Can we commit to dropping the hustle of chasing wedding customers in Facebook groups?
There is a MUCH easier way to get clients for your wedding business.
So, you have decided to start a wedding business (or you have hit a dry spell). Either way, I am glad you are here. Whether you are a wedding planner, a wedding photographer, a florist, or a wedding invitation designer, let me just assure you that you are in the right place.
I’m not going to tell you to hit up every networking meeting – in fact, I am going to tell you why that strategy never really worked for me (until of course, I already had a solid book of business). I’m also not going to tell you to hustle everyday on social media because – well – that didn’t ever work quite as well as I wanted it too. Spending all your time at networking events or on social media, is not the easiest way to get clients for your wedding business.
Does content marketing work for wedding businesses?
Let me quickly introduce myself before I get carried away. My name is Kara and I am the owner and a destination wedding planner at Love at First Travel. I am INSANELY passionate about content marketing because it has allowed me to stop worrying about “where my next lead was coming from”. I have a small team I work with at Love at First Travel, which has allowed me to take on less destination wedding planning clients, and more content marketing service clients (should you be one of them?). If you have AT ALL thought about outsourcing your marketing, or creating a strategy that will work long term, set up a call via the link below:
Here is what I have learned about how to get clients for your wedding business: traditional marketing strategies still work. Blogging is not dead. Email lists can nurture your readers so that they become clients. We don’t have to be so creative when the goal is simply to get booked. Simplicity is overlooked.
Banking of referrals is a bad business plan.
Let’s talk quickly about the three different types of referrals and why I don’t want you to put all of your eggs int the good old referral basket.
- Friends & Family Referrals: Bless their heart – am I right? They hear anyone BRIEFLY mention interest in what you do and they send them your way. This leads you to (almost always) lower your price and/or do work you are not insanely passionate about OR risk burning bridges when the referral is not the right fit.
- Vendor Referrals: the is where everyone tells you the money is. And it’s not that I strongly disagree. But vendor referrals are usually strongest when you have worked together before and are still interested in doing the same kind of work. Solid vendor referrals are hard to get (as they should be) when you are first starting out in the wedding industry. And if the vendor you have the closest relationship with loves barn weddings while you dream of ballrooms? Welp. Not ideal.
- Past Client Referrals: almost always favourites. But in reality, if you are in the beginning stages of business, you are going to be changing constantly (and revamping your price list every month you clock over 200+ hours). When the work you want to do is different than the work you have done in the past, past client referrals are not a great place to look for new business. We don’t want to take these referrals for granted though!
What is the easiest way to get clients for your wedding business?
Content Marketing. Content marketing is absolutely the easiest way to get clients for your wedding business. Once you have a solid content marketing strategy, it pays off over and over again. One common misconception I hear is that business owners don’t want to constantly create content. We are not trying to be influencers, after all. We are trying to run a business and execute the services we sell.
One of my favourite things about content marketing is attracting ideal clients only. You can be incredibly specific about the content you create so you intentionally choose your audience. Don’t want to ever plan another barn wedding? Same. If you only blog about ballroom weddings (or beach weddings!), people searching for barn venues won’t even find you. But couples searching for what you offer? They’ll find you every time.
Content marketing is a long term strategy.
I keep saying it – but let me explain. You won’t write a blog post about weddings at the Fairmont today, and have five inquiries tomorrow. Blogging consistently builds trust with Google and that takes time. With that in mind, once it starts to pay off (ie. you hit page one for wedding photographers in your area), it’s much easier to stay there.
Want/need clients a bit faster? Pinterest is one of my favourite ways to drive traffic to my blog. With the right Pinterest strategy, it really doesn’t take long either. Interested in learning more about what you need to do before investing time into Pinterest? read this post. In the wedding industry, I am sure I don’t need to convince you your ideal client is on Pinterest.
If I started again, this is where I would put my marketing effort.
If you invest your marketing time and energy into social media, you will be irrelevant within a couple months. Did that hurt to read? If I could start my wedding business over again, I would put 90% of my effort into content marketing as a long term strategy. Now that we have over 100 blog posts, we make minor updates to keep current. If I never made another Instagram story again, I would still get inquiries on autopilot. We also sell a destination wedding planning guide on our website that we almost never talk about on social. It brings in some extra revenue, every single month.
Let’s finish off with some good old fashioned real talk. I know as a wedding business owner, you are being pulled in 1000 directions. If you have made it this far, I would love to chat about your marketing plans and see if I might be the right fit to help. I offer both Pinterest management and content marketing (blog writing) services for wedding businesses. In business, you have to make smart investments (both time and money).
“When you invest, you are buying a day that you don’t have to work” – Aya Laraya