Hi , I’m DANA

Welcome to the blog! Here is where I feature the beautiful couples I work with and industry news, tips, and tricks. 

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Wedding Planner Frequently Asked Questions 

Wedding Planning Tips

I thought it might be fun to answer some of the frequently asked questions I get about being a wedding planner, how I got into it, and of course…bridezillas. I’ve talked about some of this before in a past blog post, but wanted to go a little deeper for those who might be interested and also considering a career as a wedding planner. Let’s get into it!

What made you decide to become a wedding planner? 

I came to this career in a different way than most planners, many of whom started doing it because they planned their wedding and loved it, or were in the hospitality industry in another role and it was a natural transition. I started out by helping friends plan their wedding because I tended to be a Personal Attendant extraordinaire. I loved helping them figure out the logistics of the day and making sure they were having the best time and not worrying about a thing. Well, after doing this for many years, I just decided to jump in and give it a try. I did a small wedding fair at a venue I had worked at a few times so I came up with a name, a logo, and some semblance of an idea of what service I would offer and I booked three jobs from that wedding fair! Looking back, I am very sure it was because I was SO cheap as I was brand new and had no idea what to charge. But I also had a good rapport with those clients and still touch base with one of them to this day!

Is it so much fun???

Yes, there are many great benefits to being a wedding planner. You get to know industry folks and get invited to grand openings and networking events. You get to help clients plan one of the most important days of their lives and if we do it right, get a big hug from them at the end saying it was! But it’s also really hard and long hours and it’s almost impossible to turn your brain off. As a business owner, there are always a million things to do and think about and that just expands as the business expands and you take on a team. You are also likely giving up a lot of time on weekends to be at weddings and events so you need to be prepared to sacrifice your personal time for it while building your business, or even after if you plan on being the one at the wedding or event. It’s not for the faint of heart, but loving what you do helps make it worthwhile.

How do you find clients?

Always the hardest and most stressful part! Starting out, it was through a lot of wedding fairs and online listings with The Knot, Wedding Wire, etc, and even some of the local Facebook wedding groups. As the business has grown, it has definitely transitioned to almost exclusively referrals from venues, other vendors, and past clients, which is the best! We do still get some “we found you on Google” clients (thanks to more hard work on SEO) but it is a smaller percentage. 

How do you find people to work for you?

I have been pretty lucky that I have never had to post an ad. It has mostly been through people I know or a few random people who have contacted me at the right time looking for work. Referrals are great because trusting someone else to assist or take over with one of your clients when it’s your business is scary! But that’s why you do some training and make sure they are a right fit for you. I feel pretty lucky with my team!

What about bridezillas??

In 11 years of business and more brides than I can count, I am happy to say that we haven’t come across too many of these! I think it’s because KUE clients tend to be more chill and realistic about their weddings, and we do a very good job of setting expectations when it comes to their budget and what they are looking for. Far more often we have come up against momzillas, groomzillas, and even the occasional dadzilla! But here’s why: by the wedding day, we have typically been mostly involved with the bride or the main planning person in the couple so by the time that day comes, they know we have GOT this for them since we have hammered out every detail. It’s the other VIPs who haven’t been as involved in the planning that can get all nervous on the day of. We make sure to connect with those people at the rehearsal by introducing ourselves, asking if they have questions they don’t want to ask the bride or couple, and then checking in with them on the wedding day. It makes everyone feel better! 

Can you get us discounts on services?

Maybe? We have a few strategic partnerships with certain vendors where you might get a 10% savings or a bonus because you are working with us, but it’s never something that I tell our clients to expect. We respect our fellow vendors’ pricing and don’t ask them for discounts. 

Will you negotiate prices with other vendors? 

See above 🙂 I am not sure where this idea came from and maybe it happens more in other markets but it has not been my experience that many planners in the Twin Cities do this. I know I wouldn’t appreciate it if another vendor came to me asking me to discount our services so I try to return the same courtesy.

How can you do more than one wedding in a day?

That’s where having a team comes in! We don’t do it a lot but sometimes it works out that we have a set of people at different weddings. Maybe they are both Management clients, or maybe one is a Planning and one is a Management, but we won’t usually do two Planning clients in one day. We did three weddings in one day once and I will never do that again! It makes me too nervous if someone is not able to make it. I like to have a backup plan in place if needed and it’s hard to do if you are stretched thin.

keyed up events assistant bustling dress
Photo by: Empiria Studios

What are your favorite venues? 

So tough! Always my go-to answer is any venue where guests have to move from the dinner area to someplace else for dancing. Yes, a big reason for this is so the dinner area can be cleaned up by your vendors making the end of the night smoother, but I also think it helps guests focus more on the dance and the next part of the evening. This happens at Orchestra Hall, Van Dusen, Semple Mansion, MIA, Urban Daisy…but we also love Machine Shop just for its awesomeness and wonderful staff! 

What is your best advice for someone wanting to start their own wedding planning business?

For sure go to networking events, meet other planners, and shadow them if you can. Pay for mentoring sessions if need be. Have an actual website, business account, LLC, and insurance. Know that you will always be learning. But before all of this, decide if you are the kind of person who wants to be a business owner and everything that comes with it. You may be able to find satisfaction in working for another wedding planner or even at a venue without all the stress of wondering where your next client will come from and making sure you are paying quarterly taxes. 

Feel free to contact me with any questions about being a planner. I probably gave out most of my best advice here but I am happy to help if I can!

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