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Get Inspired! 5 Blog Posts to Write After A Wedding

by Guest Blogger, Kathy DalPra, of Bride Appeal

1. Venue Review
Provide a review of the venue where the wedding was held and give your readers insight into the kind of experience they can expect there.

2. Trend Ideas
Did this weekend’s wedding feature a new trend you’ve been seeing pop up? Talk about it on the blog and give your audience new ideas to consider.

3. List Post
Have you had a few other weddings like this one that shared a similar theme, style, tradition, trend or other special element? Write a list post about it, such as “How Today’s Bride is Approaching the Wedding Cake” or “The New Father-Daughter Dance That’s Got Everyone Talking” or “Backyard Weddings Gone Luxury”. Provide a link to each real wedding post that applies to this topic with a brief summary of how each relates back to the list topic.

4. Vendor Interviews
When you’re at the event, be sure to introduce yourself to the other vendors and exchange cards. Then, follow up afterward and ask to briefly interview them about their business. Then, use these interviews to create a handful of blog posts, which could keep your blog filled with great content in between every event. Remember to keep it interesting. Brides relate to stories and inspiration so you’ll want to make sure your interview has both.

5. Real Wedding
And, of course, brides can never get enough of those real wedding posts, so remember to share the details of the event in this way too with tons of photos for eye candy.

kathy-dalpra-200

Kathy DalPra

 

Kathy DalPra is a former bridal-preneur who unexpectedly fell in love with web design and SEO. Today she helps other wedding and event professionals use their website to get more traffic, leads and inquiries so they can create a thriving business in any economy. Learn how to turn curious visitors into paying clients on her website: Bride Appeal.

Branding Your Business- The Importance of Standing Out From the Crowd

www.weddingprocourses.com

Photo: www.avenue-photo.com

By: Tracey Manailescu

*As seen on the Event Source blog.

We all know the basic fundamentals of having a brand; a great and easy to navigate website, tagline and logo, competitive pricing, valuable services, etc.

You are your business, and your business is you and it’s time to take it a bit further. By being authentic, having a presence on social media, knowing your target market and giving good customer service, you are creating a brand that you should feel great about.

brand

Be your Authentic Self:

The best way to be authentic with your customers is to be true to your brand.

You need to be communicating your brand clearly, consistently and continuously.

Believe it or not, it‘s actually not that hard to stand out from the crowd.

We all have our own way of doing things based on situations and experiences that we have had over the course of our lifetime. The things that we believe in, the way we handle difficult clients, tricky situations, deadlines and customer service. It all comes down to our own individual strengths and weaknesses. Take a good hard look at both of these things, and put your strengths into play. Not so sure about what your strengths and weaknesses are? Ask your past clients, good friends, trusted family members and industry colleagues what they see as your best attributes, skills and things you need to work on. Keep in mind that you don’t want just anyone to be ripping you apart; this is supposed to be eye-opening and helpful, after all. After they have chewed you up and spit you out, really think about it and listen to what they have to tell you, and make changes as you see fit.

Social Media:

Social media can be an excellent source for branding, and a great tool for marketing your business to the wedding and events industry. Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, blogging and Google+ are available free to you to share your products, services and personality with existing and potential clients. Use them to show glimpses of what goes on in your business and what you do on a regular basis with the use of photos, things you discuss, your comments, and interact with your followers. Share positive feedback from past clients, show photos of you with your clients, photos of yourself and your team working at a wedding or event, share exciting news about your company, share behind the scenes photos at weddings and events, etc.

*70% of consumers prefer getting to know a company via articles than ads.

Know Your Target Market:

Who are your clients? You need to know who you are talking to with your marketing. What age are they, what is their average household income? Where do they live? What are they willing to spend on your service or product? What is their style? Everything you do with your business should be aimed at them. You need to understand your target market and be able to give them what they want and need. When you know and understand this, then you can look at where these potential clients are looking online and off, to find your type of services.

