When I first started my business, I wasn’t sure how much to charge. Even when I figured out my pricing structure, when it came to putting it on paper, I was always nervous it was going to be too much. I didn’t know my value – and worse – my clients didn’t know either.
It was a few years into a certain client’s event that I decided that the value I brought to the table was not being rewarded. It was my own fault, but I was charging way too little because I just wanted to “get the business” and I was afraid of claiming what I really thought I deserved. It was a tough time in my company – trying to take LKE from a side business to a serious FT business – and part of that transition was learning to charge what I believed I was worth (and building a business that reflected that value). I ended up raising my prices 4X that year and it has been a more successful business ever since.
I don’t get every client, but I do get the ones that are perfect for me. This is important – and the process to get here was long, but worth every second. Here are a few tips I have if you’re looking to change the perception of your business, uplevel and see exponential growth!
1. TAKE YOURSELF SERIOUSLY AS A BUSINESS
The first step in getting other people to respect you as a legit planner who is worth paying for – is to take yourself seriously. This isn’t a side business. It’s not a hobby. If you want to make a full-time income, you’ve got to make this your biggest priority. I’ve found that focusing on your planning as a serious business does a few things.
(1) It helps you believe that you bring something very special and unique to the table. You know how hard you work and you want to be paid accordingly.
(2) Your activity is evident to all those around you – they take you more seriously, expect to spend more money and determine that they want to work with you for a specific value you bring to the table.
If you’re working with a full-time effort and want to command higher revenue, you’ve got to make it look legitimate. This would include spending your time on:
- Branding yourself as a high-class planner. This mandates that you focus on your BRILLIANCE and brand yourself accordingly. Yes – choosing a niche is important!
- A strong marketing plan. If you’re spending hours and hours working on your business, some of that time should be on strong social media posts, an updated website, updated LinkedIn profile and a strong marketing plan.
- A defined, well-branded proposal process. What do your prospective clients receive from you the second they’re interested? What is your proposal process and how does it speak to your ideal target clients? If it’s giving away too much up front or not communicating your value, you’re going to lose more potential clients than you could ever find.
In short, when everything you do looks like a successful business that provides a unique value to a specific target audience, you’re on the right path!
2. CHARGE ETHICALLY AND APPROPRIATELY
It’s not fair to our clients, or to ourselves, to make pricing a guessing game. The price of the day shouldn’t be based on how you feel or how rich your client is. At the end of the day, you’re selling a service that has an associated price. You’re an event planner and that means you’re involved in various aspects of throwing an event. Maybe you’re more on the management side or full production, but you should know your service listings.
In determining how to charge, I’ve found a few pricing models that exist in our industry. Some do one way, others make a hybrid version, and still others make it up as they go along. Here are 3 popular pricing models I’ve seen and my opinions on each.
- A PERCENTAGE OF THE BUDGET
This model is simple – planners who charge this way take a % of their total budget. So let’s say your client has a $100,000 budget and you take 20%, you get paid $20,000 (Look ma, I just did math!).This is very straightforward, but not my favorite way to charge because it has no reflection on the work you will need to do. Let’s say the client’s budget is $100,000, but they want you to manage 100 speakers. They may not be paying these speakers so it’s doesn’t factor into their budget, but managing 100 speakers is a HUGE, time-consuming task. You’ve really got to make sure your % is fair if you’re using this model.
- A FLAT FEE
I’ll be honest – I’m not 100% sure how people figure this model out (which is why I don’t do it), but the general concept is that there is a flat fee. For example – on-site wedding management is $2,500 and full wedding management is $5,000. I’m guessing this is based on average workload, but I also have a feeling this changes frequently based on the whim of the day – and the projected “budget” of the client.
