Like other wedding suppliers, wedding celebrants display at wedding fairs. With so many wedding fairs how do you as a celebrant decide which ones to attend?
Why Should Wedding Celebrants Have a Stand at Wedding Fairs?
As well as being the obvious place to showcase a celebrant’s business and meet potential clients, wedding fairs are a networking opportunity. Meeting other wedding suppliers and exchanging social media links and information with each other can be beneficial as suppliers suggest each other to their clients.
How to Decide Which Wedding Fairs Should You Display at?
Not all wedding fairs will be the right kind of a wedding fair for every wedding celebrant. The main thing to consider is what kind of a celebrant are you and will those attending and displaying there be the kind of clients or suppliers you are interested in?
If you are more of a traditional kind of celebrant, there isn’t much point attending one of the many alternative wedding fairs as those attending won’t be your kind of client, neither will the fellow suppliers. On the reverse, if you are an alternative celebrant looking to meet likeminded suppliers and gain bookings from attendees, there isn’t much of a reason to attend a traditional wedding fair as it could be a waste of your hard earned money and your time.
Are you prepared to travel for a specific wedding fair, or do you only want to do local ones? Most of the larger, well attended wedding fairs are weekend events and there are more things to consider when deciding to book a stand at these events. The time it takes to travel there can be time well spent if you can travel by train as you can work on the train. If driving, the time spent travelling is something to consider.
Wedding fair organisers promote their businesses and events in various ways, with most using social media as their main promotion platform. This is one way of deciding if their event is going to be financially viable for you.
Look for every event you are considering attending on Facebook and see how many have been invited or how many are attending. Those fairs which require a ticket to be purchased to attend are usually well attended as those with a ticket have paid to there so be and going with a purpose to find suppliers or to buy items on sale.
Cost of a Wedding Fair for a Celebrant
The cost of displaying at a wedding fair is much more than the stand price. You will need to spend time and money designing your stand and making unity ceremony items to show.
Costs to calculate before deciding to book a stand include:
- Travel costs to the event
- Parking fees if you go by car
- Accommodation costs if it is a distance wedding fair (if it is a distance from your home you may want to consider stopping over an additional night if it is going to be long hours)
- Food budget (you may decide to take your own. Some weekend fairs have a trader event on the first evening)
- Stand price (a smaller stand maybe too small so do not book a stand on the cost, book one on the amount you want to display to gain attention and interest)
- Display costs (this includes business cards, roller banners, banners, lights, batteries, tablecloths, stand display, flowers, and everything else you use on your stand)
- Clothing and personal grooming costs (unlike many other wedding suppliers, celebrants are seen on the day, and we need to look professional. This includes looking good at wedding fairs)
- Childcare/pet care costs
The cost of a stand is a small price to pay in comparison to all the above. If this is your first wedding fair as a celebrant you will have to buy/source everything making it costly, but over time your costs will come down if you have all your display.
Borrow items from fellow celebrants if possible. Posting requests for items to borrow in celebrant groups on Facebook maybe useful.
It is always worth remembering your stand should change at least annually if you do a few yearly shows as many attendees visit various fairs and return the following year. This will also help you from being copied at wedding fairs, especially alternative wedding fairs that are attended by other celebrants. Some attend to check out the competition, some believe they can make money from alternative people and give out business cards to attendees and take photos of celebrants stands displaying there. When you pay a lot of money to be at a wedding fair, and you have put a lot of time into being there, this is both annoying and leaves you pondering as to why this happens.
How to Display at Wedding Fairs as a Celebrant
Introduce your business by making sure your stand looks enticing, inviting, and professional. Make signs and branding stand out clearly and professionally, and place business cards, leaflets and ‘follow me’ social media QR codes/website link at the front of your stand.
- Your name/logo/company name/should be displayed everywhere and on everything. Not only is it informative, but it’s also your identity and makes you memorable and stand out. A company name and good logo make you look professional and a recognised supplier rather than an enthusiastic part time wedding hobbyist.
- If there is another Celebrant there introduce yourself. Professional celebrants will send attendees to each other. Maybe they have been approached to do something they do not offer, or perhaps after a chat with yourself they realise you are better suited to help than they are. Other celebrants do pass on prospective client’s details.
- If you have special offer prices or giveaways for bookings, make sure these are clearly displayed to catch attendee’s attention, and always mention them during conversations.
- Avoid using a white tablecloth. Choose ivory or even silver instead as this is a great way to make your display stand out in a room full of white tablecloths.
- Use the whole of your display space. Why just use the tabletop when you can utilise the whole of the space you are given? If you have the room, turn the table diagonally or vertically (obviously not on its side). This creates you a room like space and encourages people to enter rather than walk past. Not all fairs give you a large space, but if they do, consider this option.
- If you are just using a tabletop, create height using storage boxes hidden underneath the tablecloth. A tabletop is lower than our natural eye level. Display at eye level too, and really make the most of the small space you have been allocated.
- Consider attendees with children, prams, wheelchair and walking aid users and service dogs when designing your stand. Make sure your stand is accessible and appealing to all.
- If you have images of people, use images of all kinds of people. Diversity should be demonstrated by everyone.
- The Pride flag signifies understanding a cause and an event, it shouldn’t be displayed to try to gain business.
Preparing for a Wedding Fair
The following will help you get the most out of displaying at a wedding fair.
- Post on and interact with the fair’s attendees via their social media pages. If you have offers or discounts, mention these on the fair’s events page.
- Announce on your social media pages you will be attending this fair and engage with your followers by asking who is attending as a status or tweet.
- Tag the event and the venue the fair is to be held in as not only will they repost or retweet your post, but it is also a way of informing other suppliers and followers you are attending.
- Inform your clients you are attending and invite them to come along
Wedding fairs are marketing events just as adverts are. All businesses should set aside money for marketing. Just like paying for other forms of advertising, you cannot expect to see an on the day return. If you do, then well done. Sometimes it can take weeks, sometimes months to receive a booking from a wedding fair.
Further advice and information for displaying at wedding fairs is available to all in our Choice Celebrant Community. If you would like that information, you can join us here.
Blog by Choice Celebrant Training