HCTG

—By Meredith Monday Schwartz, CEO of Here Comes The Guide

Has this happened to you?

You get a steady stream of inquiries from couples interested in your wedding services. You respond quickly to each couple with your info packet.

But then, you get no response. Dead silence.

It’s crickets—and it’s so frustrating!

First of all, I want to assure you that you’re not alone in this.

Second, I’d like to offer some tips for following up with brides and grooms that can help avoid the dreaded Crickets Syndrome:

Create a sense of urgency.

Give them a reason to book with you—and do it ASAP. Examples:

“I can throw in an extra hour/engagement session/toss bouquet if you book before the end of the month.”

OR

“We do have some other couples looking at this date, so I can only hold it for you for 3 days and then I have to release it into the wild again.”

Ask THEM questions.

Sure, they’re asking you questions about pricing, availability, etc. but YOU asking THEM about their special day sets you apart from the rest of the auto-replies they’re getting from other vendors. Bonus: it shows you care. Examples:

“What do you want everyone to say about your wedding?”

“Is there anything that is concerning you at this point in the planning process?”

“Are there any unique elements you want to include with your wedding photos/flowers/cake?”

Call them and, if you get voicemail, leave a sweet personable message.

I realize you don’t always have a phone number, but when you do, use it. Unbelievably, this will distinguish you in today’s market. And laugh at yourself—be light! Voicemail can be charming. Don’t be afraid of it. Example:

“Hi NAME of BRIDE or GROOM, it’s YOUR NAME from COMPANY. I was hoping to get a few more details about your wedding—and, honestly, try to convince you that we’d make a great team in bringing your vision to life. I can’t wait to hear more about it!”

Try to get couples to commit to a consultation or tasting.

This continues the relationship beyond an inquiry. Example:

“I’d love to treat you to coffee and talk more about your wedding goals. Do you have an hour in your schedule when we could do that? It would be a great opportunity to see if our personalities click!”

Be a human being and act like a friend.

The bride/groom is probably already dealing with a ton of drama during their wedding planning—financial discussions, family crap, the works. Be warm and receptive, someone they can confide in. You should care about their happiness. So many of your competitors are hitting the auto-reply button that being human is a unique advantage.

None of the suggestions above takes a ton of time, but each one will help turn those crickets into interested couples. I want to challenge you to experiment with a few.

To-Do For You:

Add at least one of the above actions to your standard RFP follow up and see if your response rate improves.