Thursday, December 2, 2010

Preferred Vendor Lists

What exactly is a preferred vendor list? Who has them? And how will it affect my wedding?

I get asked these questions ALL the time! So it only seems appropriate that I address them today.

What exactly is a preferred vendor list?

Preferred vendor lists can be a couple of things. First, it is a list that an event planner “works off” of to recommend their clients to.

How does a vendor “get” on a vendor list?

Theoretically, they should be on the “list” because they are the best value for their dollar. Notice, I did not say the “C” word (cheap) as I can’t stand that word. This is all about a value. For me, the I do not have “list” that someone just gets added to. The vendor needs to have either worked with me or have an outstanding reputation in the industry (and yes, all event people talk so we know what everyone is up to. Although we take the “talk” with a grain of salt, do know that if you start hearing the same bad things over and over again, one grain of that salt “must” be true . Therefore, it is not appealing to risk my reputation on that). You would be shocked at the number of phone calls that come into our office asking “how do I get on your list”. Well, since it is common question, and we are not into “selling space” on our “list”, the best thing for you to do is do your job, do it WELL, work hard, be prompt, don’t abuse the system and your business will succeed.

How will the vendor list affect my wedding?

If your consultant/planner/vendor recommends other vendors (i.e. they are on a fictional list), that person is willing to put their reputation on the line. Being that weddings are a one shot deal (well in most cases…), a bad recommendation can ruin the wedding and put the said person in an awkward position with their client. Therefore the “list” is guarded very closely. ALSO—If a consultant is operating their business on a “kick back” premise (this means they get paid by the client AND the vendor), the list might not be in your best interest since the consultant would only be taking you to vendors who are going to pay them. They are not looking for the best value for your dollar so you will want to keep a heads up on that issue.

Quote of the Blog

If I take care of my character, my reputation will take care of itself” ~ Dwight L. Moody

Until next time—


Tuesday, May 18, 2010

New Blog Site!

Hi Everyone! I just wanted to inform you of our new blog site. It's much prettier with bigger pictures, so click here to enjoy!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

April Showers and SEO Stuff

The meeting this month was all about gaining more awareness about your wedding business through website SEO. Thank goodness for our guest speaker Wendy Covey of Trew Marketing to take the time to explain it all!

A very special thanks to the very new and swanky Westin Hotel at the Domain for hosting our meeting.

Our charity of the month is Safe Place, where we donated everyday needs like toothpaste, shampoo, etc.

Congratulations to our Planner of the Month, Rosa Gibson of Austin Wedding Planners!

... and congrats to Skip Neal of Honeymoon Guru for being out Vendor of the Month!

Here's Wendy from Trew Marketing explaining her SEO knowledge with us...

And of course, thanks to our Sponsor of the Month Austin Wedding Jookbox for the lovely sweets.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Featured Wedding: Gina and Jason

Photography and description provided by Suzi Q. of Q Weddings.

Gina and Jason's pink and gold theme charmed everyone who attended their wedding. Gina and Jason are just adorable...a sweet couple, so happy together. Gina wore great floral Manolo Blahniks and a stunning Elizabeth Fillmore gown. LuAnn from Verbena Floral Design created an amazing bouquet, it perfectly enhanced Gina's look.

ceremony and reception: The Austin Country Club

Friday, March 26, 2010

New Mentor Program!

As mentioned in the March Meeting-- the mentor program is starting.. Do you want to pick the brains of established wedding professionals? looking for some free information? come to our first mentor Coffee Talk on Tuesday, march 30,2010 at 10:00am at the offices of Babara's Brides. Come one come all! The mentor panel for March is Amy Mader and Barbara Hearne. Email barbara@barbarasbrides if you are coming. There is no fee!

Being a wedding planner

I recently was in a meeting where someone suggested I write about my life's lessons. Not weddings but life. This is a little odd for me since I feel most people coming to a wedding consultants blog will want to read about weddings. Trust me, there are enough wedding blogs where consultants showcase their work and that is fantastic. But sometimes there needs to be more. What is that consultant about? who are they as a person? and why are they truly doing this as a profession? These are very important questions each bride needs to answer. Therefore I am going to start to do this or maybe something of the sort. Welcome to unconventionality!

