14

Sep

2011

Wedding Planner Wednesday: How to become a wedding planner week 10 – Think about add-ons and a side line to the business

How to become a wedding planner week 10 – Think about add-ons and a side line to the business

Hello again and welome to the 10th and final part to my How to become a wedding planner series. With a few breaks along the way this feature seems to have been a big help to lot’s fo people. I have had lots of great comments and met with so may people who have commented on the series and how it has helped them along the way whether it be as a wedding planner or in starting their own business within the wedding industry. So thank you to everyone who has taken the time to read my ramblings each week, to email or to leave a comment.

I’m aways open to new ideas so do let me know if there is anything else you would like me to feature. For now lets look at this final weeks topic.

Part 10 – Think about add-ons and a side line to the business

So you’ve set your business up, you’ve got your brand sorted your website, you have built up a few suppliers and venues that you like working with, you have sussed out social networking and you’ve taken on a few bookings.
Now you will start to look at your pricing structure and maybe begin to realise that wedding planning isn’t a massive money earner!!
…………………..what?? Yes that’s what I said, wedding planning is a great job, but it’s never going to be one of those jobs that you make a fortune from I’m afraid.
As I mentioned in one of my former posts wedding planners and the value of our service  wedding planning is still one of those businesses where people don’t quite get how much we do and how much time and effort goes into each job.
I have changed my pricing structure 4 times in the past 2 years until I am now sort of happy with what I charge. But it’s taken a long time to get here and to be honest it still isn’t a huge amount. I spent all last year taking on every job I could, only to find out this summer that I had taken on too much and run myself ragged!………..next year will be different, I have put my prices up and will only be tacking on half the work…..so 10 wedding instead of 20.
BUT this does mean that I still won’t be making a huge amount of money out of the wedding planning! SO this is where the add ons and side lines come into play.

Basically as far as I can see it, unless you are dealing with the high end brides that are willing to pay you £3K – £5K per wedding you are never going to earn a large amount from wedding planning, this again is only my opinion, there may be many other planners out there who disagree with me?? Instead my brides may pay me £1K – £1.5K a wedding and with 10 of those a year…………well you do the Maths!

So after writing the post about the value of our services I decided that I needed to start looking at other forms of money making that kept me in the wedding industry and not on the road to getting a part time job that I loathed. And this for me is where the blog came in. I have been writing the blog since December 09 but it wasn’t until May 2011 that I felt the time was right to start advertising on it .My intention was never to build up the blog to make it a money making exercise, my aim at the beginning was simply to make it an extension of the website…..BUT as time went on, my passion for it became stronger and I realised that maybe that is could be something that could make me a bit of pocket money. So that is what I did.
Now with 5 months of successful sponsorship behind me I don’t just call myself a wedding planner but a wedding blogger as well.
Sometimes it is hard trying to do both, my time management has to be spot on, and I seem to be working even more hours than ever. BUT the two work together side by side and it means I have been able to keep my wedding planning business instead of being packed off to find a full time job by my husband (which was a treat this time last year!)

But what to others do?

So many planners get into things like hiring and styling, but it’s really up to you what area you feel is best!
Chair covers seem to be a popular route; (although personally I hate the things) this then goes hand in hand with hiring the likes of runners, napkin, Birdcages, centre pieces, lanterns…….pretty much anything. You will find as a planner each wedding you do you will go home with some sort of wedding related box of stuff. I have a whole summerhouse full of it, so yes I will be adding it to the website over the winter for hire next year!……along with my photo booth!!
Vintage tea sets also seem to be a huge thing at the moment for planners to get into.

If the hiring thing isn’t your bag and you are more creative, then what about styling, this may be more the area of planning you enjoy. Personally I like a bit of both but I have my limitations ( I learnt the hard way after spending 5 hours making wish tree tags as a ‘favour’ for one of my brides!) again remover time is money, and even if you enjoy crafting and making stuff, everything has to have a price!

There are many things that you can move into that will keep the wedding planning in business, you may find a side line that makes you more than the wedding planning itself, but you probably won’t find this until you have been in the industry for a while, these things tend to happen by chance!
I know a planner who has now become a photographer, planners who have become cupcakes makers! Anything is possible.
My husband still things I should go full on into the hiring side of things……….as well as stationery, not entirely sure when he thinks I am going to do it all, as we barely see each other anyway! But for me I have found my niche with the blog, and I’m happy with that!
But whatever you do it has to be right for you.

So that is the end of the series! I hope you found it helpful? Please let me know your thoughts where are you up to in the series? What chapter are you on? How are you finding it, is it harder than you thought? More enjoyable? Do let me know your stories.
And if you are a planner with a side line I would love to know what it is.

Thanks again for reading my ramblings

Kelly xx

Have you missed any of this series? ‘How to become a wedding planner’
Week 1 – Get business advice
Week 2 – Start a wedding planning course
Week 3 – Research your competition & the market around you, find a niche
Week 4 – Create your Brand
Week 5 – Networking and Social Networking
Week 6 – Get a Website and a Blog
Week 7 – Get some experience and work for free
Week 8 – Go out and meet suppliers and venues
Weel 9 – Do your first few jobs and make mistakes
(Thank you to www.andertoons.com/ for the illustrations)

 

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Comments

    Aimee Dunne

    This is really insightful kelly, and honest! I set up about 2 years ago and still learning far more than I’m earning although thankfully heading in the right direction, but as you say it’s not the profession that earns us a fortune but more because we love what we do (most days!). I had a thought today to look into calligraphy, something I’ve always considered and would certainly benefit my clients! x

    Reply
    Kerry Jackson-Rider

    Great stuff as ever Kelly. I didn’t realise that quite so many planners had sidelines and part time jobs although I am beginning to see that it is necessary if you have bills to pay! Looking forward to your next series already n thanks for sharing with us all xx

    Reply
    kudos

    Wedding planning is such a hectic thing, it takes so much time and effort and for successful wedding everything should be done perfectly. Hats off to part time wedding planners.

    Reply

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