Welcome to our “Day in the Life” series! We feature wedding and event planners from around the world with many different levels of experience. If you would like to be featured, download our questionnaire here and email your responses and photo to firstname.lastname@example.org. We are excited to feature Carolyn Burke today!
Name: Carolyn Burke
Business Name & Location: Carolyn Burke – Wedding Liaison in St. Louis, MO
Years Working in the Event Industry: Since 1999
Years Owning Your Event Planning Business: Since 2004
What is your typical day like?
I work out of my home and start my day as early as 8am checking email messages and following up on responses. I then have a nice walk with my dog, Zombie. She keeps me in step with my morning exercise. Lunch is not a priority with me – sometimes I have a late breakfast, sometimes I have a late lunch. I try to have one-on-one lunches with fellow wedding vendors once or twice a month.
By 10am the phone starts ringing with people checking on my availability or wanting to learn more about my unique services. I can spend an average of 5-10 minutes on the phone with each inquiry. I always ask, “How did you find my phone number?”. This helps in knowing where my marketing dollars should go.
My children are all grown, but still young enough to get my attention. They do not hinder my business very much. Except for when it is 5pm and time to quit work to make a meal. We try to have a family meal 5 times a week, but I HATE TO COOK!
How did you get started in the industry?
I started out as a Wedding Liaison for my church here in Kirkwood, Missouri. We were known for allowing non-members to use the sanctuary for wedding ceremonies. I helped market this idea on the internet back in the early days of the world wide web from 1999-2003. I was able to coordinate 30+ weddings in a year.
Then I got the ‘wedding bug’ and I decided to grow myself and career and start my own business. I liked the title that was given to me at my church, Wedding Liaison. It seems to still be a unique title and it suits me very well – since I feel like I am a ‘connection’ between the couple, myself, other wedding vendors and locations.
I joined the Association of Bridal Consultants and took their courses. I received the honor of Professional Bridal Consultant (TM) and have since grown to become an Accredited Bridal Consultant (TM). I will never stop learning and listening to how others market and grow their business.
Where do you find design inspiration?
I do not design weddings. My full service is Day-Of-Coordination. I do not have a place for design. I follow the lead of the couple’s wishes as they hand me the PROPS to put out at the event. My inspiration for design in helping couples find a venue in St Louis is based on style, capacity and budget.
I wear three hats in the wedding industry : Day of Coordinator, Officiant, and Event Location Specialist.
What are your favorite online resources for your business?
Carolyn, thank you so much for taking the time to share your story and a day in your life. If you are an event planner and would like to be featured, download our questionnaire today and email it to us along with a photo.