Give Good Customer Service:

This should be your company’s priority. Our businesses are built on personal interactions and client expectations. The best advice I can give on this subject is to put yourself in the position of your clients. What would make you feel good about working with your company? Are you making your clients feel special, that they are important to you, and that you care and are passionate about your service? Are you listening and finding a solution to their concerns and problems? If you have had complaints in the past, did you own up to the mistakes? Did you learn from them? What can you do to ensure it doesn’t happen again? Be professional, prompt, know your industry and product, under promise and over deliver, understand what your clients want and need from you, listen, and make sure you understand exactly what it is they want from you, and make your clients satisfaction a priority.

**70% of buying experiences are based on how the customer feels they are being treated.

 

Source: *Ann Handley http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/227379

**Mckinsey http://www.mckinsey.com/insights/organization/the_moment_of_truth_in_customer_service

Find the Marketer in YOU!

www.wpic.ca

Photo by Decordova Photography

By: Kaley Campbell, WPICC and WPIC Office Manager

marketing plan

Find the Marketer in YOU!

Overlooked Marketing Tips Boost Your Company’s’ Presence Online and Offline

  • Only write content that serves a purpose. While writing a blog, social media post, posting photos, updating your website, make sure the information is directly providing a service to potential clientele.  Whether it is posting information for the purpose of reflection, education, entertainment, to showcase talent, even just to start a conversation; make sure you are posting for a reason.  Pointless posts with no follow ups go nowhere and are easily skipped over.  Post what you would be interesting in seeing.
  • Switch it up. If your social media plan has you posting tips and business information, ALL the time, lighten it up with photos or videos. Repost things you find interesting and that still are relative.  Choose posts that show you have a personality as well, and this will make you more relatable.
  • Industry partnerships. This is HUGE in the Wedding Professional World. The more your work is showcased; the better chances your work will be exposed to your target market.  Connect with businesses that are in your field and compliment your business, and see if they do any featuring on their social media or website.  A lot of companies use outside materials for blogs, shoots, or inspiration, and this is a fantastic way to be showcased.
  • Apply for business awards in your field. There are TONS of business related awards awarded every year in every sort of industry, APPLY, APPLY, And APPLY! These awards will allow you to be on that company’s registry, and it makes your company look even better. Some clientele focus solely on credentials, and this is a way to stay on top of the game.
  • Charity donations. This is one that I would consider a win-win situation.  Donate your time, service, or products to a local charity event.  Not only will your company be shown in the best light, you get exposure to a wide variety of people in your area.
  • Most small businesses survive off of word of mouth alone. Boost this. You’re putting your time and effort into making your clientele’s wedding a success, gaining their trust, and creating the most magical day possible. Capture everything and ask for feedback.  Use testimonials to your advantage.  Also, create a referral plan where friends and family of previous clientele can have a discount on your services.
  • Don’t overlook the power of a well-made business card. You are professional creators of stunning events; don’t lead your business off on the wrong foot by releasing material that doesn’t reflect your talent or creativity. Also, make sure that your branding and style mirrors your company.  Misrepresentation is all it takes to lose clients.
  • Set aside a set amount of time every day on all social media platforms just to “like”, “retweet”, “comment” and “follow”. This is the time to get conversations going online, not to sell your service.  This is the time to show that you are dedicated and active online and are interested in people for more than just business purposes.
  • Be seen at the “must attend” events. Showing that you are an active business professional at different seminars and functions will really make your business stand out.  Don’t over-look the power of networking.  You never know what will come from just basic conversations, and treat everyone like you would a high profile client.

 

 

Your Barista is not a Model

pretty baristaby Kristi Drago-Price, Editor’s Edge

You’ve put in the time, the money, and the resources to produce a styled shoot, so why isn’t it getting picked up for publication?

Well, there are a few answers.  Maybe the magazine you submitted it to only uses in-house content, or the blog just featured a story with a similar theme.  But there’s also one very common reason your styled shoot didn’t get picked up that the editors might not be telling you: The model sucked.

A pretty face (that you discovered behind the counter of your favorite coffee shop) does not a model make!  In fact, some of the best models–the ones who truly know how to work the camera naturally–are rather ordinary-looking in real life.  If Kate Moss worked at the Starbucks down the street, I bet you wouldn’t even notice her… unless she was smoking indoors and drinking champagne on the job!

Don’t let your creativity and hard work go unseen because of an overly-posed beauty queen in a wedding dress.  Take the time to hold a casting, involve your team in the selection process, hire someone who fits the style and mood of your shoot, and invest just as much in the model as you would on that spectacular flower wall.

