Marketing is required for all wedding businesses in order to grow. Prior to undertaking any marketing it’s important for new businesses to have all of their branding and marketing designs completed so they are ready to launch. The list below are common areas to work through when it comes to both digital and print marketing collateral during the start up phase.
Before working through all of the various elements the very first step is to develop your overall wedding business brand. Once you have your branding all planned out you can then go on to creating all of your print and digital marketing collateral which all ties in with your overall business brand.
For those with little or no design experience I recommend trying Canva for creating most of these elements. It is free online software with all of the technical aspects of design taken care for you so it’s as simple as dropping and dragging to create custom artwork in keeping with your brand.
Create a professional looking website which is linked to your domain. The website can either be created by a professional web developer or done by yourself, however using a professional tends to be a costly option for those just starting out. I highly recommend using a wordpress installation (wordpress.org) on your own hosted domain and utilising a fabulous theme. Themes are like a skin that goes over the main wordpress installation (which you could consider the skeleton of website) and there are some great free themes which can be customised as well as lovely premium themes which are pretty much ready to rock and roll
If you haven’t designed your logo yet while working through your business branding, now is the time as it’s important to have your logo featured on marketing material. Again with your logo this could be something you create yourself, engage a graphic designer who specialises in business design or there are also customisable logos available for purchase on sites such as Etsy or Creative Market
Facebook cover image & profile image
When setting up your facebook business page you will need to upload a facebook cover image and a facebook profile image. The cover image is the long rectangular image found at the very top of all facebook pages, and the profile image is the round image to the side which also features as your pages icon when you are engaging with clients and other businesses. I highly recommend that your profile image be something easily recognisable when others are searching for your social pages – this could be your logo or if you have one key image that you use on your website landing page and on other marketing material this is another option. Personally I prefer using the logo to keep your business super recognisable in case you aren’t the only page on Facebook with the same name.
For the cover image it’s a good idea to use an image / images that best represent your business and the products or services you offer as well as your business name and perhaps even a tag line / call to action.
Many businesses will update their cover image regularly with latest images of their work or perhaps promoting a current offer or an event they are attending soon. It’s not ideal to change the profile image regularly though.
To create a great looking facebook cover image I highly recommend using Canva – not only is this an easy to use and free program but you can select facebook cover image as a design option which provides starting templates which are already set to facebooks image size requirements
Instagram profile image (and other social media platform profile images)
For brand consistency I recommend using the same imagery across all social media accounts, however the frustrating thing is that all social media platforms have different image size requirements. The other frustrating thing is that these platforms often change their sizing requirements.
This is a reason why Canva is great as they are up to speed with the various social platform image sizes and you can create all of your social media profile images in that one location.
Google places images
Setting up your business’s google places is a must for local / bricks and mortar businesses. In addition to your businesses logo, to prepare for setting up your places account I recommend that you gather at least 10 lovely images that best promote your products / services. This listing shows up when brides and grooms are searching their area for specific vendors and it shows firstly thumbnail images which they can click on to see if you are potentially a good fit before they even click through to your website. I’ll go through setting up your google places listing in another post.
Spending money on advertising is a must for all wedding businesses if you really want to grow your success quickly. A common way to pay to promote your business to couples are paid wedding vendor directories on a variety of different websites. The exact ones you may choose will come down to their brand and whether your brand is a good fit as well as cost, their reach etc. When preparing for paid listings most of them will include your business name, location, category in the industry that you service and a biography so that couples can get to know a little more about your business. In addition this this you can often supply images and possibly a logo or video as well. Every wedding directory business has a different set up so it’s important to contact the ones you are interested in directly to get some more information on both their costs, reach and “artwork” requirements. In the meantime you can gather a variety of relevant images and start work on a brief bio if you don’t already have this on your website / social media about section
It goes without saying that all wedding business owners should have their own business cards. These don’t need to be fancy and over the top but they do need to have your logo, business name, your own name, email address, phone number and website at the bare minimum. You may also choose to include your social media handles and a little more information about the products / services you offer. Although you can print your own business cards with punch out printable cards from places such as Officeworks I really recommend that you have them professionally printed. In many instances this is one of the first impressions couples may have of your business so you want to impress. Professional printers online are really affordable and allow you to print on different card thicknesses and offer great quality finishes as well which you just cant do from home. You might go for a linen texture card, or a high gloss finish overall, perhaps even a gold foil detail or embossing. All of this is possible when printed professionally.
