After the past few years we've had, I think we can all agree that it’s time for a major reset! Today’s blog will help you plan your next wedding and event season in an intentional way. We're 3 months into the year, so whether you want to make some changes this year or next, I'll walk you through 6 key questions you need to ask yourself in order to have the most successful season!
Questions To Consider
- How many weddings/events do I want to work on per year?
- What’s my revenue goal?
- What will my prices look like to support my revenue goal?
- How much will I pay myself monthly?
- What am I leaving behind to make room for the growth I want to see?
- What investments will I be making to take me to the next level?
Now, we’ll break down each of these below!
1. How many weddings & events do I want to work on per year?
It’s easy to answer this question by saying “as many as possible” or “at least thirty” when you’ve never done that many events before. But after the year (or two) that many of us have had during the post-COVID event boom where we finally had 20+ or 30+ events in one year - we need to answer this question for ourselves and be honest. If you feel burned out by the volume you saw this year, then you may need to set a different cap for 2023 - and that’s not a bad thing. Particularly if you live in the Northeast or Midwest where it's cold 40% of the year, leaving you with maybe 30 event weekends in a year. Do you want to work every single one of those? If the answer is no - honestly jot down the number of beach days, family vacations, and other things you want to do with your summer, then set a number for the year. For most people, a number between 10-20 is a good place to start. Jot this down on a piece of paper to get started. Or better yet, grab our free PWP planner here and jot it down there!
2. What’s my revenue goal?
This is not a trick question. What do you want your business to bring in next year? $50,000? $70,000? $100,000? $200,000? And again, I am talking in the next 12 months - not forever away. What’s a goal that you can commit to working towards right now? Answer it honestly and (somewhat) realistically. I say somewhat because we’ve seen our clients make 5-10x what they made in previous years with the right drive, focus, and strategy. Hint - your goal for next year should be higher than what you made this year. So what’s your number?
3. What will my prices look like to support my revenue goal?
Now we already addressed point 1 that you can’t do 100 events in the next year. And now you’ve set your revenue goal for the next year. Now it’s time to do the math. What should your average service cost be to hit this metric? A few examples are below:
- If you want to do a max of 15 events, and your goal for the year is $70,000, then your average price (cost of your middle/median service) should be $4667
- If you want to do a max of 20 events and your goal for the year is $100,000, then your average price (cost of your middle/media service) should be $5000.
- If you want to do a max of 12 events, and your goal for the year is $30,000, then your average price (cost of your middle/median service) should be $2500.
Overall, it’s important to understand that your prices and capacity are what’s going to feed your revenue for the year. It's going to be nearly impossible to have a six-figure business selling $500 or even $1000 packages, no matter how much you will, manifest or pray your way into it. Numbers don’t lie, so it's important to know yours! This by the way is the first activity that we work through with our clients who join the PWP Accelerator to ensure your foundation is set up for success! So what’s your median price?
4. How much will I pay myself monthly?
Now, this is probably one of the most important points to grasp. If you have been in business for 2 or more years, you should be planning to pay yourself a salary every month from your business. And it should be a steady number for at least 6-12 months, after which you plan to increase it. I don’t care if the amount is $300/month or $3000/month - you need to get in the habit of paying yourself for all of the hard work that you are putting in, otherwise you’re bound to give up and quit on it. As humans, we need to see rewards for our efforts and our labor, otherwise, we get discouraged. And after spending hundreds of hours on each of your clients’ events, you should be paid something for all that time and effort. And as you increase your skills, influence, and efficiency - that amount should go up over time.
In the same way that you expect a raise from work every year or two, your business should do this for you (whether you are full-time or not). In fact, this practice will naturally help you to see when you’re ready to go full-time based on how much you can consistently pay yourself. Our goal for everyone who joins the PWP Accelerator is to build a business that pays $70,000-$100,000 annually, while running in under 4 hours a day, 5 days a week. This essentially means working yourself out of your day job with part-time hours - and it's very doable! This is our philosophy! To help you get started, we’ve mapped out a chart to help you calculate how much to start paying yourself in January (or next month) in our free PWP planner. Click here to get started on that now!
5. What am I leaving behind to make room for the growth I want to see?
For me, this is always the hardest part of my annual planning exercise, but it’s so necessary. You cannot add activities and goals without removing some and expecting to be successful. We are humans, who still require basics like sleep, recreation, and time with family, so we can’t just add - every year, we have to also be intentional about shedding what is no longer serving us. In past years, this has looked like this:
- Leaving beloved volunteer positions that took a lot of my time but still didn’t progress due to the mindset, bureaucracy, and issues within the organization. I always recommend leaving well - first creating a strong transition and training plan so you don’t leave what you love in shambles.
- Eliminating television from my “must have” schedule to focus on my job & business. Only watching television once my to-do list was up to date.
- Muting certain people and group chats to eliminate distractions and increase my focus.
- Eliminating the floral design component of my business to go full throttle into planning. P.S. My business grew greatly when I did this!
So what are you going to trim so that you can thrive in your areas of focus? This is a very personal question.
6. What investments will I be making to take me to the next level?
This is the part that everyone wants to avoid but is necessary. In the same way that you expect your clients to see why your $4000-$10,000 price point is worth the value in memories, saved time, and more, it’s also important for you to see the same. Are you willing to spend 10-25% of what you hope to earn next year to learn how to land those clients? It’s hard to build a six-figure business on Word Documents alone. At a certain point, your clients want to see you investing in your website, and professional tools like Aisle Planner to get ahead. Similarly, people don’t go from a $15,000 sales year to a $100,000 sales year by chance - usually, this is with the help of a proven coaching program like Planners Who Profit. Our clients easily make 5-10x their investment back before they graduate 6 months later. So as you are planning your finances and your goals for next year, be sure to plan some funds for some real, in-depth support and coaching to help you to your next level and to make those investments. So what is your coaching and investment budget to help you achieve your next step?