It’s not just for academia anymore. The advent of social media popularity has revolutionized communicating with your local brides or your product buyers. There has never been a better way to target in on your clients with paid ads, than there now is with Facebook/Instagram! You can spend as little as $1/day and still reach 75 to 100 possible clients if you have targeted properly. The catch is you must create daily posts to tell your business life story. We must throw out everything we think we know about what Wedding and Bridal ads and posts should look like and pay attention to what our followers like and comment on, or what they find engaging, if you will.
Every online site has a purpose. Your corporate branding is for your website. Your finished photos are for Pinterest, polished photos are for traditional print ads, and Facebook/Instagram are for personalizing your brand.
There is no business quite like yours. Your step by step journey is fascinating to others, if you are brave enough to share it. Instead of perfect branding with the background the same and photo shop editing skills being used, you focus on your process, personality and products. Use the smart phone in your pocket and take photos of everything you do, from daily routines to client meetings. Unpacking fabrics or trims, sketches of dresses, behind the scenes at photo shoots, photos of chatting with clients….all of these things are interesting to today’s bride or wedding business owner. If you feature your clients on your page and let them know it, you will find your page and presence growing.
Social media is our first step in creating relationships with our potential clients. If you use your posts and ads to illustrate who you are, what your goals are, what your mission is, and show the day to day minutia of your business, you will find your perfect clients. You will find yourself chatting with them in the comments on your posts & ads. Then you will find that you are meeting them in person and enriching those connections.
Just as retail store hours are consistent, so should your social media posts and ads be consistent. Posting at least once a day, everyday is a good starting point, but two or three times is even better. You’ll want to use inspirational quotes, funny memes, wedding related posts, and shout outs to your related wedding business partners as tagged posts are all ways to get your post schedule filled. More importantly, making some of your posts fun or educational will make you and your business more accessible to your followers. Accessibility is a key word for success on your social media. Showing your humanity and heart shows that you are human, too. It shows that you care about your clients as much as you care about their money. We are all looking for true connections. Social media allows you to create these connections.
Recommended Daily Post Schedule: 8:45 am, 11:45am, 5:45pm, 11:45pm
Finding and sharing your business voice is critical to success on Social Media. What is your business vibe? What is your goal? How do you make your clients feel? These questions will help you develop your social stories. For example, our bridal store’s motto is Fun with Friends and Fashion. So, we try to drive a certain amount of posts every week around this theme. We pair the idea with other events and projects like preparing for a local bridal show, where we showcase models during fittings, to our staff packing up the goodies for our booth, to booth design. Then we follow by showing brides in our booth and at the fashion show during the event. Our goal is to make our brides have a life time shopping experience, so we feature them from their first visit at a bridal show to their visit to our store to their wedding day. We show them they are welcome by our posts featuring other brides. We show photos and videos of our store and all our activities. All of this helps them know what to expect when they arrive in our store. After working on our social media since 2013, I know it makes them want to come to our store. We are now a regional store with brides arriving from the 5 surrounding states. They will drive up to 5 hours to visit us. We extended our ad area coverage as we grew our bridal traffic. We achieved all of this by posting, weighing and measuring, then re-applying as we paid attention to what our brides liked and didn’t like in our posts and ads.
One of the biggest complaints from brides is that small businesses do not have much info online. Over 97% of brides use social media to decide on the products and services for their wedding. If you have a strong social presence, you will see more business coming your way year after year. Branding is a day after day, month after month, year after year activity. The sooner you get started, the sooner you will find your voice, be heard by your chosen followers, and see brand growth.
A great way to soak into the bridal industry is to participate in National Bridal Sale Event. This event happens every year in July. It is supported industry wide from stores and designers to trendsetter sites like The Knot, Wedding Wire, Bridal Guide, Vows and Bridal Boutiques.US. To find out more about the event, go to www.NationalBridalSaleEvent.com
Jacqui Wadsworth is an expert in the textile industry. After years successfully negotiating thread and fabric contracts with mills and factories across the world Jacqui was offered a deal on a lot of wholesale wedding gowns. Since she was getting married, she thought, "Why not?" That fateful deal produced the perfect dress for her own wedding and instilled in her a love of all things bridal. By 2006 she opened the first Gilded Gown on Chapman Highway. That award winning boutique has since grown into the 6400 square foot emporium currently located in Knoxville Center Mall. Jacqui loves to share the beautifully curated dresses, stunning jewelry and sparkling prom gowns that she sources at market each season.