By Mika R

There is a magic period lasting 24 – 48 hours in which you have your best chance to generate viral marketing. It starts literally the minute the wedding is finished, and it exponentially decreases by the hour.

My own experience has shown that a video will be shared 10x as much in this magic 24-hour period than if I share it a few weeks later.

Brides and grooms (and many of their family and friends) are literally on a brain-chemical high the day after their wedding. You have 24 hours in which they LOVE everyone and LOVE everything. They just had the best day EVER.

Do something helpful for them at that moment and they will LOVE you.

They are desperate to relive the day.

Think about how you feel the day after a great party. You reminisce with your friends about the hilarious things that happened. And if you happen to have photo or video evidence, you look at it repeatedly and you laugh until you cry.

A few days later, it’s still kind of funny. A few weeks later, meh, not so much.

A wedding is just like that.

The couple’s friends and family all took crappy, dark photos and videos on their phones. Even those are amazing to look at the day after a wedding.

I’ve seen plenty of brides change their Facebook profile photo to a low quality image from the night before.

But in that magic period, anything a professional has taken will blow them away and be TOTALLY share-able. (If you’re not a photographer or videographer this can still include you… read my tip at the end of this blog post).

If you produce content within the magical 24-hour period for Facebook and Instagram, not only will your business get great exposure, but your clients will adore you, in a chemically enhanced way.

In a business where word of mouth and online reviews are key, this is no small thing.

Some of the benefits I have experienced in this magic 24-hour period have been:

  • Comments on the post from the couple, or their family members, thanking me for the great job I did. (That’s “social proof” on steroids.)
  • Couples or their family members have often left me a positive Facebook review straight after seeing my post.
  • Some weddings more than others, I receive an influx of new likes to my page.
  • Quite often I will get one new inquiry that week directly as a result of the sneak peek post.

Here’s what I have learned from my own experience.

1.    Share as soon as you can.

The most viral video I ever created was edited straight after the photo shoot, as I wasn’t hired for the reception.

I went home and put together a montage of the bridal party goofing around during the photo shoot. By the time the couple were going home in their limo they had a text from me with a link to the video on my Facebook page.

They shared it, and it immediately went viral among their family and friends. I woke up the next morning and my post had been seen by 4,000 people.

By the end of the 24-hour period it had been seen by 10,000 people. It reached another 2,000 people in the following week…Exponentially dropping off day by day.

2.    Keep it short and sweet.

Some photographers just produce one hero shot in the 24-hour period and get amazing results.

My second most viral video was a 30-second clip showing the bride and groom’s first kiss, which was hilarious because the bride was jumping up and down with excitement afterwards.

3.    Watermark it with your logo.

If you are going to go to this effort, get your logo discretely in the corner of the photo or video, so everyone sees it. Don’t let the logo detract from the content though. It needs to be subtle but clear.

(NB. If a photographer is nice enough to send you a photo of your cake / florals / venue etc., let your beautiful product speak for itself and don’t try to claim credit for the photography by adding your own logo).

4.    Make sure the client sees it!

Post it on your social channel, and then text the client to make sure they know it’s up! Put a link to your social page in the text.

5.    Get permission first and play nice.

I always ask my couples before the wedding whether they are OK with me sharing on my social channels. About 90% say yes, but some people are private, and it is vital to respect that. Otherwise this strategy can backfire.

I am also careful not to share content featuring children unless I’ve sought permission from their parents.

Also make sure whatever you share will enhance the couple’s happiness, not detract from it. I heard a horror story recently about a video of the “garter toss” that went viral for all the wrong reasons. The couple ended up suing.

Happy couple = good word of mouth. Pissed off couple = bad word of mouth.

6.    What if you’re not a pro photographer?

Even if you’re not a pro, your phone pics might still be awesome to the couple in the magic 24-hour period. Or you can take high quality pics and video on a DSLR that can be purchased for about $500.

It might be tax deductible. (Ask your accountant.)

DJs could create fun dance floor pics or videos; a florist (while delivering bouquets) or hair / makeup artist might take a fun video or pic during the bride preparation.

What have you done that’s gone viral?

Mika R. is a wedding videographer and analytics-obsessed business owner who loves writing, teaching and telling the love stories of her clients.