Let’s Talk Weddings –Let me tell you all about the role of a Wedding Planner and how to differentiate between Wedding Planning Services that are on offer to you…
Before I even start, I would like to highlight that not every wedding planner does the same job or offers the same service, so looking at what each one if offering you, what experience they have and what ‘Value’ they can add to their service is key to making the right choice.
The role of a wedding planner is that of someone who helps couples to plan and organise all the aspects that take place during their wedding day. A professional, experienced individual who does this activity as a full-time vocation for a respectable fee, and has the know-how to understand the elements and dynamics of the wedding industry because they are a crucial part of it. This know-how and experience, allows them to offer their clients, the best possible advice and they are crucial when helping them to take decisions about their wedding planning or solving any issues if they arise, in an experienced and professional manner.
With this in mind, we can start to see the values that differentiate between a professional wedding planner with knowledge, skills, relationships and experience from an individual who claims to be a wedding planner, is a venue manager or offers to plan your wedding free of charge. Most likely they only do it occasionally, perhaps as a part time job or a hobby, they know little about the wedding industry or anyone who works within it, they will offer limited skills and lack experience outside of their comfort zone.
Frequently these ‘wedding planners’, will offer their services for a fraction of an industry standard fee. Such low fees would only make sense in the following scenarios. A) The individual either does not have the knowledge and needs to learn from mistakes, so they charge a lower fee or do not know what they should be charging. B) The individual does so many weddings a year (more than 25/30) to add up to a living salary, they therefore can only offer you a very limited time to plan your wedding as they are so busy with so many couples. C) This individual gets paid indirectly through commissions that you pay when contracting vendor services (without disclosing this to you!)
Often these ‘wedding planners’ offer you their planning services at a very low rate or free of charge, the reality may be that their real job is actually a venue manager, a caterer, a photographer or wedding celebrant, just to mention some examples. C) Stills applies here.
If you think you are getting a great deal, having someone plan your wedding for almost nothing or free of charge, the reality is, you may be paying them more than you think and really not gettiong a good deal at all. Think again and consider what a planner with unbiased contacts and knowledge could do for you!
If you still don’t see it, let me explain, it is like when you are building a house, instead of contracting a professional architect to advise on the build, it is like letting the person that sells you the central heating to do it instead!
Moving on, wedding planners are therefore professionals and they have knowledge. So let’s summarize what kind of knowledge am I refering to.
Professional Wedding Planners know venues, catering companies, photographers, musicians, furniture contractors, lighting specialists, Hair and Make Up Porfessionals … and every other professional that will make weddings a great event.
And this knowledge is built not on what is found on google, but through face to face relationships, based on experience from previous weddings, on connections with other wedding professionals. A full-time wedding planner makes an effort to meet other professionals in the industry, so she/ he can gain knowledge that benefits their clients. This knowledge affects directly the quality of the wedding itself, so it is very important to add time and effort to it. And it is not a part time job.
In addition to quality, it also affects budget. Knowing who is who in this industry allows weddings planners to differentiate between services that to the untrained eyes seems similar, but in reality, they are not.
Wedding planners have skills and experience to plan and coordinate your Wedding and create the best day possible!! We have explained how important knowledge is, however without skills to apply this knowledge, it is somehow useless.
How can a wedding planner, help their client to work out the weddings elements when from the beginning, the creation of an idea, their already lack the skills to apply that knowledge. How can she implement those plans without the skilled hand to create or to visualize the elements of the plan?
Experience is another tricky one. Skills without experience, is a long shot that might work but might as well not work, and let’s be honest how many weddings are you going to have in your life.
Weddings can be stressful environments to work at. Everyone knows that. You’ve got a dozen professionals trying to carry out their job, with a space and time limitation, maintain a high pace during lots of hours and their absolute conviction that their job is the most important one. You’ve got also unpredictable elements, such as wind, rain, or heat. Or much more predictable such as delays, drunk people, or uncontrolled emotions, …
In this environment experience of your wedding planner is essential, otherwise your wedding planner will be part of the chaos, instead of the coordinator and the person to calm the air and resolve any problems. A wedding planner is a manager that enables people to work together for the best outcome, not someone who affects the overall mood of the wedding with authority and stress.
If you are unsure whether your wedding planner has experience or not, compare their rates with other wedding planning professionals. The less they charge, it is likely the less experience they have. Let’s be honest a pair of cheap shoes will hurt your feet. A bad wedding planner could ruin your wedding day!
Inexperienced wedding planners charge low fees in order to gain weddings, and subsequently, experience. They do everything for a single fee, including aspects that do not have much to do with your wedding day.
They can’t charge normal fees because they are not consolidated wedding planner yet. Experienced wedding planners charge more or less the same. They know how many hours wedding planning involves, and they are serious professionals who are passionate about their jobs.
So now you know why there is such different range of prices for wedding planning services, fooling yourself is no longer an option.
Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions!