Persuading brides-to-be to go all out on lavish floral arrangements for their ceremony and reception isn’t the only way to increase your wedding revenue. After all, a wedding isn’t really just a one-day fling; anyone who’s tied the knot or served as an attendant knows the meaning (and cost) of “engagement season” and wedding weekends.
Jennifer Pryor, owner of White House Florist & Winston’s Gift Shop in Lexington, South Carolina, pushes for a bigger piece of the pie by pitching her goods and services for ancillary wedding activities, such as bridal showers, rehearsal dinners and day-after brunches.
“Brides rarely think about those things — they have tunnel vision imagining their reception — so I’ll try to nonchalantly ask they’d like me to talk to the person planning those parties,” she said. Rehearsal dinners, in particular, are rather easy sales. “I tell the client I can do something that’s consistent with the rest of the wedding and won’t upstage the main event.” (Mothers-in-law, particularly those from out of town, really appreciate have the burden of planning lifted off their shoulders, she added.)
Another big seller: portrait bouquets. A lot of wedding photographers include portrait sessions (perfect for running in a wedding announcement the day after the wedding) in their package, and Pryor describes how holding the bridal bouquet would make that photo even more beautiful and special. “Plus, it serves as a trial run to make sure they’re completely satisfied,” a pitch that has an “almost 100 percent” success rate, she said.
Lastly, Pryor makes sure to plug her gift shop as a place where brides can register and purchase presents for the bridal party. Her consultation room is strategically placed in the back of the shop (a large, antebellum-style house), so brides wind up walking through rooms of giftware when they meet with her. Boutique items, particularly Nora Fleming serving pieces, catch their eyes. “We end a lot of consultations by scheduling a follow-up appointment for the bride to work on her registry,” she said.
To learn more ways to win a bigger piece of the bridal budget, check out “Wedding Cashers.”
Ready to expand your matrimonial merchandise? Check out the New Products column in the March issue of Floral Management.