A couple weeks ago, I wrote a blog post asking the question, “Do Bridal Lead Lists Actually Work?” and shared it on Linked In.
Before we dive into what we uncovered, let’s quickly define what we’re talking about when we say, “bridal lead list.”
We’re talking about those icy cold lead lists you buy either in bulk from wedding directory sites, magazines and bridal shows, or individually from lead generating sites like Respond.com. They are brides or grooms who haven’t met you, haven’t visited your website, and tend to be more price motivated.
Well, leave it to the innovative and helpful members of the wedding business community to not only answer that provocative question, but to share strategies for following up with bridal leads that work and alternatives that work even better.
Are you ready? Because these guys knocked my socks off.
The Reality of Bridal Lead Lists
The owner of A Better DJ and Photographer shared his results from bridal lead lists.
Based on his experience with hundreds of thousands of bridal lead lists:
- 4% actually respond by phone or email.
- 50% of those that call book immediately.
- Calls his wife takes book 100% of the time.
- Calls he takes book 85% of the time.
These results are actually high, which indicates an offer that is a good match for these type of bridal leads; most wedding pros get a response from 1% of these leads. Yeah, not too impressive, huh?
Out of 100 bridal list leads you contact, expect only 1-4 of them to respond.
What is A Better DJ and Photography doing right with these bridal leads? He’s tracking and measuring his results.
He knows exactly how many leads he’s going to book from that list, so he can easily decide if it’s worth his time and money. He even knows that it’s in his best interest to keep his wife glued to the phone!
An Alternative to Chasing Down Unresponsive Bridal Leads
Over time, A Better DJ and Photographer traded in his time chasing down unresponsive bridal leads like these for focus on search engine optimization for his website and social media. This results in higher quality, more targeted leads that he can book in less time.
“I used to invest 40-60 hours a week chasing leads…” he explains. “Now I invest 20 of those 40 to 60 hours into SEO each week and the other hours have been converted to actually booking clients.”
Nick Choroshyliw, owner of Rochester photography company, Nix Images, reported similarly disappointing results after two years of combined email and direct mail marketing to bridal show lead lists. In other words, these leads were mostly duds.
However, Nick struck upon a much more cost-effective strategy that DOES work with bridal show lead lists.
How to Book Bridal Show Leads Without Going to the Show!
No, we’re not suggesting that you hide in the parking lot and pounce on brides leaving the bridal show, throwing business cards or leave fliers on their windshields. That would be bad, bad juju.
Nick no longer attends these shows in person. Instead, he pays a much smaller fee to have his printed information added to the bridal gift bags distributed to every bride. This way, he gets his business in front of the 400-450 brides who receive the bag upon registration.
After the show, they sort through the cards they’ve collected from vendors…along with the ones that came “pre-stuffed” in the bag…and many end up contacting him.
“What’s interesting is that many of the brides who contacted me say that they liked my display at the show,” Nick says. “Well, I wasn’t at the show! My 6×8 glossy cards were stuffed in the information bags…The organizer charges a fraction of the cost…to stuff the cards into the bags and it appears that I actually get a better response than being there.”
If you can design a postcard that gets results, like the one Nix Images is using, this can be an effective, low cost alternative to getting quality leads from a bridal show.
Thanks so much for sharing your experience and ideas with us, guys!
Now I want to know…what’s YOUR experience with bridal lead lists? Do they work for you or do you have something better?
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