A Comprehensive Guide for Starting an Event Business

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People are attracted to the potential earnings of doing business in the events industry. For example, a retreat business can earn a monthly profit of $100K. Imagine having an in-demand event business wherein you have a fully booked year. After reading this article, you’ll have a more detailed understanding of how to start an event planning business that you’ll be proud of.

Benefits of an Events Business

The events industry is a promising field for new entrepreneurs because almost every type of business has some sort of event in their marketing activities. With the continuous growth in both corporate and personal events, there is a consistent demand for skilled event planners who can deliver memorable and effective events. According to industry reports, the global events industry was valued at over $1 trillion in recent years and is projected to continue growing at a steady pace. 

Diverse Revenue Streams

The beauty of organizing events is that you can dictate or control the value your event can bring to your audience. By carefully curating content, selecting esteemed speakers, and providing top-tier amenities, you can create events that offer significant value to participants. Moreover, this perceived value justifies premium pricing, as attendees are willing to invest in experiences that promise professional growth, personal enrichment, or unforgettable memories.

Events businesses can also offer a range of services such as event planning, coordination, venue rental, and equipment supply. We will give you more details about the different types of events in the next section. 

Personal Fulfillment and Meaningful Connections

Networking during events is a core benefit of owning an event business

Meeting new people, listening to stories, gaining new experiences, and expanding learning are just some of the benefits of an event planning business. Event planning has been a sought-after career because of its seemingly fun and glamorous nature. 

However, the true reward lies in the deep sense of personal fulfillment it brings. Each event is an opportunity to create memorable moments and bring people together, fostering a sense of community and connection.

Brand Building and Reputation

Almost every type of business uses events as part of their marketing strategy. Whether that is a seminar, product demonstration, conference, retreat, or virtual event, events are proven effective in helping build a brand and create loyal communities. 

Moreover, each successful event acts as a live portfolio piece, showcasing your expertise and creativity to potential clients and partners. Engaging events can also generate buzz and media attention, further amplifying your brand presence. Through meticulous planning and flawless execution, you can turn every event into a testament to your commitment to excellence, thus solidifying your position as a leader in the event industry.

Availability of Event Technology and Tools

Making a successful event happen is made easier with the presence of helpful event technology and tools. Gone are the days of manual event registration or tedious ticket selling process, with an event registration tool like Event Espresso, selling tickets is significantly more convenient and fast. 

Opportunities for Creativity and Innovation

Events are all about creating memorable experiences for attendees. Owning an event business will keep you on your toes to make events engaging for attendees. From conceptualizing unique themes and interactive elements to leveraging the latest technology for enhanced engagement, your creativity can shine through in every event. 

Flexibility in Work Schedule

The perks of having your own event business is that you won’t get stuck in a cubicle office all day. Meeting new people, traveling, and experiencing new memories are all part of the job description.  This flexibility not only enhances your work-life balance but also keeps your daily routine varied and interesting. Furthermore, during off-peak times, you can easily take time off to recharge and pursue other interests. 

The Different Types of Event Business

Event venue

An event venue business can be a steady and passive source of income. Depending on the type of your space, you can open your space for corporate events, weddings, social events, and more. 


  • Steady income from bookings
  • Flexibility in hosting diverse events
  • Potential for long-term relationships with clients


  • High initial investment and maintenance costs
  • Competition with other local venues
  • Dependence on local market demand

Corporate event planning

Corporate events are always ongoing throughout the year. Unlike seasonal events, there is no peak or downtime for corporate events. From workshops, conferences, seminars, and product launches, a corporate event planner is expected to be busy with projects. 


  • High-budget events with good profit margins
  • Opportunities for repeat business from corporate clients
  • Networking opportunities within the business community


  • High pressure to meet corporate standards
  • Demanding clients with specific requirements
  • Potential for long and irregular hours

Social Event Planning

Birthdays, weddings, anniversaries, graduation parties, and reunions are some examples of social events. A party planning business requires creative planning to be able to execute a personal and meaningful touch to the client’s personal events. 


  • Emotional fulfillment from creating memorable experiences
  • High demand for personal events
  • Opportunity for creativity and personalization


  • Emotional and sometimes demanding clients
  • Seasonal fluctuations in demand
  • Potential for high stress during peak times

Nonprofit Event Planning

Organizing events has proven to be an effective way to drive awareness and conversion for nonprofit organizations. Examples of nonprofit events include fundraising events, charity galas, and awareness campaigns.


  • Rewarding work with a meaningful impact
  • Opportunities to build community connections
  • Potential for positive media coverage


  • Limited budgets and resources
  • Dependence on donations and sponsorships
  • High expectations from stakeholders

Entertainment Event Planning

Organizing entertainment events is one type of event business

People are easily attracted to art, cultural shows, or entertainment events. Entertainment event planning covers concerts, festivals, theater productions, and other live performances. These types of events demand extensive event production efforts and require strong skills in attention to detail and coordination.


