Empowering People
& Revitalizing the Community

A Moment with our EDTP Graduate- Tracy Ferguson

Posted on 1/22/2021 by Ray Lamboy in LAEDA News
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Tracy Ferguson is the owner of Passion Driven Parties, which is a one-stop shop for all of your event planning needs! Passion Driven Parties believes that every blessing in life should be celebrated- in spite of fact that we are living in a pandemic! She is also a graduate of LAEDA’s Entrepreneurial Development Training Program (EDTP). We had a chance to sit down with Tracy Ferguson to ask about her experience with entrepreneurship and LAEDA's training program.

1) LAEDA: Entrepreneurship is a very challenging path to take with many different possible directions. What made you decide to become an entrepreneur?

Quite Frankly, I reached an age where I was preparing for retirement and looking for a way to use my gifts, talents and abilities to prepare for that retirement. Event planning was a gift that I had used for over 30 years to bless others by planning and coordinating not only their events but my own as well. I am at a point in my life where I want to pursue what makes me happy and is truly my passion, which is to help others pursue joy and happiness in every celebration of life! Event planning is definitely my passion and my calling in life, which is why my business is called Passion Driven Parties!

2) LAEDA: Why did you choose your industry?

People have always consulted and solicited my advice based on how much they enjoyed my personal events. Therefore, I felt like it was a natural progression to pursue a business in Event planning in the next phase of my life.

3) LAEDA: Tell me about your experience while attending EDTP/ WBA. What have the major takeaways been from the program? Have you had any “Ah-ha!” moments? How did the program help you?

Attending LAEDA'S Entrepreneurial Training Program helped me to see how much I didn't know about how to start and maintain a business. Some of the major takeaways and “Ah-ha” moments were how important a business plan was, how to establish business credit, learning about cost of goods sold, how to analyze demographics in terms of your competitors, and learning about SEO (Search Engine Optimization) amongst many others.

4) LAEDA: Tell me about your journey on the road to business start-up. What have been some of the challenges, successes, failures, etc.?

My challenges can be summed up in one word -COVID! It seemed as though my business model was definitely set up for failure based on how I serviced my customers in the past. That is when I had to learn to reinvent myself in many ways. I definitely had to depend more on social media to perform effective marketing. I added delivery to my services to make it convenient for my customers to still celebrate life without having to leave their home. Since my customers were not able to gather in-person, we offered drive-by celebrations for baby and bridal showers, birthday celebrations, baby gender reveal announcements, graduation, anniversary and retirement parties. In addition, we set up virtual Zoom parties for birthday celebrations, graduation, and anniversary and baby and bridal shower celebrations. The addition these services became a success because they provided ways for others to celebrate life in spite of being in the middle of a pandemic!

5) LAEDA: Could you tell me a little about where your business is today?

Passion Driven Parties is about to introduce a Valentine's Day Promotion where we will be selling Valentine's Balloon bouquets, Cupcake flower bouquets, Valentine's Day mugs and candy boxes along with personal catering services. For the catering services, we would have our personal chef prepare a 4-course dinner and deliver to the client's home for Valentine's Day. Instead of dining out, one can be in the privacy and safety of his/ her own home with no need for social distancing. Passion Driven Parties can also provide Valentine's Day decor with the catered meal, whcih would include an elegantly decorated table complete with games and treats from our Date Night gift box. What an exquisite and unique way to celebrate love! Let Passion Driven Parties show you how!

6) LAEDA: Do you have any advice for future (or existing) entrepreneurs?

As an entrepreneur, you should always take time to reinvent yourself- stay ahead of the game. Look at what makes you better, special or different and promote those qualities. Never be satisfied with doing and promoting what service or product everyone else is selling or advertising. Whether you are looking at being a future entrepreneur or already an existing one, find your niche or special quality and use that to make a difference in your business.

Congratulations to Tracy Ferguson for completing EDTP and recommitting to her journey on the path of entrepreneurship. Passion Driven Parties is a one-stop shop for all of your event planning needs! Passion Driven Parties believe that every blessing in life should be celebrated- in spite of fact that we are living in a pandemic! Passion Driven Parties offers delivery and Do it Yourself party kits for all your event planning needs along with a free 15 minute consultation to discuss how they can help you with your next virtual party or drive by party event.

To get in touch with Tracy Ferguson at Passion Driven Parties, you can reach her by visiting her website at www.passiondrivenparties.com and you can also text or call her at 267-972-5244 along with you can please follow her on Instagram and Facebook at Passion Driven Parties.

The Entrepreneurial Development Training Program (EDTP) is a free, nine-week business skills training course offered in Camden, NJ in the Spring and Fall each year. Qualified entrepreneurs receive 72+ hours of training from industry professionals, business planning, and one year of technical assistance. Apply online at www.LAEDA.com.