On the road to a pandemic recovery
Adapt, improvise & overcome your business
As we enter Month 4 of the Covid-19 lockdown (for the majority of us) we can't help but wonder when things will improve and event based businesses will return to 'normal'. Yes, the last few months have been extremely challenging for every single business out there, whether your focus is in the private or corporate sector, however things may just be starting to look up for the events industry, and we have proof!
Below is a snapshot of of data taken from BoothBook's photo booth owners across 33 countries.
- When comparing with 2019, the number of bookings taken in February 2020 decreased (as expected due to Covid-19 uncertainty). This trend continued throughout March and April. However, since May the trend line has started to rise and we are confident the gradual uplift will continue as the economy begins to recover. A key factor to this increase is most likely down to postponed 2020 events and newly engaged couples keen to book suppliers as far in advance as possible, knowing that the demand for dates in 2021 is very high.
And the positive news continues - yay!
- As you can see below, lead enquiries increased significantly in May from previous months and we know this trend will continue which is very reassuring for the industry. Prospects are online looking for your services now, so it's never been so important to ensure you're online too; sending proposals, following up with calls and closing deals with those HOT leads before your competition does it for you.
- Based on data taken from a number of our users, we've discovered weekday bookings (Sunday-Thursday) have already doubled so far compared to 2019. These weekday figures will continue to rise due to pre-booked weekend events in 2021.
- It proves the demand is there for weekdays, just as much as the traditional weekend bookings (Fri-Saturday) so you need to be offering similar packages without lowering your prices. More on this below...
- What does this mean? It means you may be in for a very busy year and your annual turnover could quadruple! With this in mind, you must ensure your confirmed bookings and lead management processes are already in order. (or if not, it's on the top of your to-do list!)
Recovery Tips & Business Considerations:
- Expand for the following year
With the possibility of receiving a high demand of events next year, it may be worth investing in an additional booth. No, I'm not crazy, hear me out... If your weekend bookings are already filling up from rescheduled 2020 events or new 2021 events, then surely you've got lots to gain from opening up more availability for the same dates? Why not take extra bookings for a *new booth* which you are yet to purchase, but whilst your deposits are being paid and you have the cashflow, you would have almost paid off the cost for a booth before you receive it. See?
- Re-consider your up-sell products
Virtual up-sells are always a winner, but I would be careful with physcial up-sell products. If that up-sell relies on hiring an additional attendant, would you be in profit or loss from that booking?
- Assess your monthly outgoings
It's always worth assessing your monthly outgoings every few months to ensure you are only paying for services or products that benefit your business, make you more profitable or your business relies on to run. A common occurance if forgetting to cancel your limited free trial, and suddenly realising you are now paying for a service that isn't needed or benefitting your business. Oops!
- Review your storage space
You may have previously needed a large space to store your enclosed photo booths, props, guestbooks etc, but with virtual booths and selfie pods taking off, should you be paying for a space you may no longer need?
- Review vehicles
Tax, insurance, lifetime value and so on... these are just a few ongoing vehicle expenses that be unnessesary to your business. A solution could be reducing the number of vehicles you own/lease and instead hire a rental van for event dates only. Another option is to add your attendant vehicles to your business insurance (often free in the UK) and use their vehicles for smaller booths.
- Don't reduce package prices
This is key. It can be very tempting right now when all you want to do is receive bookings, but if you want your business to survive this pandemic (and any other time) do not lower your prices. Remember, you must be making a NET PROFIT after every event, otherwise you're partaking in a very expensive hobby.
- Would you book you?
With the pandemic affecting thousands of loved up couples and corporate functions, cost is no longer an issue when booking a supplier. Trust and reliability is. You need to be seen as an established business, with a strong online presence, a professional looking website, competitive prices, positive customer reviews and a sleek online booking process. They want to know you will still be in business next year and won't let them down.
Adapting and improvising during a challenging time is so important if you want your business to survive. If you are yet to make any changes, it's time to up your game and get ahead of your competition.
If you wish to talk through your business plan or gain some advice with an industry professional, we'd be more than happy to give you a call.