  • Excitement of working with different work projects
  • Potential for high earnings, especially with successful large-scale events.
  • Build a wide network of contacts including performers, vendors, and venue managers.


  • Entertainment events often occur during evenings, weekends, and holidays, leading to irregular working hours.
  • Coordinating with multiple vendors, managing logistics, and handling last-minute changes can be challenging.
  • Ongoing expenses for maintaining high-quality service and resources.

Trade Shows and Expos

Starting a trade show and expo planning business offers a unique opportunity to connect industry professionals, businesses, and potential customers in one dynamic setting. Whatever industry you’re in, there is almost always a trade show for your field. 


  • High potential for revenue from exhibitors
  • Networking opportunities within specific industries
  • Attracts a targeted audience


  • Potential high investment for a big event
  • High competition in the industry
  • Heavy marketing efforts to attract exhibitors and attendees

Sports Event Planning

Similar to the entertainment industry, sports events provide a thrilling experience filled with action and team spirit for attendees and the players. Fans and supporters of the players will buy tickets to watch a game and cheer for their favorite team or players. Organizing sports events can be a meaningful event as you provide a memorable experience for attendees. 


  • High energy and exciting environment
  • Opportunities to meet and work with athletes
  • Large and specific niche audience


  • Logistical challenges like managing large crowds and venues
  • Weather-related risks for outdoor sports
  • High stakes to ensure smooth-operations

Educational Events

Schools, Colleges, and Universities will be your immediate clients as you help them plan for their seminars, workshops, academic conferences, and training sessions. Events like these are intellectually stimulating and fulfilling. 


  • High demand for continuous learning and professional development
  • Connection with educational institutions and thought leaders
  • Potential for repeat events and long-term business


  • Requires high-quality content and expert speakers
  • Potentially lower profit margins compared to other types of events 
  • Meeting attendee’s expectations and keeping them engaged

Community Events

Local community events bring people together and form special bonds among neighbors or the community. Church camps, local festivals, food fairs, and more are some fun activities you can organize if your business is focused on community events.


  • Strong sense of community involvement
  • Opportunities for local sponsorships and partnerships
  • Diverse range of event types and themes


  • Limited budgets and resources
  • Dependence on volunteer support
  • Potential challenges with permits and regulations

Event Decor

Every event needs some sort of styling and decoration to make it appealing for event attendees. This includes floral arrangements, lighting, thematic setups, and other aesthetic enhancements to create memorable and social media-ready atmospheres.


  • Creative and visually rewarding work
  • High demand for personalized and unique decor
  • Opportunities to collaborate with other event professionals


  • High cost of materials and inventory
  • Labor-intensive setup and teardown processes
  • Need to constantly innovate and stay updated with trends

Event Tech

Different icons event planners use for their event planning business

Technology is already an unremovable part of events. Event technology tools help make the event planning process smooth. Event planners are constantly using event technology to help with their events like event registration software, virtual platforms, audiovisual equipment, and more. 


  • High demand for innovative tech solutions
  • Recurring revenue from software subscriptions
  • Opportunities to innovate and create new experiences through tech


  • Continuous development and tech support
  • High costs and expert skills needed
  • Rapidly evolving technology landscape with constant updates

Hybrid Virtual Event Planning

The pandemic has opened new opportunities and changed the landscape of the events industry. Hybrid virtual event planning combines the best of both in-person and online experiences, offering flexibility and broader reach. This type of event planning allows participants to attend either physically or virtually, making events more accessible to a global audience. 


  • Allows participants to join from anywhere in the world, expanding potential attendance.
  • Potentially lower costs for travel, accommodation, and physical infrastructure.
  • Can accommodate more attendees without being limited by physical venue capacity.


  • Risk of connectivity issues, platform glitches, and technical difficulties affecting the virtual experience.
  • Challenge to make engaging content, especially for virtual attendees with a lot of distraction
  •  Ensuring a seamless and engaging experience for both virtual and in-person attendees can be challenging.

Destination Event Planning

Destination event planning like for wedding planning is an example of a type of event business

People get excited about new experiences and travel. Destination event planning focuses on organizing events in exotic or desirable locations, often for wedding planning, corporate retreats, or special celebrations. This niche offers clients a unique and memorable experience, combining the allure of travel with the excitement of the event itself.


  • Offers clients and attendees memorable and exclusive events in desirable locations.
  • Higher revenue potential from higher ticket prices
  • Great portfolio opportunities with scenic destinations


  •  Complex coordination of travel arrangements, accommodations, and local vendors.
  • Navigating different legal, regulatory, and cultural environments can be difficult.
  • Higher risk of unforeseen circumstances such as weather disruptions, travel delays, and local crises affecting the event.

