Supporting the Bridal Business Industry

Archive for March, 2013

Pushing and Pulling – Pulling and Pushing…is your marketing getting you leads?

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Every bridal & event business has some common traits. They all need to attract the attention of potential buyers. They all need a way to turn those prospects into paying customers. All businesses need to establish systems that please customers, encouraging them to buy again, and/or recommend them to family and friends.  Creating awareness of your Bridal or Event business, your products or services can be done by becoming aware and implementing the steps below to make it to the top!

Here are some of the ways we step through the process to get that sale!

Stage 1: Attract Traffic

The “traffic” may come to you through website visitors, phone calls, in-person visits, trade shows and more. Your methods of advertising and attracting interest will determine the quantity of leads, the quality of prospects, and the way they reach you. You may attract traffic with Pay-Per-Click ads on Google or Facebook, social media activity, partner referrals, print ads, networking, live events, or any number of other methods. Once you get the word out about your company and gain people’s attention, you can begin to capture their contact information and follow up.

Stage 2: Capture Leads

As you know, I encourage my ‘clients,’ to immediately make that visit with the bride and/or customer-looking at your services.  I believe that when a bride is planning her wedding, she WANTS to know those who is working with her to plan her dream.   Obviously, you may not get that immediate chance to ‘create a visit.’   So I believe that you need to maximize the traffic you attract. Only a small portion of your leads that you don’t have visits set up with, will become customers right away. The rest will take time to explore their options and think about their needs before they make a purchase decision. You need a way to follow up with these leads so that they come to you when they are ready to buy. Some of the ways we promote our clients is to establish a free offer that has value (i.e. ebook, video, free trial), then add this information into our CRM data file.  (Customer Response Management.)  It is very important that when a person converts from an anonymous website visitor to a lead, a contact is created in your CRM.  (See below for more details)

Stage 3: Nurture Prospects

Prospects who sign up for a free offer are essentially “raising their hand” to learn more about how your products and services will satisfy their need or solve their problem. Once you capture their contact information and feed it into your CRM,  you must use campaign sequences to send educational, persuasive messages that will educate prospects and maintain their attention until they are ready to buy.

Stage 4: Convert Sales

As the brides move closer to buying your product or service, the follow-up messaging should change and / or your outreach to them should be what ‘closes’ the sale.   This is where we hear, ‘I give them information once and they don’t respond.’  Does that mean you stop working and reaching out in different ways to solidify your relationship with the bride?  No!  You must ‘give them a reason’ to work with you –what interests one bride, may be different for the next one.

Stage 5: Deliver & Satisfy

After the sale, it’s time to deliver the goods and create happy dreams. Don’t drop the ball here!   When you are the one helping her ‘plan the wedding or event of her dreams,  it is highly important that you deliver a top-notch fulfillment experience and automatically follow-up to make sure new customers are completely satisfied. This stage may include sending a product in the mail as a thank you or completing a personally delivered service.  This industry is made up of ‘relationships!’ 

Stage 6: Relationship Building

Establishing a remarkable customer experience makes it easier for you to earn repeat business from your existing customers.  A bride that was thrilled with your service or product usually doesn’t mind that you can periodically offer complementary products or services so that they may buy from you again and/or refer you to her friends. You maintain customer respect and interest by sending relevant offers that are related to the interests they’ve expressed in the past.

Your number one job is to create  lifelong fans that advocate for you & your brand.  Don’t let your dreams-or your customers-slip away–Keep Pushing, Keep Pulling, it’s not as hard as you may be making it out to be!  If you’d like more information to get help on with a proven framework for developing a more streamlined, scalable marketing plan so that you can watch your event & bridal business grow quickly and profitably, get in touch with us today at EvansSalesSolutions.com  or call:  805-222-5946.

It’s time for you to Dream BIG about your business!

Sign up for a national Bridal Business Boot Camp or Bridal & Event Professionals Academy!

Looking For Referrals From Wedding Planners

bride11Marketing for your wedding & event business is constantly evolving, which means those of us in this industry have to learn a lot of new strategies, tactics, and terminology, all the time. One of those words you’ve probably heard is ‘co-marketing,’ or ‘co-branding,’ which is different.

Regardless, of what you’ve heard, co-marketing is just a form of relationship marketing, that can be used in many ways.

Co-Marketing vs. Co-Branding

Companies have been co-branding for years. Nike partnered up with Apple to create the ultimate work-out and music experience. Hershey’s partnered with Betty Crocker to create the chocolateiest brownie ever. These two companies combined their products together to create an even more valuable product.

Co-marketing is slightly different — it’s the opportunity for two brands to work together on promotional efforts with a co-branded offer. In a co-marketing partnership, both companies promote a piece of content or a product, and share results of that promotion with each other.

Why would you want to do this type of marketing? First of all, your marketing efforts are doubled! Think about all the benefits you get from promoting a piece of content or a new product or event. Now think about all the benefits you would get if two companies promoted it through all the levels of connections that everyone has. (Wedding Marketers reach outside the box!)  The bonus is through co-marketing, you’re able to reach a brand new audience, one you may not have been able to connect and engage with on your own.

Take this example into consideration. You’re a ‘Wedding Jewelry Company’ in Los Angeles.  You’ve created beautiful videos that showcase your beautiful pieces and you promote them to brides online in the hopes they’ll start following you on social media, subscribe to your blog, that type of thing.

You know of a company, also in Los Angeles, that is a ‘wedding coordinator,’ wouldn’t it be interesting if you made a video together, talking about designing weddings, and potentially showing bridal jewelry on brides that the coordinator was working with?  You both get together and create a video, talking about ‘your love of weddings,’ and how the bride would benefit from both of you.  Both companies promote this video to their channels, both of which have different audiences. After, you notice a bump in your social reach because a whole new audience has gained access to your brand from these videos and their promotion from your co-marketing partner … and that partner sees the same success.  Isn’t that wonderful ?

