This episode covers wedding shows and their advantages for couples who are planning their weddings. Kristina Stubblefield advises people to research the shows and make sure they are featuring local, trusted wedding professionals.. Sharon Rumsey and Michael Gaddie add that wedding shows are a great way to find all the vendors that you need for your wedding, but they can also be overwhelming. Therefore, it's important to take your time and talk to each vendor.
Michael Gaddie and Sharon Rumsey discussed the benefits of attending wedding shows and open houses. Kristina Stubblefield suggested that couples also attend smaller, boutique shows and open houses in order to engage more with vendors. Michael added that a caterer’s tasting is a great way to pick out a menu.
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Michael Gaddie, Lloyd's Florist
Sharon Rumsey, A Perfect Plan Events
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[00:00:00] Kristina Stubblefield: We are back with another episode of The Ring The Bling and All The Things okay, Sharon and Mike, I'm really excited about this topic because it has to do with wedding shows. And if I can say something before we get real deep into this conversation, it would be no matter where you're watching us or listening from, there are probably wedding shows that go on in your area.
[00:00:31] Gosh, I hope so, because I know we all feel like they're very beneficial. This is one thing that I would share with you, take the time to research and find out, is that a local show? And what I mean by that, does it feature local wedding professionals? That to me and Mike and Sharon can weigh in on this, is really important because your wedding most of the time. It's a big event. It's a very special occasion for people and you wanna make sure that you're using trusted wedding professionals. So when you go to these shows to meet people, you know, are they local to you or is it a national company? And that is one of the first tips I want to start off with.
[00:01:19] And if you all want to add to that, you can. I know we have a lot to talk about because we love wedding shows. I'm fortunate to be involved with them and come and give out information about The Ring The Bling and All The Things you all do booths as your business. So we've got some different angles here to share with all the engaged couples.
[00:01:36] They're family and friends, because let's be honest, most of the time they come with an entourage.
[00:01:41] Sharon Rumsey: They do.
[00:01:42] Michael Gaddie: Honestly, wedding shows I think is the best thing for couples. You're going to be able to go to a wedding show and pick out every vendor that you are wanting to use for your wedding.
[00:01:57] But just a suggestion is they can be overwhelming. We've done a few wedding shows already this year and one of them. very, it was, I'm gonna say it, it was like I was overwhelmed. It was like herding cattle and that, that is a good thing and a bad thing. It's a good thing for us because we're getting our information out to you all.
[00:02:18] But it's a bad thing for you all because you all feel like you all can't talk to each one of us. But since there is in our area, there's probably eight or nine shows a year. I feel like you should go to a wedding show and concentrate on saying, okay, at this wedding show, let's concentrate on wedding planners and florist.
[00:02:39] Just picking us out and you know, just go around and talk to those so you won't be so overwhelmed and you're gonna be able to concentrate. And then at the next show, concentrate on your DJ and someone else. That's a good idea. I mean, so it won't feel so overwhelming that you don't feel like you have to go to every booth.
[00:02:57] Now we also did another wedding show this past week, and it was, uh, smaller.
[00:03:01] Sharon Rumsey: Smaller.
[00:03:01] Michael Gaddie: It was smaller and I was able, and you were too able to talk to every bride and groom and couple that was there, and I love those shows because it's still, it's more one-on-one.
[00:03:13] Kristina Stubblefield: It's more of an open house style.
[00:03:15] Michael Gaddie: Exactly.
[00:03:15] Kristina Stubblefield: And that's what I was gonna say was going to wedding shows. Great. Please don't leave out your venue open houses or things like that, that are more of a boutique show, because as you just mentioned, there's really a lot of benefits to that.
[00:03:32] Michael Gaddie: I mean, we went to another one last week that was, uh, just a tasting by a caterer and they, there was tons of people there, but it was amazing on how those couples could sit down and taste and pick out their menu.
[00:03:45] Kristina Stubblefield: So one thing I would like to say to what you were just talking about and then Sharon, I know you probably got a lot to add in here as someone who doesn't sell anything or have any services to offer to engage couples.
