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Old August 30th, 2009, 01:51 PM   #1
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Location: Milford Michigan
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How Best to drum up business at a wedding show??

Hello everyone,

After being out of the business for the past 2 years, I am jumping back in full force. I have a wedding show coming up in 3 weeks that I need some advice for. I need to come away with some clients from this show....& how should I structure my offers?

I was thinking if the bride put down money that day, or week, I would knock off 20% from whichever package she chose. Is that too much, sound to desperate? Any input would be appreciated.

Peter Vaughn

Somewhere in the Midwest
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Old August 30th, 2009, 02:58 PM   #2
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it could certainly work ut you have to justify the reason for giving the money off. Call it a Showstopper Special... "BOOK NOW and recieve 20% off video package of your choice"

Some sort of sense of urgency.
What do I know? I'm just a video-O-grafer.
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Old August 30th, 2009, 07:01 PM   #3
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It's a pity you've left it so close to the event before you ask your completely valid question but if you've got the energy and time here's my 2c.

1 Put together the best demo disk you can and make enough copies to give away to each visitor at the fair.

2 Put together a small brochure (A4 folded is fine). Set out your service ie the way people buy your product, price etc and the USP's. Print one for each visitor plus a few for your stand.

3 Stick the two items inside a eye-catching envelope - we use a silver foil envelope that looks more expensive than it is and is easily spotted - you don't want to waste time giving one to folks who already have one.

4 Edit from your previous work a stunning minute or two ad type programme that will loop. Use plenty of titles/text. The programme should grasp the attention and convey your key USPs succinctly at busy times when you can't get to speak to people personally.

5 Make sure your website is up to date and running.

6 Make an A4 sign telling people to help themselves if you're busy.

7 Dress like you will for their wedding.

8 Sell your heart out. Memorise your pitch and repeat it constantly.

Our objective is to get the demo pack into as many hands as possible. Let the demo disk knock their socks off and motivate them to pick up the phone/check the website.

There are other refinements like using two identical screens running two different ads getting across the same message - the eye impact of multiple screens is stunning but you only have a limited time.

What I wouldn't do is to offer any money off, no specials - no-one will know you've had two years off if you don't tell them. in the UK at least there's no point in expecting people to buy or even commit on the spot. Let them go home and see your work at their leisure. Your potential customers need to have confidence in you - give them confidence.

Hope this helps.

Good luck.
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Old August 30th, 2009, 07:31 PM   #4
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I've dropped the used car salesman routine at wedding shows and now just wait patiently in my booth till a bride stops and watches for more than a few seconds and then I'll talk to her before she walks off, or sometimes they come over to me to ask about what they've just seen.

It's been my experience that I almost never book anyone who has been at a show if they haven't taken the time to talk to me so why flag each and every person down and wave my card in their face? I usually have a small table off to the side that holds some cards for the somewhat curious who want a card from every booth, but generally it's the ones who seek me out and talk to me face to face who will eventually book. I don't even offer the chance to book at the show, I tell people who are really interested to give me a call the following Monday and we'll talk more then. You never want to appear desperate.

I do agree with some points above, and disagree with others but honestly we've all got different styles/personalities so saying one way is right would be silly of me. You've got to figure out what works for you and your business, it's taken me a while to come to the approach I'm using now.

-Ethan Cooper
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Old August 30th, 2009, 08:13 PM   #5
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Philip, Outstanding advice. It's preplanned, organized and proactive. That's what it takes to get results from an exhibition or show.
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Old August 30th, 2009, 08:14 PM   #6
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Hi Peter

First of all, you are lucky to able to attend a show. Here they usually put them on Friday and Saturday..great for couples but not for me!! I'm shooting weddings!!

I must admit I adopt the "specials" tactic!! I was told a long way back that your website needs two essentials...something for free..(like a discount) BUT it must be within a fairly small timeframe so the client will take advantage before the special offer expires!!!

I personally like the idea of a "Show Special" ... What I do is rather offer a cash value off my packages rather than a percentage!! People seem to relate better to cash amounts. Giving away free "goodies" for me didn't work at all!! I tried to entice them one 30 day period with "get a free video frame preloaded with your ceremony video......etc etc" and no-one was interested at all!! However they love the idea of getting $$$ off!!

Hope you get tons of bookings at the show!!

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Old August 30th, 2009, 08:41 PM   #7
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great advice everyone....

Thanks everyone for the great advice...hopefully time will allow me to get in most of your suggestions.

Peter Vaughn
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Old August 31st, 2009, 01:20 PM   #8
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Maybe it's just my market, but I've found that show specials were never really effective. The couples that did book at the show would have booked us regardless of the special .. so in the end we were just giving money away for nothing. We even had some free giveaways we tried out and the brides that won never took advantage of them. It was odd.

So after about 4 years of trying various specials, we don't offer ANY specials at the show now and it hasn't affected our bookings. Different markets may have different results, though.
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