Financial Aspects of an Events Business 

A person computing on finances for an event business

To make an event planning business profitable, you must carefully manage costs related to running your business.

Costs to Consider For Your Event Business

  • Venue rental
  • Marketing expenses
  • Equipment purchase or rental
  • Website costs
  • Ticket registration platform
  • Program creation
  • Transportation costs
  • Staff Salaries
  • Emergency expenses
  • Insurance

Funding options for your event business

Starting an events business requires a solid financial foundation, and several funding options are available to help you get started. One traditional route is securing a loan from a bank or financial institution, which can provide the necessary capital but requires a strong credit history and a solid business plan. 

Alternatively, seeking investors can be another option; investors can offer substantial funding in exchange for equity or a stake in your business. This can also bring valuable mentorship and industry connections, though it means sharing ownership and profits. Crowdfunding is another increasingly popular method, leveraging platforms like Kickstarter or Indiegogo to raise funds from a large number of people who believe in your vision.

Crowdfunding not only provides financial support but also helps build a community of potential clients and advocates for your brand. Each of these funding options comes with its own set of advantages and challenges, so it’s important to carefully consider which aligns best with your business goals and financial situation.

Financial planning for your event business

1. Startup Costs:

Legal Fees: Registering your business, licenses, and permits ($500 – $1,500)

Office Space: Lease or co-working space ($500 – $2,000 per month)

Equipment and Supplies: Computers, phones, office furniture ($3,000 – $5,000)

Software: Event management software, accounting tools, CRM ($500 – $1,500 annually)

Marketing: Website development, business cards, initial advertising ($2,000 – $5,000)

Insurance: Liability insurance and other necessary coverages ($500 – $1,000 annually)

Miscellaneous: Unexpected expenses ($1,000 – $2,000)

Estimated Total Startup Costs: $8,000 – $18,000

2. Operating Costs (Monthly):

Salaries and Wages: For you and any staff ($3,000 – $10,000)

Office Rent: Lease or co-working fees ($500 – $2,000)

Utilities and Office Supplies: Internet, electricity, stationery ($200 – $500)

Marketing and Advertising: Ongoing campaigns, social media ads ($500 – $1,500)

Software Subscriptions: Event management, accounting, CRM tools ($100 – $300)

Travel and Accommodation: Site visits, client meetings ($500 – $2,000)

Miscellaneous: Unplanned expenses ($200 – $500)

Estimated Monthly Operating Costs: $5,000 – $16,800

Financial Projections

Year 1:


Average number of events per month: 4

Average revenue per event: $5,000

Total Monthly Revenue: 4 events * $5,000 = $20,000

Annual Revenue: $20,000 * 12 = $240,000


Total Annual Operating Costs: $5,000 – $16,800 * 12 = $60,000 – $201,600

Total Startup Costs: $8,000 – $18,000

Net Profit:

Minimum Net Profit: $240,000 – ($201,600 + $18,000) = $20,400

Maximum Net Profit: $240,000 – ($60,000 + $8,000) = $172,000

Year 2:

Revenue Growth Assumption: 20%

Total Annual Revenue: $240,000 * 1.2 = $288,000

Expenses Growth Assumption: 10%

Total Annual Operating Costs: $60,000 – $201,600 * 1.1 = $66,000 – $221,760

Net Profit:

Minimum Net Profit: $288,000 – $221,760 = $66,240

Maximum Net Profit: $288,000 – $66,000 = $222,000

Maximize profit for your business by learning to reduce costs and increase the income streams for your event business. Looking at the financial computation above, one of the major costs for an events business is the ticketing fees or the event management platform. 

When setting up your event website, choose an event ticketing and registration platform like Event Espresso. Unlike other ticketing platforms, they don’t charge any commission fees for an unlimited number of tickets sold but you can get all the features of one. 

Aside from reducing costs, consider increasing revenue streams like add-ons, vendor commissions, sponsorships, and partnerships.

Now, another thing you need to consider is taxes.

The tax obligations for an events business largely depend on its legal structure. Common structures include sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability company (LLC), and corporation. Each structure has different tax implications. 

You’ll also need to obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN) from the IRS, which is used for tax filings and to open a business bank account. In some states, additional state tax IDs may be required.

Steps on How to Start an Event Planning Business

1. Define your whys and motivation for starting an events business

A business is a commitment and is not an easy task. When challenges arise, you have to go back to why you started your business. Reflect on your passion for event planning, whether it’s the thrill of organizing successful events, the joy of creating memorable experiences, or the desire for a dynamic and creative career. 

2. Conduct market research

Conducting thorough market research is essential to understand the landscape of the events industry in your area. Identify your target market, analyze competitors, and uncover gaps that your business can fill. Market research will provide insights into customer needs, preferences, and trends, helping you tailor your services to meet demand.

