How to Start Your Event Business While Working a Day Job

Update: In this video I refer to Success Academy, but that program has been merged into our Boost Your Event Business program so you’re getting three (complete!) courses for one: event training, business development training and sales & marketing training!

Everything you need to grow your event business.

For more information about Boost Your Event Business, click here.

** Swearing Heads Up! If you have little ones around, put your headset on!

(Previously recorded as a Live video from our Facebook page)

Today, we’re talking about how to get your event planning business started if you’re working a day job.

If this is you, if you’re working a day job, working the Monday – Friday 9-5 grind, but you want to start your event business or maybe you’ve started but it’s just not going the way you want it to go, this is for you.

We’re going to be talking about how to get your event business started if you’re working a day job, so any comments or questions you have – pop them into the comment section below and we’d be happy to answer them.

I do know what it’s like because I got started the same way. I worked a day job as I was getting my business started and sometimes it felt completely overwhelming and some days I was like, “how am I going to keep my shit together”.

I Know What It’s Like!

I do know what that’s like. I know what it’s like to try and fit everything in. You’ve got your day job, you’ve got family obligations, you’ve got to buy groceries – you know it’s sometimes those mundane things in our lives that take up so much time, but they have to get done. And you want to have a social life as well, to spend time with friends and family is really important. 

What I’m going to challenge you to do is to come up with a way or find one hour  – just one hour a day somewhere in your life where you can dedicate it solely to starting your event business. I know we can talk about things like staying up another hour later or getting up earlier, but sometimes that just doesn’t work for people and if you’re not a morning person then that really doesn’t work for you. I prefer to do that because I could get it all out of the way early in the morning then I’d go to work and then come home and I could have a social life as well. That worked for me. If it doesn’t work for you don’t worry about it, you don’t have to do everything exactly the same way I did.

1-Hour a Day

What I would like you to do is find one hour every day. It could be when you’re sitting in traffic- can you do some brainstorming then? With safety in mind, write a couple of things down or it can be when you’re going to our child’s swim class and you’re sitting there and you’re watching them or at their dance practices, what about in a bathtub? You can have nice candles around and nice, soft music playing as you hang out, if you like to have baths do it then. Take notes, brainstorm, and create ideas. Maybe even reflect on what’s happened in the last day or two that you could put into your event business.

That’s number one, find one hour a day.

It could mean cutting out one episode of your favorite Netflix series! I don’t know about you, but I’m totally addicted and I tend to binge watch so I know that there’s an hour in there, somewhere, where I don’t have to get up earlier, I don’t have to stay up later, but if I just cut out one extra episode, I can work on my business, which makes it easier.

The point is to create momentum and consistency within your schedule and within your business. That is the key to all of this.

There’s this great saying that goes, “it takes 15 years to create an overnight success”. Let’s think about that for a second. 15 years to create an overnight success and I can guarantee that in those 15 years there’s consistency and momentum going on. Every once in a while you fall off and you’re like, “Oh my God this is just not working”. That’s okay, that’s life!

There’s this great quote that I think about when I’m feeling like I can’t get it all done, “it takes 15 years to create an overnight success”.

We need to give ourselves permission to let it go so we don’t feel overwhelmed, especially when life gets in the way.
Let’s think about that for a second…

 

Meh! Social Media

In today’s world of social media and instant access and Facebook Lives, it can feel like we’re not doing enough or we’re not doing anything or that person can do it, but I can’t do it or they can have it but I can’t have it or it’s happening so quickly for them but it’s not happening quickly for me.

It’s so slow.

I have be honest, quite frankly, it’s complete bullshit! It’s total bullshit. If this isn’t happening for you in the first night, the first week, even the first year just keep going!

I want to talk about consistency and the momentum and building consistency and momentum in your event business. Not just when starting your business but this will transfer into building your business as you move forward and grow.

This is a question that comes up constantly in our event planning community for people who are in the world of working 9 to 5 Monday to Friday.

There’s absolutely nothing wrong with building your business or side hustle, if you want to call it that, on the side.

How to Start Your Event Business While Working a Day Job

If you’ve been following us for a while, you’ve heard me talk about our program business training program – a fantastic, amazing program.

If you’re ready to start your event business make sure you get on our wait-list.

