This Sunday is the Nashville Perfect Wedding Guide (#NashPWGShow) show taking place at The Music City Center. The PWG shows started in 2011 and have quickly became the “must attend” show in the Nashville market. The winter shows have over 1,000 brides coming through the door. As a vendor I personally find these shows a tad overwhelming. If I find them overwhelming and I am in the business and already married….I KNOW YOU as a bride must feel overwhelmed. The summer shows offer a more intimate experience to connect with the vendors and we will try to alleviate some of the headaches by offering you 5 Bridal Show Survival Tips. Lace up your heels and get ready for action, we plan on getting you through this weekend like a hero!
1. Bring Decision Makers With You
Most of our clients have more than one person making the decisions for their wedding. Those people could be your fiance, mom or dad, aunt, maid of honor and the list could continually grow. Regardless of how many people you have helping you make decisions, a second opinion is always a good thing to hear. We do not encourage anyone to rush into any decision, but we do encourage them to weigh their options. Sometimes an additional voice can speak wisdom into your choices and may not be as emotionally tied to those decisions. On the opposite side of bringing decision makers…we would caution you on bringing little ones. I personally have two small children myself and I recognize they can tend to tire out and unintentionally create additional stress. That could potentially lead to poor decisions.
2. Speak Now Or Forever Hold Your Peace (in regards to vendors)
Plan on reserving your favorite vendors or priorities the day of the show. I can speak for our business alone and we have multiple days already filled in 2015. Why is that important? People are booking further and further in advance every year. They are not waiting for a free weekend to come book their vendors; they are booking them sometimes as soon as they get engaged. Recently we booked with a client as we had the pleasure of DJ’ing her two older sisters weddings. She got engaged on a Saturday evening and had phone messages with our staff on Sunday morning. She did not even have a venue or photographer booked, but she knew she wanted us to be a part of her event. Speak now for your vendors or you may have to move to “plan b“. One more thing to consider…many vendors will have special pricing if you book with them at the show. Saving $100 or $200 here and there will add up in the long run. Choose your priority services/vendors and book them on site.
3. Use Your Smartphone Camera
For me personally, I am a very visual person. I thrive off stunning imagery and I remember just about everything I see. I will rarely, if ever remember “that booth on aisle 3 with the cool guy wearing a bow tie?”. Grab some literature from the vendor, take notes, but most importantly, take a picture of their setup. After seeing multiple vendors, a plethora of setups and countless conversations it is simply difficult to remember what you liked or what you did not like. Pull out that phone, snap away, I promise you will be glad you did after the show
4. Plan Accordingly Around Those Fashion Shows
Nearly every bridal show incorporates fashion into every production. I consider myself a snazzy dresser and I appreciate the latest in fashion as much as the next person. However, these shows can be critical opportunities to connect with those key vendors. My two tips for planning the shows are as follows. One, get there early for the first one and grab a good seat. Check out the dresses. Investigate the formal wear for men. (I promise you will like Street Tuxedo, ask for John.) Secondly, when the next round of fashion shows hit during the wedding show…that is the time to strike those vendors. Typically the crowd thins out a little during this time and it can give you some extra moments to connect. Ask questions, get curious and maximize your time that day. The extra five minutes just may be enough to make up your mind.
5. Have Fun
This is probably a rule I would have in general for just about everything. Do not forget the reason you are actually attending the bridal show…you are there to prepare for one of the best days of your life. Instead of viewing every vendor as a salesperson, view them as a potential partner for an incredible day. Lean on their experience and advice to possibly avoid mishaps. Just like your mom and dad get smarter everyday…the successful vendors are successful for a reason, and I doubt luck is the main reason. Smile, enjoy the goodies and celebrate the moment. When you think about it; if planning the biggest day of your life is such a pain…why bother? Just elope and be done with it. I vote to embrace the energy and celebrate life together with those closest to you!
Make sure to stop by our booth and say hello! Strike up a conversation, it just might be the answers you were looking for ;) We will see you at the show.