Wedding Vendor Communication
Happy January, or what the wedding industry likes to call “engagement season”. You may have noticed that you’re not the only ones posting your happy news to Facebook and Instagram, and that’s because it’s the season to get engaged. One of the complaints I most often hear from couples is the lack of wedding vendor communication they receive. They email a vendor and it either takes days to hear back or sometimes it’s never. Truthfully, there are a lot of vendors who slack on communication, whether is busy-ness or laziness, and sometimes the culprit is not the vendor, but actually a very eager client. With that being said, here are a few tips to handle the situation with grace and how to know if it’s you or them!
I know the common misconception is that in the “off-season” we are all slow business-wise. While we may not have as many weddings as we do in other seasons, we do still work winter weddings. We also run a business which means we are never not working on something. Add a constant wave of emails and inquires and you can see why it might take a little time to respond.
Weekends are essentially a write-off for most wedding vendors. If they are not working a wedding, they are taking that time off with their own family or to get things done in their personal life. If you do email someone over the weekend and they don’t respond, don’t freak out. Give them until Monday to get back to you.
Some services, like Decor for example actually work all weekend long Friday- Sunday on set up and tear down. They often take Mondays off just so they have a single day off in the week.
Give a little grace when communicating with vendors. We are all busy humans and we, just like you, strive to do it all and to the best of our abilities.
When to follow up
If you sent an email, and you haven’t heard back within 3 business days, you should absolutely follow up! Sometimes emails don’t send, sometimes they get pushed to the very bottom of our inboxes and we haven’t gotten to yours yet, and sometimes certain vendors need a reminder that you are interested in them.
Speaking more on the last point there, some vendors are really good at their “job” but they suck at running a business. That’s the cold hard truth. I don’t think it means you should write them off if you really love their work. That’s why you should always send that follow up. If they still are not getting in touch with you and they are not a must-have vendor for you, move on.
With that being said, if you are absolutely in love with a certain venue or vendor’s work and you can’t get them to respond, give them a call or even try reaching out on their social media outlets.
I personally could not imagine leaving a couple without a response for that period of time. Personally, if I had followed up once and they didn’t respond I’d likely move on. If they can’t even be on top of things enough to make the sale and get yours business, they are likely not going to get back to you in a timely manner once you are a client.
Communication During Your Planning
Maybe you had a great initial experience with your vendor but now that you’ve started planning they seem disorganized or are telling you what you want to hear but you’re not sure they will deliver. I can’t stress enough that you need to put everything in writing. Keep notes, stay organized and on top of your details. If you meet in person or you speak over the phone, jot down the important things and send an email to confirm what you talked about. This way if they say “I never agreed to that”, or “I don’t remember that conversation” or “no that’s not something we do” when it comes down to the delivery, you can go back to your emails and confirm that it was talked about and on what date etc.
Don’t leave us Hanging
We totally get that we aren’t a great fit for every inquiry we get, and that’s ok! But please do all of us vendors a favor and just let us know if you’ve decided to move ahead with someone else, especially if we take time out of the day to follow up with you. A simple “Thank you so much for following up, but we’ve decided to go in a different direction,” is the perfect quick response. If you really did love what we offered but something prevented you from hiring us or a competitor offered something you couldn’t say no to, we’d really appreciate you giving us feedback. We are all small business’s and every client we are able book gives us the ability to continue to pour love into our services and offer our expertise to the world. If there is a specific reason you didn’t choose us, knowing why helps us to keep a handle on the market and how we can make an impact.