Get the financial side of your business in order this year with these money resolutions every wedding pro can make (and stick to)!
On a scale of “Hot Mess” to “Totally Together,” where would you say your financial management systems are? Actually, no. Don’t answer that. Instead, let’s just say 2022 is the year you’re going to crush those money goals. The key to a wedding business that’s making you real money? It starts with a solid foundation and working knowledge of your income, business expenses and profit. Here, 10 totally realistic and achievable resolutions to help make 2022 a year of growth for you, no matter what stage of business you’re in. (Feel free to bookmark this one: These are resolutions you can start and restart any time!)
“The beginning of your sales success starts when you have a plan. What is your plan to achieve your goal?” says business mentor and sales coach, Cindy Novotny. Are you going to expand to a new geographic market this year? Sell your first educational product? Increase your streams of passive income? Whatever it is, put pen to paper, make a plan and tie those goals to revenue for your business. If you’re seriously going to see those ideas take shape, make time to check in each month to reflect back on all that you’ve accomplished. Note where you need to make adjustments and identify places you need to ask for help.
Ask any wedding business owner who’s built a successful brand and business and they’ll tell you: if there’s something you don’t feel like you can confidently speak to in your business or with your finances, get help. “Surround yourself with people that understand finances. You shouldn’t try and do it yourself if you don’t know how,” says Jes Gordon, founder of Jes Gordon/proper FUN. Whether that means you’re investing in a bookkeeper this year, a business coach, or a financial strategist, now is the time to make those calls.
Hey, no judgments here…but we see you and this is the year to step it up! Getting your finances in order is easy once you have your books in order and in this case, it comes down to one of two options: Hire a bookkeeper to take care of it all year round or set up your own monthly bookkeeping hours. PS You can sync your Maroo account to your Quickbooks account so that any payments that come through to your Maroo account will automatically appear on your balance sheet. (A bookkeeper’s dream come true!)
An easy trap to fall into is spending money on expenses rather than paying yourself. “Dial down your expenses and dial up your owners payments,” says attorney and tax strategist, Braden Drake. "For most entrepreneurs it's a lot easier to do a revenue push and increase your revenue than it is to cut an equal amount in expenses. You want to cut all the expenses you don't need but don't cut the ones that are actually helping you generate revenue, especially if they have good ROI. Instead, you want to focus on paying yourself. If you can't pay yourself enough, then you probably have too many expenses."
Now, stay with us here because this one is important! Braden works with wedding pros all the time and one of the big missteps he notes is that business owners will often think about deductions as pure tax savings. “Instead, think about deductions as a discount that’s equal to the tax bracket you’re in,” says Braden. . “In other words, if you had $100,000 and a 10% tax rate (this incorrect tax rate is only used for easy math in this example) you would pay $10,000 in taxes versus if you spent $10,000 on a deduction, now you have $90,000 in profit and with the 10% tax bracket, you’re going to pay $9,000 in taxes. You spent $10,000 on a business deduction to save $1,000. You don’t want to think about deductions as this really magical tax savings, instead you want to think about it as a discount on what you’re purchasing and then make a decision on if you really need that thing. I think about deductions as a sale at a store - you’re saving but you still have to spend the money.”
If you’ve ever been to a wedding conference, you’ve no doubt heard this adage. And that’s for good reason: Far too many businesses in our industry aren’t truly profitable; they’re breaking even. “In this business, we are people pleasers,” says David Beahm, founder of David Beahm Experiences. “To please people costs money. And you have to charge money, to make the money to be able to be a people pleaser.” So if last year, you broke even, it’s not only time to re-evaluate your finances, but it’s also time to consider raising your rates.
You could have all the right systems in place, the best invoicing tool for wedding businesses available (ahem), but as Cindy Novotny puts it: “All great businesses are centered around someone buying something or saying yes.” That in mind, you owe it to yourself to embrace the sales part of your business this year. A few reminders when it comes to sales: resiliency, confidence, and practice are total necessities.
Well, check this one off the list for the week because by reading this article, you’re investing time in your financial education. Our promise to you: we will consistently deliver and pass along any and all financial resources we have in our back pockets to you. All you have to do is commit a little time to the cause. By the way, the Maroo Money Summit is a brand-new virtual series designed to kickstart your financial wellness for 2022 and it’s taking place this month. Stay tuned for details and the link to RSVP (Maroo members only!).
Whether you feel like you have it all together, or you’re pretty sure you need a full-on financial makeover, vowing to get real with yourself on money this year is one of the biggest most important steps you can take. “Think of yourself as a leader in charge of your businesses financial decisions instead of being at the mercy of them,” says wedding business consultant Michelle Loretta. Looking for a starting place? Sit down and answer a few basic questions to get you started:
Whether you’re a team of one with a part-time assistant, or you have a full-time team, the next step is to ensure that everyone on the team knows and understands the goal. “Light a fire under everyone around you,” says Cindy Novotny. And don’t just tell them what the goal is, make them accountable by tying their performance to your financial goals.