[00:03:59] I think one of the first shows they go to is engaged. It's a lot to have really detailed conversations because you're excited, like you're out celebrating your engagement. You probably wanna show off a ring or maybe talk about the engagement. And when people ask me, even at the one larger show you were talking about, I suggested to just take it all in.
[00:04:24] Get information, maybe take a couple pictures on your smartphone of things that.. Did I really just say smartphone. Aren't all cell phone smartphones these days? Take a couple pictures with your phone if something stood out to you or if you came across somebody that really made an impression with you.
[00:04:42] But you know, we talk about paperwork and do your hand out brochures and do this and do that. Taking that information and being able to go back. Don't necessarily just walk past a booth because you don't think you are going to use them. You don't think you're gonna want that type of service because you may have just gotten engaged and don't know exactly what you want.
[00:05:04] But these devices can be awesome because it can help you remember certain parts. And as you mentioned for you, because you did a lot to help that show as well, you were dealing with vendors that were setting up booths. There was a band and the couples were coming through.
[00:05:25] There's usually really good vendors there and you may think I'm not gonna have a videographer. We're we've just decided to go with pictures or, I'm not gonna have a live artist paint at my wedding.
[00:05:38] But just taking that information and Sharon always loves to say, give it a beat. Get home and maybe spend a little time going through that. Sharon may have some more feedback on going through this.
[00:05:48] Michael Gaddie: We'll I want to say one thing because I always picture, you know, most wedding shows you give out bags and you, it's almost like going trick or treating.
[00:05:55] And you know, and then when you get home, I can see brides sitting up on their bed and they pour that bag out and they're going through all that information.
[00:06:02] Sharon Rumsey: And that's what they do.
[00:06:02] Michael Gaddie: That's what they do.
[00:06:03] Sharon Rumsey: That's what they do.
[00:06:03] Michael Gaddie: And you know, just collect all that information and it's a lot.
[00:06:07] But you have to, you have to connect with somebody. And that's one good way to do it.
[00:06:12] Kristina Stubblefield: And I didn't wanna disagree technically with what you were saying, but I feel like when you're first engaged, it is tough to, you've probably never been to a wedding show. You don't, probably don't even know what to expect, to be honest with you.
[00:06:27] I don't know if you all even know this, but there was a post on social media. Someone, an engaged person asked What's a wedding show? So Sharon, don't you
[00:06:39] Sharon Rumsey: If you've never been to one.
[00:06:40] Kristina Stubblefield: Yeah. Why don't me and Mike let you talk? I mean, and that's
[00:06:44] Sharon Rumsey: this doesn't switch.
[00:06:45] Kristina Stubblefield: I'm not, I'm not being silly. Our terminology of being in the industry for people that are newly engaged, what in the heck is a wedding show?
[00:06:56] Sharon Rumsey: Absolutely. I love wedding shows. When I first started, I was really, really nervous. Um, Mike knows this. I shared it with him. I'm not, I'm a hell of a wedding planner. I'm not a great salesperson. I'm not real.
[00:07:10] Michael Gaddie: I disagree. .
[00:07:11] Sharon Rumsey: I'm not real salesey. So I struggle with, what do I say? What do I, you know, how do I convey what I do?
[00:07:18] And, and it's worth, um, I feel like I've kind of conquered that a little bit now, but for me, I always, always, my whole life I have done better in person. It's just not the same as an email or talking on the phone. I like in person, uh, all of my clients will tell you, I'm a hugger, I'm a, you know, I, I just like people, And I think that your wedding vendors, you know, especially your planner, because you're gonna work with her probably a year, a year and a half.
[00:07:48] I think those, just how you click with someone is so important. And if you don't click with that person and you don't get that good feel, maybe move on. Maybe that's not your person. So I like wedding shows because you get to meet in person, you get to kind of get a little bit of a feel for that vendor's personality.
[00:08:09] um, see if you think they're a good fit. I also wanna echo what Mike said, I think for a newly engaged couple. I know I had one of my clients at our big show that we just did, and she said, I got so overwhelmed that I didn't go through the second half of the show. Um, because she had just gotten engaged and she just didn't even, she, we hadn't even like, really talked about all the decisions she needed to make.
