In recent weeks, I’ve received two sweet emails from wedding service providers that I’ve written about on the Bee. Both emails were from vendors thanking me for a positive review. One vendor (my makeup artist, Nam Vo) mentioned that she received many inquiries for her services after I posted my pictures. These vendors had never heard of Weddingbee, so I’m happy that they are now exposed to the wonderfulness of our little forum!
This also brings up the interesting topic of vendor referrals. As a bride-to-be exploring the unfamiliar world of wedding planning, I often feel like I’m Alice in Wonderland. Every aspect is foreign and requires tons of research. Where do I order candy for my candy buffet? How do I get things printed? What’s the proper wording for invitations? What is a reasonable price for everything? Referrals from other brides and my own wedding vendors have been priceless through this process. Most of my vendors have been discovered through recommendations:
- Reception Hotel – Family friend hosted a wedding here
- Photographer – Photographed a friend’s wedding
- Cake – Neighborhood bakery
- Lighting – Referred by the reception hotel
- Music – Not sure, Mr. Eggplant found them first but they were also recommended by the hotel
- Flowers – Google search and mybayareawedding.com [this is the only vendor that we did not find through a referral]
- Officiant – Our pastor
- Printing Company – Referred by Mr. Eggplant’s coworker
- Makeup – I loved the artist’s work from another wedding
- Hair – Haven’t had my trial yet, but referred by makeup artist
I’ve often felt that brides have a disadvantage in a world of service providers charging sky-high prices and providing poor customer service. I’m begining to realize that we actually do have power in our voice. A bad review can draw business away from a vendor and also tarnish a reputation while good words can create more business. We actually have a big responsibility here in our forum!
Personally, I’ve found that word of mouth is the best and often most honest advertisement. My friends have given me golden referrals. Our reception venue has surprisingly recommended excellent vendors also. A few were out of our budget, but many were affordable and a blessing to work with. Now, as a champion for other brides, I feel extra responsible for writing completely candid reviews for the vendors that I talk about on the bee.
How did you find your wedding vendors? Word of mouth? Google searches? Paid advertisements? Have you given a vendor recommendation to someone else?