As Photo Editor on Conde Nast’s BRIDES magazine for over a decade, Kristi Drago-Price directed the visual content creation for thousands of images in all genres of photography.  Now as Editor’s Edge, Kristi uses her powerfully trained eye to curate, critique and sharpen the visual message of wedding brands.  Kristi also produces and directs photo shoots for clients such as The Know, Architectural Digest, The Bump and Self while continuing to be a highly regarded wedding photographer.

Canadian Weddings: The ULTIMATE Destination

www.wpic.ca

Photo by Decordova Photography

By: WPIC Office Manager, Kaley Campbell

Canadian Weddings: The ULTIMATE Destination

The wedding venue: Arguably the most important detail of the wedding planning process. I, for one, will always remember the setting and the feeling of a wedding and look back at pictures to see the beauty around the day.  A lot of brides will look for destination weddings to get the perfect setting, however here in Canada; we have so much hidden beauty that will captivate any attendee.

Atlantic Canada:

Of course I will start this one off by highlighting one of my favorite places in the entire world: Atlantic Canada. I have attended so many stunningly beautiful weddings here, and I can’t wait to share with you the magic of this place. Decor: You do not need to worry as much about decor when you have the Oceans’ beauty as your backdrop.  You cannot drive for more than a few hours in any province without hitting a beach or oceanfront views.  Many people choose to have an outdoor wedding and use this to their advantage. Beaches are not the only outdoor options.  These four provinces are lined with caves, waves, cliffs and peaks to create a completely different feel. The Maritimes have some of the most sought-after golf courses in the world, which provides luxury and elegance, if that is what you are looking for. Atlantic Canada is bordered with all different types of lighthouses, all that provide a deep sense of history while being pretty enough to make any wedding a knock-out. Atlantic Canada is also often seen as the “it” place to be for any Celtic weddings.  With the gorgeous landscape, the greenery, and with the scenic beauty and charm overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, these provinces are the perfect destination for your Celtic-tied wedding..  Another trend that is on the up and up, are weddings that take place in rustic barns, highlighting the natural beauty and pulling a lot of nostalgic heart strings.  Atlantic Canada is filled with clay roads, red cliffs, rocky points, ponds, harbour fronts, coal mines and more; a venue for everyone. But, you better know that with any traditional maritime wedding, you should prepare for the homemade drinks to be flowing and a big feeling of “home” as part of the spirit.

Maple Syrup

Quebec/Ontario:

The province of Quebec offers so much culturally, historically, and sensually. Sensually, this is the destination for the couple who wants to showcase food like no other. Quebec is one of the major destinations in Canada for the food connoisseurs, and as we all know food is a major part of the wedding celebrations.  There are tastes that are only found here, from traditional poutine to the Maple Bush, any one would be excited to attend a Quebec-based wedding.  Quebec offers so much more as well.  Famous landmarks such as the Ice Castle, The battlefields of the Plains of Abraham, buildings from the 17th – mid 19th century, or Mont Royal; there is a piece of Quebec that interests us all. Quebec would definitely be a top contender as the perfect setting for a wedding in any season.  With romantic cobblestone walkways, heritage homes, colorful cafés and new-age feels, this might be the destination to fit your wedding. Ontario has one of the biggest tourist attractions; Niagara Falls. Niagara Falls brings in over 12 million people a year to see its absolute glorious beauty. There are casinos, restaurants, and a vibrant nightlife right on scene, overlooking this world wonder. Ontario also offers the CN tower, Parliament Hill, and the Rideau Canal for unforgettable wedding locations.  However, the standard sight-seeing scenes are not only what Ontario has to offer. Weddings in Ontario are getting creative with their venues.  Vineyards have been a popular choice, but now breweries are on the rise.  Ontario has a lot of local breweries that offer amazing architecture and a rugged beauty. Ontario also is hosting amazing weddings with panoramic views of the city. Venues are popping up everywhere, capturing the heart of the city, and the bright lights and polished city.

