1. Give them reviews online
We all have Facebook pages and would LOVE to hear what you thought about your experience with us! Further, when you leave a word about your experience, it allows other couples to get a better idea of what us vendors are like. And who knows, your words may even get featured on the vendors website!
2. Tag them on social media
We all love posting wedding images, and why wouldn’t we? Even wedding guests nowadays can’t help but snap a phone pic. to post on their Instagrams. Now, couples are usually pretty good about tagging their photographers on these social media posts [which we appreciate very much by the way], but people almost NEVER tag the other vendors (catering company, venues, DJs, etc.). Posting a picture of your wedding cake on Facebook? Tag the cake decorator! Posting an image of you holding the flowers that you absolutely adored on Instagram? Tag the florist, and leave a special comment about how amazing she was to work with! Every time you mention them, you give them just a little more exposure, and above all else, that is something they really do need the most of.
3. Send them something in the mail that they would love!
I LOVE getting mail! Nowadays, it’s the most personal way to speak with someone. It requires time, effort, and a great deal of thought. Being for real, when a past bride sends me a gift as a way of showing me she appreciated my time and friendship, it brings an inexplainable amount of joy into my life! [By the way, if you ever happen to fall into a position where you could see yourself sending me a gift, I ALWAYS love receiving cookies of pretty much any variety].
4. Tell your friends about them!
All else being equal, people generally want to work with others that they both like and trust. This is ESPECIALLY true at weddings! You can always find disaster stories about vendors who didn’t show up on time, and as a photographer, the thought of the florist being late to a wedding I’m photographing actually freaks ME out a little bit [Ring shots without a bouquet? What’s even the point?!]. But, when you find a GREAT vendor, that is something to talk about! Someone who shows up early and stays late to make sure everything is good. That decorator who waits until the reception is well underway just to make sure that nothing falls apart. Those people are WORTH talking about, and if you loved working with them, the biggest way you can help them professionally is by just TELLING people about them. I promise you, they will adore you for this, and will probably give you a HUGE thanks when they found out you referred someone to them.
5. Call/text/email thanks!!!
Sometimes running a business can just be a downright thankless job. You book weddings, do your job, and then get ready for the next one. You work and work and HOPE that people can see how much you are accomplishing. At the end of the day though, you can’t expect anyone to really care. You don’t have bosses to tell you how good your doing. Your parents pretend to understand but they are just bewildered that you’re business still exists in the first place. It can be disheartening and overwhelmingly exhausting.
But we press on because we love what we do! Flowers are delivered PERFECTLY, the food tastes a thousand times better than you imagined it could, and your videographer even surprises you with a DVD of some fun blooper moments! You loved every bit of your wedding day because there were a small army of people behind the scenes making it all happen. Once it ends however, couples so often get so busy being married that they forget to let their vendors know what a great job they did.
Personally, as a photographer, when a client lets me know that she loved working with me… it makes all the difference. I give my heart and soul to wedding days trying to be everywhere all at the same time, keeping the energy going even when a tropical storm is raging outside [literally happened]! When a bride calls me after the fact and just says thank you… the hours of toil become so incredibly worth it! It feels SO great when a client texts me after receiving her images just EXPLODING with happiness! You can’t beat that! I’d say the favorite thing past clients have ever done for me was just letting me know that they were glad they had me there on their day… That’s it. So, above leaving reviews or telling friends… and MAYBE even above sending cookies in the mail, remember to love your vendors in the simplest and most routine way: with genuine, expressed thanks.