Is Your Online Advertising Hurting Your Wedding Business
The question has to be asked. In light of Wedding Wire's "Wedding Cost Guide" published in January, we as wedding professionals have to take a hard look at whether or not online advertising is hurting our businesses. Facebook lit up from coast to coast after the cost guide went live. Wedding Wire claims to be the foremost best resource for couples planning their weddings in the country. So their word matters. Why it should matter to you is because their cost guide is flawed. Whether you are a wedding planner, photographer, bakery, or DJ, the guide gives couples a much lower average price point, than what vendors actually charge. That hurts your ability to charge what you "the advertiser" what your worth.
Upon pressing them they say the average cost guide is categorized by area and what price vendors publish on their listings. Here is the problem with that. I've heard from advertiser after advertiser that when they have complained to Wedding Wire about lack of leads, they tell them to lower their price on their store front listing in order to get more click throughs. That means the information they're using to create their cost guides is flawed.
Why is this a big deal? Because couples take what the resource tells them as gospel. If you're a vendor and you're sending pricing information to prospective couples, they're calling you back saying that you're pricing is too high. Why because online listings are telling them so. Trying to convince a couple that your pricing is industry standard and fair becomes impossible. This practice also opens up vendors who will undercut you, and give unprofessional service to couples looking for a deal. It's a problem that is hurting our business and quite frankly the wedding industry as a whole. Your cost of doing business include...um hello...ADVERTISING, rent for your studio, marketing, phone bill, insurance, etc., and on and on. If you can't cover your costs, this advertising is hurting your business.
Washington DC Wedding Planner, Tara Melvin of Perfect Planning Events was only one of the hundreds of wedding professionals who became very vocal in telling Wedding Wire about their displeasure. Tara took it one step further and created an online petition and took the results to her sales rep. She's making progress on your behalf and I encourage you to follow her on Facebook to track the progress of her hard work.
It's my stance that if you advertise with an online resource, a blog, or print, that you should expect your marketing partner to work in your best interests. When they stop doing that, they're working against you. If they won't fix that, stop paying them thousands of dollars a year.
I encourage you to go to the cost guide, look up your category in your area and determine if your hard earned advertising dollars are being spent wisely. If not, let your voice be heard.