During times of crisis, maintaining a calm, collected brand voice and keeping open channels of communication with clients is critical. As you navigate the difficult decisions that need to be made, we’re here to be a source of information for you. Dealing with clients can be really stressful at this time as it’s not just you, the whole wedding industry is shaken at this point in time. In fast-moving and uncertain situations, many leaders face questions they may not even have answers to. Here’s a little help from our side on how to navigate through clients’ questions.
Don’t Cancel, Postpone
One thing we need to communicate to our clients is: Canceled weddings shake up families who have been planning the most significant day of their lives for months or sometimes years. Postponing is always a better idea – and with the flexibility that the entire travel and tourism industry is providing at this stage, it may work better for their budget and still keep their dreams alive! As JoAnn Gregoli from Elegant Occasions says: “It’s a bump on the road – not the end of their romance.”
Experts are recommending not to postpone weddings if it is after May. Canceling the wedding does not make sense financially. Most couples who are postponing their weddings currently are looking at rescheduling to October and November this year. So we hope to see the industry start to build itself back up towards the end of 2020. Additionally, having a small ceremony on the planned day and having the wedding postponed after 6 months can be a great idea to offer the clients.
Focus On Empathy
Focus on empathy rather than trying to create selling opportunities. Think outside of the box and be flexible. The clients are looking for help, they are also in the same situation as you are. Offering them help by coordinating with other vendors might work. Ask vendors about solutions should you need to postpone your event. Let clients know what you’re doing to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Use the crisis as an opportunity to reinforce the relationship’s long-term fundamentals.
Wait And See Approach
Nobody wants to cancel the biggest day of their lives. Depending on the destination you are getting married in, wait and see how things are progressing in the coming days. Encourage the wedding vendors to be more flexible in the contract for summer weddings and see the possibility of holding on. Agree on a cut off date with the client to make the final decision – tomorrow may be a better day! Address the elephant in the room by answering questions about reschedule/cancellation policy. be flexible with refunds. Advice the bride to inform the guests in advance.
Be Proactive With Communities
Right now, your audience won’t be interested in stories like ‘Fresh Spring Bridal Collections’ or ‘Best Wedding Decor Designs.’ You need a content strategy right now! Create content that is more in line with the current zeitgeist. It can be a piece of news, challenges, concern, trend or real stories of how the Coronavirus has impacted their life. Engage with the local and international communities to figure out a way to support and help each other in the time of crisis.
Brides and grooms are getting nervous and don’t know what to do. If everything gets back to normal in a month or max two, it will be painful to see the wedding getting canceled which still was months to go. Acting as an advisor to them in these times and making them understand the facts will help see the light at the end of the tunnel. In the end, it’s about learning from the lesson. What has it taught us? What can we do in the future to deal with such a situation? And keep in mind that this crisis, which will end and allow life to go on, is likely to be a game-changer in terms of what the clients are expecting. Hence, spread positivity and ensure your clients to look at the brighter picture.
All Images Credit: @twenty20