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Making Money

3 Ways To Make More Money Per Wedding Without Raising Your Prices

July 21, 2023

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At this point, I’ve written a lot of blog posts about making more money as a wedding planner. Making data-driven pricing decisions, following a Profit First model, and even just sharing marketing tips to help you generate more leads, are all ultimately written to help YOU grow a profitable business with purpose. And I’m proud of the posts I’ve written! But today, I’m taking it even FURTHER. I’m sharing 3 ways you can make more money PER wedding (without raising your prices or lowering your expenses). I’m talking about more cash in the bank here! If that’s what you need right now, keep on reading.

Why should you raise your revenue per wedding?

There are a lot of ways to make more money as a wedding pro. Just off the top of my head, I’m thinking:

  1. Affiliate Income
  2. Selling digital products/templates
  3. Offering mentoring to other wedding pros
  4. Selling online courses
  5. Offer “one-time” planning calls for couples

And heck – if you’ve spent any time on TikTok lately, you may even be thinking about starting a dropshipping business or selling something “print on demand” on Etsy. Please tell me I’m not the only one getting flooded with that nonsense. 

But today’s post isn’t about any of those things. Instead, I’ve focused on ways you can raise your revenue PER wedding. That way, you can make more money without booking more weddings. Can we all just breathe a collective sigh of relief? Doesn’t that sound good?

#1 Separate Venue Research from Full Planning + Design

One of the first steps to making more money is to go through your current wedding planning packages, and then figure out what you are including that is “non-essential” and then offer it as an “add-on” service instead. For most of the wedding planners I coach, venue research falls into this category!

Storytime: I still remember the first time someone told me they had already found a wedding venue, so could I remove it from the full planning and design fee. It felt like the question hit me like a ton of bricks realizing that 1. I was going to make less money on this wedding now, and 2. How had nobody ever asked me this before? I knew right away I did NOT want that to happen again. I remember sitting there thinking “How much is venue research really worth?”

As you can imagine, I had two thoughts again:

  1. It was a ton of work so likely worth a significant chunk of change.
  2. On the other hand, the higher I valued the service, the more I had to deduct from my fee. 

Naturally, I’ve learned a lot since then (and that’s why you are here right?). If you want to make more money per wedding without raising your prices, I highly recommend offering venue research as a separate service from your more comprehensive packages. While you are revamping your packages, look at what else you can remove from your current planning packages and consider offering them “a la carte” too.

If you are looking to start charging for venue research in addition to your full-service planning and design fee, I go into detail about the process here. I even include swipe files so you can start selling this new service immediately

And by the way? Even though I’m talking about this service being something you “add on” for full planning clients, you could also offer it to couples who don’t feel like they need a wedding planner yet, too. Once they get a taste of working with you, there’s a good chance they will want you to guide them through the rest of the wedding planning process too! And let’s be honest – it’s a great way for YOU to get a taste of working with them too.

#2 Start Managing Your Couple’s Rentals

This strategy is HIGHLY profitable, and a great way to make more money per wedding without raising your prices. Again, this is a way to make more money from the work you are ALREADY doing for your couples. Don’t you want to get paid for it?

I’m going to break down a little more about “what it is” so you can start to think about ways you might want to implement rental management in your own business, but if this is something you plan on pursuing, I highly recommend you grab this Playbook where I outline the Wedding Planner Rental Revenue strategy. This ONE tweak has made me thousands of dollars in extra revenue (PER wedding!). It felt like it literally doubled my revenue overnight.

Here’s the short version of this powerful revenue-generating strategy:

In the simplest terms, managing your couple’s rentals makes YOU act as the rental company, and you act as the intermediary between your couple and the rental company. In most cases, your couple will pay you, and then you’ll pay the rental company. Obviously, there are ways to maximize the amount of money you are getting back, but that’s the essence of it. You “manage” the rentals, and therefore you’ll get paid a commission or fee for that work. You’ll need to require your planning couples to book through you, and you’ll likely want to open a separate bank account too. Before long, there will be a lot of money flowing in and out of your account.

Want more? Inside my Rental Revenue Playbook, I share:

  • Step-by-step guide on how to sublet rentals and make money off tents, tables, linens, lighting, and everything in between without carrying any inventory of your own
  • Example rental invoices you'll send clients
  • How to establish relationships with rental companies and secure discounts
  • How to pitch high-end rentals to your clients
  • Rental policies swipe files to protect your business

It’s over 50 pages, so it’s a smidge more than I can include in this blog post!

#3 Add Partial Planning Hours to Day of Coordination

Raise your hand if you’ve been guilty of giving your day of coordination free advice because at the end of the day, it makes your job easier if they get it right. While I’m not going to tell you to stop doing that (I don’t want you walking into a shit show on the wedding day), instead, I want to encourage you to start offering to add partial planning hours to your “wedding management” service. You KNOW your couples will use them, and this can be a great way to 

If you’ve followed me for a while, you’ve heard me say that the only thing partial about partial planning is the paycheck. That’s NOT what I’m talking about here. I’m not talking about offering to help with specific tasks or taking on a partial planning role. I’m talking about setting an hourly rate and offering packages of 5,10, or 20 hours that couples can use as they need throughout the planning process. This way you are ensured you are paid for your time!

If you are in the process of revamping your wedding planning packages, I’d be doing you a major disservice if I didn’t tell you I’ve done all the heavy lifting in The Ultimate Guide to Wedding Planning Packages. If you want to structure your wedding planning packages in a way that will help you make more money per wedding easily, it’ll be the best money you ever spend. 

A Note about upselling your current clients

I just want to add a quick note here – while you can offer partial planning hours to couples at ANY time in the planning/management process, the other two strategies should likely be implemented with NEW couples moving forward. I’m not suggesting that you go back to your current clients and restructure your packages to make more money. I’m sure you already know that, but this blog post wouldn’t feel quite complete without this disclaimer. 

a copy of a timeline for a wedding planner

BONUS: Are you pricing yourself well as a wedding planner? 

Listen, I promised to share three tactical ways to increase your average revenue per wedding, and I have, but the business coach inside of me has GOT to ask: are you sure you shouldn’t be raising your prices? 

If you are curious how much you should ACTUALLY be charging as a wedding planner (and what factors go into deciding on a price – and hint, your “worth” did not make the list), I have one last guide for you to consider. If you’ve priced yourself “a little less” or “a little more” than your competitors, and are ready to actually take a deep dive into your numbers and make sure your business is PROFITABLE, I highly recommend grabbing a copy of my Pricing your Planning Packages for Profit Playbook

While raising your prices is NOT the only way to make money, throwing spaghetti at the wall and choosing a random number is not the vibe either. And despite what you might think, I actually DON’T always recommend you raise your packages. I talk about that inside too!

Want more advice in your wedding planning business?

You’ve found your business coach. My membership, the Planner’s Playbook, is THE place for wedding planners who want to grow a wedding planning business they love (with a lot more ease than reading random articles on Google). I’d love to welcome you inside! Sign up for the details and join us for our next coaching call here

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