The reason I bring it up Boost Your Event Business is because:

A) it’s a fantastic program and it works, and

B) we give you step-by-step systems and show you what you need to start your event business including five things to focus on first! You’re probably thinking, “okay that’s sounds really good, but what does that look like for me?”

While you’re watching this video, think about one hour a day that you can carve out and 5 things you can focus on each week to move your business forward. It can be anything like – set up 1-2 client calls or client meetings each week, posting to social media if that’s your thing or maybe, if you like, writing and you want to start and write an event blog because that’s how you’d to reach or connect with your audience.

Boost Your Event Business

That’s two things that I’ve given you here today:

A) find one hour each day to focus on your business and

B) what are 5 things you can focus on to move your event business forward each week?

In Boost Your Event Business, we have a bonus called “5 Things to Focus On First”, and we give you those 5 things – like how to get event clients and we help you find your sweet spot.

What I mean by that is – not all marketing techniques work for everyone, even in the event industry. You might have a business in New York versus someone in LA and the same marketing techniques won’t work.

In Boost Your Event Business, we help you find your sweet spot and figure out what you really offer – otherwise known as your value proposition – so you can start focusing on the right types of marketing and you’re not wasting time or money.

I hate when people have to waste money! I’ve done it a lot myself, but I want you to avoid the mistakes I’ve made and we’re going to help you with that in Event Business Academy. How do you get all of those things done in your life?

Your job Monday to Friday 9 – 5, which is taking up a lot of time, and you’ve got family obligations, you’ve got mundane tasks and day to day stuff like shopping, getting groceries, cooking, and all those things that have to get done in a day.

So, how do you keep on track and continue with momentum and consistency?

Project Management Software

There’s one thing that I really like to use and that’s a project management system called Trello.

It’s completely free.

You may choose to use another program like Asana and there are a number of good ones out there, but that’s totally up to you and it doesn’t really matter which one you use. I prefer to use Trello because I like the way it’s set up and because I can share it with my team (virtually). If you don’t have a team yet don’t worry about it.

Trello makes it really easy because you can set categories and set up the entire project in the software – for anything! In your case it’s going to be your event planning business, so figure out your to do list to build your event business. It’s not just registering your business name, it’s not just figuring out what your business name is. It’s not just figuring out if you’re going to work from work from home or rent office space.

I recommend, if you’re just getting started, to work from home. What are good marketing idea and how do I research them? Who exactly is my ideal client? And doing an exercise to know your ideal client so you can put your precise to-do list in Trello and then move them into different categories. For example, in my case I like to have my whole to-do list and then I move it into ‘working on’ and then I move it into complete’ so I can see the actual patterns of what’s happening, where things stand, and what is still outstanding, what still needs to get done.

If you’re really organized and you like color coding and stick-it notes then you can do all that within Trello. Putting Systems Into Place That’s one way to not feel completely overwhelmed and keep your time management in check so that you are still doing a great job (at your day job) and you are paying your bills and you’re taking off the pressure to feel like “Oh my God, I want to quit my job, but I don’t have the finances to do it”. Let’s take that fear away.

Let’s be real. You can’t just quit your job one day without a buffer, right?

You have to put these systems and checks and balances in place to make sure that you’re set up for success and we hope you do that at Event Business Academy. Like I said we give you those 5 things to focus on first so you stay focused on what’s important and what you need to do.

Does this sound like you?

I want to know in the comments below and if you have any questions about starting your business, feel free to ask. I’m happy to talk about it, I love talking about business and getting your business started and building your business.

Maybe you’ve been working independently for a while and want to grow your event business. It really is about creating the systems that you need so you’re not floundering and you’re not still thinking, “I’m still in the same spot” in a year from now, which I see often.

Why Baby Steps Are Important

It’s so important that you’re taking those baby steps. I talk about this a lot. Sometimes you’ll see leaps and bounds and then other times it’s a turtle’s pace. You’re pulling your hair out and you feel like nothing is helping. That’s what we do at Event Business Academy – help you to get rid of that feeling of overwhelm and unknown and uncertainty.

Talking Down To Event Planners

Thanks Dee. Dee is saying, “established event planners in my area tend to talk down to newer planners.” Yes Dee, I hear this a lot and unfortunately I don’t know why that happens or what to do about it – other than ignore them! This is a life lesson.

