Your Event Planning Career: 5 Vendors to Network With
Want to advance your event planning career? QC Event School Student Ambassador, Carissa Corsi, is here to reveal 5 types of vendors you should start working with in 2021! As an industry expert, Carissa’s business specializes in wedding, event, and party planning. She is also currently enrolled in QC’s Event & Wedding Planning, Luxury Wedding & Event Planning, and Event Decor courses.
The Role of a Vendor
A vendor is a supplier of goods or services to another company or individual. They play a critical role in the event planning process! In this industry, event planners need to be hyper-focused on building relationships with and supporting their clients. At the same time, they should also wish to do this with the other vendors who are contributing to the client’s big day.
The power of networking is key, as every vendor ultimately has the same end goal: their client’s satisfaction. Some of the common vendors an event planner will come across during their career include:
- Venues / venue coordinators;
- Music and entertainment;
- Transportation services;
- And more!
When it comes to servicing the client, vendors are irreplaceable when it comes to the success of the overall function. This is because their services are what controls the flow of the event. Vendors need to collaborate together on set in order to make sure the client’s vision comes to life.
Needless to say, your professional relationship with the vendors you work alongside is crucial for maintaining a successful event planning career. Networking with other vendors can only grow your business! After all, people want to do business with those they know; whose work they’re familiar with and whose results they can count on.
How to Find Vendors Throughout Your Event Planning Career
Finding the perfect vendors can be quite the process because – as stated above – you want people you know, like, and trust. But what if you’re new to the game and don’t know anyone yet? Luckily, I’ve got a few useful tips for researching and finding the best vendors in your area!
Here are just a small handful of avenues you can pursue:
- If you don’t know where to start, do a Google search! You’ll find all sorts of local results and from there, you can delve deeper into your sleuthing.
- Check out their social media feeds. Do you connect with their content and style? Would their services complement your services?
- Browse their website. A strong website can (and should) answer a lot of questions you may have about their business. If it’s a lousy website? You probably have your answer right there.
- Set up a free call with vendors of interest. This is a good way to narrow down your choices.
- Do you have any friends who are engaged? You can ask them who they’ve been looking into.
- Have any of your friends recently gotten married? Perhaps they have some vendors they’d like to recommend!
Did You Know?: QC Event School’s online training dives deeper into the roles and responsibilities of all possible vendors you’ll encounter over the course of your event planning career! As part of your education, you’ll be provided the timeline in which you should begin searching for each vendor, as well as discover how detailed your searches need to be. QC Event School is helps to drive home the overall importance of vendors and the contribution they make to maximize an event’s overall success!
Networking with Vendors in Your Event Planning Career
Networking with vendors is beneficial to your event planning career for countless reasons. For starters, the more vendors you meet and build rapports with, the more options you’ll be able to suggest to your clients. Likewise, there will be more and more industry professionals who will be likely to recommend YOU to their clients!
As a general note, it’s good to start your own preferred vendor list as early on as possible. It’ll make you look more established in the event industry. That being said, the only way to actually create your list is through networking and collaboration. So, don’t wait to get started!
Some of my top tips for working professionally with other vendors include:
- Be yourself!
- Always come prepared with potential clients you can pass along (if relevant)!
- Look for any opportunity to exchange professional contacts!
- Share industry knowledge whenever possible (without monopolizing the conversation)!
- Demonstrate your reliability and professionalism every change you get!
This year, I participated in a bridal show which allowed me to meet other folks in the event space. Conferences and trade shows are an excellent way to meet other industry experts! I also like to collaborate by conducting some type of live training on a relevant topic, in which we can both share knowledge with potential clients. QC Event School has taught me the foundation of working professionally with vendors. Their courses have provided the ultimate tips to researching, finding, and showcasing the importance of networking as a whole!
5 Types of Vendors You Need to Work with In Your Event Planning Career
The following types of vendors are all crucial to an event’s success, and as such, are the ones I most recommend networking with…
1 – Venues / Venue Coordinators
Venues are a place in which you can hold an event. Venues can either require you to use their own vendors, or allow you to bring in your own outside vendors. A venue typically has a coordinator whose job is to sell the venue, work with the event planners on the room layout, and formalize any in-house needs.
The venues and their coordinators are important to the event’s overall success because an event wouldn’t be an event without a beautiful space to hold it, or gain the assistance of someone on site who can provide the information needed to make the event all the more beautiful!
2 – Photographers / Videographers / Production Teams
Photographers, videographers, and production teams are meant to record their client’s event and tell the client’s story through images and video. These vendors’ contributions maximize the event’s overall success, as they are documenting the memories-in-the-making for both the clients and their guests to look back on.
3 – Caterers / Bakers / Bartenders
Caterers, bakers, and bartenders all handle the preparation and delivery of food/drinks for their clients. Food and drink are the details that truly make a celebration unique. These vendors are the ones providing that unique experience. Their services bring people together!
4 – Florists / Floral Designers
Florists and floral designers are the experts behind the beautiful floral arrangements you see at events, such as bouquets and centerpieces. They are responsible for arranging them at the venue space beforehand. An event would not be an event without florists, as they bring touches of liveliness and make the client and their guests feel special through their design!
Fun Fact: QC Event School recently launched its brand-new Floral Design Course! Check out the full course page here and discover how you can become an International Floral Design Professional (IFDP) in just 3-6 months!
5 – Musicians / DJs / Performers
Musicians, DJs, and live performers are a huge part of setting the tone for event receptions. Music loosens up the soul and helps guests to adapt more quickly to the overall atmosphere. These experienced vendors know how to do just that! They provide a sense of comfort and, most evident of all, bring the FUN of the event into existence for their client and the guests!
As part of my business, Carissa Corsi Events, I’ve had the privilege of working with all sorts of top-notch vendors. The above are the main vendors that I connect with most in my own event planning career. On the day of the event, the most important thing I collaborate with them on is the flow of the event itself. It’s crucial for things to run smoothly. In order to do so, you need to work with the other vendors and become a unified team.
Personally, I have found success in networking with anyone I have had the opportunity to work with. This can range from connecting with other vendors through their social channels, to meeting at event shows, and everything in-between. The event world is made up of so many talented vendors. So, it’s best to put the effort in to explore and connect with your fellow industry experts. It can only help grow your personal network – and your business as a whole!