#SMPWedding101 - Vendor Etiquette
December 2, 2016
Any former bride would agree: it takes a village to put together a wedding. Every vendor plays a fundamental role in helping it all come together, so you, the bride-to-be, can do what you're supposed to do: enjoy! To ensure everyone has a pleasant and productive experience, Marisa Nicole Events is sharing their insight on dealing with vendors and making the most of the planning process!

Getting Started


Three words… plan in advance! Before you even think about contacting vendors, be sure to know what your budget is, both overall and specifically for the service of the company you are meeting with. Once you do start connecting with potential vendors, let them know your price point and ask them what services they can include while staying true to that. Many brides worry that presenting a strict budget means vendors will shy away from giving her everything she wants for the wedding, but it is in fact the opposite! When vendors have an honest, clear budget to work with, and a straightforward idea of what you have in mind, each will do what they can to make it happen within your price range (and if they can’t, you’ll save a lot of time not communicating with vendors you can’t afford). As always, throughout the research process with potential vendors, kindness is key!

Booking + Negotiations


Hooray! You’ve decided on a vendor to book, now you just need to solidify details and make things official! Here is where the precedence is set for what your relationship with each vendor looks like moving forward. Through all the planning and design, remember that each vendor plays a massive part in making your day everything you want it to be, so treat your vendors with respect. When the potential vendors present you with their fees, understand that if you have been consistently specific and kind, it is their honest price. Trying to haggle a price point or talking them down can give off vibes that say you’re feeling as if the vendor isn’t worth what they think they are. Constant kindness from you means when it comes down to it, vendors will bend over backwards for you!

Wedding Logistics


As you approach the date of the event, don’t forget to continue to communicate with your vendors! Don’t assume they’re off doing their job and don’t need to hear from you anymore. Ask for each vendor’s collaboration by sending your contact the working day of timeline. See if what you have planned is setting their team up for success. When your contact gives you feedback, actually take it into consideration and try to work it into the day of plan. If what he or she is asking for just isn’t possible, be sure to communicate why, keeping the lines of communication open and allowing each vendor to feel as if his or her expert opinion is valued. If your vendors don’t feel heard, they are much less likely to give you their all on the big day. Be clear and interactive.

Execution


When the big day arrives, the most important thing to keep in mind with vendors is to never, ever treat them like they are just paid workers. Each one of your wedding team members has shown up to make your special day even more wonderful, and should be treated as kindly and with as much respect as one of your guests. The key is to remember that although your vendors are providing a professional service on your wedding day, they are still people too, just doing his or her best to make your celebration fabulous. Additionally - please feed your vendors in a timely manner! We suggest having the vendors eat at the same time that your guests do, as you wouldn’t want them to have to miss a minute of the action once speeches and dancing commence (the photographer can’t snag photos of your bestie’s Maid of Honor rap if the vendor meal is served at the same time and a hungry band won’t able to perform their best with tummies rumbling).

Post-Wedding Etiquette


In the same way that our mothers taught us to say “please” (see the 'Booking + Negotiations' section above), they also taught us to say “thank you.” We at Marisa Nicole Events truly believe that showing your hard working vendors how much you appreciate them is a must if you want your vendors to feel like you are happy with their work. This is where tips (and a kind note) come in. Which vendors should you tip, you ask? Our rule of thumb is that you tip the team members who are actually present during your wedding, pouring their blood, sweat and tears into making your day a success (whether or not the person on-site is an employee or the owner of the company)! If your vendor did a fantastic job and played a part in making your wedding as perfect as you had hoped, then we recommend a tip and a nice note to thank him or her for their service! If they’re not tipped, vendors will take it as a hint that they didn’t do a good job. Give them love if they did their job well.

In Sum


The bottom line is, always be as sweet as possible to your vendors! You will always catch more flies with honey. Kindness is the the key to having the most productive interactions, getting the best price, and having the best overall experience. Just remember that it’s your day, and your vendors are there to make it phenomenal! Happy booking!
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