Most of us wedding planners, coordinators, photographers, videographers, and all other professionals are still right smack dab in the middle of the fall wedding season. But there’s one thing you must remember as we’re wrapping up the season: engagement season is right around the corner!
Did you know that 40% of all engagements take place from November until March? (In Holiday terms, that’s Thanksgiving to St. Patrick’s Day.) So we definitely can’t ignore the fact that it’s time to transition out of fall wedding focus mode and into engagement season focus mode. That means making time in your day to prepare your business for the influx of engaged couples looking for your services. But don’t worry — you don’t have to figure out your game plan all alone. With nearly two decades of experience in the events industry, I have a few ideas up my sleeve!
So today, I’ll be giving you the best five ways to get your business ready for engagement season, no matter what your niche is in the wedding industry. From sprucing up your website to enhancing your social media visibility to updating your system processes and workflows with automation, and more — we’ll cover all the most crucial aspects. By the time you’re done reading, I hope you’ll feel ready to set yourself up for a successful engagement season! Let’s dive right in.
1. Make Your Website User Friendly
The first topic of interest: your website! You want to make sure it’s user-friendly, which means a few different things.
First, have your contact information easily accessible. Publish your business phone number, email address, and provide a contact form — and make it easy for your potential clients to see that.
The second way to make your website user-friendly is by including a call to action (CTA) on each page. You want to take your customer on a journey through your website, eventually leading them to check out your services or contact you. Laying out a clear path for them with CTAs can help bring them on that journey without a lot of effort on their end!
The third and last way to make your website user-friendly is ensuring your website is easy to navigate. Don’t worry about being the prettiest or fanciest website on the market — I want you to adopt the slogan less is more. The only thing you should worry about with website design is if your visitors can navigate your website without getting confused or overwhelmed. (Confusion and overwhelm ≠sales.) Make your website simple and clear, and your visitors are much more likely to understand why they need your services!
Pro-tip: Don’t try to re-design your website or packages during engagement season! Your focus should only be on being more visible and selling so you can give all your attention to your clients. You’re going to be busy, and you’ll likely overlook mistakes or overbook yourself by trying to tackle back-end tasks.
2. Social Presence – Get Social!
As many as 82% of newly engaged couples research their vendors on social media, so freshening up your feed and becoming (more) visible on social media is imperative to your success during engagement season.
Ok, but what exactly does being visible on social media mean? First and foremost looks like being consistent. In other words, it’s not the best idea to post five times in one week and then disappear for three weeks. Instead, you want to post a realistic amount of times a week — an amount you can keep up with — and follow that posting schedule. So if your schedule allows you to post just three times a week, that’s perfectly fine! As long as you are posting three times consistently.
If you’re thinking, “Brandee, there’s no possible way I can even come up with three ideas per week. Help!” I understand. This is where anchor content becomes handy. Anchor content is a topic that you revolve all other content around. (More about that in this podcast episode.) Once you have your anchor content secured, scheduling out the rest of your content is super simple and streamlined.
If you’re feeling like you still need some guidance, I completely get it. Coming up with anchor content can be an obstacle in itself. That’s why I created a years-worth of content ideas called Social 365 (click here for access!), so you can get back to focusing on what you do best. Social 365 is one full year of blog post ideas (AKA anchor content) and social media content for wedding professionals like yourself! I think you’ll get a lot of use out of it, and it’ll help you get familiar with the type of content you (and your audience) connect with the most so you feel confident setting up your own schedule for the following year.
3. Update Your Services and Packages
While gearing up your social media profiles and website, don’t forget to do a little refresh on your packages to ensure they are up-to-date with the services you offer! And don’t forget to be very clear on your offerings. For example, do you only focus on Day Of Coordination? Make that known right away at the top of every page so your ideal clients know they’ve come to the right place. Do you offer wedding day photography + engagement session photography? Make that super obvious so there’s no confusion.
Another aspect to pay attention to when updating your services and packages is your portfolio (if applicable). You want it to reflect your most recent work, as well as the type of work you want to keep doing/want to do more of. For instance, if you’re a proposal and wedding photographer and you dabble in maternity photos but you want to step away from that, don’t show maternity photos on your website. Focus on proposals and weddings only. Similarly, if you love serving contemporary brides, display images on your site that a contemporary bride will resonate with the most.
Lastly, you’ll want to make sure the prices for your services are updated before engagement season starts. Trying to make significant edits to your services will create confusion for everyone involved.
You only have a few seconds to make a connection with your visitors, so ensure you’re making it clear what you do and who you serve with your brand messaging + packages prices + photos. This formula will help you book more of your ideal clients during engagement season.
4. Automate, automate, automate!
If location, location, location is the slogan for real estate agents, automate, automate, automate should be the slogan of wedding entrepreneurs.
Automation can look like using an online scheduler, automated email responses with general information/FAQs/simply letting your inquirers know you’ve received their message, using CRMs, etc. At first glance, automation can feel impersonal, but there are plenty of ways to make your tools feel personal and true to your voice! For example, for online schedulers (like my favorite, Acuity), you can write personal messages that will save in the platform to remind your prospective clients there is a human behind the technology.
If you don’t already use automation in your business, now is the time to consider it! Automating your process makes it easy for you to streamline your consultation process, become more efficient in your workflow, and you’ll avoid wasting time on back-and-forths between prospective clients.
5. Make Your Biz Legally Legit
If you take one thing away from this blog post, it’s that you need to make sure your contracts are legally legit. Do not go into engagement season with a contract that doesn’t protect you, your creative assets, and your business. I know it’s tempting to skip over the legal stuff because it can be intimidating, expensive, and confusing. But that’s why I am so excited to introduce you to my favorite legal contract website: The Legal Paige.
Paige married her passion for law and entrepreneurial experience to found The Legal Paige so she could empower fellow small business owners to build a solid legal foundation for their business. She’s made the legal side of business effortless and approachable, and her contracts can protect you from all the “what if’s” in your business! If you use code BRANDEE at checkout, you can get 15% off any of her legally legit contracts.
Now you’re ready for engagement season!
I hope this blog post helped, and now you feel ready to conquer the upcoming engagement season! Now I want to hear from you: what change are you going to make first in your business to get ready for the busy season ahead? Share it in the comments!