When you run a small wedding business, it usually comes with an equally small marketing budget. You need “bang for the buck” marketing strategies that work to get real leads. Follow these steps to find the right advertising strategy for you.
1) Lead with your strengths.
What’s already working to bring in leads for your business?
If you get most of your leads from a particular venue, build that relationship by giving them a call, paying a visit or sending them a gift. If your leads come from word of mouth referrals, create a referral incentive program to get your happy couples to spread the word.
What skills and talents do you have?
It’s easy to forget what comes easily for you just because it’s that easy. Yet the tasks you do effortlessly are a solid platform for building your marketing plan.
Love to write? Blogging is a powerful form of online marketing? Dig social media? Leverage your online social skills with a social media marketing campaign. Are you a numbers guy or gal? PPC advertising (Pay Per Click) on Google Adwords or Facebook is right up your alley.
2) Model the success of others.
Once you’ve determined a best match marketing strategy, find an example of success you can imitate.
Turn to your local wedding professional associations and networking groups for help. Find another wedding professional who’s rocking the marketing or advertising strategy you’ve chosen, and ask for their advice and mentorship.
3) Determine a way to reliably track your results BEFORE you start.
One of the biggest mistakes wedding pros make with their marketing is not measuring their results. So they spend thousands of dollars on a print ad or wedding directory listing and have no way to tell whether it sent them any leads!
Don’t rely on what your couples say about where they found you. You need reliable tracking.
These tools will help:
- Google Analytics for tracking referrals to your website
- Unique coupon codes for tracking promotions
- A unique phone number or website url
Whatever you do, don’t spend a penny until you have a solid plan for tracking your results.
4) Test small and fail fast.
Before you invest a large amount of money in a brand new contest or promotion, test it out on a small level first. Roll it out for a small group of your potential clients and see how they respond before spending the big bucks.
Test your offer, the name of your product or service and calls to action to find out what works. If you don’t get a response, test variations until you connect with your audience.
You can do a “quick and dirty” advertising test using Facebook Ads or by emailing an offer to your current or past clients. In any case, make sure your advertising campaign gets results before investing thousands of your hard earned dollars.
5) When it doubt, focus on the big 3: Networking, Bridal Shows, Facebook Ads
If you STILL haven’t figured out which type of marketing is best for you, these three strategies are a good place to start.
The absolutely fastest way to get leads is from other wedding professionals who have them to give, so put networking at the top of your list. It’s cheap…paying for a cup of coffee or two ought to do it…and all it takes it some relationship skills.
Bridal shows are an old faithful because the brides are definitely there! It puts you front and center in front of a qualified audience. Make sure you have a winning strategy for booking weddings from your bridal show leads.
Facebook Ads makes this list because you can target engaged couples right in your zip code and broadcast your offer to them right in the newsfeed for pennies per click and a budget of any size. It’s highly targeted, inexpensive marketing.
What do you think is the best, low cost marketing?