Set specific questions as you do your research, such as “What types of events are most popular in my area?” or “What pricing strategies are competitors using?” Discover what are the existing problems in your market and position your business in a way that can solve those problems. 

3. Develop a solid business plan

A comprehensive business plan outlines your business goals, strategies, and financial projections. It serves as a roadmap for your event planning business, detailing your service offerings, target market, marketing strategies, and operational plans. 

A well-developed business plan guides your business and helps secure funding from investors or lenders by demonstrating your business’s potential as a successful event planning business. This is also the step when you can form your team or business partners. 

4. How to legalize your business

As mentioned above, you would need to take care of some legal processes to legitimize your new business. Choose a suitable business structure (such as sole proprietorship, LLC, or corporation) and register your business name with the relevant state authorities. To obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN) from the IRS for tax purposes. 

5. Obtain necessary licenses and permits

Different licenses and permits may be required based on your location and the nature of your event planning services:

  • General Business License: Most municipalities require a general business license to operate legally.
  • Special Event Permits: Specific permits may be needed for certain types of events, such as large gatherings, events with alcohol, or those held in public spaces.
  • Health Permits: If your events include food service, you may need a health permit.
  • Alcohol Licenses: Required if you plan to serve or sell alcohol at events.

Check with your local city or county clerk’s office for specific requirements.

6. Set up your finances

The section above on the financial aspect can give you an idea of what to expect once you start your event business.  Also, separate your personal and business finances by opening a business bank account. This helps with accounting, simplifies tax filing, and enhances your business’s professionalism. 

Create a budget to monitor cash flow and plan for future growth. Moreover, proper financial management ensures sustainability and helps you make informed business decisions.

7. Build a brand

Your brand is what will help you stand out among your competitors and convince your potential customers to choose your business over others.

Additionally, develop a unique brand identity, including a memorable name, logo, and tagline. Create a professional website showcasing your services, portfolio, and client testimonials. 

A tip in building your brand is to have a clear understanding of the customers you plan to serve. Create a message that speaks to your audience to get their attention. 

8. Setting your service menu

List the services you offer on your event website and make it easy for your customers to avail of your services. Eliminate blockers or roadblocks that can hinder your customers from a smooth checkout process. If possible, your offer should have persuasive descriptions that can drive people to convert. 

Additionally, another tip is to offer tiered packages that can cater to different budgets and needs. A well-structured service menu helps clients understand your offerings and choose the best option for their event.

9. Network and build relationships

Businesses thrive on good relationships with different people or businesses. Genuinely engage and provide value to your community or industry and you’ll be surprised how word of mouth runs fast. 

You can do this by attending industry events and conferences related to your field. Join professional associations and organizations can also be a way to meet with colleagues and potential partners. Hosting your own networking events can also help build your name in your field.

10. Create a marketing plan and strategy

When you have an amazing product or offer but have no effective marketing strategy present, no one will know about your business. Again, you can go back to identifying your target audiences and the best channels to reach them, such as social media, email marketing, and search engine optimization (SEO). Create engaging content that showcases your expertise and past successes. 

11. Select your event tools/event tech stack

Finalize the list of tools you need for your event planning company. Here are some of the most common event management tools you’ll need:

  • Event management software: Event Espresso or Event Smart
  • Graphic Designing: Canva
  • Customer Relationship Management: Salesforce/ Hubspot/ Pipedrive
  • Marketing Automation Tool: Mailchimp
  • Social Media Management: Buffer
  • Project Management: Asana/  Monday
  • Survey and Feedback Tools: Typeform
  • Data Management and Reporting: Google Analytics

12. Hire or outsource your team

As your business grows, you can start delegating tasks for your event to your staff or outsourcing your team. Proper delegation allows you to focus on strategic planning and business development while ensuring that each aspect of your event is handled by experts. Delegating tasks effectively can improve efficiency, enhance the quality of your events, and provide you with the bandwidth to scale your operations and take on more ambitious projects.

13. Execute your first successful event

Finally, it is time to execute your event. Think of your attendee experience and be present all throughout the event. Keep improving and learning so you can continue to provide quality service that your attendees will return to. Engage with your guests, listen to their thoughts, and observe their interactions and responses to different aspects of the event.

The Best Event Registration Tool for your Own Event Planning Business

Get ready to launch a successful business with the right event management tools like Event Espresso. You can start to build your own event website on WordPress and have Event Espresso as your ticketing plugin. 

Unlike other event ticketing platforms, you don’t have to pay additional commission fees with Event Espresso. Just a simple flat fee and you can have all the features an event planner needs like an efficient event registration system, secure payment collection, customizable event registration forms, and more. 

If your website is not on WordPress, you can use Event Smart instead. Event Smart is a similar platform that any event planner or event organizer can use. You can try the 14-day free trial or check out the free live demo now.

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