neighbors, colleagues, or even random people you meet at the bus stop for free or a reduced rate. Not only will opening yourself up to multiple people give you experience, but they can refer you to others who may need your services down the line. Your college roommate who was in that super exclusive sorority? She’ll recommend you to her big, little, and sisters across chapters. Your great aunt Bertha who’s on her fourth engagement? Perfect, then you’ll get repeat business for sure.
Once you have learned the ropes on how to tie the knot, you may feel the need to take special classes on event planning or even feel to need to apprentice with an established planner. Wedding planning certification courses can be taken in person or online and range from a few days to a few months to complete. Of course, there are some people who offer wedding services without being certified, but having a nice framed sheet of paper can help potential clients feel more secure in using your business services. You can keep it right next to your just-as-valuable college diploma.
2. Say “I Do” to a Professional Business Plan
If you’ve never worked in a business before don’t let this deter you from starting your own. You don’t need an MBA from an Ivy League university to succeed in your career, but you do need to have a business plan. Luckily your plan can be as simple or complicated as you wish. Simply document your business goals, milestones you hope to accomplish, a record of your expenses and any ideas that come to you in a dream or pop in your head when you’re taking a shower. You can even create a portfolio of pictures from past weddings which will not only showcase your skills to potential clients, but also document major milestones in your business. By doing so you’ll be able to track the progress of your business and schedule out your growth. Make sure your plan is readable by keeping it short- hopefully unlike your clients’ marriages.
3. Marketing Your Business Can Be a Piece of Cake- If You Do it Right
Luckily or unluckily, weddings and engagements have pervaded social media. When was the last time you went on Instagram without seeing a blingy engagement announcement or throwback to a wedding from three years, 7 months and 12 days ago? Using Instagram, Facebook and other social media websites to your advantage will help you create a name for yourself. Just make sure your photos and tags are on point so blushing brides (or bridezillas) will feel inspired enough to use your services.
Dresses and tuxes, cakes and food, flowers and first dances: weddings are complicated events that require a lot of hands getting dirty. Try to make and keep as many contacts as possible in different areas that can provide referrals to your services. If a DJ shouts you out of course you should recommend them to the next couple you plan for. Freelancers helping freelancers makes the world go round.
4. Celebrate, Get Paid, and Make Millions of Dollars
When you’re marrying your business the line should always be “for richer or richer”. According to PayScale, the median pay for freelance wedding planners is $40,000 a year while planners in big cities can earn from $75,000-$200,000. Not too bad for getting to attend parties full time! Make sure you discuss prices with your clients ahead of time and write up an agreement. Once it’s the big day, don’t forget to send your clients professional looking invoices using Invoice Home’s templates. You can choose from hundreds of beautifully crafted designs to match your winter wonderland theme, tropical destination wedding or zombie themed nuptials all for free. While it might be tempting to give some services out for free, remember while money can’t buy love, it does buy your time and hard work.