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The pros and cons of being a wedding planner

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Wedding planner: Making the career change! - want to become a wedding planner? We look at the pros and cons of being a wedding planner, to help you decide!


Are you daydreaming about turning your love for weddings into a lucrative career as a wedding planner? You’re not alone! It’s a job that offers the chance to let your creativity shine, build lasting relationships with clients, and even earn a handsome income.

But before you start planning your own business, it’s important to weigh the pros and cons of the job. From long hours to high-pressure situations, there are definitely some drawbacks to consider.

But don’t let that scare you off just yet! With the right skills and mindset, you can overcome the challenges and thrive in this competitive industry.

In this blog post, we’ll dive into the advantages and disadvantages of becoming a wedding planner, so you can make an informed decision about whether this career path is right for you. Plus, we’ll share tips on how to get started, including certification options and networking strategies. Ready to learn more? Let’s get started!


The advantages of being a wedding planner


Discover the many benefits of becoming a wedding planner with our guide to the advantages of this fulfilling career. From creating beautiful events to working with happy couples, we’ll explore why wedding planning may be the perfect career choice for you.

Let’s continue by looking at some of the advantages of becoming a wedding planner:


1.  The number one thing about wedding planning, is that you can run your own business. It is one of the most empowering feelings and owning a business, in itself, has got so many more advantages.


2.   You are your own boss. You decide on your business perks. Your hours. Your salary. The services you offer. What type of clients do you want to work with, etc., etc? No more being bossed around and doing things you genuinely don’t want to do.


3.   You can fire your clients. Is Bridezilla on the loose? Fire her! (Note: When you start as a wedding planner, you might need all of your clients to stay afloat, but once you are up and running and you have the freedom to choose the brides you want to work with – let the difficult clients go. It will be less stressful for you and you can start enjoying who we call “easy brides”. (Unless, of course, you like challenges…)


#4:   Another favorite of ours: you can determine your salary. Be reasonable and maybe get financial advice for this one. At first, you might have to spend your hard-earned money on necessities for your business, but once you have established yourself as a full-time wedding planner, you can determine your commission.


#5:   You can be a part-time wedding planner. If your current job doesn’t require you to work overtime, and you have your weekends free – consider wedding planning as a part-time job. Meet brides after hours and do weddings on weekends. You might have to sacrifice your lunch hours here.


#6:   You can be a day coördinator. What we mean by this is, sometimes you get brides who have already gone through the trouble of organizing suppliers and ironing out the kinks of their wedding. They simply need someone on the day of the wedding to make sure that everything goes smoothly. You can meet the bridal couple a few weeks before the day of the wedding to get all the necessary information and just be there on their special day.


#7:   Networking. You get to meet a lot of people in the industry – which is quite exciting! You can build networks and get to know suppliers firsthand. When you are part of the inner circle, some people in the industry might even do favors for you. Also, it has a massive support system.


#8:   There’s an app for this. There are so many applications available to help you in your wedding planning career. Just go onto any iPhone or Android application store and check it out.


#9:   One thing to also mention is that the market is huge. There are so many clients and opportunities to make money or to be part of someone’s happiness… which brings us to the last (but not final) reason…


#10:   You are part of someone’s happiness and that is an awesome and uplifting feeling. This is what makes wedding planning such a rewarding career.


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The disadvantages of being a wedding planner


While being a wedding planner can be a rewarding and exciting career, it’s important to also consider the potential challenges and drawbacks. In this section, we’ll take a closer look at the disadvantages of being a wedding planner and explore some of the less glamorous aspects of the job.

Whether you’re considering a career in wedding planning or are already a seasoned professional, understanding the potential downsides can help you make informed decisions and prepare for the challenges ahead. So let’s dive in and explore the less glamorous side of the wedding planning industry:


#1:   Long hours. On the day of the wedding, it is estimated that you will be on your feet for at least 15 hours. That is a long time of running around and being in three places at once.


#2:   Difficult clients. You WILL get Bridezilla. She is always roughly one out of eight brides and she can be very difficult and unsatisfied: All. The. Time. Then you get the mother of the bride who wants to plan everything and her word is the law. She feels that she is paying for everything, so she will decide on the song for the first dance, in extreme cases. In any case, you might enjoy this post. 🙂


#3:   Another passion killer is the dreaded What if? statement. Murphy loves weddings (you know, Murphy’s Law) and there will almost always be something that can or will go wrong. And who else will be blamed for that tiny (or massive) mistake like forgetting to put the cake topper on the cake before it goes to the reception hall? You. At least they will not blame you for the bad weather on their fantastic outdoor wedding. (Pro Tip: Always have a plan B!)


