Finishing a wedding or funeral celebrant training course is just the beginning of the start of your new job. Now you need to gain bookings to recoup back the money you have spent on your celebrant training, but how do you gain bookings as a celebrant?
Social media is a great way to potentially gain bookings as a celebrant. It’s free, reaches a lot of people and is essential to build your business and brand as a celebrant. It is time consuming and does take time with regular posts, images, videos/reels of relevant and interesting content. Many celebrants have found success from posting to social media, it is an excellent business tool.
As a web designer and website developer (there is a difference), one of the most common questions I hear is ‘do I need a website?’ Yes, is always my answer. The reason is your website is your business headquarters and your main shop window. Filled with all you have to offer and all you can do and have previously done as a celebrant. Social media is a great way of promoting your business, but don’t forget who owns the platforms.
Your Facebook, Instagram, or any social media pages you publish on could be hacked or cloned. Your hard work gone in a flash; you don’t own the social media page you just use it. A website is something you own, can be backed up. You present your information in the format you want your customers to see it, not being restricted unlike a social media platform.
With thanks to Michelle Taylor Celebrant
Does Your Celebrant Business Look Professional?
When people visit your social media platforms or hit your website, what do they see?
Are the images and posts informative, engaging, accurate and representative of you as a celebrant?
Do your social media accounts have reels and images?
Do you share content from others?
Do you document what venues and events you are at?
Do you respond to likes and comments?
Do you mix personal information and content with your business information?
Does your website look like many other celebrant websites?
Do you have many stock images which other celebrants also use?
Do you regularly blog and share this to social media?
Do you update the content on a regular basis?
Do you have access to update your website?
What does your logo say about your business? A logo is so much more than a nice looking image or a type face you like. An experienced graphic designer will understand this and advise you not only on your logo, but also your brand.
The designer will be displaying examples of logos and branding on their website and social media, ask them how they came up with the concept, chose the colours and typefaces.
A lot of questions but things to consider if you want to gain bookings as a celebrant.
Should I Pay for a Website to be Built?
This depends on what you want from a website.
Do you want a nice looking website with a blog which you can add to, run yourself, change your images on a regular basis and be found in an online search?
Do you want your business to be found in local and national searches?
Do you want your blogs to rank on Google so the content and information can be found?
Let’s look at this from a different prospective. You are at a wedding fair hoping to meet prospective clients and network with other wedding suppliers. You talk to a few people, and a few say their friend/family member is acting as their celebrant to save money. (A fair point perhaps in these hard financial times). Another asks your fee and says their celebrant is only charging them £350. How do you feel? Happy for them? Slightly annoyed? You do not have an opinion? You smile and wish them well and think to yourself you would have done a better job and included things which would have made this a tailormade ceremony without any possible copy and pasting from online ceremonies.
After spending money and time to train as a celebrant, and hearing there are people doing what you are doing for free, or a much cheaper fee than you are charging can be deflating. You are a professional and each ceremony you build, design, create and deliver is done so uniquely.
It is the same with your website.
You may have family or friends who build websites, and there are free templates around too, but as the saying goes ‘you get what you pay for’. ‘Drag and drop’ websites as they are known (templates where text and images can be dropped into certain places) are the celebrant equivalent of online scripted ‘insert name’ ceremonies. They may look different with a few changes, and yes, they serve a purpose. Will it help you gain bookings as a celebrant? Is this how you want to define your business? A purpose or a ceremonial marker in a life story?
Websites are more than text and images on a phone or screen. They need to be coded correctly and have search engine optimisation as this is how you will get found.
If this can be done with a free one or one built be a friend, brilliant, go for it. If you aren’t sure, research more before you take up a kind or reduced price offer as in the long run, it will cost you more money and could prevent you from being found online and gaining bookings as a celebrant.
Research Website Builders and Website Developers
When you looked for celebrant training, you would have researched different companies (even if one was recommended to you). Your clients will research you and other celebrants, and you will research many things when creating a ceremony. Research is essential for all celebrants.
Things to look for in a website developer/builder.
What does their website look like?
Do they have good reviews from past clients?
How many other websites have they built?
Can you see and find online past websites they have built?
Do the websites they build look similar?
Do they understand your individual business needs?
Can they advise you on how to gain bookings as a celebrant?
Are they using drag and drop templates?
Will they give you instructions and control of your own website?
Are they on hand to help with any security or site issues if needed?
Do they offer a content creation service/advise on how to be found online?
How much do they know about website construction, developing, security and maintenance?
Are they as knowledgeable as they seem? Ask them to explain correctly and research their answers. They are far too many claiming to understand about search engine optimisation (SEO) and the above and, they are blagging people to get business.
What do you receive for the fee you pay?
Can you pay in instalments or is it a one off fee?
What is the monthly/annual fee after your site has been built?
Can your site be moved to another hosting in the future?
Will your website be mobile friendly too?
Are they active on social media?
Celebrant Websites, Uniquely and Professionally Built
I have had over 25years experience designing and developing websites. I have been building websites for celebrants for over 8 years and have built celebrant training websites for two companies including Choice Celebrant Training.
I have built many websites for new and established celebrants and here you can view some of the sites I have built and read testimonials.
There are of course others who build celebrant websites too. My advice is to check out their portfolios and set up a meeting and ask questions.
Get Recommended as a Celebrant
If you want to be successful, your website and social media presence will help you to gain bookings as a celebrant.
Being recommended by people who have seen you in action through past clients is a great way to gain bookings. How did those clients who recommended you find you and book you?
No Obligation Information on Celebrant Websites
I am always happy to chat to celebrants and other small businesses about how a correctly built and well performing website can gain bookings. If you would like to do this, please contact me.
Blog by Rob – Solo Creative
Website Designer Graphic Designer