How to Achieve Success as an EXP in 2019
Whether you just wrapped up a tour or maintained consistent opportunities year-round, you may be wondering: How come event opportunities decreased? Maintaining consistent income during slow periods as an EXP is a challenge. As I explained in You Do What? And in my pop-up video to start off the new year, December to mid-April is the slow period, when opportunities to execute events decrease. As an EXP it is important to prepare adequately during these times. Here are a few principles you can incorporate to get you through the industry’s slow period:
Revamp Your Resume
Take time to clean out the clutter from your resume. Long gone are the days of 5-10 page resumes. Instead, take time to restructure your resume and include experience relevant to the opportunities to which you are applying. For example, for a product specialist’s job opportunity, apply with a tailored resume to highlight all of your product specialist experience. If you are just beginning a career in the experiential marketing industry, be sure to create a resume that highlights all of your customer service experience. We all have to start somewhere and truth be told, my customer service resume assisted me with landing my first brand ambassador opportunity. So go ahead: invest the time to revamp your resume and create (as well as update) your job profiles with experiential marketing and staffing agencies. It takes time and effort but I’m living proof that hard work pays off. You can do it too!
Save and Budget Accordingly
Separate your wants from your needs. While it may sound simple, it can be tough to remember and implement. Needs are essentials you can’t live without, such as food, housing, proper clothing, and transportation. Wants are things we deem important but which are not necessary. If executing events is your main source of income, then ensuring you save for the slow period ahead is important. By paying yourself first (10% of every check), taking time to set budgets and track expenditure, and paying any bills in a timely manner, you are able to account for all funds. If you need additional guidance, be sure to review my checklist for a list of recommended books on financial literacy.
Understanding Uncle Sam
Oh, taxes! Every year without fail we are faced with having to do our taxes. As a full-time EXP, this time of year can bring feelings of dread, leading us to delays filing our returns as long as we can. Executing events as an independent contractor (1099 employee) or W-2/W-4 employee will generate a 1099 or W-2 form. These forms are usually sent at the beginning of the new year by experiential marketing or staffing agencies. They account for all income earned, as well as any taxes deducted (if hired as a W-2/W-4 employee) while executing an event or program. As an EXP, it is important to understand what deductions to write off and to keep a list of how many 1099s or W-2s you are expecting. Hire a knowledgeable certified public accountant or educate yourself on the new laws and rules to ensure you (or the individual preparing your taxes) will take the time to do them correctly.
By law, the IRS can audit you ten years after your filing taxes. Therefore, implementing the three tips above – along with my checklist – is essential. Be sure to download my free checklist for industry and financial success in 2019!