First Look – how first impressions mean so much to wedding couples

63% of couples view fewer than 5 venues before booking their big day so how do hotels get on that elusive short list? With the rise of the internet and the prevalence of couples researching online nowadays first impressions are more important than ever with modern savvy wedding couples.

Website
It goes without saying that venues need a good internet presence nowadays. However, have you actually used your own website from a bride or grooms perspective? Go to the weddings section with a fresh set of eyes (or better yet, observe over the shoulder of a friend or family member) and document your experience. Consider the imagery, clear navigation, easy access to pertinent information and a strong call to action. Beware of the stock photo!

Enquiries
Strong emails and a speedy phone call follow up are absolutely imperative and contribute a great deal to the first impression couples get of your venue. It is always worthwhile to send a test enquiry yourself to get the email response couples are sent. Really put yourself in their shoes to see if the email wording resonates with you and how it could be improved. I am always encouraging hotels to ditch the “corporate” speak when emailing brides as it is inherently a more informal relationship.

Show rounds
How are show rounds done in the hotel? Are couples names given to reception so when they arrive they are expected and greeted with a complimentary glass of bubbly/cocktail/coffee? Do you have a private area for them to wait for the person who does the show round with them? Provide them with a photo album of past wedding photos or a folder with thank you cards and emails from past couples for them to read – this is a great way to build their excitement and trust in the venue before they have even met the person who is going to do the show round with them.

Social Media
Yes, you probably have a Facebook page but does this work for you for weddings? Facebook Ads are a great way to target newly engaged couples in your area. You can test out the performance with relatively low budget and a dedicated landing page within Facebook helps improve the conversion rate on these ads massively instead of just directing them away from FB out to your website where they may get confused or frustrated and click away. Pinterest can be used really effectively as a sales tool to help get brides over the line by sharing customized mood boards with them to help them imagine their wedding day in your hotel.

Brides have changed the way they book – have you changed the way you sell?

WeddingDates provides enquiry management software which generates qualified leads for available dates, helps hotels streamline their wedding pipeline and supports social media activity via Facebook Apps and social media promotion. Contact us today to increase your wedding revenue for 2017/2018. Guaranteed wedding bookings or your money back! Ciara@weddingdates.co.uk / 020 3481 1332

first_impression

Image credits:NJ NY Live Picture Studios