If you’re not really surrounding yourself with people who are supportive get away from them, walk away. There’s nothing you can do about those people and, quite frankly, it’s more about them than it is about you. You don’t need to be completely established to start your event business and, let’s be honest, they had to start somewhere.

They didn’t have experience. They made mistakes. They did all those things that you’re going to do so, I don’t understand this whole idea of talking down to new event planners. It’s not helping and it’s all about insecurity so just walk away.

Event Planning Community

Even in friendships that end, for whatever reason, maybe they’re not supportive, it’s the same idea, so unfortunately, it’s a fact of life. I would walk away and find positive people.

I focus my energy and efforts on finding the people who are supportive and who do want to help me, which brings up: community. I hear that a lot and it is a concern for new event planners. We created Boost Your Event Business because we’re you need support and we’re very supportive! I’m going to be totally frank with you. If you’re the type of person who is negative, please don’t join Boost Your Event Business.

I want to help people who want to be helped and we have a really supportive community with amazing people in the group who are go-getters. About 90% of them are working a day job, but we have this amazing community so that people aren’t talking down to each other.

We’re learning from each other and, I must be honest, I learn just as much from the people in our community as they do from me. Different things, but it’s very much a give and take type of scenario.

Why You Shouldn’t Do It ALL!

I know you have a lot of options. You have a ton of options! Maybe even too many options and it can feel completely overwhelming. Whether it’s another courses and you’re trying to make a decision about which one to pick, or it’s feeling like what I must have a complete website that’s beautiful and perfect.

I need to have marketing materials that are stellar, but they cost a lot of money I need to be an expert in all social media – Facebook and YouTube and Facebook Live and Twitter and LinkedIn and the list goes! It’s just not true. You don’t and I don’t recommend that you do that because you can’t be an expert in all of those areas.

Inside Boost Your Event Business we show you and teach you areas that you are good at. It’s not about me being good at one area vs you. You might hate being on video so don’t do video!

We’ll help you find what you do like so that you can do more of that because that’s where your energy and your momentum and your consistency is going to come from.

Think about anything you love doing – you’re going to do it willingly and freely vs. the things where it’s like pulling teeth. I want to acknowledge that I know you have options and we want to help you narrow those options down so that you’re not feeling overwhelmed and so that one hour every day that you’re spending on your business is productive and it’s moving your business forward.

I don’t make claims that we’re going to get you there in two months or in three months – that’s completely up to you. I’ll give you the tools so you can do it in that time, if that’s what you choose to do. We also give you lifetime access to Success Academy so that if you want to take 12 months or two years, you can do that.

Now, I don’t recommend that you take that long to do the course, but we give you lifetime access so that you can do the course with us and then in a few months you can do the course over again. If you have questions about Boost Your Event Business, send us an email at info(at)eventplanningblueprint(dot)com.

Alternatively, type the questions into the comments below and we’ll be happy to answer them. Thank you so much for joining me here today.

I want to acknowledge you for being here and really for taking steps forward in your event planning business.

Have a fantastic day and I’ll see you again soon.

Bye!

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8 Comments

  1. Avatar Deval A Jackson September 18, 2017 at 5:10 pm

    Hello Melanie, wonderful introduction. I’m looking forward to starting my event planning business.

    Reply
  2. Avatar Hazel Moss September 22, 2017 at 3:36 pm

    All I can say is that although stressful it is totally possible. I was working full time when I started my event planning business.
    I admire your strength!

    Reply
    1. Avatar Event Planning Blueprint September 22, 2017 at 4:17 pm

      Yes, it can be stressful at times, but SO worth it. The key is to take one day at a time and keep pushing forward.

      Reply
  3. Avatar Patty September 25, 2017 at 9:22 pm

    Great stuff Melanie! Thanks so much for all this! This is amazing and I can’t wait to start putting in practice all your tips on how to survive and succeed in this industry! Lots of Love from the UK )

    Reply
    1. Avatar Event Planning Blueprint September 25, 2017 at 9:29 pm

      You’re welcome Patty!

      Reply
  4. Avatar Michael October 20, 2017 at 10:48 pm

    Thank you for the information! I’m just getting started in this industry and you’ve given me a lot to work with while still getting off the ground!

    Reply
    1. Avatar Event Planning Blueprint October 21, 2017 at 11:31 am

      You’re welcome Michael!

      Reply

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