Stop branding yourself as an amateur.
“Engagement season” refers to the period of time each year when the most wedding proposals happen. In the United States, it runs from Thanksgiving (fourth Thursday of November) until Valentine’s Day. For many other locations, it starts just a few weeks later, going from around Christmas to Valentine’s Day.
The most popular days for engagements are currently Christmas day, Valentine’s day, New Year’s Eve, Christmas Eve, Thanksgiving, and New Year’s day – in that order.
Just like most good publicists will start prepping and pitching their clients’ Christmas campaigns in early Summer, wedding pros’ prep for engagement/proposal season should ideally already be underway. However, if you, like almost every wedding business owner, have been juggling a zillion things, the next best time to start is now.
For the month of October, I’m going to be mostly discussing the things you can do get your business ready so that yours can be the company they most love once the ring is on their finger.
There’s one word on your website, in your Instagram captions, in your beautifully designed lookbooks that tells people you don’t know what you’re doing as a wedding professional – even if you do.
That word is “STRIVE.”
If you're striving to do something, it means you haven't accomplished it yet. Your clients pay you because you are an expert at what they need, not because you hope to be one some day.
We strive to create the best customer experience.
We strive to make your wedding planning process enjoyable.
We strive to give you photographs that capture your day.
We strive to give you and your guests a fun experience.
You either know how to make what you are selling to clients happen or you don't. You either are an expert or you’re not.
Using the word strive or any of its synonyms (aspire, seek, endeavor, aim, etc) absolves you of responsibility for the outcome because it positions you as an amateur who hasn't yet figured out the ropes.
It also tells potential clients that you don't fully believe in what you have to offer and subconsciously makes them hesitant to trust you with their money and, more importantly, the creation of some of their lifelong memories.
If you're feeling like all your clients are micromanagers, check your marketing copy for words that tell them you don't trust your own talents.
There is nothing wrong with consistently looking for ways to improve, and true experts know that there's always more to learn, that if they've "arrived," they've settled.
Deleting the word 'strive' from your marketing copy doesn't mean that you're promising unattainable perfection. It simply means that you're a professional and know how to deliver consistently.
True humility doesn’t hide its gifts. Stop downplaying your talents and own your expertise. Your work will be better for it, and so will your sales.
A version of this post was originally published January 2014.