The Canadian Rockies

The Canadian Rockies

Western Canada:

Western Canada offers a completely different feel / geography then Eastern Canada. Western Canada has so many natural beauties to draw in every type of couple.  Ice fields provides a blank terrain of pure ice backed by mountain views, Killer whale watching expeditions showcase nature in such a pure form,  and storm watching is becoming a trend to capture the impeccable photos desired. Western Canada is host to a lot of different wilderness resorts, polar bear adventures, hot springs, and more. Besides the impeccable landscape that these western provinces have to offer, there are other trends that are found in this area of Canada.  Like in Eastern Canada, barn weddings are a common trend that’s on the rise. A different trend, however, is full elaborate flower gardens. Garden weddings provide such an elegant grace to any ceremony.  The Canadian Rockies are a common and exquisite back drop for Alberta’s wedding revenues.

“We’re big on socials and having weddings be big parties to celebrate with family and friends. We’re known for the province that spends the most on weddings and for good reason; we have a short season of warm weather so when it’s nice we’re out, we want to have fun, and we want everyone else to as well! We love our tent weddings, backyard weddings and also our pub and restaurant weddings. We like to get back to our roots with good old German and Ukrainian comfort food and we’re all in for late night snack and sweets tables. Our weddings are all about the experience and being with the people you love.” – Amanda Douglas owner of Amanda Douglas Events

Hot Air Balloon

Northern Canada:

The natural beauty of Northern Canada is one that you cannot find anywhere else.  The Northern Lights are one of the main attractions. The sky lights up in a beautiful haze of colors, creating an exclusive look for any wedding photo. The Northern Territories also provides a different living experience with the Aboriginal cultures.  Northern Canada offers beautiful old Inukshuk, Dog team traveling, small intimate communities, sculptures, print artists, tapestry, Aboriginal celebrations, unique music,  and more.  Some of the more popular wedding trends that are found in the Territories are getting wedding photos on or with hot air balloons overlooking the beautiful terrain, getting married in the famous igloo church which captures the whole feel of the celebration, or having your guests fly into the venues on float planes.  This destination is the perfect place for adventuring couples that want to do a wedding like no other.

 

 

What’s in Your Wedding Emergency Kit?

www.wpic.ca

Photo:
www.avenue-photo.com

By: Tracey Manailescu Emergency Kit from Bottles and burbs Photo: Bottles and Burbs

Bridesmaids dresses bursting at the seams, groomsmen with bad breath, an obsession with clean hands, a bride who didn’t work in the wedding shoes, don’t worry.  We’ve got this! There hasn’t been a wedding that I have coordinated, that my Emergency Kit was not used.  It is invaluable to your couple, the wedding party and to you, as a wedding coordinator. My bag has a strap on it so it can be brought everywhere that I go with ease. It has different compartments to keep things organzied,  and has a cooling bag inside of it to keep an ice pack.  The most used items in my kit are a butane lighter and band-aids.

The butane lighter is great for lighting hard to reach candles in votive holders if the Decorator leaves before they need to be lit for guests entering the reception area, and the band-aids are great for the wedding party who haven’t worked in their wedding shoes. band aids butane lighter

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here are some uses of items in Tracey M Events emergency kit: *Items may change at any given wedding

Hairspray/Static Guard: Bridesmaids dresses may cling in all of the wrong places. Spray a little static guard on the inside of the dress and, BAM, all is good! These two items seem to be interchangeable. A tip that I leaned from a dancer was to spray static guard or hairspray on the bottoms of the shoes (that don’t have treads on them) will make the soles slip proof. I used this trick for a Mother of the Groom one time, and she was freaking out. She couldn’t believe how well this worked!

Sunscreen: Sometimes couples forget to put sunscreen on before the makeup is applied, or just in general for all of those outdoor photos. Nothing worse then a sunburn:(

Evian Spray: This is great to refresh the entire wedding party! It’s also great to touch up the makeup.  Smudges and fine lines that may appear after all of that smiling and those tears of happiness. It won’t ruin the makeup and will make you picture perfect again. (Just use a q-tip or makeup pads/sponge to correct what needs to be touched up and removed.)

Advil/Tylenol: We have both for the simple fact that each does different things to different people. (*Please note that it is in original packaging, with the date of expiry clearly visable and checked before each wedding.) We can tell you we have it, take it out of our emergency kit, but then we have to place it on a flat service, unopened container, and let you open it yourself to take the Advil/Tylenol.