[00:08:32] And so then she was getting hit with things she hadn't even thought of yet, and it was overwhelming to her but what I would encourage someone in that situation to do is go to that first show. Don't make any decisions. Just gather information. Then like Mike said, go home. Dump that information out on your bed.
[00:08:51] Throw away what you know you don't want, but then maybe go to another show, a smaller show, you're gonna see some of those same vendors. And when you see that vendor again, then you can talk and try to process a little bit more of what they do and if they're a good fit for you. I know I have clients that will go to three or four wedding shows, um, just because they're trying to get, you know, talk to that vendor again and learn more.
[00:09:19] Michael Gaddie: Well, when you see the same vendor over and over, don't look at that as being a negative. It's a good thing because that's a good thing because that means they're professional and they're gonna be out there, you know, pushing their business. And for an example at the big show, if you came up to my booth and there was 10 people there, I probably handed you a card or a brochure
[00:09:39] Sharon Rumsey: and said, congratulations.
[00:09:40] Michael Gaddie: Yeah. And said congratulations, and then you move on. But the next show, they're gonna be able to, you know, talk a little bit one-on-one with you. Right. So, I mean, I think wedding shows are a big plus. Um, it's fun. Come and eat, you know, taste cake.
[00:09:55] Sharon Rumsey: Listen to music.
[00:09:55] Michael Gaddie: Listen to music, and just have fun with it.
[00:09:58] Sharon Rumsey: Well, and I think too, sometimes, and I think Kristina touched on this, you get ideas for things you hadn't thought of. You know, like a wedding painter or, some specialty things that every wedding doesn't have. There was a lady in the show we just did last week, the smaller show, and she offered picnic dates like for your bridal party to go out and just like, she would set up a whole picnic, like those kind of, I had never seen that before.
[00:10:24] I thought that was a super fun idea. So, I think just go open-minded. Don't put pressure on yourself to make decisions that day. Just have fun and enjoy yourself and then, you know, process and make your decisions. The other thing I'm gonna say is, and this is to vendors and couples follow up. You know, if you go and you liked that person and you know you want that vendor, go ahead and reach out and let's set up a consult.
[00:10:53] Because if it's someone you did really like, you want to make sure that you, um, get them on your team.
[00:10:58] Michael Gaddie: Well, I wanna say one more thing, and that is talking about what Kristina was saying earlier, is research the show. Go back and research shows that they've done in the past. See what vendors are there because your time is valuable.
[00:11:13] And I mean, even if it's on a Sunday afternoon or a Saturday afternoon, you want to be able to attend a program or a show that is gonna benefit you for sure. Newlyweds and new couples, they're not worried about putting gutters on their house or putting
[00:11:32] Sharon Rumsey: replacement windows
[00:11:33] Michael Gaddie: replacement windows and shingles.
[00:11:35] Sharon Rumsey: I had a bride say to me. Replace what windows? We don't own any windows, so just, we don't have a house yet.
[00:11:39] Michael Gaddie: Do your research because we know that your time is valuable, so make sure , you know, pick the shows that are good for you.
[00:11:47] Sharon Rumsey: And local.
[00:11:47] Michael Gaddie: And local. Local is the main thing.
[00:11:52] Kristina Stubblefield: Well, the other thing Sharon touched on was follow up. Now you're getting into my jam now. This is for engaged couples. Um, and uh, yes, I always encourage vendors. There's a big key there with follow up. We've already talked about it. It can be overwhelming, can be a lot of different people, things like that. For the engage side, it's a two-way street in my opinion.
[00:12:16] And like you mentioned, Sharon, even if you're not ready to book someone you met at a wedding show, if you need to get that initial consultation schedule.
[00:12:25] Sharon Rumsey: You just wanna know how much they charge. You just want information. Yeah,
[00:12:28] Kristina Stubblefield: additional information. Um, or maybe you have questions for them. Reach out.
[00:12:35] That is the thing I feel like communication is key on all parties in all industries, not just the wedding. But if you are dead set on a date or you already have a venue picked or you don't really know anything yet. Even just getting a call, an email, a message, scheduling a consultation, just getting that in the books, whatever that follow up means for you.
