Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Ten Tips for a Successful Party Planning Business

Wow - I wrote this a few years ago and just found it on my hard drive. Thought I'd share:

Ten Tips for a Successful Party Planning Business

1.    Motivate yourself to succeed. Know what you will be spending the money on. Don’t just make extra money. Make extra money so that you can afford to do something. Examples: pay for your car, reduce your mortgage by $x per year, go on a family holiday to x, buy a new refrigerator, buy your family an in-ground pool, pay for school fees, supply your family’s clothes budget, spoil yourself with monthly luxuries like manicures, pedicures, maids, massages, and/or gardeners.

2.    Pick a company and a product you believe in. Use the products yourself. Don’t reinvent collateral, brochures, or programs – use what your company provides – spend your precious time talking to clients, not developing marketing tools.

3.    Network. Tell everyone you know what you do. Ask what they do. Help each other with business advice and referrals.

4.    Control your diary and always have it with you. Schedule everything – other jobs and appointments, personal time, family time, holidays, training time. Decide how much time you will put into your party plan business each week, commit to doing that, and schedule the time. Activities include: conducting parties, calling clients, submitting orders, calling clients, writing and sending notes and reminders, calling clients. Minimise time spent organizing files, updating online social networks, and writing to do lists.

5.    Duplicate yourself. Always promote the business opportunity to others. It’s a simple formula: more people sell more products and therefore you make more money. Businesses that use Party Plan to sell products do not have recruiting expenses. Instead, they pay bonuses to the Party Planners who recruit productive Party Planners. In a legitimate party plan business, you won’t be rewarded for recruiting people, you will only be rewarded when they sell products.

6.    Provide great customer service. Finalise orders at the party – most importantly - including all payments and the host order. Process parties within 24 hours of finalising orders. Call your clients to ensure they received their items and are satisfied. Fix problems right away. Provide advice. Ask for referrals. Offer promotions.

7.    Send handwritten thank you notes and reminder cards liberally. The art of writing words with a pen and paper is amazingly simple, low-tech and effective. Buy some stamps, buy some nice paper or postcards, and write. People respond to real mail when it is written by a human. They throw away printed mail as “junk” and they rarely open email. You will stand out from the crowd.

8.    Host monthly home parties. There is no better way to grow your business than to always have something to invite new contacts to. Schedule your home parties and promote them all month long. Introduce new clients to your services without pressure.

9.    Run it like a business. Set financial targets. Develop strategies to achieve those targets. Keep track of your income. Deposit payments made to you in cash or cheques. Keep track of your expenses. Make sure you are making a profit and an acceptable hourly wage after expenses. Set aside money for taxes (successful people pay taxes).  Use an accountant.

10. Lead by example. Whether you are a new Party Planner or have an established Party Planning business, you choose what you do every day. So choose to follow these tips and make them a part of your business every day.

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