You’re staring blankly at your laptop with 75 tabs open on your browser; there are so many great wedding pros in the area to choose from, but finding the right one for you can feel like you’re standing at the foot of a mountain, will I ever make it to the to the other side?
It might be tempting to type out a canned message asking for the price list and paste it into all those contact forms, but with that method you’re doing yourself a disservice. Comparing price lists doesn’t really help if you don’t have info about the quality of service/products or know if the service provider is someone you feel comfortable with. Instead, I want to share a few tips you can use to make the most of your inquiry so that you get a great service experience, the answers to your biggest fears about hiring that vendor AND the pricing information. It will give you a chance to make a connection with those you speak to and help you further narrow down that list with confidence!
Use the tips below to write yourself a template of a few key details, and then customize that template to the vendor you’re reaching out to so that they know you’re actually interested in them. I promise, the responses you get will be SO MUCH BETTER. Most wedding pros are crazy passionate about what they do and truly want to help brides/grooms have the best wedding day, give them a chance to help you!
Start with a list of pros who’s work you really love and in your inquiry…
Most wedding professionals are small owned businesses, that means there’s a small group of people (sometimes only one) on the other end of that email. They genuinely want to know all about you, your wedding, and your vision for the day so that they can make the most of their service to you. Talk to us and don’t be afraid to be excited! We REALLY WANT to connect with you! The more personal you are, the better we’ll be able to tailor our service (even if it’s just an email exchange) to your individual needs. Imagine if you go to a restaurant and ask the waiter to help you decide what you should eat. The waiter will need to ask about your preferences, any potential allergies, dietary restrictions, etc. or he will be completely unable to help you. Likewise, your potential wedding vendor needs to learn more about you, your specific preferences and style – a price list cannot tailor it’s offerings or suggestions to your specific needs, but a human can!
Name your venue and why you picked it
It’s possible we’ve worked there before and have some insider tips that can help you. Understanding why you chose a particular venue will allow us to help you in a way that’s in line with your vision. (example: The florist might be able to bring attention to areas that you love or disguise areas you don’t. Your photographer can photograph it in a way that captures what you love about it.) The more you share about your wedding, the more each vendor can lend guidance to help you make the most of your day.
Talk about your budget
Client budgets can vary greatly. There are couples who have only $500 to spend on a particular service and others who have $10,000. Both are on a budget, but there’s a huge difference between the two. Be specific so that we can show you options that are within your reach. If we can accommodate your budget we will, and if not, we’re not out to judge!
Being realistic with your expectations and doing your homework on the vendors you are considering will save you money and headache in the long run. Like most things, you often get what you pay for when it comes to hiring wedding vendors. If you’re offered a really low price on something, you want to consider what corners might be being cut for such a low rate. Example: Are they running a legal business that pays taxes/insurance? Are they a profitable business that won’t go bankrupt before your wedding date arrives? How much experience do they have? What is the quality and lifespan of the products they’re offering?
Consider your worries & ask questions
The very definition of “inquire” is to look into; to ask for more information. Price is important, but that shouldn’t be the only deciding factor. Use your inquiry as an opportunity to find out more about the service, the process, the people, and also express any concerns you have. My list of important questions to ask a wedding photographer has some great suggestions on where to start, and many of these questions can be used for more than just photographers.
Think about this for a minute: Is there anything that makes you nervous about hiring a wedding photographer? A florist? or a caterer? These fears are the key to understanding what your personal priority is when it comes to hiring those vendors. For each vendor category, take note of what makes you nervous about hiring them and in your inquiry, ask questions to find out specific information on how they deal with that issue. Their answers will help you figure out what you’re comfortable with and help you narrow down your options to people that you trust.
Resist the temptation to ghost!
Sometimes it’s tempting not to reply when you hear from a vendor, but it’s polite to send a response either way. Don’t forget there’s a person on the other end of that email and it’s SO helpful when you write back to let us know what’s on your mind. Even if it’s a matter of budget, don’t hesitate to write back. You never know when a they might be willing to create a custom package or give you recommendations to make the most with what you’ve got! If you’ve hired someone else, it’s helpful to know we don’t need to follow up again. And if you’re still thinking things over, let us know so we can help answer questions or follow up later when the time is right. Your feedback helps us to be better service providers!
Searching for professionals for your wedding doesn’t have to be overwhelming! If you put these tips to use, you’ll be able to gather the information that will help you narrow down your options, rather than just comparing price lists and hoping you made the right choice.
Have these tips helped you in your search? Share your thoughts below!