Become a BETTER Event Planner: 7 Foolproof Techniques
Event planning is one of those careers where you can’t slack off. If you do, someone else will steal your clients out from under you! It’s easy to slide into a rut. After all, you’ve already found success. But it’s absolutely no reason to start dropping the ball.
Find out how you can keep on your toes and become a better event planner!
1. Don’t be Afraid of Change
You should know better than anyone that your industry is a dynamic one. So long as people want to celebrate occasions (public, private, personal), your creative talents will always be in need. Once you’ve gone around the block a few times, you probably know the kinds of events you like to plan. You probably have a preferred vendors list or maybe a company that you exclusively source all print and stationery products from. But even though you’re comfortable, remember to be on the lookout for change.
This could apply to something as small as using a new organizing app or as large as learning a new skill/ approach in the industry. There’s always be room for improvement!
2. Never Stop Learning
Not only will your clients thank you for it, but it also keeps things interesting for you! Whether it’s attending weekend workshops or advancing your skills with specialization courses, do what best suits your career goals.
You may have started off as just a party planner, but if becoming a destination wedding planner or a corporate event planner tugs are your heart, go for it! It’s never a waste of your time and money to invest in more skills and expand what you can offer to your clients.
3. Make Connections
Get out there and socialize- you never know who you will meet. And we don’t just mean socializing with your current clients. If you provide them with superb business and great client-service you already have them in your corner! It’s all about making it easy for your clients to refer your services. Let them know that you’re happy to help out their friends as well. Have business cards on hand so interested parties know how to contact you.
And let’s not forget about other event planners. Investing time into connecting with planners in your local industry is worth it. Not only will you gain support from professionals who are going through the same struggles as you, but you’ll also gain much-needed insight into dealing with novel issues and problems. Plus, a good relationship with a busy planner might lead to them recommending you if they have too much on their plate!
4. Be Direct and Clear
Your vendors, especially venue managers, receive dozens of proposals a week. There’s stiff competition out there for the best venues, caterers, and decorating professionals! In order to provide the best service to your clients, landing the vendors of their choice is a must. And to best the competition, you need to make sure you’re highly organized with your proposals.
When you’re writing your proposals for your vendors, keep it succinct! Your vendors are busy people and so are you. Why waste time adding fluff to your proposals instead of getting down to the nitty-gritty? Listen to the vendor managers, address all concerns, and answers all their questions. Just as a resume should give hiring managers a good idea of who you are after just 2 minutes of reading, so should your business documents.
5. Find a Balance
Even rock-stars need downtime! Working yourself to the bone seems like a valiant effort, however, it’s actually counter-productive. Yes, you may be putting in extra hours to earn the respect of your clients, but your health deserves attention, too!
When you strike the perfect work-life balance, you’ll have a fulfilling career and personal life. Take time to focus on yourself. Whether it’s a spa getaway every couple of months or 5 minutes of meditation a day, you deserve it. Giving yourself plenty of rest will leave you fully re-charged. You’ll be able to dedicate 100% of your energy and efforts to your loyal clients.
6. Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff
Knowing that one of a bride and groom’s happiest events in their lives rests on your shoulders can lead to a lot of stress. As soon as you sign a contract with them, the pressure is on. But while a little stress makes you productive, a lot can keep you from performing at 100%. Manage your stress by becoming organized about the big things, and letting the small stuff slide.
We’re not saying that you should disregard details. After all, it’s probably what sets you apart from other planners in your area! But you have to simultaneously focus on the small details and the big picture. A great wedding planner is one who thinks on her feet. She’s always ready and willing to adapt. If something goes off the rails, she already has a contingency plan in place.
7. Reward Your Clients
This may sound odd, but it makes a lot of sense. After you’ve done your magic and planned the perfect event for them, it doesn’t mean that you should forget about them forever. If they loved what you did, they’ll keep coming back to you. Reward their loyalty—even incentivize it!
Loyalty and fantastic referrals are priceless! Whether it’s a free consultation, 5% off service packages, or going as big as throwing a client-appreciation event, go for it! Make them feel valued and that you appreciate their business. But most of all, make sure you honor your rewards. Your generosity will be returned ten-fold!
Did we miss anything? Let us know your tips on how to become a better event planner!