- A PROJECT FEE BASED ON PROJECTED # OF HOURS
This is the model I love the most, and it’s what I use for all of our clients. I lay out a very specific scope of work. Like -VERY specific – and then use that to determine how many hours I think I will have to spend. Of course, I also include staff time as well. This estimation of hours is then multiplied by my hourly rate and then given as a flat fee. So – if I end up spending more time than I thought, that’s my fault. My clients don’t pay more. If I spend less time (which RARELY happens), I still get paid the same flat fee. But – I do reduce for the client the next time around to make sure it’s in line with reality so they aren’t overpaying.The reason I love this model so much is that it’s a direct reflection of the work. If I give a proposal for $40,000 and my client can only afford $10,000, I can still take the contract by reducing the scope and lessening my fee. I know how much work I’ll need to do, and reducing my fee and scope allows me to take on other clients. It’s also much more transparent to the client as they know they’re being charged only for work I’m doing. It helps me when the client’s budget is lower than my proposal – I don’t just have to do all the same work for the same price.
Now just because the third model is my favorite, doesn’t mean it’s the only right answer. You have to find a solution that you feel comfortable with. The main goal here is to decide on a pricing model – make it clear to your clients – and stick with it. If you know HOW you charge, you can then determine HOW MUCH!
3. STICK TO YOUR GUNS
If we want our clients to take us seriously, we have to take ourselves seriously. And the biggest way we do that is sticking to our pricing strategy. Once you’ve done the two things above, you’re really sure that you deliver great value to your clients. You’re also clear on HOW you price your services and HOW MUCH makes sense for each project. Once you’ve established this – you come to the hardest part of all – sticking to your guns.
Remember that story I told in the beginning about raising my prices by 4X? Well the first time I did that, I lost the client. They couldn’t understand why I had to raise my prices so much and they didn’t value the work that I brought to the table. It was a hard loss and I really had to push through a lot of doubt and uncertainty about this new pricing strategy. But you know what? After 2 years, that same client came back and paid the 4X amount. They had hired other companies and didn’t get the same quality – and when they came back – they knew why I was worth every penny.
I know this is easier to say than to do, but when you truly believe in the value you bring to the table, you take yourself seriously, and you have a smart pricing strategy – you will find that the right clients are the ones who will pay you. You’ll have to let the ones who don’t see your value fall away. You’ll lose some business. You might even lose some of your best current customers.
But you’re also opening the doors to a whole new ballgame.
When you brand yourself and price accordingly, you open up all new doors.
- Clients who love you and will pay top dollar to work with you.
- New revenue opportunities from thought leadership.
- No more justifying your value every step of the way and arguing with clients who don’t have clear expectations.
- Getting paid WELL for work you LOVE to do.
It may not be easy, which is why many people don’t do it, but those who take the time to walk this path will be some of the most powerful event hustlers in the business!
This may be one of the largest articles I’ve ever written, but raising your prices is not a simple task. It’s a lot of work and there are a lot of nuances. I found out (the hard way) that much of this takes support from people who have been there before.
If you’re ready to take action on these items and could use some help, there are a few ways I support entrepreneurs like you!
- FREE PODCASTS: The “I’ve Been Thinking” podcast is a 3-5 min. series I’ve been doing to inspire you in your thinking as an event business owner. You can listen at the gym, in the car, or anywhere you have some time to challenge your thinking about your business!
- MEETUPS: Sometimes you need to get out of your office and swap war stories with other independent planners who are going through the same things. I’ve found there aren’t many resources for independent event planners so I created a space for us to get the networking we need – planners only so you won’t spend your night being pitched by vendors. Instead – you’ll be able to share war stories and best practices that arm you for success.
- DEFINE YOUR BRILLIANCE: One of the things I’ve noticed is that so many independent event planners have a hard time defining their unique value. And if they know what it is, they’re scared of “niche”ing. But this step is SO CRITICAL to growing your business. In this one-on-one short consulting, we’ll work together to find YOUR brilliance – so you can see the ripple effects of defining your value throughout your entire business.
- IGNITE: If you’re ready to really dive in and uplevel, this year-long mentorship and consulting program is a life-changer. The eventprofs who have been through this course have seen a dramatic difference in their perception of their businesses, but more importantly, so have their clients. We work on defining your brand, up-leveling your business, raising your prices, finding the right clients and bringing in more revenue by leveraging thought leadership. This takes you from the roller coaster of entrepreneurship and puts you on the path towards sustainable revenue and a growing business.
