The Recession is over….

I glanced at a headline today that stated “Economists State the recession is Over”. While this may seem like good news, I thought of what I mentioned in last weeks message about how many wedding businesses have felt the number of weddings they were doing in 2009 fell off a cliff.
This thought brought to mind a saying that I once heard, “The time to dig a well is not when you get thirsty”. This is especially true in the Wedding industry as most of us have a forward momentum of about 6-9 months out for wedding bookings. This being the case, let me share some ideas of what you can be doing right now to effect your business down the road.
1. Have a target in mind. This step seems almost too simplistic, however, you would be surprised at how many people do not have a simple goal in mind of how much business they want to do , let alone how they are going to do it. Base your numbers on a metric that is manageable and realistic, yet will make you stretch. I highly suggest you spend some time on this step to really breathe some life into your vision. By having a vision about what you want and why you want it, you will automatically have 90% of the how to get it done.
2. Create a marketing plan that fits your talents, likes and abilities. There are about 9 ways to market to Brides that are effective. Within those 9 ways are other sub-sections (i.e. on the web, there is your web site, other web sites, linking strategies, facebook, blogs, and you tube-6 different sub- sections of the one major category). Figure out wherein your strengths fit the best. If you don’t like to play on Facebook, that is something I would suggest you avoid and not concentrate. However, if you don’t like facebook simply because you don’t understand or know facebook, maybe you should set the goal to figure it out, read a book, or simply ask someone who does know facebook. Your marketing plan is your well digging and you will not get too much immediate business, but have the chance to start preparing to get some business. This business will come down the road, so be ready to wait for it (don’t hope that all these Brides will start flocking through your doors in December, even though in the past however many Decembers you have not booked a single wedding- you may have done some weddings, but the Brides typically don’t come seeking you out to start the process in that month, etc…)
3. Review what you have going on right now. Now is a great time to revamp your web site, start that video blog or simply lay out a new brochure to use. This is very important- make sure you test it out with at least 20 girls who are of marrying age or your typical Brides age that you attract. By getting their feedback, you will have the ideas of what they like and what they do not like. (you may as well give your prospects something that might attract them to taking the next step J )
4. Get out and do all the things that might keep you from Sales and Marketing down the road. I like to look at my days as prime time and value time. This is from the concept of Television where your prime time shows are the shows which create the highest amount of revenue dollars and value time is where the Television stations are making deals. If you can only get out and meet other wedding vendors during what is your prime time and you are busy running errands or getting equipment fixed, etc… you are wasting time. Take a moment to figure out A) when in the day is your highest ROI for marketing and Sales efforts B) when you can shift other activities away from that time, so as not to interfere with your Sales and Marketing efforts.
There are seasons to every business. If you are in a Winter right now, don’t despair- there has never been 2 Winters in a row! Spring is coming, so prepare now and soon you will be reaping the results!


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