You just inherited a five-acre property near Silver Lake. Part of it has been developed as a farm. There’s a huge house that looks old but doesn’t feel eerie or haunted. A good fix-up will render it looking very good. Several yards away is a barn, plus two more structures that seem like a storage space. There’s a huge strip of land that’s untilled.
You wonder what you are going to do with this property. You could create attractions like an escape room. The two structures would probably be good for it. You’re running a management consulting firm specializing in HR solutions and organizational development. Suddenly it clicked! Why not create a venue space or an events place business?
You now need to go to work to find out how this is done. The following discussion can set you on the right track:
There are more than 142,000 businesses related to party and event planning. The revenue for the entire industry is $5 billion (March 2019).
A wedding venue can cost a couple anywhere between $12,000 to $14,000. Food, drinks and other incidentals are already included in this rate. To rent a farm with a barn would be anywhere between $6,000 to $12,300. Gardens and parks would go for $7,900 to $13,350.
That’s just for a single event. The numbers seem compelling and attractive.
Where to Start
Experts are unanimous in their advice that the first thing that you need to do is to research. Since you have a place already, you don’t need to investigate what locations are available and which ones are the best for your concept.
You will, of course, need to write your business plan and develop a sound financial analysis based on all the information you’ve collected.
Know the players. They are good sources of information. The National Association for Catering and Events (NACE) is one organization you can reach out to. Another is the Wedding International Professionals Association (WIPA).
What will set you apart? Which audience do you want to reach? Are you looking to penetrate the wedding industry? Or will you appeal to the corporate world and host medium-sized conventions or team building events?
What is key is to find a specific focus first. And then from there, you can try to expand your services. Capitalize on your existing resources. You’re managing an HR consulting firm, perhaps your client base can help influence your offerings.
Logistics and Administration
This part is inevitable. You need to secure permits and licenses. Concurrently, you need to prepare all aspects related to your operation, from possibly renovating your venue to acquiring other assets to conducting an early marketing campaign.
These should all be outlined in your business plan. A critical component in this process is knowing whether you will require investors. Seek the help of financial experts you trust to work with you on the numbers.
Use your network of contacts to help spread the word and start getting early bookings. Careful planning, a focused idea, and a sound marketing plan are key elements in starting your venue space business.