wedding planning

How Do Wedding Planners Get Clients?

Booking new clients is an ongoing effort for any service provider, whether you're a caterer, florist, photographer, or planner. Therefore, wedding vendors should always be planning for their next booking, even during the busiest part of wedding season.

If you're a seasoned wedding vendor, you probably have a set of strategies that you've found to be effective in the past. However, it's always a good idea to take a look back at your current tactics, evaluate how well they've been working, and then refine them for the coming year. If you're just getting started, now is the time to put your plans on paper.

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In order to help you get started, we have compiled ideas to help you formulate a strategy to bring in new customers for your wedding business.

It's common for newcomers to the wedding planning industry to worry that finding clients will be difficult. To attract clients, you need to be communicative and outgoing, which can be challenging if this is your first time planning. We've put together some guidelines to help you land your first client and get things rolling.

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Table of Contents

Innovative Ways to Promote Your Event Planning Company

wedding planning

Networking

Most planners place a premium on networking as a means to build a solid clientele. There are two ways in which networking can benefit your company's bottom line. Once people get to know you and your services, they are more likely to either recommend you or hire you for their own needs. You can meet some of the people whose services you might need as you plan events by networking with hotels, caterers, and so on.

Advertising

There is a wide price range for print ads, from the free or cheap Yellow Pages listing to the thousands of dollars for an ad in a high-end national magazine. Planning professionals are generally in agreement that Yellow Pages advertising is a sound financial move. Phone companies will often throw in a free line ad for your company that simply lists your name when you sign up for service (if you have a landline). Display ads (the Yellow Pages' larger, bordered ads) are also an option, but they will cost you.

If you plan both business and social events, you could benefit from placing ads in the newspaper or a regional magazine. It's possible that a county's entire population will need the services of an event planner, making it a good idea to advertise in a magazine that caters to that county. The magazines you choose to advertise in should either cater to your target market geographically or to a specific niche, such as gourmet food or floral design. If you're trying to attract high-end customers, a magazine ad in the area might be the way to go. Advertisements in regional business periodicals would also reach potential corporate clients.

Business Card

It may be small, but don't discount its potential as a marketing tool. A brief, expertly printed business card remains indispensable even in the digital age. To use an analogy, a tri-fold business card is like a miniature brochure. Due to the additional space it provides over a standard business card, many organisers prefer this style. On the other hand, the card's compact size means it won't take up too much room in your bag.

Include your company's name, your name, your specialisation, your logo, and some testimonials from past clients. Never leave home without a stack of business cards. It's impossible to predict when you'll meet a potential customer. To spread the word about your event, have your florist, caterer, and photographer leave a stack of your business cards at their establishment.

Brochures

Just like a well-designed business card, a professionally-designed brochure can help to solidify your reputation as a capable planner. Make sure your brochure is well-thought-out and professionally made, as potential customers will evaluate your business based on it.

In addition to the data found on your tri-fold business card, the brochure should give you room to expand, in particular through the use of photographs, on this material. Images from events you've planned and executed successfully are required. Including a picture of yourself is optional but encouraged.

You can improve your chances of success by designing a brochure that is appropriate for your line of work. Although it is important for all marketing materials to look their best, a glossy brochure may not be the best choice if your target audience is concerned about saving money.

Leave brochures with caterers, florists, photographers, and other vendors you've worked with, just as you would business cards.

Facebook

Facebook's primary function is to facilitate conversation amongst a user's social circle. On the other hand, friends like websites that they enjoy or find useful. Your event planning company needs a Facebook page, but you should only use it occasionally to promote your services. What you've learned about a new wedding venue in the area, or some behind-the-scenes anecdotes from that Rolling Stones concert you're helping to coordinate, might make for an interesting Facebook post. You can learn a lot about how to use Facebook to your advantage by visiting the pages of other event planners and businesses you admire.

How To Get a First Client

Research

First-timers may make costly mistakes when estimating fees for their clients because they lack knowledge of the local wedding market. One place to start is by investigating what other similar businesses are offering and what brides are looking for but aren't getting from existing options. This will give you an edge over the competition and ensure that your business is sustainable.

Look for a Mentor

Building a relationship with a wedding professional will give your business a boost because they will reveal valuable trade secrets to you. Look up some well-known wedding planners online, and reach out to them to express your admiration for their work and interest in entering the wedding planning industry.

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Determine Your Customers’ Favourite Hangout Spots.

One of the most efficient ways to reach your target audience is to be where they already are. If you want to increase your chances of getting hired, you need a way to get in touch with your ideal client. You never know who you might run into or who might have a sudden interest in what you do when you're in such places, so it's best to always be ready. Exhibitions/wedding shows, churches, conferences, and specific events/concerts are some of the few places you can get leads. Meeting other professionals in the industry and gathering potential leads are two of the main reasons to attend a bridal or wedding show. It could be worthwhile to enquire with locally owned shops about the possibility of leaving flyers or business cards that explain your services in greater detail near the cash register or elsewhere in the store.

