Hello and Happy Thursday!
We are getting into booking season over here at Coastside Couture and of course have been getting lots of inquires to our pricing. I’d like to explain why and how Coastside Couture charges what we do.
In 2008 Heidi and I incorporated our sole proprietor businesses making us a SCorp. So Coastside Couture is an actual legit Corporation (we think big around here ). We had decided to become a corporation for a number of reasons, all of which we are happy we went that route. We pay quarterly and yearly corporate taxes to do business as a corporation.
Then we have our fantastic staff, because Heidi and I are employees of the corporation we pay ourselves a salary and along with Kayla as a full time employee, we have payroll costs and taxes. Keep in mind we have a part time employee, Sonia and other contractors working on our business and helping run events, so our labor cost is also a factor.
We have two offices to help support the amount of weddings we do each year. Of course there are costs associated with the offices like utilities, internet, phones, cell phones etc. etc.
Here is a big one, we have insurance! I know right? Surprise! We are insured and we also have a license to do business, and we pay for these things. We pay city and county taxes as well.
Ok then there is the other stuff like, mileage, website, advertising, event supplies, accounting, organization dues, printed collateral, educational costs (because we do refresh and learn about as much as we can in our industry each year) etc .etc…
I think you are getting my point right?
We aren’t just a small company with no overhead, we choose to be big, we choose to be excellent, we choose to have a warm office to meet in instead of a coffee shop with wifi. We want to give our clients the personal planning experience they deserve. So in order to do this, we have to incur costs. Which is our choice, but it also sets us a part from other planners. There is a great group of planners who have a legit business going on and you should commend them for it. Please when deciding on a planner don’t compare a planner that charges “a lot” more to a planner who is obviously not as experienced and charging ”a lot less”, it’s not fair to the planners who do this for a true living, who have invested time, money and hard work into making their business successful.
Think of it this way if you were going to the doctor, would you want to go to a crowded, maybe not so clean office and wait a long time while sick people cough all around you to get mediocre advice and feel like you were just a number? Of course not, you want to go to the Doctor who has a big cozy waiting room with hot tea where the receptionist knows your name and asks if there is anything she can get you. Your Doctor walks in and makes you feel like your cold is the only cold in the world right now. Yep that’s what we all want and that is what you get with Coastside Couture.
Hey I get it, we all have to start somewhere. When I first started Coastside Weddings and Events, I worked from home (I even had a part time job to help supplement my income). Even with the amount of event experience I had prior to starting my business, I certainly did not have the experience to be doing full scale weddings in a field with little resources or the magnitude of events we do now. I had to work my way up to it.
So when you are looking at a planner and comparing them by pricing alone, first make sure you look at the experience. Then ask yourself some questions. Does the planner who is less expensive have some years under their belt? Do they have the ability to make decisions on a moments notice to make the event work more smoothly. Do they have the confidence to take care of your wedding day. Look at their reviews, ask about their insurance, see if they are a registered business. These are all really important things to know. I’ve heard some sad stories recently about a planner who’s not from our area, who is undercutting the local planners then taking two weddings in one day because she isn’t making enough money off of one. Seriously, you want your planner to go to another wedding in the middle of yours? This is another reason why a professional planner will charge more, because they charge what they are worth! They don’t just charge to get the job.
I was recently asked if I would discount my rates for a package. No, we don’t discount our rates. We actually have a formula to figure out how to charge so we can run the business and actually have a little something left over to pay us with. We are a legit business. So please keep that in mind when you are looking for a planner. Do you want someone who actually does this for a living, do you want someone who has some experience to make sure the biggest day in your life so far goes smoothly? This is a one shot day, would you trust someone with little experience to make sure it’s perfect?
We all know you get what you pay for.