You just got engaged, and your mind kicks into full gear, thinking about all the possibilities for the wedding and reception that will make for a memorable experience. There are so many resources available to you, which way do you go to select reliable vendors? Google search? Bridal magazines? Self help books? Online directories? To some degree it depends a lot on how much time you have to put into it?
It’s the Local Thing
The best Wedding Vendors are woven into the local wedding event community. Good vendors have their ear to the ground when it comes to who is who, understanding who is a high end service provider versus a company who’s business model is to provide basic services for a lower price. Yes, selecting wedding services is really a “Local Thing”.
Face to Face
If you are going to select a good vendor, the best way to learn more about them is to meet them Face to Face. You should be weary about hiring a wedding service where all the communications are via Emails. Emails hide much of the reality about how ones business is run. For companies who deliver actual product, visiting their operations facility is very valuable. If their warehouse is clean and organized, that is a good foundation for providing great services to you. EC provides tours of our facility and will even pull down the tent you have selected or stage the table layout, complete with your linen colors, chairs, dishes, etc. There is no reason to worry about whether the tent is 5 years old, or muddy when a sales person has the confidence to show it to you. And while you are there, watch the employee interaction, because these are the people who will be working on your property for several days.
There are many different ways to pick reliable wedding vendors. You can be your own Wedding Planner, or use the services of others to help you through the process. Lets explore this further.
Three typical ways to select wedding vendors:
1. Be your own planner
Be your own planner, selecting all the service providers based on your own research. If you are inclined to do your own planning we suggest you use the better tools that are available to you online such as Wedding Wire, readyEVENTgo and The Knot. Finding on line customer reviews are a good gauge of how a company performs. If you like a company, but see a questionable review, ask them about it. The way they respond is probably an indicator of how they would respond, should you run into an awkward moment while they are providing services. Anyone can make a mistake, it is how they work through it that counts the most.
2. Use Trusted Vendor referrals
Do you have a caterer or party rental company who knows the market? If the vendor is well established in the region you live in, chances are they know who is who of their event partners. A Caterer is not going to give out the name of a florist or photographer and risk their reputation not knowing if they will stand behind their promises. Chances are they are placing their own business with the companies they refer to.
3. Use a Wedding Planner
A Wedding Planner, might provide any or all of the following services:
- Partial Planning – Partial planning usually means picking from a menu of services and agreeing on a price for the service provided.
- Day-of Coordinator This refers to hiring the perfect “go to person” for the day of event.
- Full Planning is a start to finish approach where the wedding planner takes a fee up front to secure the best value to the client.
One last thing. The perfect wedding planner should feel like talking to your best friend. Chemistry is everything. A good wedding planner is not there to get your money, they are there to build their business reputation one happy customer at a time. A future referral from you is the life’s blood of a successful wedding planner.
About Event Central and Wedding Planners
Event Central shares great relationships with many Central PA wedding planners. Sometimes they place the business on behalf of the client. Other times they just give our card to a customer with a recommendation without us knowing. Below are a some of the planners we enjoy a steady relationship with. (If you happen to be a wedding planner I did not mention who sends work our way, we’d love you too, and welcome you to comment on the blog)