Let’s take it a step further…. how about an event that showcases you, the wedding industry professional to the wedding planners?

The Bridal & Event Professionals Academy (BEPA) & Networking Mixer  allows you to meet quality wedding planners in a setting that encourages face-to-face interaction with individuals who can book and refer your service to high-end weddings!

  • The BEPA  is being held in prestigious locations across the country. Reserve your table-top display today and start building relationships with the nations best wedding planners. Each event starts with an complimentary afternoon of training for local wedding planners and ends with a mixer where everyone has fun.
  • 12:30 pm to 3:30 pm – The Bridal & Event Professionals Academy Training – Featuring Chris Evans as well as other wedding industry speakers to train wedding planners in the latest sales techniques.
  • 3:30 to 4:30 pm – Round Table Discussions. Participants have their choice of joining 10 Wedding Industry leaders for intense Q and A and training. Each participant gets to pick 4 tables to visit during the hour.
  • 4:30 pm to 7:30 pm – The BEPA Networking Mixer – Wedding Planners will have an opportunity to relax and enjoy appetizers and drinks as they meet with a select group of local wedding professionals who want to form a referral relationship with them. This is your opportunity to build relationships with local wedding planners.

This type of ‘co-marketing,’ gives you more benefit since your participation includes admission to the training sessions!    Statistics show that ‘wedding planners,’ are always looking for ‘quality partners, are you one that they can work with?  32% of high-end weddings hire a full-time coordinator, wouldn’t this be an incredible way to ‘show what you have to offer?’   Let’s talk….click on the info below.

BEPAlogoLocations of the BEPA Event: (click on location)

 

 

Evans Sales Solutions, is the connection between the wedding business — to grow that business!   We offer wedding business training & education, networking and more!  For more information, please go to:  ‘BEPA-Academy‘ or ‘Evans Sales Solutions’ for more information!

Movies that will inspire wedding business professionals today

The wedding business can be a grind.  There are days that all the proposals or hard work that you’ve done for someone else, is just not enough.  Days where they’ve invested $100, but want a return valued at $10,000.  There are the days when you’ve made countless phone calls and accomplished nothing other than having someone hang up on you in mid-sentence.  Or you’ve gone a long stretch of time without picking up any new business and you wonder if you’ll ever close another sale again.

It’s good, during times like these, to have some inspiration to help you keep pushing. When we’re struggling with the grind we will sometimes go to YouTube, Red Box or Hulu.plus and pull up clips from some all time great motivational movies. Here are three of our favorite movies and movie scenes to watch during those tough days.images

My wife loves the movie, Baby Boom, with Diane Keaton.  Why?  Whenever she’s feeling down or struggling with business–for some reason this movie helps her get back in the game and motivates her!  I asked her ‘what it was that motivated her in this movie?  Her reply, “I love that she’s down and out–taking care of her new baby–(spoiler alert)  creates something from nothing–making millions.  Most of all, I love that she finds herself, finds love and is a true success in all that she is.’   She also loves the movies:  ‘Wedding Planner, You Got Mail, The Holiday…and other movies like that….(if you know what I mean!)

pursuit-300x300The Pursuit of Happyness with Will Smith. I asked a guy one time, when he drove up in the most incredible Ferrier,  ‘What do you do?!’  It reminded me of this movie….one of the best sales movies of all time. Will Smith is phenomenal in the true life story of Chris Gardner who, through a combination of risk and persistence, overcame huge obstacles to become a successful stock broker. My favorite scene is the climactic close (spoiler alert) when Gardner finds out that he is the one broker, hired on trial basis, who will be offered a permanent position. The combination of joy and relief on his face as he leaves the office to share the good news with his young son is something that all sales people will find inspirational.

Apollo 13 with Tom Hanks.  Overcoming adversity, flying, determined to see that ‘It’s a bright new day filled with unlimited opportunities.’  I’m fascinated by the courage and competence of the men who flew the Apollo missions. As I watch the astronauts and the crew at Mission Control, overcome every obstacle and challenge to bring the Apollo 13 team home alive, it reminds me how small and manageable my problems are in comparison. The recovery of the space capsule when it lands and the excitement of the men and their families, would have to rank as my favorite scene.

So, we encourage you today to keep your heads up, stay in the fight….and maybe, take some time to watch a movie….

-Chris Evans

Eternal Treasures

by Jo Ann M. Grant, wedding & event architect, Apropos Creations

“A well-tied tie is the first serious step in life.” ~Oscar Wilde~

So fitting…  Over the weekend, our 15 year old son was asking how to tie a cool looking knot for this necktie.  The reason behind this was because of having to attend the Academic Decathlon in Phoenix. Although he doesn’t know how to tie a regular tie he did learn how to tie an Eldredge knot.  🙂  He definitely inspired me to look up different ways to knot a tie and here are my top 5 knots.

The Eldredge Knot

Eldredge Tie Knot

The Trinity Knot

Trinity Tie Knot httpwwwsoletopiacom

The Cape Knot

The Cape Knot

The Merovingian (Ediety Knot)

The Merovingian (Ediety Knot)

The Diagonal Knot Tie

Diagonal Knot Tie 1

There are the common knots out there like:

The Windsor Knot

The Windsor Knot

The Half Windsor Knot

The Half Windsor Knot

The Pratt Knot

The Pratt Knot

The Small Knot

The Small Knot

The Four In Hand Knot

The Four In Hand Knor

There are so many more out there…

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