White label event app makes it seamless for enterprise organizations to design a stunning mobile experience in addition to optimizing attendee, speaker and sponsor engagement in entirely new ways
NEW YORK – October 9, 2018 – Bizzabo, the world’s leading event success platform, today revealed the launch of its new ultra branded event app to support its constant upmarket growth in the billion-dollar events software industry. Market Research Future’s new report on the Global Event Management Software industry cites its projected growth to reach $14.5 billion by 2020, driven by increasing expenditure on event management tools and growing adoption of cloud platform technology from providers like Bizzabo. The company’s new white label app solution offers fully customizable branding capabilities that deliver a premium event experience for attendees. Starting today, Bizzabo’s customers can generate new ultra branded event apps for creating engaging events worldwide.
Eran Ben-Shushan, Co-founder and CEO of Bizzabo, said: “The events app market has evolved tremendously since we began in 2012, and over the years, brands have sought out more holistic and more high-end customizable event management solutions to create consistent brand experiences and meet their growing needs. At Bizzabo, we’ve always been market pioneers – offering the first networking events app solution, then the first robust modern web solution, and now the first truly integrated white label app events solution. This will enable us to keep growing upmarket with key brands, while also continuing our focus on delivering best-in-class features and functionality for marketers to create impactful in-person events.”
Trey Smith, Vice President of Events for Human Capital Media, said: “Bizzabo’s white label app makes it so easy for us to customize our entire event experience and keep our attendees engaged.”
Bizzabo’s new ultra branded events app enables marketers to create a more personalized experience for attendees to engage with their brand, building an event community in order to form more meaningful connections. Brands can fully customize their event app appearance from the first touch in the app stores, to the app icon and label presented on the mobile home screen, and finally, the actual app interface colors, content and look and feel. The Bizzabo platform offers an end-to-end branded experience for attendees to fully immerse in their events, and for marketers to measure performance and ROI.
Trusted by over 10,000 live events worldwide, Bizzabo not only provides the software solution to create the app, but also the marketing expertise to optimize the app store appearance in order to reach maximum adoption rate. The new white label events app is already in use by some of the world’s leading event brands, including Hubweek, South Summit and Hashtag Sports.
For more information on Bizzabo and its new ultra branded events app, visit www.bizzabo.com.
Bizzabo is an award-winning holistic event cloud providing marketers with a modern suite of tools to create impactful and rewarding professional events. Bizzabo unleashes the power of events to drive impactful in-person experiences, networking opportunities and business outcomes for thousands of events around the world including those by WeWork, Hubspot, GitHub, EA Sports, CoinDesk, and Gainsight. Customers use Bizzabo to consolidate their event stack and benefit from the platform’s insights to manage, measure and grow their events participation, engagement and experience. Key features enable organizers to build websites, manage event registration, sell tickets, grow communities through onsite networking, and event apps – all within a cloud-based, user-friendly platform.
Founded in 2012 by Eran Ben-Shushan, Alon Alroy, and Boaz Katz, the company’s mission is to bring people together, and to make events more rewarding and impactful for everyone involved. Bizzabo was selected by The Event Technology Awards, in 3 consecutive years, as The People Choice’s Award for Favorite Event Technology Solution. Backed by leading investors Pilot Growth Equity, Maor Investments, LionBird VC, AfterDox VC Mr. Zvi Limon, Mr. Gigi Levy, Mr. Barak Rabinowitz, Mr. Joey Low, Mr. Eli Alroy, OurCrowd and Kaedan Capital, the company holds offices in Tel-Aviv and New-York. To learn more, visit https://www.bizzabo.com.
Have you ever worked on an event with no budget (or VERY small)? How do you handle it? Here are my thoughts on this mini podcast (only 5 min listen!)
I always like to start new things, and fall is a great time to launch something I’ve been planning for a few weeks now. As my followers know, I’ve done podcasts before, but now I’m excited to announce an all-new format that will be quick, inspiring and fun to listen to. My new mantra – #KeepItSimple and #MakeItImpactful! Check out episode 1 to learn more about what I have in store. (Under a 2 min. listen!)
I’ve got my Starbucks locked and loaded and I’m ready to hit Monday with a vengeance. When you love what you do, you can look forward to a productive Monday, rather than dreading it. Here are a few of my Monday practices that keep me on track all week long.
Update my calendar.
