By Megan Miranda
#1: They don’t communicate
Keep in close contact, even if it’s with a bridezilla or her mother. Brides planning a wedding hate to reach out and not hear back.
If you’ve received an email, text, call or pigeon post from a bride or groom, you must write back promptly!
Make a rule for yourself and stick to it. Most people respond to work emails within 12 to 24 hours, and about 1 in 5 people expect a response within 12 hours. Almost nobody tolerates waiting a week to hear back, so be sure to respond within a few days, at the longest.
#2: They are curt and tactless
It’s okay to be short with the bride, but never snappy. You don’t have to match the novel the bride just emailed you, but you should take the time to respond to each question with more than just a “yes” or “no.”
Be yourself and speak to your client the way you think will make her most comfortable. If you’re not a formal person, don’t pretend to be. If you two hit it off, go ahead and talk to her as if she were a personal friend!
#3: They don’t listen
When a bride asks for specific shots, she expects them to be taken. Furthermore, she shouldn’t have to push to get the shots she wants. Even if you don’t think the photographs will turn out very well, take the photos to please the couple and move on to shots you think will be better.
Avoid this awkward situation by knowing ahead of time what the couple wants. Never make assumptions! Ask which elements are most important and be sure to deliver them, even if you’re not totally on board.
#4: They won’t give their prices
Brides and grooms hate budgeting, but money is almost always tight and they need to know who they can afford to hire. When you refuse to share your price, couples have no idea what to expect.
Give at least a price range before you meet so they don’t move on to your competition.
#5: They don’t have ideas
Although many brides have been planning their weddings since before getting engaged, some will need suggestions.
Be sure to have a few photo, makeup, hair or song proposals. This makes you appear especially helpful and helps the bride trust your professionalism.
#6: They’re not trustworthy
If you take someone’s money, you better show up at the wedding. Brides and grooms are terrified about giving you their money — which is undoubtedly in short supply — and never seeing you again.
Keep in contact throughout the wedding planning process to avoid making the happy couple worry and they’ll feel much better about the whole situation.
#7: They don’t deliver on promises
If you offered the bride a deal, you need to honor it, even if it hurts your bottom line.
Did you promise you’d be able to get her favorite flower, even though it’s winter? You better come through or never hear the end of it!
The best way to avoid dropping the ball is not to make promises you aren’t certain you can keep. If you think a bride’s timeline is too tight, don’t tell her, “It’ll be fine, I promise.”
Be honest and realistic so you don’t have to face a disappointed, angry bride.
#8: They don’t dress appropriately
Please, please, please dress like the professional you are. Even if you are “behind the scenes” on the wedding day, chances are, you’re going to show up in a few pictures or at least be seen by guests. You do not want a bride to look through her wedding album and forever see that you wore jeans on her big day.
DJs are especially visible and need to dress professionally. This usually means wearing a suit and tie. If you’re working a “rustic” wedding and aren’t sure about the dress code, just ask!
#9: They just aren’t professional
Be on time to every meeting and be early to the wedding.
Since you’re a professional, you already know this, but it’s worth repeating because it’s so important: don’t hit on the bridesmaids and don’t get drunk at the wedding! It’s unprofessional, gross and will get you terrible reviews, at the least.
#10: They don’t make us feel special
Every couple is different and unique, and every bride deserves to feel special. If you treat a bride like she’s just another booking, she’s not going to appreciate it and you won’t get a good reference out of her.
Treat each couple as though you care, because hopefully, you really do! This means remembering the small details and the names of the VIPs. Smile, enjoy yourself, and show the couple you’re genuinely happy to be a part of their big day.
What complaints have your couples made about other wedding pros?
Leave a comment below.
Megan Miranda is a Portland, Oregon-based blogger, writer and business owner. When she’s not writing, you’ll find her baking bread and planning her own wedding.