Promotional flyers / brochures / postcards
Letterbox drops might be the first thing many of us think of when it comes to flyers and brochures, but this isn’t the reason for the need for printed promotional material for wedding businesses. Unless you also offer products for your local area, traditional letterbox drops are a waste of time. However almost every wedding business will at least try exhibiting at wedding expos / fairs at some stage and having print material to hand to prospective couples is a must. Some also like to have some printed collateral to hand to couples during an initial meeting that may go through a little more information.
The exact material will vary from business to business. Bridal gown / suit businesses may benefit from a small booklet which includes several pages of gowns or suits available for purchase. Cake decorators or florists may have a simple flyer or brochure which includes small images along with a bit of text explaining how they can help the prospective couples. You may even like to do a special offer postcard.
To start with though, a simple flyer or double / trifold brochure is always a fabulous start from the very beginning as it’s most versatile and less expensive. This will be enough to have you ready to go should a last minute wedding fair opportunity arise. If you have your box of brochures ready to go that’s always a massive time saver!!
With compliments slips
These are really handy little things to have. A slip of paper that has your branding on it but space to write notes is a great way to jot down important information for your prospective brides and grooms while also reminding them off your awesome businesses name (and it’s handy to have your contact info there too so that there are minimal hurdles to reach you when they are ready to go). I’ve used these slips for jotting down custom price ranges, product inclusions when you have variable options or even having handy so couples can write their own notes down. If you are posting samples it’s also lovely to write a hand written note along with your sample on these.
Product / package folios
Are you a service provider? This is when folios come in handy most. Wedding celebrants, photographers / videographers and venues benefit from having a lovely branded folio or folder to include their various paper inclusions when providing quotes for couples. It’s a nice touch so that they aren’t simply handed a bunch of pieces of paper and allows you to include a brochure or other smaller piece along size regular A4 pages.
Labels / price tags
If you are planning to operate a physical store then having visible pricing on your products is a must. How will you display this? Will you design labels that sit on shelves? Perhaps you need swing tags which are the price tags generally attached to string for garments or accessories. If you are selling garments or accessories under your own label then printed fabric labels displaying your branding and also care instructions or the garments size are also required.
How will you package up your final products for your couples to either collect or have shipped to them? Do you need branded garment bags or small accessory boxes? How will you package your products to minimise damage for shipping and will you have branded shipping boxes? If you have a retail store will you provide shopping bags for customers to carry items out. You may prefer to use a couple of professionally printed stickers and apply these to plain coloured bags / shipping boxes etc as custom printing directly on packaging can get quite costly.
Follow up / thank you cards
Last but not least how will you follow up with your couples after their wedding? Thank you cards are a really lovely touch to make them feel really special. This could be sent after the wedding or could be included in the packaging of the product when they receive it. We all know that referrals are one of the biggest ways to build your wedding business so it’s these little touches that keep you and your brand memorable and talked about in a good way!
To help get you started I’ve created a downloadable wedding marketing materials checklist which you can get right now so that you don’t miss any of these important marketing elements in the busy start up phase
- WordPress (website building)
- Canva (design tool)
- Etsy (logos & wordpress themes, also creative price tags / labels)
- Creative Market (logos & wordpress themes)
- CMYK Online (printing of business cards, brochures, flyers, postcards, with compliments, thank you cards)
- Bee Dee Bags (product packaging supplier)