As a new wedding planner, some of your clients will come from family and friends, but in order to have a successful business you are going to have to get out and market your services to people you have not met. Yes, today a lot of marketing may be done online over the Internet, but you still need to get out and network and exhibit at bridal shows and wedding expos to meet brides and vendor partners. A lot of other wedding professionals are shy, they have just learned to get out and do what they need to do to get clients.
Here are 5 tips for handling shyness:
1) Prepare in advance
Like preparing for a meeting, you can prepare for networking events in advance by deciding what you are going to say about yourself and your services. Create a 30 second "elevator speech" to introduce yourself and the benefits of your services to another person. Practice saying it to friends, if it helps you.
As far as preparing to speak to attendees in a bridal show, think about how much your services can help the brides who visit your booth and how you would tell them about it. You do not have to give a hard sales pitch, just be yourself.
2) Concentrate on the other person
Listen and ask questions. Focusing on the other person will help you take your mind off of your anxiety.
3) Remember that the worse that can happen is they are not interested or say "no"
At a networking event, most people will be fairly polite and listen to you because they also want you to listen to them and refer or buy their products and services.
At a bridal show, a bride may ask you questions, take a brochure and walk away (she may be shy also) or she may not want an appointment with you, but probably it will not get worse than "no."
4) Remember that it's never personal
When a bride is disinterested or turns down an appointment, remember it is not about you. They may just be "window shopping," asking questions before they plan their own do-it-yourself wedding, or not yet ready to commit to a wedding planner. Thank them for their time and move onto the next person, do not dwell on what you "should have said."
5) You have to practice
The more you get out and meet with others, the easier it will become to talk to strangers and the more success you will bring to your business.