Change is inevitable in the world of Wedding PR, especially these days. In years past, you could enjoy a bountiful press portfolio by focusing on real wedding submissions, keeping an eye on HARO and participating in inspiration shoots.
With the ever-changing media landscape, and the increasingly competitive nature of wedding publicity, it’s essential to diversify your channels in 2019 to ensure your brand’s buzz is sustainable.
First–it’s time to rethink what promotion means to you. Yes, a fabulous real wedding feature is still a great way to go, and there are instances where an inspiration shoot will make sense for your business goals. But as I’ve covered prior, it’s important to be mindful of media platforms on the rise, as well as identify new opportunities where you can leverage your expertise, such as speaking. But in this day and age, it’s time to even go beyond that, and look to lesser-known ways to increase brand awareness instead of just sticking to what’s worked in the past.
With that being said, here are three ways to boost your visibility in the wedding space that may not come to mind:
Guest articles on your creative partner’s sites
The fact of the matter is, the majority of wedding professionals are servicing clients within 100 miles of their office. Even when you’re careful to make sure to work with a variety of event professionals, you’re still going to ultimately end up working with like-minded creative partners who share similar experience, values and, in some instances, style.
It stands to reason that prospective couples are looking at your colleagues’ websites, and are absolutely in a position to consider hiring you as well. It’s also a well-known statistic that couples are researching prospective vendors far before reaching out to them. They’re reviewing their portfolio, social media and every aspect of their web site, including their blog.
On the flip side, many wedding pros are challenged by the idea of keeping up with providing timely content on their own blogs. So why not make it a win-win and offer to share insight on your colleagues’ sites? You benefit from the publicity of being on a site that shares a likely similar audience to yours, while they can take the week off from stressing about writing a blog post.
Facebook Live presentations in targeted Facebook groups
Video has quickly proven to be an increasingly successful marketing tool. That being said, it’s also the perfect channel for sharing your expertise to a wider audience.
There’s no better-targeted audience than members of specific Facebook groups, so make it a goal this year to join industry Facebook and get a feel for opportunities to education, such as FB Live events with the audience. I happen to enjoy seeking out large-scale brands and associations that form a group on Facebook–whether because they all use the same tech program, or have been through a particular educational course.
I love the chance to increase brand awareness for my company by sharing PR insight in the FB Live format–it’s more informal, giving you the chance to share a bit of your personality. You typically also have far more engagement than if you were to present on a webinar, or even in person. In either scenario, don’t hesitate to reach out to the respective administrators to see if a collaboration is possible.
“Best of” lists
I am often surprised by wedding professionals that focus on industry related awards, but don’t look beyond that to consider honors outside of the event world. Most regions host small business awards, and you’re sure to come across “top 40 under 40” lists among area groups and media publications. Likewise, alumni groups from colleges and universities regularly pay homage to successful graduates in their respective fields.
While not directly connected to weddings, it’s a great way to leverage third-party credibility, as well as gain the trust of prospective couples. So carve out time this year to seek options relevant to your location, background, expertise and alumni relations.
If there’s one thing we can be sure of it’s this: change is inevitable, especially in this industry and most certainly among wedding media channels. By shifting your perspective, and remaining open-minded to new opportunities, you’ll be sure to weather what lies ahead.
Meghan Ely is the owner of wedding PR and wedding marketing firm OFD Consulting. Ely is a sought-after speaker, adjunct professor in the field of public relations, and a self-professed royal wedding enthusiast.