Bridal shows can be A LOT of work which is why we wanted to outline how we tackled our most recent bridal show. For the sake of honesty, it was really tough, BUT absolutely worth it. Not only did we work hard and totally kick butt in the preparation department – we also got a ton of leads and met some fantastic people.
We realized the best way to bring in leads is to be genuine, authentic and to foster relationships with the brides and grooms that take the time to chat with you. It sounds simple, but seriously, we connected so well with couples that we asked questions to and showed our genuine interest in learning more about them.
SO, in addition to meeting some awesome people, we created a list of how we came to be so prepared.
Prior to our arrival at the bridal show, we researched text services that we could use to capture phone numbers and use for future contact with our brides/warm and hot leads. Textedly, used for exactly this service, was just what we needed. We found that a three text sequence would be the perfect number of texts to send without overdoing it, but still provide the information we wanted to get out to our brides. We also set up a pre-designed sequence in 17Hats, our client management platform, to prepare for leads we were sure would come in.
Our incentive to capture emails and phone numbers was to host a giveaway. Anyone who texted the designated code to “our given number” (just a five digit code given to us by Textedly) became eligible for our giveaway IF they filled out the attached Google Form. This form was provided via text automation (SO HELPFUL) and was also a way to grab emails in addition to phone numbers.
Things you need to bring and prep:
If you want to start implementing print sales into your business – especially at a bridal show where 100 people might walk past your booth/display – you NEED to showcase your products. We had tables (literally, more than one) full of product samples. In addition, we put our fabric swatches out so that anyone who stopped over could feel the options.
We pre-designed how we would display wall art with the help of Fundy, and good thing we did because we had all of the measurements we needed which streamlined our set up.
Another thing we did, knowing it would catch onlookers’ eyes, was to display our company name as often as we could. We wanted anyone and everyone who walked by to know this was our area and give them something positive to remember… even if they didn’t choose to stop.
We were optimistic about booking couples onsite and wanted to be prepared. In our “lead corner” – a little corner in our display section, we would chat with brides in a less trafficked, quieter area and provide a more in-depth description of our services. While we were over in this corner, there were contracts in neat little folders and champagne on display in case there was cause for celebration. We made it a point to let brides know that we were excited and ready to work with them!
In order for you to have success at a bridal show, you HAVE to have your numbers memorized (because people will ask) and know your stuff. Stuff meaning, collections, vendors you’ve worked with, testimonials on hand, marketing materials with your services and base collection listed and your value proposition (what makes you stand out from other photographers in your area).
It’s important to know your own offerings, share it confidently, but also, not overwhelm anyone with information. However, you do want them to make an informed decision so that they don’t experience buyers’ remorse or sticker shock from your pricing. With talking points in mind, it’s easier to share about why you believe in the value of print or, the reason your services are exclusive and how you go about providing a full-service experience for each of your clients. Your talking points become your selling points and the reason someone books.
We wanted to leave a good impression with fellow vendors – especially those we haven’t worked with or met yet. With that in mind, we created vendor bags with little trinkets and knick-knacks to get them through the day. We included tic-tacs, little powdered energizer packets and our business card.
In all seriousness! We recruited some family members to help set up and design our awesome display and we couldn’t have done it without them! And we have no doubt that they’ll be calling upon us to return the favor 😂 In the end, we even gave them business because they were the architects behind our giant wall display and it was a win-win. We also couldn’t have done it without the help from our awesome team (looking on point and on brand, too)!____
If you want MORE information on being prepared for bridal shows, we have an entire module dedicated to it in our Branded & Booked course.
This helps you to:
• Start attracting high-end clients (multiply your revenue)
• Build a workflow that guides clients through an elevated experience
• Create collections designed with irresistible offers for mega profit
• Become the brand that everyone is talking about & craves to book
• Finally, have a solid marketing strategy in place & stop worrying about what to post online
• Avoid common client-losing mistakes!