After Bite: We can’t stop you from getting bit or stung from all of those pesky bugs out there, but we can definitely give you some relief with After Bite spray.

Light Bulb: For Jewish weddings it is much easier to break a light bulb then to break a glass wrapped in cloth.  “Mazel tov!” We have actually had a light bulb shatter minutes before heading down the aisle at a wedding ceremony, and had to scramble to get a replacement from cleaning staff at a venue.  Now, we carry an extra, just in case :) The list goes on and on…Chances are though, it’s in our emergency kit!

What’s in Your Emergency Kit?

www.weddingprocourses.com

Photo: www.avenue-photo.com

By: Tracey Manailescu Emergency Kit from Bottles and burbs Photo: Bottles and Burbs

Bridesmaids dresses bursting at the seams, groomsmen with bad breath, an obsession with clean hands, a bride who didn’t work in the wedding shoes, don’t worry.  We’ve got this! There hasn’t been a wedding that I have coordinated, that my Emergency Kit was not used.  It is invaluable to your couple, your wedding party and to you, as a wedding coordinator. My bag has a strap on it so it can be brought everywhere that I go with ease. It has different compartments to keep things organzied,  and has a cooling bag inside of it to keep an ice pack.  The most used items in my kit are a butane lighter and band-aids.

The butane lighter is great for lighting hard to reach candles in votive holders if the Decorator leaves before they need to be lit for guests entering the reception area, and the band-aids are great for the wedding party who haven’t worked in their wedding shoes. band aids butane lighter

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here are some uses of items in Tracey M Events emergency kit: *Items may change at any given wedding

Hairspray/Static Guard: Bridesmaids dresses may cling in all of the wrong places. Spray a little static guard on the inside of the dress and, BAM, all is good! These two items seem to be interchangeable. A tip that I leaned from a dancer was to spray static guard or hairspray on the bottoms of the shoes (that don’t have treads on them) will make the soles slip proof. I used this trick for a Mother of the Groom one time, and she was freaking out. She couldn’t believe how well this worked!

Sunscreen: Sometimes couples forget to put sunscreen on before the makeup is applied, or just in general for all of those outdoor photos. Nothing worse then a sunburn:(

Evian Spray: This is great to refresh the entire wedding party! It’s also great to touch up the makeup.  Smudges and fine lines that may appear after all of that smiling and those tears of happiness. It won’t ruin the makeup and will make you picture perfect again. (Just use a q-tip or makeup pads/sponge to correct what needs to be touched up and removed.)

Advil/Tylenol: We have both for the simple fact that each does different things to different people. (*Please note that it is in original packaging, with the date of expiry clearly visable and checked before each wedding.) We can tell you we have it, take it out of our emergency kit, but then we have to place it on a flat service, unopened container, and let you open it yourself to take the Advil/Tylenol.

After Bite: We can’t stop you from getting bit or stung from all of those pesky bugs out there, but we can definitely give you some relief with After Bite spray.

Light Bulb: For Jewish weddings it is much easier to break a light bulb then to break a glass wrapped in cloth.  “Mazel tov!” We have actually had a light bulb shatter minutes before heading down the aisle at a wedding ceremony, and had to scramble to get a replacement from cleaning staff at a venue.  Now, we carry an extra, just in case :) The list goes on and on…Chances are though, it’s in our emergency kit!

7 Tips for Staying Safe While Planning Weddings

business woman walking alone

by Danielle Andrews Sunkel

As wedding professionals, we often work outside of normal business hours and are constantly meeting with new people. We need to attend evening meetings, industry events, site visits in industrial areas and visit vendors in areas we aren’t familiar with, and unfortunately these situations pose some personal risk.