I block out time for all the priority projects I need to tackle that week. I also schedule all the calls I know I’ll need to take and make sure I know what is on my cal for the entire week. This helps me professionally and personally – so I understand what I have ahead of me and can plan accordingly.
Clean out my inbox.
There’s no better feeling than a well-managed inbox so I spend the first few hours of Monday morning combing through my emails and getting back to anything I missed the previous week. If you missed my latest post on managing your inbox, here are some of my tips for getting to Inbox Zero!
Set my daily goals.
With competing prorities, a set task list can be hard to follow. There’s always something popping up and throwing us off. So – my latest technique is to set just a single daily goal – the BIGGEST thing I absolutely MUST achieve each day of the week. That way – no matter what pops up, I have one big business thing to focus on before I can call the day successful. While smaller tasks can get moved around, my BIG priority must be accomplished. Even better – I try to accomplish that task first thing so I start my day feeling productive!
Tired of watching people with half your experience make twice as much as you?
If you’re looking for tips on standing out in the crowded events industry and making money planning your dream events, don’t miss our inaugural IGNITE program – the growth plan for #eventprofs designed around my experience building and growing Liz King Events.
Do you find it difficult to respond to all the emails in your inbox, and sort through all the junk? Our inboxes have become command central for our businesses, and learning to manage them well is incredibly important.
In this newsletter, I want to offer you 3 tips that I’ve learned in my years as a professional planner to dramatically minimize the time wasted and allows me to spend more time in pursuit of my ideal clients.
1. REDUCE YOUR EMAIL LOAD WITH UNROLL.ME
This is one of my favorite tools for cleaning up your inbox. Just link it to your email account and it will pull up all of your subscriptions. Go through them one-by-one and unsubscribe with one click or do it in bulk. And – even better yet – for the ones you want to keep (like my west elm subscription and techsytalk :P), you can roll them up into a single digest so you only get ONE marketing email per week that holds all your favorite pieces of information.
I’ve found this DRAMATICALLY reduces my email load and helps me focus on getting back to clients and getting through the time-sensitive responses.
2. MANAGE INTERNAL TEAM COMMUNICATIONS WITH SLACK
This tool was built to help teams communicate more seamlessly and efficiently. You know those long group-chat thread emails that get longer and longer? Imagine moving those OUT of your inbox and INTO a place that’s more effective? You can organize conversations by topic or project – add people only to relevant conversations – and attach files, emojis and gifs. And, best of all, the platform is FREE to use and totally searchable, up to 10,000 messages (at which point it’s about $6/month per user!)
3. GET MORE WORK DONE, WITH LESS INTERRUPTIONS USING GMAIL OFFLINE
Event planners are known as road warriors. But whether you’ll be flying in the air without wifi access or you just need to focus on cleaning out your inbox, this Gmail Offline extension for the Chrome browser, downloads your emails and then lets you respond, sort and work as if you were online. Then – as soon as you have connection – it automatically updates your inbox to match all the work you did. I like the idea of using this for an hour a day to get through emails without the distractions of social media or new emails popping in every 2 minutes!
For more tips and tricks to manage your events business, check out our IGNITE program, packed with education, community and all the resources you need to take your business from struggling to SOARING!
- Create a registration page easily with a live preview and a risk-free trial.
- Configure multiple ticket types and discount codes to boost sales.
- Customize a branded check-out page that’s conversion optimized.
- Seamlessly integrate registration data with any Attendify App.
- Centralize event registration data on a single platform and use it with Attendify Audiences.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Join us on Friday, April 20th, 2018, at Convene, 32 Old Slip, in New York City, for techsytalk LIVE 10: The Grand Finale. That’s right, after 8 years, New York’s most acclaimed event tech conference announces its 10th and final event in the techsytalk LIVE series. You won’t want to miss this very special day.
This final production will be emcee’d and soundtracked by Sean Patrick McGillicuddy – Host/DJ for great companies like Disney, Google, Marvel Studios, Lucasfilm and The NFL, just to name a few!
