Moving Right Along

Published June 18, 2012 by sparklebysarah

I can’t believe how quickly things seem to happen!!

I’ve been working on my first event…well, it’s a series of events for one customer.  I’m putting together a summer series of concerts for a local business. The music will be every Saturday night.  It’s been a little tough going.  The client is just starting out, so she doesn’t have a lot of cash to pay bands.  The bands that are willing to talk with me for the amount I am allowed to pay them are incredibly slow getting back to me.

I’ve got the first two weeks set up.  Then, I’ve got one empty Saturday in July, one in August, and then all of September to fill up.  I’ve got to get some straggler bands to pick up their phones and fill out the remaining dates.

I am excited for what is set up, though.  I’ve got about eight bands ready to go.  Once I get everything set up, it’ll be time to Rock ‘n Roll!!

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Launch Day!!

Published June 1, 2012 by sparklebysarah

Today, I started the next step.  I sent out emails, facebook notifications, and a twitter announcement telling everyone I know what my new business is.  The launch announcement has been sent.  Now, I am going to continue to work my tail off to get the business rolling.

I’m already working on an event!  I decided that creating a contract is the best thing to do in order to protect myself and my customers so everyone knows exactly what I am going to be responsible for doing.  It’s going to be a simple write-up describing what I understand the customer’s need to be and what I am going to deliver based on that need.

I am waiting for the business cards I designed to get here.  I created one using one of the many photographs from Melissa Harper Photography.  If you are looking for a photographer, I highly recommend her:  http://melissaharperphotography.yolasite.com/

More to come!

From “To Do” to “To Done”

Published May 23, 2012 by sparklebysarah

Well, my “To Do” list in the previous post was fairly short, but now it’s even shorter! 

Today, I sat for my head shots with a photographer.  I found someone local who was way more reasonable price-wise than any chain place could have been.  She came to my house, set up in my living room, took about fifty or so pictures with three different outfits and three different backgrounds, and five hours later, I have a disc with the photos! Most importantly, she was reasonably priced!  

I suggest to you all, whether you’re starting your own business or not, if you are looking for a photographer, go local.  I found this photographer through my friend, Debbie.  She has a little black book with names and phone numbers for anything!  I am using my new photographer to take my daughter’s senior picture and finally get my son’s picture done for the family wall of photos.

Tomorrow, I am meeting with an accountant to get incorporated.  That should be an interesting process!  I will blog about what I learn…if anything!

That brings my list to the following:

  • A camera
  • Software
  • Business cards

That list is getting shorter and shorter as I get closer and closer to my launch date!

Busy, busy, busy

Published May 16, 2012 by sparklebysarah

Setting tasks for myself has worked out well for me.  I am getting all the little things accomplished that are going to add up to me having success for 1 June.

This morning, I got up and got my teens off to the bus.  Then, I sat down and uploaded my website.  It’s LIVE!!

I tried to put together the Facebook page for the business.  I did not realize it, but Facebook does not allow any email addresses that start with info to create a page.  Bummer.  I got my husband to help me with creating a secondary email address, which I am going to automatically forward to my info address.  VOILA!  The Facebook page has been created.

My dog has been sick, so she went to the vet last night.  That means that the money I had planned to use for the accountant is now gone.  I have to reschedule that appointment.  The good news is that the dog got some antibiotics, and seems  like she should be alright.

I now have a list of things I need to get that are going to cost money.  I need:

  • A camera  (about $200)
  • Accounting software  (about $200)
  • Incorporation (about $600)
  • Business cards (about $125)
  • Photograph  (about $100)

I’ll get them…eventually!

For the remainder of the week, I have two small projects to get moving forward with that need attention.  I have to design the Facebook page.  It’s great to have the page, but without the right “look” it won’t do me any good.  I also have to create a letter to send to businesses who will want to hire me and the service that I offer.

Launch Date Set

Published May 14, 2012 by sparklebysarah

The next step that I have taken is the simple one of setting dates for myself.  Something I have noticed in the past is that having goals is great, but if there is no date, the goal never even gets started.  By creating deadlines, there is movement forward.

So, I have set the date.  On 1 June, I am launching Sparkle by Sarah, my corporate event planning company.  The website will be live/active, this blog will be tied into the website and updated fairly regularly, business cards will be handed out, the Facebook page will be active, and I will be shouting from the rooftops encouraging everyone I know to spread the word about my business.

I have been spending time every day working on something for the business.  Every day, there is something I can do to build or improve it.  If I am not working daily on building my business, who will do it for me?

Starting up the Start Up

Published May 11, 2012 by sparklebysarah

I’ve started on the next phase of my life. I am very fortunate to have an incredible supporter in my husband and three teenagers.

Yesterday, I quit my job.  I’ve spent the past month collecting information to get started on my own business.  I spent four years with a school creating events and activities for the students and their families.  I am very good at planning events…or being an Event Planner.  I prefer creating team building activities.  I am going to start have started putting together my company as a Corporate Events Planner.

How does one start?  Well, I found myself a really great mentor.  My friend has been running her own business as an Interior Designer for almost 20 years.  She is very much on the same wave-length as I am, so I can ask questions and she can understand what I’m trying to figure out in my head.  We’ve had two breakfast meetings over the past three weeks.  Over these meetings, I have found local connections, which is to say, I’ve been put in contact with other people who are running their own businesses and will put me in the right direction.  I have an appointment with a local accountant who is going to incorporate me, set up my tax identification, and push me into the right direction as far as what I need to grow.  I have the name of a local mom who does photography who I have to call to make an appointment so she can take my business shot and a variety of other shots for my website.  I have found the business card place that is going to print out my business cards at a reasonable price.  Best of all, I have a Debbie!  She is my friend, who has been giving me all kinds of advice and listens carefully to my questions and has been incredibly helpful.

Next, I created my website using an appropriate template.  I used Go Daddy for the website.  If you can ignore the stupid commercials, they have a really good and cheap product.  I’m starting this blog to chronicle my adventure as a business owner.