Bridal shows and party planning showcases are an easy and fun way to generate leads and meet potential clients. It doesn’t matter if you are an entertainer, event planner, caterer, florist or photographer, these events will put you right in front of your target audience. When participating in events like these, it is important to have a nice booth or table, be friendly and engaging, and offer special deals for attendees with an expiration date. These are factors that can help generate interest at the shows.
Brides love when they see something new and exciting. Showcasing your work through a cutting-edge product such as BrideLive can be used to attract attention to your booth by posturing the demonstration as educational. This also shows brides, grooms and their families that in addition to being easy to work with, you are also easy to MEET with, which is very important to today’s busy bride.
Showcasing live will give you a strong advantage and may provide you with the opportunity to book dates on the spot. For example, DJ’s and Bands might choose to play a live set. Limousines, specialty cars and buses can park in front of the venue and allow brides and grooms to sit inside the vehicles. Bridal Shops, Florists and Formal Wear stores can take part in a fashion show and display their items on the runway in front of all event attendees.
As much as we vendors would all like to get business at these shows/showcases, we have to remember that brides and grooms are all at varying stages of the planning process. Therefore, unless your services are timed perfectly with what attendees are planning to explore immediately after the event, in all likelihood some time will pass before show attendees will consider contacting you, diminishing the memory the bride and groom have of your company.
For this reason, in order to produce a successful outcome from shows and showcases, it is important that a strong follow-up plan be implemented. Here are some steps you can take:
- Have your own form at the booth that visitors can fill out. This will help you prioritize following up on people who actually visited your booth.
- Get as much detailed information from the bride/groom as possible; such as when and where the wedding is going to be held, how many guests will be there, etc. – this information will help you follow up with more insight about the customer and increase the likelihood he/she will be receptive.
- Plan to follow up persistently, but tastefully with a combination of direct mail, email and social media engagement.
- Telephone follow-up is effective if you have something very specific to share with the bride/groom.
The size of bridal shows is not always the strongest factor in determining what shows to participate in. The bride to vendor ratio may be something to consider. A show that has 50 vendors and 500 brides may generate more results than a show with 100 vendors and 750 brides. Even a smaller show that has 75 brides where you are exclusive in your category sometimes can be very fruitful.
Once again, bridal shows and showcases are a great source of leads, especially when you are prepared as best you can to meet your future clients.