When running an event planning business, it’s easy to forget to market yourself the way you truly need to. I know how it is, you have your website, business cards, and you’re ready to rock and roll. But how will you find your clients?
Marketing doesn’t have to be hard for today’s event planner. With social media, it’s become easier than ever, if done the right way. These five strategies have helped not only me, but have contributed to the success of fellow colleagues in the event and wedding planning industry. Marketing doesn’t have to be hard or even mundane, with these top five tips, you’re sure to take your business to the next level.
1) Social Media: Choose 2-3 Platforms To Use
The biggest problem event planners run into is that we want to be on every single social platform at once. Not only will this absolutely overwhelm you, but it takes away precious time you could be devoting to your business.
When you’re first starting out, it’s best to cover the top social media profiles which represent your business best. Where are your customers? Is there a specific demographic of clients you want to target? If so, you should be exactly where they are. Share your images, provide wedding and event tips, if you get your client’s permission, showcase their stories as well! I will give you a hint though, because we’re a visual business, Instagram is the one social app that as wedding planners, we MUST be on. Also, always make sure you have a killer bio to entice new followers!
P.S – Make sure your social profiles are public! We don’t want to turn away potential clients.
2) Create a Blog
This not only helps to build you up as a force to be reckoned with in your industry, it gives people who want to know a little bit more about you and your business greater insight. When blogging as a wedding planner, you share information for free to gain a potential client’s trust. If you’re saying ‘I don’t know what I can talk about’, trust me, you haven’t been in the wedding planning business long enough! From how to set up an event, to how to start an event planning business, the blog topic possibilities for wedding planners are endless.
3) Gather and Use Your Email List
Through your website and blog, have a place to collect emails in at least three places on your site.
A pop-up window
The sidebar/bottom of your home page
A link at the bottom of every blog post
If social media went away tomorrow, your email list is the only audience targeted just for your business that you’d be able to get in touch with. Don’t leave the fate of your business up to social sites that you don’t control. Take control of your customers and demographics and ensure you have them in a rock solid email list. Also, be sure to send updates to your subscribers so that they always have the inside scoop on what’s new in your business!
4) Utilize #Hashtags
Hashtags are great for seeking out new clients. Images and posts with a specific hashtag get searched together. For example, if you’re based in a specific city, you want to ensure that you’re using that cities hashtag. This is so people who may be searching for event planners in your specific city will begin to see your content. Aside from that, and the obvious #eventplanner hashtag, here are a few popular hashtags related to our industry:
A good time-saving tactic is to copy and paste your complete list of hashtags into a place that you can quickly copy and paste from your phone, computer or tablet. This way you’re not re-creating hashtags each time you create a post. It’s also great to change or add to this set of hashtags frequently to pertain to new events you may be planning for.
After all, we do put on events as event planners. Make sure you’re going out to other events as well! Network with people so that they can put a face and personality behind your brand. Don’t forget your business cards and always be sure to follow up with contacts directly after the event, who knows, they may become a potential client! Also, if you run out of business cards at an event, or even worse, you forget them, you should always be prepared by investing in an e-business card. Another great trick to solidify your connections on the spot, is to follow each other on social networks, collect their number, and set up a date to meet for a drink or coffee.
Marketing outside of social media is a key marketing strategy for your event planning business. We know word of mouth marketing is still the best form of marketing there is. Once people get a feel for what services you provide, they are sure to share your business with others. This form of marketing still forms like wild-fire. My number one motto in this industry is to market to everyone you meet: from the grocery store to the cleaners, everybody knows somebody who is getting married.
If you are ready to learn more about marketing and strategies to grow your event planning business, join us at The Let’s Plan Conference.
This is a sponsored post from Tawanda Sims. Tawanda is the Founder and CEO of Elite Events Management located in Fort Lauderdale. She has over 25 years in Human Resources and Management. She is a creative thinker who enjoys planning and designing weddings and events to precisely fit the personalities of her clients. She earned her wedding planning certification from The Bridal Society, the Nation’s Leader in Wedding Planner Certification. Tawanda is also the founder of the Let’s Plan Conference.