Planning events for a living has become a trending career path. A person who has a love of party planning, an eye for detail and can handle tight deadlines, will fit well with this career path. Below are some ideas on how to break into this glitzy, ever-evolving world.
Experience and Networking
A key tip to breaking into party planning is to garner experience in the industry. This can be done by volunteering for events at non-profit agencies. This could involve anything from manning the coat check to handing out programs to helping with setup and takedown. Non-profits are constantly looking for volunteers to help keep costs down – a good way to find a charity in need of event volunteers is to search local area charities and ask if they have any events coming up that they need a hand with.
Networking is the number one way to break into any industry – it really is all about knowing the right people, and those right people knowing who you are. Another good way to network is to go to happenings that are hosted by hospitality organizations. Once there, make smart conversation and always follow up with the people that were reached out too. In the end, networking is all about creating meaningful relationships with professionals, and keeping those relationships.
When volunteering at any event have conversations with vendors and build a contact list of people in the business. It is also a good idea to take notes on what works and what doesn’t work during an event. The more exposure to these types of events, and what goes on behind the scenes, will give the budding planner a good idea of what makes a party successful.
There are many social media sites that make a good platform to start a career. Make sure the page put forth on any of these sites is engaging and professional, as successful corporate and event managers scour these sites for planners. Be sure to leave contact information on the page so that these people can reach out. Add any volunteer work that has been completed in the industry and an updated resume.
Event apps are also a good way to break into and learn more about the business. The best event apps can be found at 24me, ArrangeMySeat, Bizzabo, Blossom, Boomset, and many more.
Research and Education
As with any new career, it is important to be educated and up to date on the path being taken. This education can be found anywhere from blogs and magazines to classes at the local college. The more knowledge that can be gained on upcoming trends, the more clients will reach out.
Two Sides of a Coin
It is important that event planners be of two mindsets. These are a logical and creative mind sets. In order to break into the business a person will have to use logistics to make sure events come off without a hitch. It is also important that a planner is extremely organized, and do well with a budget. With this being said, an event planner also has to have the ability to think in a very creative way. Visual aesthetics are crucial for making a party successful. Taking courses on budgets, logistics, and creative planning are important to garner the right experience for the job.
Think Outside the Box
In order to get a foot in the door, one has to think outside the proverbial box. All types of companies, big and small, need the services of an event coordinator. In terms of corporate type events, always be sure to be versed in convention markets, meetings, expositions, and launches. Another area to be educated in is educational, military, social, fraternal, and religious events in your town. Social events can be anything from weddings to birthdays to bridal showers and family reunions.
There’s a world of different opportunities out there in the event planning business – seize them now and see where it can take you!