It’s important to stay safe while being extraordinary, so here are some tips:

  1. Resist the urge to broadcast your whereabouts until after the event. Of course you want your social media followers to know you are going to this great spot or event, but wait until you are in the safety of your home before you put it on Social Media. You don’t need to let people know where to find you or when your home or office is going to be empty.
  2. Do not go to new client or vendor’s homes or have them in to your home or office if you will be alone. Meet in a public place such as a coffee house, and make sure someone knows the address and time of where you are meeting. You can always ask a new WPIC graduate to come as your assistant for an Initial Meeting, it is invaluable experience for them and they can help you by taking notes.
  3. Don’t be lulled in to a false sense of security, just because they are from the same organization as you, or are a friend of so & so vendor. A stranger is a stranger, so exercise the same caution you normally would.
  4. Keep your car maintained and your gas topped up. Make prepping your car a part of your meeting preparations.
  5. Always travel with your cell phone fully charged. Don’t power down your phone for meetings, just put it on silent.
  6. Buddy up for industry events. Make an industry friend and attend events together, you’ll save money by carpooling, you won’t feel awkward arriving alone at an event, and no scary walks through lonely parking lots at the end of the night.
  7. Take a self defense course. You’ll feel more confident and have a heightened sense of your surroundings.

Most importantly, booking a client or making a sale is not more important than your safety, so always trust your gut! If the client has raised any red flags for you or gives you a bad feeling, do not proceed with them.

The 5 Most Popular Wedding Flowers for 2015

2015 wedding flowers

Photo Source: weddingideasmag.com

by Danielle Andrews Sunkel

The 2015 Wedding Season is just starting to pick up steam and one thing is certain, big, frilly blooms are everywhere!

Here are the most popular flowers we are seeing this season:

Hydrangeas

Always a wedding favourite, hydrangeas come in several colours and just a couple of these blooms make a big impact.

Photo: JCrew.com

Photo: JCrew.com

Garden Roses

Not your standard roses, garden roses are large and frilly.  My favourite is the Juliet, David Austin rose.

juliet rose bouquet

Photo Source: DavidAustinRoses.com

Peonies

Whether tight egg-shaped or in full bloom, these beauties make a dramatic, yet feminine statement.

Photo Source: OneWed.com

Photo Source: OneWed.com

Succulents

A wedding favourite for the past few years, these babies aren’t going anywhere.

Photo by nbarrettphotography.com

Photo by nbarrettphotography.com

Dahlias

Once a source of food & medicine to the indigenous Aztec peoples, these pointy blooms come in every colour of the rainbow. A single bloom provides a ton of impact.

Photo by rebecca-arthurs.com

Photo by rebecca-arthurs.com

 

10 Ways to Build a Great Relationship with your Clients’ Wedding Planner (without spending any money)

jenniferborghbridephoto

by Jennifer Borgh, WPICC, DWC of Jennifer Borgh Events

  1. Always give the Wedding Planner credit for planning the wedding or coordinating the wedding when posting videos and photos of the wedding
  2. Make the Wedding Planner shine with her/his clients. Go above and beyond to make the clients happy
  3. Never argue in front of clients. Even if there is a difference in opinion work it out privately.
  4. Send them a referral. If you love working with this Wedding Planner, then try and reciprocate the referrals
  5. Throw in something extra for clients that book a Wedding Planner. We all know that working with a good Wedding Planner makes everyone’s job easier and the event run smoother, so why not reward the clients who value this service?
  6. Always remember that you are a representation of the Wedding Planner who referred you. From the way you dress, to the way you speak with the clients.
  7. Focus on building a relationship with the Wedding Planner, instead of desperate attempts to promote your company such as signage at weddings or handing out business cards.
  8. Speak highly of the Wedding Planner. Include them in the thank you’s any chance you can. If you genuinely love working with this Wedding Planner then let it show.
  9. Respect a Wedding Planner’s other vendors. Even if you sell Décor + taxi service then promote and sell what you have been asked to sell and nothing more.
  10. Communicate with your Wedding Planner. We want our vendors to be happy and love working with us too! We are open to any changes that make things work out better for our clients.

If a Wedding Planner loves working with you then you will have more clients than you can handle.

About Jennifer Borgh:

Specializing in destination weddings in Jamaica, Jennifer Borgh with her team of exceptional assistants and vendor connections ensure every single detail of your wedding is taken care of. Jennifer Borgh Events is a boutique planning company and doesn’t overbook. Jennifer Borgh plans weddings and honeymoons FULL time and is therefore available when you need her!

Her extensive background in events has taken her all across the Caribbean. Being Certified by The Wedding Planners Institute of Canada, Jamaica Tourist Board, Sandals and Travel Industry Council of Ontario leaves destination wedding parties completely worry-free in her capable hands.