Event planners are in a unique position to make money by providing services to customers. Most event planners use a “cost plus” method to value their service fees, which is typically between 10 and 20 percent of the total cost of the event. Social media and word of mouth are two of the most popular methods for attracting new customers. Event organizers can also make money by selling alcohol and food, securing event space through venues that offer a commissionable rate, and selling sponsorships. Additionally, event planners can charge fees for services ranging from 15 to 30% of total event costs. To maximize their income, event planners should network with caterers, bands, and customers, as well as advertise their services on social media.
Most event planners value their service fees using a “cost plus” method. They outsource the labor, supplies and materials needed to produce an event and charge their customers between 10 and 20 percent of the total cost of the event, with an approximate 15 percent average. For example, take Bernadette Coveney Smith from 14 Stories. Inspired by her experience as an event planner for non-profit organizations, she decided to pursue business as a wedding planner for LGBTQ couples. Their services range from addressing all the traditional wedding planning needs faced by these couples, to the more specific needs of LGBTQ couples, such as “escape” packages for couples whose home status does not allow them to marry.
Did you know that 46 percent of brides were influenced by a provider's presence on social media, and 34 percent have contacted a provider through social media? That said, the event planning industry still relies heavily on word of mouth to attract new customers; 52 percent of brides turn to family and friends offline first for recommendations. Not only that, 74 percent of customers say word of mouth influences their purchasing decision.
Most places make money selling alcohol and food. If you promise to attract a crowd to your establishment, places will generally not charge any fees. The place wants more business, and you promise to bring them more business, so they don't charge you up front. For starters, the main source of your income comes from your contracts with large corporations and private parties. They charge a fee for their services to organize these holidays, and they earn a huge amount of money from each contract. Once their fees are paid, they distribute most of the profits between the leading company and the various contractors.
Sponsorship sales is the most popular method that organizers rely on to generate additional revenue for events. Sponsorship agreements are also the most poorly executed. So, what are the organizers wrong about sponsorships? They generally do not provide potential sponsors with the level of detail and specificity required prior to the event, making it difficult to properly evaluate the results after the event. If you expect a banner placed in one place to be seen by 40,000 people, then say that. If you are sending an email invitation with a sponsor's logo to 10,000 people, tell them. These kinds of details help the prospective sponsor justify the expense, especially if they are considering other alternatives (whose ROI can be more easily measured).
For help putting together a winning sponsorship proposal and hosting profitable events, check out this free sample prospectus. Another way that event planners can charge fees for services is by securing event space through venues that offer a commissionable rate. These are charges that are normally provided to travel agents to book tickets, hotel rooms and other forms of transport.
Many event planners who plan their own simple events make so much money that they earn more than six figures each year. Even so, planning your own event is just one way to earn a lot of money. As lucrative as planning your own event, helping others can be just as rewarding.
Fees charged by event planners tend to range from 15 to 30% of total event costs. Sometimes, event planning revenues can cover the total cost of the planner and provide a significant source of benefits depending on the complexity of the program and the time it takes to plan and execute it.
Networking with caterers and bands will help you with your business but networking with customers can help increase your salary. The more people know about you and how good you are at planning events, the more opportunities you will have. Be sure to give your customers additional business cards so they can pass them back and forth. Ask your customers to mention their friends and family to you so that your name can reach people who have seen what you are capable of.
There is even a growing market for 'wedding coaching', in which event planners advertise themselves as part organization experts and part therapists and shoulders to cry on. As big goodie bags can attest after many events, people like to come home from events with things.
As an event planner, you won't be giving many speeches but you may need to be able to talk to people at some events. Another specialist Helena Parker from Divine Events by Helena chose to focus her business on coordination day for couples who want a minimum of practical help planning their event.
With the rise of virtual events due to Covid-19 now is an opportunity to become an expert in planning virtual events. One of the easiest ways to get involved in event planning is to offer help to friends or family plan larger events.
The best way to get customers for virtual events is to let your friends and family know what you're doing and organize your own virtual meetings where attendees can verify that you're skilled at organizing and facilitating a virtual event.
In general many event planners don't consider it in good shape essentially “double their revenue stream this way” Mountainside Media Event Planner Christie Osborne recommends thinking of Pinterest and Instagram as marketing tools rather than a way to engage customers.
In this scenario the customer can contract directly with the event organizer to coordinate all expenses of logistics catering venue accommodation etc.
Whether you're starting an event planning business for social events business events or a combination of both you need to know how to charge for services.
As an event organizer you are in a position to make money by providing services such as cost plus pricing selling alcohol food securing commissionable rates selling sponsorships charging fees for services networking with caterers bands customers advertising on social media offering wedding coaching providing goodie bags talking at events helping friends or family plan larger events organizing virtual meetings etc.
Event planners have many opportunities available when it comes time for them make money from their services. By utilizing cost plus pricing selling alcohol food securing commissionable rates selling sponsorships charging fees for services networking with caterers bands customers advertising on social media offering wedding coaching providing goodie bags talking at events helping friends or family plan larger events organizing virtual meetings etc., they can maximize their income potential.