You have decided to become a wedding planner. You may even enrolled yourself into a wedding planning course. You have a website, an email address and you have all your beautiful stationery ready. You may have advertised in some, if not all, wedding publications. You took out stands at various expos, styled beautiful shoots and you have spent a lot of money on getting your name out there. And then nothing happens. You wait and you wait, and then you become desperate…
Signing up clients is a sales game and the one you need to learn how to play it well. Here are a few helpful tips that could help a novice wedding planner to sign up clients:
Tip 1: Dress for Success
Figure out your success outfit! When you meet with potential clients, always dress your best. Your hair and make up are important too. Your personal style and grooming will say a lot about you to the potential clients. If you are driving to see your clients, make sure your car is clean. If you are inviting people to your place, then make sure your meeting place is spotless.
Tip 2: Get Out There
You will never sign up clients from behind your computer screen. If you are getting email enquiries but do not set up a meeting you will not sign up a client. Always insist on a meeting. A meeting is your chance to present your services and answer any questions and win the couple over. It is your chance to shine and show your passion.
You need to meet and introduce yourself to the wedding suppliers in your area. Do you research and decide which venues you want to work at and who is your ideal supplier list. Reach out to them, invite them for a coffee and introduce yourself. Let them know you need work. Never pretend to be more than you are. Do not lie about how busy you are, why would they refer you if you are already busy? Be honest and people will help you. Assure them of your commitment and make sure you deliver on your promises.
Tip 3: Be confident in yourself
You need to exude confidence in your abilities to plan a wedding and face any wedding related challenges. Potential clients need to be reassured that you are capable. If you never planned a wedding before, tell them that and then assure them that you will do everything possible to make their wedding a success. Wedding planning is a lot of things, but the most important aspect of our job is being creative problem solvers. Being resourceful is as important as being experienced. Your experience will grow as a result of your ability to draw on your resources and ability to resolve any potential wedding planning related issues. If you are not confident in your own abilities, nobody will hire you.
Tip 4: Be Aggressive
You need to become an amazing sales person. Great salespeople do not let clients just walk away and make a decision all on their own. Great salespeople help clients to make ‘right’ decisions by highlighting advatages of hiring them. If you met with a potential client, had a great conversation, sent a proposal and a quote and then heard nothing back, what do you do? Do you leave it? Being passive and complacent is not an option. Give potential clients a deadline for a decision, then follow up. Find out what additional information they require, what are their concerns? Answer difficult questions, demonstrate your passion for weddings and let them know you would love to be part of their wedding planning process. Initial ‘no’ can be turned into a sale, but only if you are aggressive in your sales game.
Tip 5: Have a Process
You must have a clear signing up process. Make the process simple. Create ‘First Meeting Script’ to make sure you cover all important aspects as to why hiring a wedding planner will be beneficial, explain your packages and outline your wedding planning process. Leave your client with enough information to understand how to go about hiring your services. Make sure you have communicated this process clearly at the initial consultation.