[00:13:04] I think it's really important. You don't have to wait for vendors to reach out, and again, I go back to a two-way street because engaged couples, they're busy. They could be busy with life, with work, with overwhelm of wedding planning.
[00:13:20] Sharon Rumsey: Yeah. Everybody's busy.
[00:13:22] Kristina Stubblefield: Yeah. The wedding vendors are human as well.
[00:13:25] Michael Gaddie: And well, you know, I have had a lot of brides tell me at the shows as we've done here lately is, you know, I'm not getting married till next year.
[00:13:34] It doesn't matter. I mean, we have booked quite a few weddings for the following year and same. And you want, it does not matter. It's not too early. And if a vendor tells you, this is my personal opinion, if a vendor tells you, oh, well we don't book until January the following year. Move on, because honestly, I am here for you and I want to go ahead and get you on my books so I can take care of you for next year cause it's not too early.
[00:14:04] Sharon Rumsey: Well, and I know Mike and I have very different businesses. I work with most of my clients and people don't realize this a year, 18 months, sometimes even two years. So if you tell me I'm getting married next year, I'm gonna do my little happy dance because I'm booked for this year.
[00:14:22] Kristina Stubblefield: I'll be honest, I was gonna say that. This year. At just, some of the recent shows, I've heard a lot of 18 to 24 months out. More so than in the past. Yeah. And let's not even bring up what, where that could have been spurred from. Because we're not gonna bring that. We're not, that's right. Not gonna, we're not gonna talk about that.
[00:14:43] But here's the deal. If you're newly engaged and you don't know this, um, when it's gonna come about is when that vendor that you really got your heart set on is already booked and they, they just booked two weeks ago, but you really were interested in them in a month.
[00:15:03] Sharon Rumsey: And every vendor, no matter what they do, has a limit on how many weddings they can do on the same day. For me, I'm one wedding a weekend. I have two weddings a month. Mike, I think yours is five a weekend because it's a very different business. But there is a limit. And if you love Lloyd's Florist and that's who you want, you don't wanna be number six.
[00:15:25] Michael Gaddie: Yeah and that happens all the time.
[00:15:27] Sharon Rumsey: It does. And it's, it's hurtful on both ends. I hate to tell a couple. No.
[00:15:31] Kristina Stubblefield: And it's really just getting the information out and communicating, and it's not a sales pitch, you know? It, it is not a sales pitch. You can only do what you can do. That's correct. And that's the thing is if you have questions. Don't hesitate to reach out to vendors. They're human beings.
[00:15:50] It's not just a business. Reach out. Get those questions answered. Go to their website. Most have an FAQ page or information. Not always can you get your information from Google. I love Google, but get to that vendor if you've got questions or you're possibly interested in taking the next step.
[00:16:08] Sharon Rumsey: Weddings are a personal relationship based business.
[00:16:12] I love Google, I love social media, all those things. But when the rubber meets the road, you need to meet that person and click with that person.
[00:16:21] Michael Gaddie: Uh, agree.
[00:16:22] Kristina Stubblefield: I don't know if you mentioned that, you know, we're still on the topic of wedding shows, but in all honesty, you really get a chance to meet people in person.
[00:16:32] You said, I remember about do you click with that person? You get to see people, their personalities. You just get to see a different side than you might see in pictures and video on a website or if you Google them. And you know, I've always had people ask me about, I mean, I can look this stuff up online.
[00:16:54] Like, do you really think it's beneficial to go to wedding? Yes. I'm not even gonna let you finish your sentence. Mm-hmm. , because it's a different atmosphere than Google. It's in person.
[00:17:04] Michael Gaddie: And you know, the things are, you know, a lot of things are going to online, but this is one thing.
[00:17:10] Kristina Stubblefield: Now we are online, so be careful about what you're gonna say.
[00:17:13] Michael Gaddie: Well, well, and I agree with you, but when it comes to one-on-one vendors, like Sharon said, you want to have that personal relationship with them. Mm-hmm. , and you're not gonna get that personal relationship by getting on Google and, and ordering your flowers from anywhere. I mean, we're gonna take you and we're gonna help you, and we're gonna walk you down the aisle with Sharon.
