I wrote my first floral education article as a guest blog post for FlirtyFleurs.com back in March 2011 with 15 Tips To Book More Weddings.
I continued to submit flower business articles and videos and the rest, as they say, is herstory.
I was inspired to share what I knew so I went out on a limb to ask a knowledgable floral expert, Alicia Schwede–who didn’t know me at all–if she’d be willing to let me talk to her audience and lucky for me, she said yes!
In fact, she continued to say yes to my submissions and floral designers can find dozens of guest blog posts, videos, checklists, and I even had features in a few of the Flirty Fleurs print magazines over the years. (Scroll down to see those original 15 Tips I shared!)
I’ve covered a lot of ground over at Flirty Fleurs!
From topics like mock-ups and minimums to tipping and “extra flowers” to pricing garlands and when to get paid; scroll down for a Flirty Fleurs Playlist!
As you know if you own a business: everybody has to start somewhere. And this is where I started my floral education journey.
15 Tips To Book Weddings More Quickly (via FlirtyFleurs circa 2011!)
- Be easy to reach via e-mail. E-mail is essential to coordinating with your clients.
- Schedule consultations with the lead wedding designer—someone who is skilled and versed in weddings, works well with customers and translates ideas into designs.
- Update your portfolios and website to reflect the best of your work and professional photos are always best. This means that wedding bouquet from 1995 has to go. Heck, maybe that bouquet from 2009 has to go, too! Keep it fresh.
- Keep up! Follow trends on blogs, websites, magazines, social media, etc. You have to know what’s happening in your industry. (Your clients do!)
- Decide which services you offer and which you don’t. Are you: a floral designer; an event designer; a florist who does weddings; a wedding designer who owns a flower shop; a lighting specialist? You don’t have to be all things to all weddings!
- Do what you do. Don’t worry about what the other guys are up to.
- Be upfront about your pricing. Find out what the clients’ budget is and either do your best to stick to it or suggest what you think is a reasonable budget for what they want. Years ago I was advised to never inquire about budget and to always “up-sell” to clients planning a wedding. After all it’s their wedding day—a day to “go for it”—it’s a chance to steer them towards more expensive options. Wrong. People can’t spent money they don’t have—period.
- If the pricing or style doesn’t work, then move on. It’s OK to decide that a client is not a good fit. It will make life easier in the long run.
- Don’t overbook. Taking on more than you can handle is never a good idea.
- Require a signed contract and a reasonable deposit of at least 20-30% of the total budget to book an event.
- Be concise in proposals about what is required to book a date, when final payment is due, etc.
- If you send out a proposal and don’t hear back within a reasonable timeframe you should follow up—once—with the client to see if there are any questions you can answer.
- Charge fairly, but you have to be compensated for your flower markup, design fee, delivery and set-up, travel, etc. If you are not charging enough, then why are you working so darn hard?
- Don’t promise what you can’t deliver. (Definitely don’t do that!)
- Listen to what your clients want. Then, make it happen.
9 years later, I still stand by these tips by the way!!
After sharing my “stuff” with floral designers for years on Alicia’s blog, I finally branched out and created my website, realflowerbusiness.com, where I could create my own corner of the world to create and share. I’ve been doing so since 2015 and I’m so thankful for the thousands of florists who’ve taken the time to watch my videos, join a course, or participate in one of my Live Q&A Tuesdays on Facebook!
But I still make guest appearances on Flirty Fleurs–look for me on the first Monday of the month–including this video: Should Florists Make Mock Ups? If you’ve ever been asked to make a mock up, click to watch!
Funny story: I first knew florists were watching my educational videos when I attended a Chapel Designer’s Workshop and someone said, “I’m your biggest fan!”
It hadn’t occurred to me how many florists were actually watching my videos or reading my articles so when someone recognized me and called herself a “fan”, I must admit I was surprised. And flattered. But first and foremost I was inspired to keep creating!
I thanked Alicia in a blog post a few years ago for sharing her stage with me (read that here) and most recently on her website (see my video below) and if you’ve missed any of my Flirty Fleurs Features you can catch them all in my YouTube Playlist here.
To see some of my videos throughout the years, check out the Flirty Fleurs Playlist below!
Thanks for taking the time to tune in, Floralpreneur®! Keep doing beautiful work!
With love from me to you,
Find a Playlist on YouTube with hours of videos here:
Remember: If you like my videos, please “like” them, comment and share ’em with your best flower friends. xo.