Make Connections

Friends are essential, and networking is the best way to make them. Women in particular love to discuss their ideal weddings and the newest trends in bridal fashion. You can follow up with people you meet, including those who work in the wedding industry, by exchanging business cards. It suggested thinking back on meetings with new contacts in order to pick up on any useful tidbits of information that may have been discussed.

Though you may be an expert in a certain field, your success depends on more than just that. In the wedding industry, word-of-mouth is invaluable, both from satisfied clients and other vendors. If you're in the catering business, for example, it's beneficial to connect with other vendors in the industry, such as florists, event planners, etc. Engage with wedding professionals you admire online in person by going to industry events, wedding expos, and meetups in your area.

Weddings are a great way to network and meet potential new clients. People attending the wedding and other vendors will take notice of your efforts if they are exceptional. Now that you're at it, consider how you can further exceed expectations. Think about what else you might need for a shoot if you're a photographer, and put together a toolkit to keep in your vehicle. The extra bobby pin you brought for the bride could be the deciding factor in getting the next referral.

You could try not intruding too deeply into their personal space by reaching out to them. Sending a personalised message on special occasions helps customers remember your company and is a great way to get referrals, especially if they are newlyweds and you remember their wedding anniversary.

Make Contact with Wedding Vendors

You might be surprised to learn that establishing connections with well-established companies can also help you attract new customers. These establishments would be the first stops that newly engaged couples would make in their quest to plan their wedding. Since a jewellery store is likely to be one of their first stops when shopping for an engagement ring, it would be wise for a wedding planner to pay a visit to one of these establishments in the hopes of promoting their services. Making contact with florists, bridal shops, event rental companies, event venues, caterers, and photographers can be a great way to expand your network and gain referrals.

If you host a variety of events, you will need the services of many different suppliers. If you build trust with them and send them consistent business, they will likely suggest you to others who are looking for similar connections.

Professionals in the wedding industry know one another well and frequently run into each other at the many events for which they are hired. They have mutual confidence in each other's abilities and will happily recommend you for the upcoming wedding.

Write Blog

Produce a number of blog posts that will interest your intended readers. Some advice on why a wedding planner would be useful, suggestions for the perfect honeymoon, and other topics that brides might find interesting while making plans for their big day. Blogs are written to attract readers who are actively seeking the information you provide, and who may also be interested in learning more about the service you offer. You can increase your customer base and brand awareness in this way.

Identify Your Niche

It's natural to want to maximise your client base when you're trying to expand your wedding business. But, before you start hunting down new business, take a step back and make sure you have a clear niche.

In a market saturated with service providers, you need something to set you apart and make you stand out to engaged couples. In order to achieve this goal, you must first define your niche market and the specific types of weddings that interest you. As a wedding planner, for instance, do you favour more unconventional ceremonies, such as those held at exotic locales, or more traditional ones held in a church? If you're a photographer, what kind of weddings do you prefer to shoot—large, formal affairs or smaller, more personal ceremonies?

Build Your Branding Online

Numerous opportunities exist for business owners in the multibillion dollar wedding industry, but competition is fierce. Keep up, or even get ahead, by meticulously tending to and curating your online persona.

Maintain an active presence online by posting new examples of your work frequently on your website and other online profiles. Also, make sure it is simple for potential customers to locate you. To achieve this, you can:

  • Making pins with wedding-related keywords in mind for the social media platform Pinterest
  • Insta-gram users who employ targeted hashtags
  • Facilitating natural search engine results for your website.
  • To make it simple for engaged couples to set up an appointment, you should make your website user-friendly and prominently display a "contact me" or "book appointment" button.

Join wedding planning communities like Wedding Wire and The Knot. The listing will likely cost you money, but it will expose your business to more newly engaged couples in your area who are looking for vendors.

Clear Costing

As obvious as it may be, wedding decisions are heavily influenced by financial constraints. Most of your potential customers will be price-conscious because weddings are so costly. Don't keep your customers in the dark about your pricing structure.

You can also send estimates with invoices, so customers have a good idea of the value you provide. You can improve your record keeping by adding photos and contracts to your estimates. Furthermore, once the wedding is over, Invoices makes it easy to collect the deposit and any outstanding balances. Customers will appreciate your honesty and patronage more if you're up front about your prices. Check out our post on What makes a good wedding planner?

Use Modern Tools

All of your clients want their events to look professional and polished. In other words, this is all about prestige. If you use cutting-edge technology and ideas in your event planning, guests will get the impression that you know what you're doing and are up to date on all the latest developments in your industry. You can attract more customers and set reasonable prices for your services thanks to this. It's not necessary to take up arms to bring about transformation.

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Doing so will increase your chances of attracting new wedding clients. And if you provide the best service possible, your reputation will spread and bring in more customers.

