Event Planner Salary: 4 Tips for Pricing Your Services
Katherine Dionne is here to reveal how you can increase your event planner salary! A Student Ambassador of QC Event School, Katherine is currently enrolled in QC’s Event and Wedding Planning, Event Decor, and Luxury Wedding & Event Planning courses. She is also the proud owner and Director of Events at Je T’aime Weddings & Events.
If you’re a new or aspiring event planner, you’re probably at a loss on how to price your services appropriately. I know I sure was, back when I’d first started out. Believe it or not, there are negative consequences to pricing your services too low – and even too high.
If you’re pricing your services too low, potential clients will begin to wonder why your rates are so cheap. I’m sure you have heard the term, “You get what you pay for.” Clients looking for an event planner will be of that same mindset. In their eyes, low prices equal a low quality of service. On the other end of the spectrum, if you are charging too much, clients will expect that same, high level of service and knowledge. Clients who put more money into their events will have very high expectations. (And as well they should!) So, you’d better be ready to perform at that level.
Now, I’m sure you are wondering: where do I find that happy medium? Well, I am happy to say that I’ve put together my top 4 tips on appropriately pricing out your services, so that you can ultimately increase your event planner salary. Let’s dive on in!
Boosting Your Event Planner Salary: How to Price Your Services
1. Know Your Market
Market research was where I first started. If you want to boost your event planner salary and improve your bottom line, you first need to know what your competition is doing. When I was trying to figure out what to charge for my services, this is what gave me the best idea of where to start. It also helped me determine what I wanted to include in my packages.
I began by going to dozens of different event planners’ websites. I wanted to see which services they offered and how they were pricing them. The key here is to be as thorough as possible! While doing your research, get a feel for event planners that do luxury events, as well as average, low-end budget events. This will give you some great perspective on where to set your prices. Plus, you’ll get a good idea of what your clients will expect from you when you send them a quote.
2. Know Your Clientele
After you have done some market research, it’s time to decide who you want your clients to be. Are you looking for customers that have a higher budget? Or would you rather assist those with a more average-to-lower budget?
Knowing your target audience is critical to your event planner salary – otherwise, you’ll be going into business blindly. This is never a good idea.
That being said, there’s no reason why you can’t start out one way and then gradually switch up your game plan. After all, your business model will be ever-changing. You could start out with the lower budget client, and then build your experience and knowledge to a level where you eventually feel confident targeting higher-end clientele. Either way, you’ll really need to think about who you’re promoting your business to, and who your ideal client is.
Unfortunately, “everyone” is not the correct answer. As much as we would love for everyone to be our clients, it just doesn’t work like that in real life. A good way to begin narrowing down your list is to think about what age group you are looking for, whether you’re interested in corporate or private clients, etc.
3. Know Your Services
Your can’t begin earning an event planner salary if you don’t actually know which services you intend to offer clients. So, here are some questions to get you started:
- In addition to planning, will your business offer design and/or decor services?
- Is day-of coordination going to be an option?
- Will you offer an hourly consulting fee?
- Can clients add a la carte items (e.g. RSVP Management) to their package?
These are all things you need to consider before you start selling yourself. Once you have a list of services you know you want to offer, sit down and really think about how much time managing and/or working this service would require from you. Does the service include travel? Will it cost anything out of pocket? Add up your hours of actual work it’ll likely take for you. At that point, what I typically then do is multiply that number by my hourly fee. I use that as my starting point.
4. Know Your Worth
My 4th tip is the most crucial part of accurately setting your prices, in my opinion. And that is to know your worth!
If you do not see your own worth, how can potential clients see it? Start by thinking of all of your qualifications. Do you have any certifications? If you don’t, a great start would be taking online event planning courses through QC Event School! Having this certification will put you one step above your competitors and add to your value as an event planner. Plus, it’ll help boost your event planner salary.
Next, do you have any real-world experience in the events industry? If so, flaunt it! If you start noticing that people are coming to you for your expertise, then you’re obviously doing something right. You should be getting paid for that. I suggest making a list for yourself. Write down everything that makes you qualified to plan a client’s event. This is the time to really sell yourself! There is no such thing as being too modest when it comes to your expertise. Use that to your advantage and never sell yourself short!
It will take some time to find a sweet spot that works for both you and your client’s needs. Some trial and error is to be expected. In the beginning, if you start pricing your packages a certain way and are just not getting results, you can go back to the drawing board and figure out where you can adjust. Remember: your prices must be mutually beneficial for everyone!
Personally, I’ve tested out a few different ways to price my packages. For example, one option allows clients to build their own package for wedding services. As you gain more hands-on experience, you’ll quickly begin to realize that no two weddings are the same. Similarly, no two clients’ needs are the same. It stands to reason, then, that they shouldn’t be priced the same. At the same time, if I have a client who’s strictly looking for Day-Of Coordination services, I have one set price for that. This is because, nine times out of ten, they all need the same services that are included within that one package.
As you can see, pricing your services isn’t just slapping a price sticker on a package you offer and calling it a day. This won’t contribute to your event planner salary in a beneficial way. Rather, it takes time and planning to come up with numbers that you can make a living on. If you follow these 4 tips for pricing your event planner salary, there WILL be positive outcomes!
If you need any assistance or have any questions at all, please feel free to comment below. You can also email me at [email protected] or connect with me in QC Event School’s Virtual Classroom on Facebook. I am happy to help in any way that I can!