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A potential buyer does not want the risk of failure if you are the entire company and brand.7) Keep all of your portfolio pics from past events Having the professional images from your past weddings and events is another intellectual property item that is valuable in the sale of an event planning business.6) Don’t make your business all about you Most of us start out as solopreneurs which is just fine.
If accounting isn’t your strength, hire a bookkeeper and/or accountant who can help you for a few hours each month to keep your financial records up-to-date, reconcile your business bank statements, and prepare your business taxes.
2) Focus on lead generation and keep track of where leads come from A big selling point for my planning business was the number of leads generated on a yearly basis.
I recommend using accounting software such as Quickbooks, Freshbooks, Wave, or 17 Hats.
Potential buyers will want to see the past 3-5 years of profit and loss statements as well as bank statements and employee/contractor payment records.
After selling my 10-year-old successful event planning business in 2015, here are my top tips for preparing your business to be a sellable business in the future.
1) Keep REALLY good accounting records From the start of your business (or as soon as possible), use separate bank and credit card accounts for your business.At some point in your event planning business, you may consider selling your business.Or, perhaps, selling your event planning business is part of your business exit strategy.Keep copies of everything that relates to the portfolio of the company including all images from past events and copies of your event timelines.8) Document your business processes Having written procedures and processes for both the business and planning aspect of your event planning company is crucial to have in place before considering selling your business.With strong attention to SEO during the previous 7 years, my event planning company generated 300-400 inquiries per year.We also had other sources of leads such as being on preferred vendor lists, referrals from past clients, and two paid advertising outlets.3) Read Built to Sell This book, Built to Sell, is key to building any type of sellable business.I read this book after being in business for about 4 years and implemented many of the strategies which eventually led to a successful business sale.4) Keep your branding up to date Current branding with your website, social media accounts, and print marketing materials is essential if you are trying to sell an event planning business.The last thing a new owner wants to do is create a new brand and look for a business they just purchased.