[00:17:36] So, I mean, I mean, it's, well, and you really need to think,
[00:17:38] Sharon Rumsey: I don't mean to sound cheesy or goofy or anything.
[00:17:42] Michael Gaddie: Hmm.
[00:17:42] Kristina Stubblefield: Are you going to, so
[00:17:43] Sharon Rumsey: I might
[00:17:44] Kristina Stubblefield: But just go ahead.
[00:17:46] Sharon Rumsey: I don't care. I really, really love all my people. I love on my couples. And I don't know how to convey that online. I don't know how to show that online. But when we meet in person,
[00:18:04] Kristina Stubblefield: you're doing a better job of it. Just so you know.
[00:18:06] Sharon Rumsey: I'm working on it, but when we meet in person, to be honest, it's a two-sided interview. They're interviewing me, but I'm also gonna spend a year or two years with this couple. I wanna have fun. I wanna feel comfortable.
[00:18:22] I wanna sit down, I wanna grab a cup of coffee, I wanna hear all the things. And that starts very often at a wedding show.
[00:18:31] Kristina Stubblefield: You've said this already, it's a relationship business, and that's what it comes down to is do you click, is it somebody that's got your back? Are they trustworthy, dependable, and is it, can they, I'm gonna steal some of your words, execute what you want.
[00:18:51] And that I feel like cannot always be accomplished over email or text messaging. Um, those, and I encourage people, have an in-person consultation. You don't, if someone won't meet with you before booking in person, is that potentially a red flag?
[00:19:13] Sharon Rumsey: if I were the consumer, and someone wouldn't meet with me until I paid them money I would move on.
[00:19:21] Michael Gaddie: I'd move on too.
[00:19:22] Sharon Rumsey: Yeah.
[00:19:23] Kristina Stubblefield: So just some helpful tips about wedding shows. Yes, they can be overwhelming, but our census here is they're worth it. Go to some bigger shows or at least I use the word bigger show, but don't forget about your boutique ones because I feel like
[00:19:42] Sharon Rumsey: I love smaller shows.
[00:19:43] Kristina Stubblefield: Even tasting open houses, engagement parties, they kind of have all different names. Look it up in your area, see what's out there. Even ask vendors, maybe you already have your planner or your venue booked. Ask them, are you participating any wedding shows or do you know of any coming up?
[00:20:01] Sharon Rumsey: Well, catering tastings are honestly something I didn't have in my toolbox until about two years ago, and some of the local catering companies started inviting me.
[00:20:12] Well, it's not ever in my experience, been just a catering, tasting. There's always some other vendors there. And it's a nice atmosphere because I always go with my clients. It's part of full service wedding planning, so I'm there to buffer questions. But you know, the last one I went to, Mike was able to sit down at the table.
[00:20:31] These are both his clients as well. He was able to chat with them a little bit again, developing that relationship. And then, you know, I said, oh, let's go look at this photo person. There's a bar service over here. Let's go talk to them. But I'm there with them. So questions get answered like that. It's much smaller. And it's an amazing dinner.
[00:20:52] Kristina Stubblefield: They're not having to email questions. They're right there in person to discuss it.
[00:20:56] Sharon Rumsey: Right.
[00:20:57] Kristina Stubblefield: Not give a one or two sentence answer by email.
[00:20:59] Sharon Rumsey: Right.
[00:21:00] Michael Gaddie: So the moral of the story is we highly recommend a wedding show. Going to a wedding show.
[00:21:06] Kristina Stubblefield: Yes. And we'd love to hear from you all.
[00:21:09] Maybe there's different experiences out there that we're not familiar with. So we'd love to hear have they been beneficial to you? How have you worked through the overwhelm? How have you dumped that bag out on the kitchen table, on the bed, as you said? What is your process that we could also share with other engaged couples?
[00:21:34] You know, because we're on one side of it. But we'd love to hear your feedback to share that. You can always go to our website or send us a message on social media. If you haven't already subscribed on your favorite podcast platform, please do. Or if you prefer it in video, you can subscribe to our YouTube channel.
[00:21:53] So until next time
[00:21:57] Sharon Rumsey: see ya.
[00:21:57] Michael Gaddie: See ya, and have a great day.