Featured presenters include:
- Author and Serial Entrepreneur – Peter Shankman
- Digital Strategist and Social Media Maven – Sree Sreenivasan
- President and Co-Founder of Convene – Christopher J. Kelly
- Owner & CEO of K.I.M. Media, LLC – Leslie Short
- Founder & Editor-in-Chief of Smart Hustle Magazine – Ramon Ray
- Tech Evangelist – Dahlia El Gazzar
- Founder & CEO of Social Tables – Dan Berger
- Co-founder & CMO of Bizzabo – Alon Alroy
- President & CEO of VeeKast – Donvil Collins
- Founder & CEO of Greater Good Events – Ellen Hockley Harrison
- CEO of Voila Event Solutions – Christina Rene
- Business & Sales Coach – Carolyn Herfurth
- President & Owner of Renaissance Meetings & Special Events, Inc. – Bernard Toliver
- Founder & Owner of Alive Entertainment – Ed Baker
- Renowned Mentalist and Foodie Magician to the Stars – Josh Beckerman
- and our very own Liz King Caruso
For the last eight years, techsytalk LIVE has distinguished itself by presenting an event crafted by and for event planners – a well-curated experience presenting the industry’s finest innovators and tech experts to share their know-how and learn from one another. Most importantly, it’s a gathering that promises a non-bloated format that is both instructional and FUN. You’ll enjoy panels on everything from transforming a raw space into a masterpiece event location, learning to trust your gut instincts, and speaking the language to attract more sponsor dollars, to leveraging the best apps, social media and influencers to take your event game to the next level.
And for the first time EVER, techsytalk LIVE will be hosting an amazing after party to celebrate eight fantastic years of event tech goodness. The party will be at The Mezzanine, the financial district’s latest gorgeous addition to the land of industrial-chic event spaces.
If you’re a growth-obsessed event planner working in NYC, do not miss this last chance to be part of the best LIVE experience, For Planners, By Planners. If you can’t be with us in person, join us via livestream as we broadcast the entire day from the main stage. Get your tickets HERE.
For more information, contact: Liz King firstname.lastname@example.org.
San Francisco, USA, February. 26, 2018 – Evvnt Inc, the digital event marketing platform, has announced its expansion into the USA that includes six strategic partnerships with leading data, ticketing, platform and search companies. Launching integrations including Ticketmaster, Eventbrite, Universe, Bandsintown, Ticketsauce and SpokenLayer, means that Evvnt continues to prove itself as the solution to the challenge of monetizing online event discovery and promotion for the news, media and publishing industry.
Richard Green, CEO of Evvnt explained “For decades news groups have been supplied feature-rich event discovery platforms and data services that cost thousands of dollars in license fees, without focussing on the ultimate return – ad revenue. Evvnt’s turnkey solution for news media, which now includes event discovery & reseller tools, has the potential to deliver exceptional marketing value to local organisers, drive SEO traffic back to site and ultimately provide a new revenue stream. We are set to generate over $1m for our early adopters which is a huge ‘win-win’ for local news publishers, and for their communities of event organizers looking to reach new audiences”.
After launching with Hearst Communications’ SFGate and SeattlePI titles earlier this year, Evvnt is continuing to roll out its products to new partners across the US. By combining event calendar software, rich data and its aggregated network marketing service for resale, Evvnt is delivering a leading revenue solution across news & media titles whilst simultaneously helping event attendees discover the best events in their local areas. In addition to Hearst’s flagship titles Evvnt has also onboarded 60 more news sites, including Morris Communications’ “WhereTraveler” national network and the Metro Media US New York, Boston and Philadelphia news sites.
“It’s sophistication made easy!” Franc Coleman, Digital Product Manager at Hearst Media said, “My partnership with Evvnt has opened my eyes to the world of event marketing. Saving time by having my events populated on qualified, relevant, event listing sites in a matter of minutes along with search results is… game changing. Using Evvnt’s reporting analytics to provide greater transparency around our campaigns only adds to the value proposition of Hearst Media. I’m a firm believer that Evvnt is changing the event marketing space and I look forward to seeing what else this dynamic team brings to the table.”
Driving that event discovery is new relationships with Ticketmaster, the global market leader in ticketing, Bandsintown, the leading concert discovery platform, Eventbrite, the world’s largest ticketing and events technology platform, and Universe, who are providing their catalogue of events to further power Evvnt’s discovery calendars. In return Evvnt has also opened up its core product, the premium network of 4,000+ publishing sites to its major ticketing partners, helping event organizers to sell more tickets through targeted marketing, and making sure their events are seen across major news & media titles.