It's possible to enjoy the process of marketing your business if you take the time to develop a comprehensive strategy and apply it methodically to each of the aforementioned channels. Improvement in even one of these areas can bring a great sense of satisfaction, and it can also pave the way for a gradual influx of new customers. You need to get better at self-promotion if you want your event planning business to expand. With any luck, you'll be able to find some inspiration among these various marketing avenues. We know that they will help you succeed because they have helped other event organisers.

FAQs About Wedding Planners

A full wedding planner helps to plan your wedding from start to finish and is usually hired early on in the planning process—at least 10 months in advance. The average starting rate for a full-service wedding planner in the U.S is about $3,000 with top-tier planners averaging $4,500 to $12,000.

When it comes to making the most of your budget, a wedding planner can actually help you save more on your bottom line. The value of hiring an experienced event planner for your wedding or special event cannot be overemphasized. 

Your wedding coordinator will not decorate all of your reception tables. There simply isn't enough time for them to be responsible for setting all of your reception decors simultaneously and executing all of their other responsibilities.

If you're not hiring a wedding planner for your big day, you're better off getting on your vendor's schedule well ahead of your wedding day. Booking early will help ensure you get the vendors you want and reduce stress in the months and weeks leading up to your wedding once you know your vendors are locked in.

They are budget ninjas in all things wedding related. They know how to negotiate with vendors when appropriate and get the best quality for the best price across the board. They also typically get trade discounts from companies they have good relationships with.

Conclusion

Whether you're a caterer, florist, photographer, or planner, booking new clients is always an important part of your business. Now is the time to put your plans on paper if you're just getting started. Here are some pointers we put together to help you find your first paying customer. Advertising in local newspapers and magazines can be useful if you organise both professional and social gatherings. Even in the information age, the value of a brief, professionally printed business card has not diminished.

Distribute flyers to the businesses of your chosen caterers, florists, photographers, etc. Determine the gaps between what's available and what brides want. Find some famous wedding planners on the internet and tell them how much you respect their work. One of the best places to make connections and find new customers is at weddings. Visit trade shows and conferences to meet up with online friends in the wedding industry in real life.

Get in touch with vendors like florists, bridal shops, event rental companies, event venues, caterers, and photographers. The wedding business community is tight-knit and full of professionals who will gladly pass your name along to their clients. Find your audience and the kinds of weddings that pique your interest. Keep your online profile fresh by regularly adding new examples of your work. Participate in online wedding planning forums such as Wedding Wire and The Knot.

More people will be interested in your services, and you can charge fair prices for them. Guests will have the impression that you are on the cutting edge of your field if you employ innovative techniques and concepts in the event planning.

Content Summary

  • If you're just getting started, now is the time to put your plans on paper.
  • In order to help you get started, we have compiled ideas to help you formulate a strategy to bring in new customers for your wedding business.
  • It's common for newcomers to the wedding planning industry to worry that finding clients will be difficult.
  • To attract clients, you need to be communicative and outgoing, which can be challenging if this is your first time planning.
  • We've put together some guidelines to help you land your first client and get things rolling.
  • Planning professionals are generally in agreement that Yellow Pages advertising is a sound financial move.
  • If you plan both business and social events, you could benefit from placing ads in the newspaper or a regional magazine.
  • To use an analogy, a tri-fold business card is like a miniature brochure.
  • Just like a well-designed business card, a professionally-designed brochure can help to solidify your reputation as a capable planner.
  • You can improve your chances of success by designing a brochure that is appropriate for your line of work.
  • Your event planning company needs a Facebook page, but you should only use it occasionally to promote your services.
  • You can learn a lot about how to use Facebook to your advantage by visiting the pages of other event planners and businesses you admire.
  • If you want to increase your chances of getting hired, you need a way to get in touch with your ideal client.
  • You can follow up with people you meet, including those who work in the wedding industry, by exchanging business cards.
  • In the wedding industry, word-of-mouth is invaluable, both from satisfied clients and other vendors.
  • If you're in the catering business, for example, it's beneficial to connect with other vendors in the industry, such as florists, event planners, etc.
  • Engage with wedding professionals you admire online in person by going to industry events, wedding expos, and meetups in your area.
  • Weddings are a great way to network and meet potential new clients.
  • You might be surprised to learn that establishing connections with well-established companies can also help you attract new customers.
  • If you host a variety of events, you will need the services of many different suppliers.
  • Produce a number of blog posts that will interest your intended readers.
  • In order to achieve this goal, you must first define your niche market and the specific types of weddings that interest you.
  • Maintain an active presence online by posting new examples of your work frequently on your website and other online profiles.
  • To make it simple for engaged couples to set up an appointment, you should make your website user-friendly and prominently display a "contact me" or "book appointment" button.
  • Don't keep your customers in the dark about your pricing structure.
  • You need to get better at self-promotion if you want your event planning business to expand.
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