Start a party business – 8 tips to follow
At some point in our lives, many of us have given serious thought to the idea of starting a business. It is becoming somewhat of a common thread in a post-pandemic world. The digitisation of many industries has brought this dream so much closer that it’s no wonder that many of us have thrown in the towel on the 9-5 to ramp up a side hustle of our very own. If you’re reading this, you’d probably like to start a start a party business. And no wonder –working in the party industry is dynamic, fun and best of all, you get to work with customers who are in a partying mood!
Want to start a party business? Here are some tips to follow.
Whilst there is no magic formula in setting up your business, some solid research has revealed to us some of the more critical items you should be addressing in your journey to building your business.
1. Ensure you have the right mindset
Are you ready to establish your goals and hit the bullseye to success? Do you have the drive to be motivated, accountable and establish a sound work routine day in, day out? With only yourself (and maybe Siri) to kick your butt, you need to ensure you are in the right mindset to motivate yourself for success.
Some things that have helped us on a practical level include setting up a dedicated space for work (or committing to renting a desk at a coworking space), using project management software, and establishing strict boundaries for disruptions.
If you are serious about growth later on in your journey, you might also want to look into getting a mentor. Here is an article we found helpful on establishing an entrepreneurial mindset.
2. Narrow down your offering
So, you know you want to work in the party industry. But what is it that you will be doing exactly? And why? There are a few questions you could ask yourself here.
- What are your strengths? Do you have a design talent? Or are you an outstanding planner?
- Your lifestyle; do you want to work weekends? Or would you like to place time boundaries? If you don’t like the idea of working weekends, then becoming a stylist might not be the right direction for you!
- Do you have access to any particular space, equipment or props?
- How much budget do you have to outlay?
- Do you like to engage with people face to face, or would you rather deal with customers online?
- Does what you want to do have a long-term future (consider sustainability, eating trends and other cultural and lifestyle shifts)
The answers to these questions will help you narrow down your choices. Consider the below:
- Working as a planner or stylist, while requiring particular talents and skills (which may cost money to acquire if you don’t have them), won’t need too much of an initial outlay. However, the requirement to work weekends is high
- If you’d like to get into rentals and hire, consider the fact that you’d need warehouse space and and investment/outlay for props
- Working as an invitation designer will require professional skills, investment in hardware and software, and a working knowledge of printing requirements
- Is food your jam (lol)? Then you’ll need to ensure you hold all the correct safety certificates and licences
- Tenacity and digital skills are great traits for e-commerce and selling, so this might be a direction to take
You might also decide to offer complementary or associated services to make it easy for your customers – for example, as a stylist, would you offer grazing setup or floristry?
Find your why
Of course, you need to love what you’re doing too! There is no point in becoming a stylist when you really want to work with balloons or design printables.
This brings me to the next point…most of us have seen or heard Simon Sinek’s ‘Start With Why’
Do you know what your ‘why’ is? Personally, I have found that working this out will help with imposter syndrome and also help give you purpose. Here is a great article that delves into finding the ‘Why’ for your business.
3. Conduct some market research
Ask some hard questions.
Make sure you understand the market you are entering into and plan for some research in your journey, especially if you are launching a unique product or service – you’ll need some proof of concept.
First, conduct some high-level research of the market. Join Facebook consumer party groups, talk to peers, perhaps even run a poll via socials. Research consumer and industry trends. Google Trends is a great place to start.
Next, perform some customer research.
Who is your target market? Your ideal customer? Where do they hang out?
Customer research will eventually help you formulate your buyer personas. What are buyer personas? HubSpot has a great definition:
Based on data and research, buyer personas are semi-fictional representations of your ideal customers. They help you focus your time on qualified prospects, guide product development to suit the needs of your target customers, and align all work across your organisation (from marketing to sales to service).
Don’t be afraid to get creative with these. You might come up with multiple. Buyer personas will also help you figure out where to focus your marketing efforts.
Don’t forget to do competitor research and SWOT analysis. This research will also help you come up with your USP. Eventually, you can use all this to create a vision and mission statement for your business. Yes, these are mainly in use by corporates, but the way we see it is that there is nothing wrong with expressing these lofty ideals!
4. Consider your business name
This part of the startup process can be a stressful and angst-ridden one – so much rests on your business name, from target market to branding. We’ve penned a piece on choosing a name for your party business here to help you along.
5. Complete any admin items
You might feel like this is a tedious part of the process. But it’s essential! The good news is that this process will help prepare you for step number six.
Some things to think about include;
- whether you’ll register as a sole trader or company (required once you start earning more than $75,000 in Australia)
- registering your business name
- securing domain names and social handles
- think about budgets
- legal requirements
- Sourcing suppliers or finding a space if needed
- Setting up a PO Box (also, think about which address you will use to register your business)
6. Get a business plan going
A business plan is an essential tool for the growth of your business, establishing milestones and helping you get a deeper understanding of your market. The good news is that if you have followed the above steps, you should have most of the information ready to fill up. When we researched this, we found the government’s one to be a great start.
If you do want party-specific ones, here are some we found (primarily American).
7. Establish your tech stack
You can start with the bare minimum, and freemium solutions will take you a long way. However, if you’re serious about upscaling your business, you’ll need to consider investing in some tech and software to help you with the heavy lifting. Check out our guide here.
8. Don’t forget to keep learning
Sometimes, the sole trader’s life can be lonely and feel like a vacuum. There are also fewer opportunities for training and development. Luckily there are many ways to counter-balance that by;
- Join a Facebook group of like-minded pros where you can support each other with questions and sticky problems
- Check out free courses (and certifications) from Google, Facebook et al.
- Attend virtual or face-to-face workshops where possible – you can find many via Eventbrite and Facebook.
You might feel like this is a waste of time. But algorithms change, new rules come into play so it’s important to stay up-to-date.
Did this article on how to start a party business helpful? Let us know by sending us a DM on Instagram!
Next up, don’t forget to check out part two in this article series on helping you start a party business: How to get customers for your party business