In the entrepreneurial trends we see in the nation today, there is a massive market open for event planners. This market has made event planning more popular, with more and more businesses opening and competing with one another. Therefore, if you intend to start an event planning company, it’s important to know what it’s going to take to be competitive and turn a profit.
To Start: Know Your Role
First, you need to know what exactly you’ll be doing as an event planner. The tasks you take on will affect your startup costs, operation expenses, personnel requirements, and other factors involved in starting and running a business. Some of these tasks include:
- Selecting sites
- Performing research
- Designing events
- Acquiring food, decor, etc.
- Handling invitations
- Arranging accommodations
- Supervising the event site
- Reviewing and evaluating the event
The tasks you take on depend on the scope and scale of your company as well as any skills you might already possess. For example, you might have experience in catering, so your business might center strongly around that.
The role you perform will also depend on whether you intend to work in the corporate (trade shows and company parties) or social (weddings, anniversaries, etc.) sector.
The costs of starting up depend on where you live, the geographic areas you’ll serve, the sector you’ll focus on, and whether you intend to work from home or a commercial location. For a small, home-based event planning company, you might need somewhere in the range of $8,000 to start things up. For a larger company, it could run you around $3,000. Keep in mind expenses such as rent, equipment, communication costs, inventory, licenses, taxes, legal fees, advertising, payroll, and insurance.
Operational tasks include research, communicating with clients, designing events, coordinating efforts, evaluating each event, marketing, and invoicing. Again, the size of your company and the types of clients you serve will determine how much these operations cost. You may need additional personnel to handle some of these functions, such as a bookkeeper or a junior planner.
Turning a Profit
Taking the cost of each event, your startup costs, and your everyday operational expenses, you want to tailor your pricing to be able to make a profit off each event. In the social sector, you would likely charge a fee for vendor expenses, for example. In the corporate sphere, most planners will charge a handling fee on each item.
Education and experience also have an impact on how much you’ll be able to charge. Taking an event planning course and becoming certified can help jump-start your career as an event planner.