Friday, June 9, 2017

How to Start a Concierge Company

I get contacted pretty frequently from others asking to work at my company and asking to meet with me because they are interested in becoming a concierge. I thought I would write some things you need become a concierge. You can read this post on how I got started many years ago. I started my concierge company over 10 years ago when I was in college because I needed extra money. I provide services like professional organizing, personal assistance and eco consulting. I have seen many companies start similar businesses in Houston these past 10 years and it is wonderful to see so much growth because Houston is so big.
  • Come up with a name. This can be changed, but I suggest sticking to something that you will use a long time. 
  • File for a DBA. Go to the court house and file a DBA to make your business official. I chose to stick with a DBA / Sole Proprietorship because that is how I wanted to do it. Others can become an LLC, etc. 
  • Set up a website. I have found this is a must nowadays in the concierge world because people want to see the type of services that you offer. 
  • Research similar businesses in your area. Find out who your competition is and what they are up to. I view it more of community over competition because often times I need help from colleagues in the same field as me.
  • Make sure you have an online prescense. Start social media sites including, Facebook, Instagram, SnapChat, Pinterest, Twitter, etc. Through the years I have gained some business through social media, but not a ton.
  • Spread the word about your business. Get out there and network with others and tell everyone you know about your business. You never know who will need your services. Spread the word using various tactics and sources like blog posts, social media, etc.
  • Collaborate. If you are just starting out see if you can assist another concierge company on a project or shadow for a day. Like I mentioned above many people have reached out to me through the years, so I would suggest reaching out to other concierge companies.
  • Find a niche. My niche is Green Concierge because I try to do things in the most eco way possible if that is what the client wants. I have many clients who are into very eco practices as well. 
  • Choose your marketing carefully. I haven't done a who lot of marketing because most of my business is word of mouth. There are various marketing things that you can do. 
  • Network. Go to networking events, lunches and like I said above, tell everyone you know. I don't always particularly like going to networking events, but I have gained business from it. 
  • Follow up. Follow up on any leads that you may meet along the way. You never know what may come of it.
  • Join organizations. Join local and national organizations that may be beneficial to your business. I am part of NAPO national and NAPO Houston. 
  • Get Insurance. Insurance isn't too much a year depending on the type of coverage you get, but I think it is a wise idea to get it. Many potential new clients will ask you if you have it.
  • Home office or office space. For many years I ran my business out of my home because it was easiest. Now I am in an office and I like it because I can bring clients by if need be and it helps me separate home and business life more. 
  • Have fun! Starting a concierge business should be fun! There will definitely be challenges along the way, but you will overcome those pretty quickly.

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