Some days I feel as if I am at a bridal show or open house every week and the tendency to feel like I am wasting my weekends and spare time creeps up on me, so I need to remind myself why I do it.
First I have to think of the exposure. In ‘wedding world’ there is only so far that print advertising can get you. I’m not demeaning print advertising at all by the way, but I think of print advertising as the front door to my business, and the exposure of a bridal show or open house as me opening the door so that my future clients can meet me face to face and feel that they already know somebody when they actually do walk in the front door of my store. This type of exposure is priceless in the age of internet search and text conversations. I believe that by taking the time to meet clients face to face, if only for a few seconds, at a show helps to personalize your business in a de-personalized world.
Second, it exposes me to other vendors, caterers, hotels and resorts, not only giving me a few minutes to renew acquaintances and friendships with other people in the industry, but to also create new referrals and potential clients from within the industry.
At this past weekend’s bridal show, I had several planners that came through our booth and said, “I had no idea you did flowers too!” The third value of these shows is the chance to actually show off the talents, goods and services that we offer instead of just telling people. It also gives us the opportunity to show off fun designs and ideas that perhaps we haven’t had a chance to sell yet. Brides all have an idea of what they want, but if you have the opportunity to actually show it to them, you already have them sold. You might even have the opportunity to show them an affordable or easy to implement option they hadn’t thought of before.
And as much as I dread an upcoming show or open house, after it’s over, I feel revitalized and excited about my job and my industry. So remember, the value of a bridal show is much more than just handing out literature. It’s a way to get your face out to the public and the industry an getting a chance to show off what you’re best at so that you can become the person that everyone says, “I’ve heard about you!”