We had the good fortune of connecting with Sarah Wang and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Sarah, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
My journey actually started on one sleepless night, where I was praying and meditating on His Words. I was pondering on the parable of the talents in Matthew 25. The story talks about this rich master gave his three servants each a few talents. When the master returned, two of the three servants traded the talents to gain double of the amount of what they originally had. The third servant hid the talent in the ground and returned the exact amount back to the master. The master was furious that the third servant didn’t do anything with the money and so he took his talents and gave them to the two servants who were smart about their portion. The last two verses said, “29 For whoever has will be given more, and they will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what they have will be taken from them. 30 And throw that worthless servant outside, into the darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” Talent means bags of gold, it could also mean whatever God entrusted you with. I asked God, “What are the talents You’ve given me? I want to make sure I don’t just bury it like the third servant.” I was reminded of all the singing gigs I’ve been doing recently for my friends’ weddings and that’s where the idea of bringing God’s Kingdom into the wedding industry with my songs and my voice. Right there and then, the company name “My Wedding Songbird” popped up in my head, and I quickly checked the domain availability for myweddingsongbird.com, and it was available! I bought it right away, signed up for a gmail account as well. That was how this company was birthed.
What should our readers know about your business?
If you ask any entrepreneur if it was easy getting to where they’re at right now, I think most would say, “no, it definitely hasn’t been a smooth road”. For me, I definitely had my share of obstacles and challenges in starting my own business. One of the biggest obstacles was my Chinese parents showing their disapproval of my decision to start a business from scratch. They kept trying to tell me to get a full time job with secure paychecks and benefits. At first I thought my father would be supportive of my decision, because he was also a businessman. But maybe because he’s experienced great success that followed by great failure, he didn’t want me to go through the same. I totally understood where my parents were coming from, that they just wanted to protect me. However, because I have made the decision and I wanted to prove to them that I could do it, I moved out with a little bit of savings during the first year I started my business. During this year, I did not have any other income source and solely relied on income from events and gigs. This is also the year that I experienced God’s faithful and miraculous provision. I would wake up and receive phone calls and messages from strangers inquiring for event services, when I wasn’t even spending money on marketing. Also, since it was my first year, I didn’t dare to charge too much but still had clients bargaining on my low price. I remember for my very first wedding planning job I only charged them $300! Even with these low ticketed bookings, somehow, I could still manage to pay my monthly rent, bills, gas, food and other things. God is so faithful! This is also a sign to me that God is keeping the door open for my wedding business. It’s been 5 years since then, and even though I’ve been increasing my prices annually, I’m booking more clients each year! I remember only the second year, my annual income had already matched my full time job income that I had before. Praise the Lord! I believe that God gives and takes away, so if one day He closes this door, I would be ok with it, knowing that I’ve given my all when I had the privilege to serve all my clients when the door was open.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
If my friends are coming to visit for a long weekend, I’d take them to enjoy some delicious authentic Asian cuisine (Szechuan, hot pot, dim sum, Korean bbq, sushi, pho… etc), signature theme parks like Disneyland or Universal Studios, and of course Santa Monica for some beach fun. There are also tons of rooftop bars/lounges in downtown LA that I’d love to take them too. If they are into museums, there are also many awesome museums such as LACMA, MOCA, and there’s always pop-up installations or exhibits in LA that I can show them. In general, no matter if it’s food, entertainment, scenery, you name it, we have it all here in Southern California. We just gotta time our schedule around the rush hour, to avoid the infamous L.A. traffic.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Throughout this amazing journey of being a wedding planner, God has brought me many amazing people whom I’m forever grateful for. It would be tough for me to list everyone, but I would like to a special shout out to Sherrien Shui, the godmother of wedding in the Chinese community in Los Angeles. To be honest, I was still working a full time job when I had the epiphany I shared earlier. When I shared about starting a wedding/event company to my former boss, he told me I have to meet Sherrien, because she’s the most well known and most experienced wedding planner in the Chinese community. I asked him if he could introduce us, he said he doesn’t really know her either. Somehow, a miracle happened, Sherrien saw my wechat out of nowhere, and reached out to me because I mentioned something about wedding/event services in my wechat name. We ended up meeting up for lunch and chatted for 3 hours straight. This was a very clear sign to me from God that He has opened this door for me and even prepared a personal guide for me. She was seriously a God sent, like literally. She started guiding me and mentoring me in wedding planning and also hired me to be her assistant to get more hands-on experiences. I am forever grateful to your generosity and kindness and friendship. Thank you so much for everything! Thank You Lord, I am very blessed and loved.
Other: Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/myweddingsongbird
Alex Mo Photography / Lin & Jirsa Photography / Kwon Photography / J-Arts Production / Wiki Lee