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  • Writer's pictureJustin Hanover

Set Up Your Marketing So You Never Stress About Bookings

Wedding Venue Marketing

Owning a wedding venue means you can’t just sit back on the last booking you had come through and think you are set for the future. Or worse is having the mentality that just because you exist people will book for you.

That might have worked years ago, but now there is definitely NOT a shortage of wedding venues. When competition gets tight the ones who actually have a marketing strategy are going to keep coming out on top.

If you want to control your business you have to control your MARKETING. Your marketing is the life blood of your business. Nothing else happens if your marketing isn’t flowing.

The problem right now is we are experiencing a bump in growth for the wedding industry because of the reschedules from 2020. Which is great, but it is also giving a lot of venue owners a false sense of security.

This bump won’t last forever, and again once it dies off and returns to normal flow do you have control over how people are finding you and making sure they keep picking you?

If we stuck you venue against the 10 other options in your area why would people pick you?

Most don’t know where the next lead will come from or why they would pick them which makes your business vulnerable.

Well that can all be fixed with a proper marketing strategy that sets you up for future success and separates you from the competition.

What exactly is a marketing strategy?

I just want to quickly address what a marketing strategy is and isn’t. I think it is important to understand this first because it will help you think about your marketing differently.

Basically a marketing strategy is a series of actions that are all working together to reach the bigger picture goal. It allows you to understand what actions should be done daily, weekly and monthly. It also provides consistency in your business to allow you to understand what is working and what isn’t working.

This is vital as most small business owners are actually out of business 1-3 years before they realize it. This is because they lack consistency and tracking within their strategy and are not able to see the red flags coming at them.

So having a marketing strategy that lays out from the moment someone finds your venue to when they book and beyond allows you to build consistency within the business. Consistency in your actions is what breeds success.

What a marketing strategy is not

Where most get confused with this is thinking that doing random advertising is a marketing strategy or is “marketing.” All that really is, is random ADVERTISING actions that generally aren’t working together.

For example just running ads on social media or hiring a social media manager does not qualify as a marketing plan. Most do these things expecting those particular actions to turn into customers. It can sometimes but in most cases all it is doing is just boosting vanity numbers that don’t lead to growth.

So, the point I am trying to get across is that no matter what you pick whether it be Instagram ads, Google ads, social media content relying on the advertising action to attract, nurture, and convert isn’t going to happen.

There is so much more going on and you are basically neglecting the journey a buyer goes through and expecting them to go from the first date to marriage all within 10 minutes.

It simply is not a sustainable plan to keep operating like that.

The three phases that make up a marketing strategy

Now that we are on the same page with what a marketing strategy is and is not, let’s dive into what makes up a marketing strategy that leads to never stressing about booking more weddings again.

Phase 1: Audience Growth

Wedding Venue Marketing

This is phase one for a reason. If you are not actively growing your targeted audience then your business is slowly dying. Especially being in the wedding industry you are not working with the same clients for months or years. Which means you always need to be growing your audience to keep the next customer coming along.

As we have been explaining we don’t believe in just throwing a fishing net out and hoping for the best. We want to make sure we are building ideal audiences that actually want what you offer. So, we have two main ways we do that to make sure the right people are seeing you and that you show up when it matters most when they are ready to book.

Pinterest: Pinterest is a powerful search engine NOT a social platform. Most don’t fully understand the power of Pinterest and try to use it like other social platforms. Well that just won't work! When it comes to Pinterest it is about image selection and keywords. Since it is a search engine you have to make sure you are showing up for searches your ideal customer is doing.

We focus our efforts on Pinterest because it is a much higher quality lead since they are actively searching for your business. Good marketing is about going where your client is NOT just doing what everyone else is doing. Feel free to grab our free Pinterest Marketing guide.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO): This is our second focus to drive the right traffic to keep building your targeted audience. There are thousands of searches happening ALL around your business everyday with people that want what you are offering. The only problem is you are not showing up in any of those searches. So you are literally leaving money on the table.