#4:   Bargain hunters. Let us take this moment to bust a common myth about wedding planners (and which is also something that angers many wedding planners), even those who have been in the industry for a long time. Bridal couples will almost always ask for discounts, favors or bargains. This happens a lot because someone, somewhere, was bored, and hates wedding planners, and started this rumor of wedding planners who have connections! We also have to make a profit. Keep that in mind when someone tries to haggle with you.


#5:   You have to juggle many brides at the same time. If you plan a couple of weddings at the same time for different brides, you will have to keep track of who’s who and what’s what. You have to deal with different schedules and timelines as well as different types of brides. A good idea is to invest in a decent daily planner or journal to keep track of things.


#6:   It is a seasonal business. How many people do you know who LOVES WINTER!!? They literally want to roll around in it all day long and wear scarves or something else wrapped around their neck all the time? Not many, no. Same goes for brides who want to get married in the winter. Not many.


#7:    Someone will expect the impossible. Horse and carriage, yes, that can be arranged. Underwater wedding, yes, that can also be arranged. Tightrope wedding across the Grand Canyon, yes, wait… What?? You get the idea…


#8:    It is a long way to the top. It is a huge industry. Yes, there are bucket loads of clients, but there are also a lot of competitive wedding planners who are also trying to work their way up the career ladder. You will have to do a lot of weddings to get ahead in the game. Also, never underestimate the power of social media marketing.


#9:   It might not pay as well as you think. (At least not in the beginning) You might expect a huge salary for yourself after you have planned a wedding for an average couple. It might shock you how little pay you get after the hard work and long hours you have put in. And also, think of all the deductions that need to be done before you can calculate your profits.


#10:   It is not your wedding. You have soooo many ideas for fairy tale weddings and you have the perfect color schemes in mind. The bride might not like the same ideas that you have. You have to do exactly what the bride wants – even if her color scheme is coral and emerald.


#11:   You need to deal with the emotions of others. The teary maid of honor who can’t believe her friend is getting married before her, angry suppliers who insist “that is exactly what you ordered”, family arguments about the budget, unresolved issues that come up during the meeting with the pastor, etc. Have enough tissues with you, just in case. You will be the one who wipes the tears, be the shoulder to cry on, the peacemaker and probably the one who has to pick up all the pieces.


Now, go and ponder this. These are not all the advantages and disadvantages of becoming a wedding planner, but we hope it helps you in making this massive decision.


Don’t let the disadvantages discourage you too much! Like we’ve mentioned: Being a wedding planner is an extremely rewarding career!


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The pros and cons of being a wedding planner - The Wedding Club
The pros and cons of being a wedding planner - The Wedding Club
The pros and cons of being a wedding planner - The Wedding Club

Here are some tips to help you get started on your journey to becoming a successful wedding planner:

  1. Get certified: Earning a certification from a reputable wedding planning organization can give you a competitive edge in the industry. Consider organizations like the Wedding Planning Institute or the Association of Bridal Consultants.

  2. Build a portfolio: Even if you haven’t planned any weddings yet, you can still showcase your skills by creating a portfolio of your work. This could include mood boards, design concepts, and other creative elements that demonstrate your ability to bring a wedding vision to life.

  3. Network with other wedding professionals: Attend local bridal shows, reach out to other wedding vendors, and join professional organizations like the National Association of Wedding Professionals to build relationships with others in the industry. You never know when a referral or collaboration opportunity will arise!

  4. Establish an online presence: Create a professional website and social media accounts to showcase your work and attract potential clients. Make sure your online presence is polished and reflects your brand identity.

  5. Offer your services for free or at a discount: When you’re just starting out, it can be helpful to gain experience and build your portfolio by offering your services to friends or family members for free or at a reduced rate. This can also lead to referrals and positive word of mouth, which can be invaluable in the early stages of your business.

Remember, building a successful wedding planning business takes time, hard work, and dedication. But with the right skills, certification, networking, and marketing strategies, you can make your dreams of becoming a wedding planner a reality.

Certification options

When it comes to becoming a certified wedding planner, there are several reputable organizations to consider. Here are some of the top certification options:

  1. Wedding Planning Institute (WPI): The WPI offers a Certified Wedding Planner (CWP) program that covers everything from event planning to vendor selection and contract negotiation. The program includes online coursework, live webinars, and an in-person final exam.

