The UK wedding market is jam-packed full of Millennials. Fact.
In fact, out of the 250,000 weddings per year in the UK the vast majority of couples are aged between 25-39 (aka Millennials). Source: The UK Wedding Report 2018 by Bridebook.co.uk.
And those digitally devoted information absorbers are now demanding a different approach from wedding suppliers. They’re looking for an altogether more open wedding market. They want you to overshare examples of weddings you’ve worked on – but don’t hound them or they’ll swipe left.
They might not have tons of time for you but they sure as hell want you to lay all of your cards on their perfectly designed wedding breakfast table.
So here’s the rundown of exactly what engaged and soon-to-be-wed couples of today expect from their wedding entourage for the approximate 20 months that they’ll be engaged and working with you…
1.Be online when your couples are
Unsurprisingly, the most popular time of the week for wedding planning is after work, with 63% of couples stating that evenings were the time they were most likely to be online.
Bridebook has discovered that the majority of enquiries are sent between 7pm-9pm so as a wedding supplier, you need to be active at these times. And of course the faster you are able to respond and interact with these enquiries the higher your conversion rate will be.
Where possible, keep an eye on your inbox over the weekend as Saturday (40%) and Sunday (37%) also show higher than average wedding planning activity.
2.Contact couples in the right way
For yet another year running, email is the preferred method of communication for initial enquiries (85%) and ongoing contact (88%) between couples and suppliers.
Interestingly though, half of couples also want in-person contact with the suppliers they’re working with.
However, you choose to answer your initial enquiry, remember to ask your couples how they would like to be contacted from there on and ask when is best for them in case evenings and weekends don’t suit.
3.Never underestimate the importance of reviews and recommendations
For yet another year running, couples have rated reviews and recommendations from friends and family (71%) as the most valuable source of information when booking wedding suppliers.
It is now more important than ever that you showcase your past work and triumphs wherever and whenever possible because 76% of couples read 8 or more reviews before booking a wedding supplier.
More specifically, 59% of couples said that they wanted to read online reviews from couples you’ve worked with in the past before making a decision on whether to contact you.
4.Understand how couples are choosing to spend their wedding budget
Did you know that the national average wedding spend in the UK in 2017 was £17,913 – excluding honeymoon? In London, this figure rises to £31,837.
So what are these big spending Millennial’s actually doing with their wedding budget?
The good news is that the money being spent on suppliers has increased by an average of 12% year on year. Consider this when reviewing your prices and ensure that you’re still pricing competitively and are not underselling your services by pricing too low.
Marquee hire (24%) food and drink (23%) and venue dressing (22%) are areas of spending that grew the most year on year.
5.Couples need interaction
The wedding industry is an unknown for most couples when they first dip their toe in our world and as such, we should be willing to guide them through the process.
This is the most important day of their lives and they are spending a lot of money so you have to prove your worth and show them that your business is worth investing in from the get go.
Be their friend and their partner throughout the wedding planning process. By communicating in the right way and offering the right kind of advice without being pushy you’ll ensure that couples have confidence in you and trust your expertise.
6.Couples depend on your photos
It is so important that you show couples what you do and what you offer with real, visual examples.
Keep your website and Bridebook profile up to date with the latest and greatest photos from weddings you’re most proud of.
Wedding venues – make sure that you’re showcasing great quality external and internal photos. If you aren’t blessed with acres of glorious grounds take photographs of other assets that surround you – whether rolling countryside or big city hotspots.
Makeup artists, wedding stylists, florists – photograph your work yourself and ask photographers and videographers for permission to use a couple of their photos or stills from the day (remembering to credit them).
Try to evoke a “that could be us” feeling with every visual you share.
7.Diversity is important to Millennial couples
Diversity is a problem that we are facing in the industry and we as suppliers should be tackling it head-on.
We live in one of the most diverse countries in the world and to ignore that is to ignore and potentially offend your potential customers.
As a start, be gender inclusive and try not to use phrases such as ‘normally a bride and groom have this or do that’. Consider your use of ‘bride and groom’ in the content you write and speak, using the term ‘partner’ or ‘couple’ instead.
We should be making every couple feel confident, comfortable and unique.
Wedding suppliers; ask yourselves…
…are you working with millennials or against them?
Are you interacting with them at the time and in the ways that they want you to?
Are you showcasing your business at it’s best – including reviews and beautiful images to really sell how great you are?
Bridebook can help you adjust to what Millennial couples want and need. Set up your own Bridebook page now to start promoting your business in a quick, easy and effortless way.
Looking for more wedding industry trends and couple insights? Head to the Bridebook Business Hub, the home of wedding industry knowledge.