Writing a business plan for your wedding business sounds daunting and scary, but it can actually be easy and painless. You can even write an awesome business plan in just one day. Once you have your awesome business plan in place and you’re working it, you will be attracting wedding clients that want to work with you, meeting your goals and your wedding business will be growing.
A simple and awesome business plan will enable you to create the wedding business of your dreams, reach your goals and still have time to enjoy the other parts of your life.
The key is to create the plan, work the plan, review the plan and update the plan and then start again with putting your plan into action.
If you feel like you are only working with crummy wedding clients that make you question your job, your budget is a hot mess, you’re struggling to close sales and you work all the time, then creating or updating your business plan is the first place to start to solve those problems.
Every wedding business (and honestly every business) needs a plan and a business plan is essential to set yourself and your wedding business up for success. You don’t need a fancy plan in a big binder filled with graphs, formulas, and pages filled with text.
A basic business plan is a roadmap to where you want your wedding business to go.
It will help you make decisions, map out strategies and stay on course. It’s important to remember that your business plan is never done, it always evolving along with your business. That’s why it’s essential to revisit your business plan each year, update it and then work that plan.
What is a business plan?
Very simply put, a business plan is a document outlining the future of the business and how you will get there.
Writing a business plan doesn’t need to be a giant project.
Use this short guide to get going on your business plan and you can write a quick and simple business plan in only one day. Each bullet item below is one section of your business plan. Start each section with the name of the section, for example Summary.
Your Quick and Simple Business Plan:
Write the name of your business and the date you are writing the business plan
The summary is a general overview of your wedding business. Answer these questions: Who are you? What do you do? How long have you been in business? Where are you located? What area do you serve? Who do you serve?
Write down the core values. What are the unwavering beliefs and practices of your wedding business? For example “we only use green products in our design”, “we create luxury experiences”, “we always make time for family”, “we work with local artisans whenever possible”, “we act with integrity”, etc.
The mission statement describes why you exist (what do you do, how do you do it and who do you serve). Fill in the blanks below. Be sure to be as specific as possible to make the mission as useful and appeal to your ideal client.
We (what do you do) by (how you do it) for (who you serve) so that (result).
Example: We create beautiful wedding designs by sourcing local wares for stylish couples getting married in the Pacific Northwest so that each wedding design is completely custom and inspired by the ocean.
A vision statement describes what your success looks like in the future.
Answer this question: What does success in 15 years look like?
Example: (In 15 years) ABC Wedding Planner Co will be a household name in the San Francisco Bay area and known for unique and locally sourced planning and design inspired by the ocean.
In this section, describe the services you provide
Write the different packages with prices and descriptions
The marketing plan identifies who you will sell to, how you will reach them and how you will keep them.
Describe your ideal client. Not sure where to start, use this worksheet to get started.
Include a plan for social media with Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest
Include in-person networking opportunities and organizations you will join
This section describes what needs to happen for the office and behind the scenes to run smoothly.
What do you need in your office (computer, printer, notebooks, etc.)?
Will you have staff? Will they be employees or contractors? Will you have a virtual assistant? Will you have a bookkeeper?
Where will your office be (your kitchen table, a home office, downtown location, etc.)?
This section is a simple and basic budget with income and expenses and you can use Excel to create it.
Ask yourself: How much money do you need to get paid each year? How much will it cost to run your business each year? How many weddings do you need to do and at what price points to meet that budget?
Where do you want your wedding business to be in one year, three years, five years? How will you get there? What milestones do you need to hit?
Remember, your wedding business plan is a strategic roadmap to grow your wedding business and work with awesome clients. A business plan is successful when it is written down, you work the plan, review the plan and make updates each year. As soon as you stop working your business plan, your business will start to fail and you’ll be back to working with annoying clients. A wedding business without a business plan is like driving a car in the dark with no headlights; you are bound to either crash and burn or run right off the road.
Need help getting started? I have a free bonus for you, it’s an ideal client worksheet!