  2. Association of Bridal Consultants (ABC): The ABC offers a Professional Wedding Planner certification program that includes online coursework, in-person workshops, and a final exam. The program covers topics like wedding planning, design, and business management.

  3. The Bridal Society: The Bridal Society offers a Certified Wedding Planner program that includes online coursework, a final exam, and ongoing education opportunities. The program covers topics like wedding design, budgeting, and client management.

  4. Lovegevity’s Wedding Planning Institute (LWPI): LWPI offers a Certified Wedding and Event Planning program that covers everything from wedding planning to event design and execution. The program includes online coursework, an in-person workshop, and a final exam.

When choosing a certification program, it’s important to consider factors like cost, time commitment, and reputation. Look for programs that offer comprehensive training and resources, as well as ongoing support and education opportunities. Remember, earning a certification is just one piece of the puzzle when it comes to building a successful wedding planning business, but it can give you a competitive edge and help establish your credibility in the industry.

These certification programs are largely offered online, so you can complete the coursework from anywhere in the world. However, some organizations may also offer in-person workshops or exams in certain locations. Here are some additional international options to consider:

  1. The UK Alliance of Wedding Planners: The UKAWP offers a training program and certification for wedding planners in the UK. The program includes online coursework, in-person training days, and a final exam.

  2. Wedding Planning Association of Canada: The WPIC offers a Wedding Coordinator Certification program that covers everything from event planning to vendor management and contract negotiation. The program includes online coursework, in-person workshops, and a final exam.

  3. Association of Certified Professional Wedding Consultants (ACPWC): The ACPWC offers a certification program for wedding planners and consultants in the United States and internationally. The program includes online coursework, in-person workshops, and a final exam.

  4. Wedding Beautiful Worldwide: Wedding Beautiful offers a training and certification program for wedding planners in multiple countries, including the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom. The program includes online coursework, in-person workshops, and a final exam.

When choosing a certification program, it’s important to research the organization’s reputation and accreditation, as well as any specific requirements or restrictions based on your location.

Networking strategies for beginner wedding planners

Networking is a key component of building a successful wedding planning business. Here are some detailed networking strategies for beginner wedding planners:

  1. Attend local bridal shows and events: Bridal shows are a great way to meet potential clients and network with other wedding professionals. Bring business cards and a portfolio of your work, and be prepared to introduce yourself and talk about your services.

  2. Join professional organizations: Joining a professional organization like the National Association of Wedding Professionals or the Association of Bridal Consultants can provide you with valuable resources, education, and networking opportunities. Attend events and meetings regularly to build relationships with other industry professionals.

  3. Build relationships with vendors: Wedding vendors like florists, photographers, and caterers can be valuable sources of referrals and collaborations. Reach out to local vendors and offer to meet for coffee or lunch to discuss ways you can support each other’s businesses.

  4. Volunteer or intern with established wedding planners: Volunteering or interning with an established wedding planner can provide you with hands-on experience and help you build relationships with other industry professionals. Reach out to local planners and ask about opportunities to assist with events or shadow them on the job.

  5. Participate in online wedding communities: Joining online communities like Facebook groups or LinkedIn groups for wedding professionals can provide you with a platform to connect with others in the industry, ask questions, and share ideas.

  6. Host your own events: Consider hosting your own networking events or workshops for other wedding professionals in your area. This can be a great way to showcase your skills and expertise, and build relationships with other industry professionals.

  7. Collaborate on styled shoots: Styled shoots are a popular way for wedding professionals to showcase their work and collaborate with others in the industry. Reach out to local photographers, florists, and other vendors to organize a styled shoot together.

  8. Build relationships with venue coordinators: Venue coordinators can be valuable sources of referrals for wedding planners. Make an effort to build relationships with venue coordinators in your area by attending open houses and offering to meet for coffee to discuss ways you can work together.

  9. Offer to speak at industry events: Speaking at industry events like bridal shows or professional organization meetings can help you establish yourself as an expert in your field and build relationships with other professionals. Reach out to event organizers and offer to speak on a topic related to wedding planning.

  10. Leverage social media: Social media can be a powerful tool for networking and building relationships with other wedding professionals. Follow other wedding vendors in your area and engage with their content regularly. Consider joining Instagram pods or Facebook groups for wedding professionals to expand your network.

Remember, building a network takes time and effort. Focus on building authentic relationships and providing value to others in the industry, and the referrals and collaborations will come naturally over time.