The thoughts, or sometimes the ramblings, of a shoe obsessed wedding and event planner.
You want everyone to have a blast at your wedding, right? Right!
You want the dance floor to be packed all night long, right? Right!
It is totally up to the DJ to make sure that happens, right? WRONG!
I thought I would write this post because I heard an interesting story recently about a bride (we will call her Jane). Apparently at her friend’s wedding the dance floor was jam packed and the party went until the wee hours of the morning, everyone had a great time! So of course when it was her turn to get married, Jane called the same DJ her friend had. Jane’s wedding rolled around and you could have played croquet on the dance floor…it was empty. The party wrapped up early and Jane and her new husband were left wondering what happened, and they very obviously blamed the DJ for doing a crappy job.
My first question to Jane: Were YOU on the dance floor? No…she was busy mingling with guests.
My second question: At your friend’s wedding, were THEY on the dance floor? Yes, they were right in there, Gangnam style, partying it up with their guests.
It is certainly true that an experienced DJ makes a world of difference. They help things run smoothly, can play to the crowd, know when to change things up, and they have professional people and equipment. But here’s an important fact, ultimately it is YOU who decides how much action your dance floor sees. Let’s face it, the party centers around you! If you are low key walking around mingling, your guests will follow your lead. If you grab a cocktail and start to mime Applebottom Jeans and boots with fur (come ON people, I know you have ALL done it!) your guests will too.
The bottom line is that you need to dance and party as hard as you want your guests to! No matter how great the music and lights are, the DJ cannot force people to dance. Take the bull by the horns, kick off your fabulous heels and dance your ass off!
Tips to encourage your guests to dance:
With wedding season in full swing, I barely have time to sleep let alone blog but I thought this warranted a discussion. Sometimes I wonder if I sound like I’m whining…but thankfully it’s my blog! My intention is to try and educate couples, not only about wedding things …but about the value of hiring a good wedding planner.
Last week I received a call from a groom who immediately started firing off questions about budgets and destination weddings. It became clear very early on in the conversation that this gentleman had absolutely ZERO interest in hiring a wedding planner. He was calling me expecting me to answer all his questions about how much certain things cost, resort recommendations and the pros/cons of destination vs. local weddings.
If you are saying to yourself “What is wrong with that?” Read on my lovely …read on.
Obviously this person called me for one of two reasons, he has no idea where to start looking for this information or he doesn’t have the time to do his own research to find the information. These are both great reasons for HIRING a wedding planner. Key word there is hiring.
Each week I am shocked at the number of people who call and email me expecting me to give them information for free. Vendor recommendations, venue information, budget advice…the list goes on and on.
After a few minutes of him asking questions and me not really answering them, he said “If we meet with you, it’s free right?” I politely told him that yes, my initial consultations are no charge but the consultation is for us to get to know each other a bit, to tell you how a wedding planner works and discuss my fees. I told him that if he wanted help with a budget or suggestions on resorts etc. I have an hourly consultation rate. He became noticeably irritated and quickly ended the conversation.
Believe it or not there are couples who have no intention of hiring a planner, but will meet with a ton of us to see how much information they can get out of us for free. Some couples have no problem shelling out hundreds of dollars for a wedding cake or thousands of dollars on décor, but when it comes to realizing the monetary value of someone’s time, talent and expertise…not so much.
Do you walk into Starbucks and say “I can totally make my own coffee at home, so why should I pay you for it?” You pay Starbucks to make your coffee because they can do it better, you don’t have time to make your own coffee, it’s more convenient to have them do it for you, or if you’re like me…you actually have no idea how to make your own coffee. Yes you heard correctly…wedding planners are like Starbucks.
I am flat out during wedding season, working tirelessly for my amazing couples, basically surviving on lattes and granola bars.…Why would I spend a couple hours of my time meeting someone who has no intention of hiring me, when I can spend that time with my paying clients that realize the value of my services?
See my point? I thought you would! Now go relax and enjoy a latte at your favorite Starbucks.
We have all heard the term “You get what you pay for” and Lord knows it couldn’t be more true when you are dealing with wedding vendors. This blog post today might sound a bit bitchy but this is something that really grinds my gears…bad or inexperienced planners often give wedding planners as a whole, a bad name. If you use good judgment and do your research when hiring wedding vendors, you can rest easy knowing your big day is in the hands of professionals!
I want to make something clear. Wedding planners cost money because we do a TON of work (please see previous blog post http://www.headoverheelsweddings.com/blog/first-blog-post/) we charge fairly for our time and in my opinion a good wedding planner is well worth the money, just ask some of my previous clients!
When you see someone posting an ad that states they have 10 years of wedding planning experience but are just doing it for free as a “hobby” run like hell in the other direction. Don’t get me wrong, I love my couples and I LOVE what I do…but I would not put a couple hundred hours of my time into someone’s wedding for free. Not to mention the cost of things like gas to get to appointments and the mountains of paper and ink I go through. You cannot plan a wedding for free even if you aren’t charging for your time. My guess is this person has no idea what is involved in planning a wedding properly and when she realizes how much of her time she is putting in…she will either bail or ask to be compensated.
Everyone loves a good deal! In this ad it states that their normal price is $2500 but they will plan your entire wedding for $500. That is a two THOUSAND dollar discount. If you are that desperate for business that you need to discount yourself 80%... I wouldn’t want to hire you. Maybe they only do 20% of the work that a wedding planner is supposed to do?
What can I even say about this ad. If you can’t bother to use spell check and proper grammar when selling yourself, what kind of job are you going to do on someone’s wedding? Weddings are about details! I noted a few errors with some arrows. My favorite is “Big and Ball”…
Chances are you are spending a lot of time, money and effort on one of the biggest days of your life. If you honestly cannot afford to hire a reputable wedding planner (I personally think everyone can afford one if they think it is necessary, you just need to budget for it), then my advice is don’t hire one at all. No planner is better than a planner that doesn’t know what they are doing. Use good judgment and RESEARCH the planner you are considering.
Here are some questions you can ask that might help you in your search for the perfect planner: