Along with running What Emma Did as a full time blogger business, I’m also a freelance make-up artist too. Mainly within the wedding industry, specialising in bridal parties, which I truly love.
There is just something so special about being part of a brides big morning, making the bride and her bridesmaids look their very best.
I started out doing bridal makeup around 7 years ago, slotting it in on my weekends alongside working full time. However, about 18 months ago, I took it full time along with running my What Emma Did business, and I’ve never looked back.
A lot of people ask me where do people find me, and how do I actively find new clients? So I decided to talk about a site I used called Bark.com, and how I’ve successfully used it for make-up and weddings both as a seller and a buyer.
Lets look at how I use Bark as a Seller (offering a service) first.
Using Bark as a Seller
I get a number of bookings through word of mouth, recommendations, social media and my website, but sometimes I like to hone in on a more tailored business approach. For example, I carry out my services across South Manchester, Cheshire and Staffordshire, so being a seller on Bark.com lets me search for brides looking for a makeup artist within those areas.
I set up my Seller account to send me email alerts every time a bride withing a certain location puts an advertisement up that they are seeking a bridal makeup artist. In their advertisement, they are specific about the date, how many people need their makeup doing, the location, the budget they have, and whether they will require a trial.
This means I can log onto Bark straight from my emails, and contact the bride-to-be with my rates, if I am available on that date.
Bark then lets myself and the ‘buyer’ build up a conversation, and keep in touch prior to the booking. It’s worth noting that because Bark provides just as easy, effective service which literally brings business your way without really having to hunt, there is a payment system which I use to do this.
You can buy little bundles with give you credits to reach out to potential business, so say for example I spy two brides in the Cheshire area looking for my services, and I know they are excellent jobs for me, I would make sure I had enough credits before doing so,
Credits can be purchased to give you 5, 10 or 20 responses, but every now and again Bark will run reductions, meaning you get more credits for your money!
Using Bark as a buyer
Before I listed myself as a professional on Bark, I started off using Bark as a buyer. This is purely because I got fed up of sites like Gumtree which are unreliable, and don’t have much professionalism to them (just my humble opinion by the way!).
When a lot of my friends started to get married a few years ago, I would tell them to look on Bark from everything from a hair stylist, a musician, a caterer etc. But for me, I’ve used it before when I have needed a cleaner, and even a personal trainer many years back.
The beauty of being a buyer through Bark.com is that again, it is so simple and streamlined. Everything is designed to be so easy for both sides. You simply type in what you are looking for with your desired location, it then brings up a more specific list of specialist titles to pick from, then the date, and then voila – a list at your disposal. You can tend request certain individual contact you, by expressing an interest in their service.
Don’t take my word for it – you should totally try Bark.com out yourself if you don’t know where to start when looking for professionals.
Or, if like me, you’re a bridal makeup specialist, or even a specialist in the wedding industry within another skill area, it’s worth setting yourself up as a Seller. The amount of interest I receive is brilliant, especially as Bark lets me upload a portfolio too!