Evvnt are also introducing an integrated ticketing solution as part of the event submission experience. Organisers can now set up ticketing & marketing from one centralised platform, choosing between leading providers Eventbrite, Ticketsauce white label and Universe.
“We are excited about working with Evvnt to provide the ability for their customers to create events and sell tickets,” stated Travis Fisher, CEO of TicketSauce. “Event ticketing and event discovery are two critical components that drive new revenue and data for media partners. Richard and the Evvnt team create the robust discovery experience that partners very well with the TicketSauce platform.”
Richard Green added “we are listening very carefully to news publishers to ensure we supply a service that meets their needs, Ticketsauce has made impressive in roads with our target market and continues to be the preferred choice for a number of large news organizations, it’s clear that white label ticketing revenue is a quick win and we felt it essential we integrate and combine the offering.”
Moving into new markets, Evvnt will also be piloting event discovery through voice technology with SpokenLayer, based out of New York. Delivering event suggestions alongside news via popular smart-home technologies like Amazon Alexa and Google Home, the two companies are designing a solution for major news publishers that helps keep media consumption on the forefront of technology. Richard Green commented “Watching my daughters instinctively engage in voice search to get web based results really highlighted the simplicity and direction for future generations to access local news content and SpokenLayer are well placed to ensure we surface local events data.”
Jeremy Mims, Head of Strategy and Partnerships at SpokenLayer:
“SpokenLayer powers voice experiences for leading media companies like Gannett, McClatchy, Hearst, Univision, Oath, Time, Medium, Politico and many more. We know that local events are an important piece of what users want on Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant/Home, and Apple’s Siri. We’re excited to work with Evvnt as a valuable resource for local events content on the SpokenLayer platform.”
Evvnt – INVITE THE WORLD TO YOUR EVENTS
A leader in events marketing automation our mission is to help people promote and find events.
To empower people, event organisers and venues of all sizes, to manage and promote events data across the industry’s largest ecosystem of event listing sites, calendars, directories, ticketing, social networks and search engines from one simple platform.
EventOPS (www.EventOPSSoftware.com), the premier online tool for streamlining event management, is delighted to announce the appointment of Michael Fuller as Chief Strategy Officer.
Fuller has an impressive background in event technology and the MICE industry, with extensive experience working with a broad range of clients and industries across the United States, Europe and Australasia. His previous roles have included VP Global for ShowGizmo, where he spearheaded their international expansion, and Strategic Communications Manager for the Association of Australian Convention Bureaux, where he helped raise the industry profile of business events in Australia and globally.
EventOPS Co-Founder Chris Roberts said, “Mike is a stellar addition to our team. Our software is gaining traction at a heck of a pace, as it’s helping event professionals realize efficiencies and automate actionable plans; Mike’s appointment is key to ensuring continuous alignment of product with customer needs, and his depth of experience in the meetings and events industry is vital to that.”
EventOPS is a member of the Event Tech Tribe, a collaborative ensemble of event tech specialists offering best-in-craft event technology. Event Tech Tribe COO, Marie-Claire Andrews, is also happy with the news: “I was lucky to work with Mike in Australasia where I was impressed with his nous – and his extensive networks!” she adds; “His global connections and industry knowledge will undoubtedly help make EventOPS #1 in the ‘business of event management’ and I look forward to working closely with him on Event Tech Tribe business.”
Michael Fuller said, “ It’s an honor to join the EventOPS team – as someone that has planned major events, conferences and summits I absolutely understand the grind and how (and why) event professionals continue to make the list as one of most stressful jobs year after year, so I feel well qualified to help take that pain away!”
The EventOPS platform allows individuals to be more strategic in all areas of the business by breaking down silos, organizing teams (and vendors), automating and streamlining pre-event planning as well as tackling event budgeting. The events industry has changed a lot over the past 20 years and the EventOPS team feels that the traditional tools and software used has lagged behind. Roberts added, “we started EventOPS with one thing in mind – how can we help event professionals create better events. This is something Mike is also very passionate about and I so welcome him to the EventOPS team.”