That is where we come in. We will create a 5 month SEO plan to overall your website to make sure it is fully optimized for the right keywords your ideal customer is using. There is no shortage of competition which is why making sure your site is fully optimized so YOU keep showing up when your customer is looking for you.

Phase 2: Audience Nurturing

Wedding Venue Marketing

Now that the audience growth is happening it’s time to move to the next phase in this marketing machine. The nurturing phase. Basically what this means is you are building know, like and trust with your audience. No one likes to buy from a company they don’t trust.

Without the nurturing phase it is like you are trying to go from just meeting a random person to asking them to marry you. Usually it doesn't end well. (Most try to skip this step)

We make sure that awkwardness doesn’t exist with your customer and that they feel connected to your brand and see you as a trusted solution.

Blog Marketing: Blog marketing not only boosts your SEO but it really helps you connect with your audience and position you for the next step. Really what a blog should be is a mini sales letter. That is exactly how our team crafts all of our blogs. Yes, you read that right. We handle all content creation so no added work for you. Amazing, right?! We think so..

Blogging helps you connect with your audience on topics that matter most and are most relevant to why they would be looking for your service or venue. Then beautifully positions the call to action in a way that never feels like they are being sold.

Website Optimization: Your website is your 24/7 sales person. It is the first point of contact with your ideal customer and first impression ABSOLUTELY matters. You have about 7-10 seconds to get them to stick and want to learn more. Doesn’t leave room for a lot of errors.

So we make sure your site is dialed in to pull your audience in, nurture them and guide them to taking action. There is a method and a flow to how a site should go and most don’t understand this and think by making the site prettier it is good. Not so much.

Phase 3: Audience Conversion

Wedding Venue Marketing

Moving right along here! We are building a targeted audience, nurturing them to build brand trust, and now it is about the conversions or bookings! When you move your ideal customer through this process when it comes time for them to book it happens effortlessly. In fact they are happy to book! It feels good when you feel like you found the ideal service or venue. Like it was created just for you. That is what this process is about.

Offer Creation: Not all offers are made equally. Having a poor offer can really cancel out all the efforts you made up until this point. So, we work with you to make sure your offer is SO good it would literally feel silly saying no.

Email Marketing: It is great to get the traffic to your website, but in order to convert more you have to be able to keep the relationship going beyond that. Capturing emails is a powerful way to do that. Your email list will be your best source of new bookings. With our email marketing service we will build out a lead nurture campaign for you. It will run automatically as soon as your ideal customer opts in! We craft the emails to make sure they are focused on building a relationship, educating them, and then providing opportunities to book. Since this is automated it frees you up to focus on serving those that book with you all while your marketing machine is running constantly in the background.

Let’s wrap this up

Do you see now when each one of these phases is a part of the process how it leads to never running out of bookings?

Delayed gratification is so important when it comes to building a solid business that can last for decades. Most try to skip steps and run right to making sales. The sales part is the exciting part right?

Well, it is but without the other two steps getting to the sales part is unpredictable at best.

Along with sales being appealing the other issue for most owners and why they don’t properly set up a marketing strategy is the lack of time. You are doing so much already so something has to give, and it usually is the marketing.

It takes time to set this all up properly to make sure it runs like a machine. Which isn’t an issue if this was all you had to worry about, am I right?

I absolutely get that and understand the position you are in. I have been there myself. That is why I created the Smart Marketing Program for wedding venues. Where we basically become your marketing team and build out everything we just walked you through in 6 months.

So, you have a fully functioning marketing strategy that will keep working for you well into the future. Let my team and I take this stress off your plate so you can stay focused on doing what you love most about your venue business, without stressing about where the next booking will come from.

What is the next step?

Let’s get to know each other and make sure we are a good fit. You can simply click the link below to apply for our Smart Marketing Program. Once you apply we can set up a call to get to know each other, and if working together makes sense we can go from there.

Quick note: part of the application process is to make sure we even have your area available. We provide location protection for our clients and will not take on venues within 30 miles of our current clients. So, be sure to apply as soon as you can to even see if we have your area available.

Marketing Application

Your marketing team

Justin & Lindsay

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