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Jani Elmore

Jani has been growing her marketing career working exclusively in the luxury travel and wedding industries since 2012. She enjoys crafting content that informs, persuades, entertains and connects.

Young couple at ceremony with beach backdropToday’s marrying couples will likely visit the sites of hundreds of vendors and wedding venues during the 13-18 months it takes to plan a wedding. Your goal is to stand out in an overcrowded wedding market — and a successful marketing strategy is key.

Marketing your wedding business requires a lot of things: a beautiful website, a portfolio of experience, and industry knowledge. To resonate with today’s bride, these 3 elements are critical in her search for a wedding dream team, and highlighting those things will help you land more clients than ever.

Bride using technology to plan her weddingPricing

According to The Knot, the average cost of an American wedding was $33,931 in 2018. Plus the average couple pays for almost half of their wedding! With so much of their own money on the line, it’s no surprise that couples pay close attention to a vendor’s price.

Why It Matters

Very few small businesses — particularly those in the wedding industry — like to post their costs online. Weddings are very personal events, and costs can vary wildly from one couple to the next. However, advertising your prices upfront is crucial in wedding industry marketing.

The overwhelming majority of couples heading to the altar these days are millennials and this generation prefers almost any other mode of communication to the phone. They were raised in the era of Google, where a few keywords in the search bar yield all the answers they could ever want.

If you don’t include pricing in your wedding marketing, millennial couples are very unlikely to call and ask. Instead, they may just assume it’s out of their price range and head back to Google to find another venue with the kind of transparent pricing they want and respect.

What To Do

At first, it may seem like adding costs to your website is easy enough. However, marketing your wedding business properly is a little more complicated than that. Remember, you’re competing with hundreds of vendors for potential clients, and that means you need to price yourself strategically.

For example, let’s say you own a wedding venue like a hotel or bed and breakfast. You’ll need to look at the average cost of a wedding venue in your area, and monitor other companies’ prices to stay competitive. This may mean dropping rates in the off-season or hiring a marketing firm to help you track pricing trends to plan accordingly.

It is also important to really sell a couple on the value of your service. What makes your venue, your catering service, or your photography so special that they’d want to fork over thousands? Highlight the unique elements of your wedding business that proves your asking price is worth it!

Couple shaking hands with wedding professionalReviews

We shouldn’t have to tell you how important reviews are for marketing your wedding business. A positive review from a satisfied bride can lead to a surge in clientele — and a negative one can lead to a devastating business dry spell.

Why It Matters

Recommendations from friends and family have always shaped people’s purchasing decisions. But in the digital age, recommendations are more valuable than ever! Millennial couples are very sensitive to advertising (they’ve grown up around “advertorials” and #sponcon), and they are often more convinced by a great Yelp review than a carefully-planned marketing campaign.

According to WeddingWire, a staggering 80% of couples used online reviews from strangers to decide on venues and other services for their wedding. With this in mind, it is absolutely essential that you promote your wedding business with the best reviews you possibly can!

What To Do

Start by implementing a follow-up process for every client. Stay in touch post-wedding, thank them for their business, and ask them to give you a quick review online. Then, monitor every review site you can think of — Google, Yelp, TripAdvisor, The Knot, etc. — and see what your clients are saying about you. If you don’t have time to check all those sites, consider hiring a marketing firm that offers reputation management services. They’ll keep an eye out for negative buzz and alert you if you need to act.

What happens if you get a negative review? Honestly, the best thing you can do is take a good look at your business and fix any internal issues first. Then, consider getting in touch with the negative reviewer to see if you can make things right. A swift and compassionate response just might mean an amended review!

Groom kissing bride holding bouquetPhotography

We all know the old saying: a picture is worth a thousand words. As a wedding industry professional, you’re helping a couple tell their love story — and when it comes to marketing your wedding business, the right photo expressing tangible joy might be all you need to win over your clients.

Why It Matters

Most couples begin planning their wedding with a certain vision in mind. They’ve thought about this moment for most of their lives, and they have some idea of how they want their big day to look. This is why so many couples look for photos from wedding venues, planners, or other vendors they’re considering as they are trying to find a vendor whose style matches their own.

What To Do

If you’re a wedding photographer, you’ll have no trouble keeping your website stocked with beautiful, current photos. If you’re a DJ or you own a wedding venue; however, you (or your marketing firm) will need to do a little networking.

Talk with the photographers and videographers at weddings you work and ask to post their photos from the wedding (with appropriate credit, of course). You can also coordinate with event planners to stage a styled shoot at your venue, highlighting the most unique and beautiful aspects of your service or wedding space.

It’s also a good practice to avoid stock photos as much as you can. Stock photos have a bad habit of looking staged and inauthentic, and this will only hurt your brand and your business. However, if you find yourself really needing to use stock photos, remember to be inclusive; the more demographics you represent in your images, the more couples will be interested in working with you.

Up close shot of love wedding sign

Highlighting and successfully implementing these three elements in your online marketing strategy is a great way to reach more clients and boost your business — but you don’t have to do it alone! Contact us today and say “I do,” and we’ll help you market your wedding business like never before.