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Old May 6th, 2003, 01:40 PM   #1
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WEVA, and general business promotions

I'm thinking to seriously expand this hobby into a at least for now, a part-time business as a wedding videographer, but knowing a little about the business of videography, I know it is mostly word of mouth, but to get that kind of exposure one will need to get known. How do you guys promote your business, ads, etc, web sites in order to get a healthy client base? I was thinking of going to bridal fairs, etc. but this would mean spending some $$ and I would like to spend $ for advertising effectively (RIO) since I'm working on a very limited budget, (basically I'm using my consulting business to fund my wedding business until this takes off.) What has been most effective for you guys? I thought of joining WEVA, they have a list of videographers and such, but do B&G's actually use them? Anything will be be appreciated. Thanks.
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Old May 6th, 2003, 03:30 PM   #2
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Garret,

WEVA is a great organization to learn marketing and business skills, technological tips and tricks, and how to put together a great event video. As far as brides looking to WEVA to find a videographer, most brides don't even know it exists. WEVA does have a forum where brides can post their wedding and contact information. In 4 years, I've booked one wedding from the Bride's Guide.

90% of our wedding and event business comes from internet marketing. A good website is very important to give prospective clients a place to look at samples and get information about your services. We have a print ad in a yearly wedding vendor book which includes a webpage on the company's site. We actually book more from their website than from their book.

We've gotten mixed results with bridal shows. There are so many shows in the Salt Lake City area now, that brides are bombarded with radio ads for different shows with the same vendors. This is the first year we skipped the bridal shows, and our business is up from last year.

One of the most important things you can do starting a business is to join your local videographers association. This gives you the chance to network with other videographers in your area, and discuss the challenges videographers face in your market.

Good luck!!

Rick Foxx
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Old May 6th, 2003, 03:55 PM   #3
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Rick thanks for the valuable information, local videographer group? Wouldn't that be WEVA? I'm confused, wher edo I look for such an organization. Canvassing bridal shops, flowers, balloons, etc. would these prove lucritive or a waste of time?
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Old May 6th, 2003, 03:56 PM   #4
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I never stop talking to people about what I do. Namely weddings and events. Although I do belong to WEVA and I do on ocassion go after the weddings that brides advertise for I have found that WOM advertising is still the absolute best in ANY business. I have owned and operated other businesses over the last 35 years and it never fails.
Talk to DJ's, caterers, bands,photographers,wedding and event coordinators, people who print invitations, tux places, everyone wants to go to the dress places, not as many go to tux shops, florists, anything that has to do with a wedding talk to them. Be prepared to leave a price list and a demo and a brochure. At the very least business cards.
Right now, the majority of my work comes from referrals of couples I have already done weddings for, photograpers and coordinators. Be carefull with coordinators, some are a lot better and smarter than others. I work with 1 who is stuck in stupid and parked in dumb but she gets me some work, I work with another one who is as sharp and organized as they come. She gets me more.
I got a haircut last week, was talking to the "stylist" and before you know it we've got an appointment next week to talk about her wedding next year. You never know where the work will come from. TALK TO EVERYONE!
Good luck, getting started is the hardest part.
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Old May 6th, 2003, 04:19 PM   #5
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Don, thanks you couldn't be more right, starting is a pain in my arse! I want to use my equipment, I have fun doing this stuff...anyway frustrating to get someone to call. I got my contracts done, I work for a major law firm and wrote one up and had one of them evaluate it, so it's good to go. Another question: Is this business seasonal? I thought people get married all the time?
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Old May 6th, 2003, 04:58 PM   #6
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Garret,

WEVA is a national organization. WEVA does sponsor a number of local associations that are set up throughout the US and Canada. Membership in these associations is separate from WEVA membership. If you go to http://www.weva.com/resources.php?action=localassociations you can select your state and see what association is set up near you.

When we were first getting established, we invested a lot of time in building relationships with other wedding and event vendors. We found that most of the high-end bridal and catering shops would only refer us for a fee. We were fortunate to work with a few vendors that were also just getting started in the market, and we helped build each others' business. It never hurts to network with anyone who might be involved in a wedding or event at some point in the future.

Don makes a good point about talking to everyone about your business. I know of several videographers that leave a couple of business cards along with a tip when they go out to eat. Just about everyone knows someone who is getting married.

Rick
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Old May 6th, 2003, 05:54 PM   #7
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I've been leaving "tip cards" for years and surprisingly enough, I've booked a couple of gigs over the years from that. Ya never know!
I'm not against paying a reasonable fee to a vendor for a referral BUT everything has to be worked out in advance and it must be equitable to all. A 30% fee is NOT equitable. Anyway,good luck,have fun
Don
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Old May 6th, 2003, 06:11 PM   #8
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Thanks guys, I think I will need all the luck I can get.
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Old May 6th, 2003, 10:36 PM   #9
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I've had a lot of this years bookings through the internet. I searched for sites that listed videographers and I submitted my information. And the cost for the listing was either nothing or next to nothing.

$40 on an internet site listing that runs for an entire year is a great price when compared to a yellow pages ad. Not to mention it's so much easier for brides to find you while their doing their research online.

Word of mouth is what seals the deals and gets their confidence. Word of mouth referalls are my most valued clients.

Ben Lynn
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