Being an event/wedding planner does have many perks, however it also has its downs. Over the past 20 or so years, I have learned how to be a better person. Through working with the bride on her most special day, you truly realize one of the many marvels of life. Passion. I have been able to find passion in what I do and I truly believe that you need to be passionate about life. If your passion is sitting in a cube job and answering phones during the day for 30 years so you can retire, more power to you. I personally would be on the brink of suicide. I cannot imagine doing the same thing day in and day out and hating going to work. My job is fun because I make it fun. I have had the distinct pleasure of seeing some bat sh** crazy things happen at weddings. I have had the distinct pleasure of meeting almost every type of bride there is out there (notice I do say almost since, well , quite frankly I am constantly given new opportunities to deal with special brides). Why do I smile about this since weddings are not always puppy dogs and rainbows? I have a unique quality of being able to make the best of a situation. The reason why I say that it is unique is because I have come to learn that many people to not have it. I could be stuck in a funeral home and most likely make friends with everyone (if you are getting my sense of humor-- that means the people are dead). Why? because just the thought of sitting amongst dead people would depress the heck out of me! You make the best of what you are given. No one will make your life better for you, except you. If you do not like what life has dealt you, then move on and find something else. Life is too short to be upset!

I try to begin each day with the feelings I had on my wedding day. Passion, love, excitement, happy fear of the unknown, adventure and fun. It is possible to say that "well today will be a sucky day" and then it most certainly will. We are in control of our own destiny. On the days that I wake up in a bad mood, my husband and kids are in a bad mood, my clothes look awful, my email will not work, the car is falling apart, and my hair is sticking out all over. So how is it that the days when my attitude is bad, everything is bad? Well, I can only believe that I dictate how my day will be. By losing the passion, excitement, love, adventure, fun and the happy fear of the unknown, I have predetermined myself to miss out on the best things in life! I will miss the joy of my husband, kids and my personal successes. Man that is a big thing to miss out on. It is not easy so do not think that "well she is just one happy freakin' ray of sunshine" because that is not true. I feel that I make a conscious decision to take on my day and be the best person I can be. That one small act will make the most extraordinary impact on your day.

Make sure you are extremely aware of your surroundings. That will allow you to internalize the most crazy of craziest things! There is always going to be someone better than you, wealthier than you, skinnier than you, fatter than you etc. but if you are no dead, you are contributing something to society. I was at the grocery store the other day when there was a bagger packing groceries. He thought it was a good idea to pack break underneath cans of soup. The customer went nuts on him. She said insults that were so impressive I had to listen. Sure, he should have thought about how he was packing the groceries (afterall it is his job) but I truly wanted to record her on my phone since the insults rolled off her tounge. As I carried on through my day, I looked at the silver lining and thought "well at least I do not have to go home with that lady tonight" and I hugged my husband as he walked through the door. See, you have many opportunities during the day to see life. Good/bad/indifferent? That truly does not matter. It will allow you to appreciate what you have and how you can be a better person.

So, I will wrap up my first entry patting myself on the back (since that is quite frankly what consultant blogs do:)). I had a wedding featured on the Style Me Pretty Blog. Go to Ashley and Drews wedding. It was in November 2009 at Laguna Gloria Art Museum and it was pretty fantastic! Sure, it was a bang out event-- but most importantly, they were a truly unique couple. What I appreciated most about them was that although there was a fantastic wedding planned, paid for and executed, they truly had passion for each other and I look forward to attending their 50th anniversary party.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

March Madness Meeting...!

As always, our monthly NEAWP meetings are a great time and a wonderful way to meet new wedding professionals as well as hang out with good friends. This month, our focus is on mentoring, charity, and raising the bar for professionalism in the wedding community!

Thanks to the fabulous Perry's Steakhouse for hosting our monthly meeting.

Allison Gueli from Parkside Restaurant

John John The Wedding Butler and Stacey Hogge of Petal Pushers.

The best part about the meetings is always the food :)

Amy Mader, our fearless leader, giving us the lowdown on all the charities we're helping this month! "Keep the Change and Pay it Forward" is a program that benefits "Toys for Tots". Plus next month's charity will be "Safe Place", which collects daily essentials for people in need. To get more involved, contact our Donor Diva Amanda Dudley of Big Day Event Productions.

Also, congratulations to our "Featured Coordinator of the Month" Britt Roth of Clink Events! And, another kudos to Myra Adkins of Word of Mouth Catering for being our "Featured Vendor of the Month"!

A very special thanks to Christie Mueller, owner of CLM Business Etiquette Consulting for her extremely informative talk about improving our businesses as well as client experiences and relationships!