You are all wonderful. It is very encouraging to hear your views. And I understand that regardless of which country we live in what kind of culture we have grown up, what manners and customs, many human characteristics are the same, especially when it comes to costs, options, support of our work, etc.
A Memory Lane Event, in Denver we agree with all of you. We would also like to let brides know how important we as coordinators are in the planning process. With 19 years experience as planners and coordinators we've developed such a great group of vendors that when booked through us, we can save brides anywhere between $100-$1000 off of vendor services. We're really one of the best cost savings that they can have and one of the first services that tight budgeted brides want to cut.
I wish brides knew and trusted in the fact that hiring a wedding coordinator can make their lives easier, save their pocketbook since we usually have connections where they normally would not, and that a good wedding coordinator ensures all the day of event tasks/issues are taken care of so all they have to do is enjoy their wedding, family & friends, and making wonderful memories on the most important day of their lives.
I wish brides understood that photography is not a commodity, but Art. What it really takes to shoot a wedding. How many obstacles (weather, mood, time constraints, health issues, drunk guests..etc) a photographer has to overcome to deliver beautiful wedding photographers. For one of the kind photography, please visit www.fridphotography.com
When brides are comparison shopping, be sure that you're comparing apples to apples. As the photographer part of an all inclusive package, we're constantly hearing "so & so is doing this", etc. When it doesnt even compare equally. We developed a "shoppers checklist" which we email/send/hand to them at the first contact. Hopefully by the time they actually meet with us, this helps them for clarification. But we always have to remember...we (as vendors) can supply all the knowledge in the world. How they retain it is totally beyond our control. Patience, patience, patience....Happy Holidays!
I have a FAQ I give out with every consultation. It helps them compare my service to others, while explaining why and how things are charged on the estimate. Some banquet halls include linens, hall rental, bartenders and staff in the meal price, we don't. I think its nice to break things down, so they can trim things down or add services that they would like. Our prices are lower than the others in the area, but that doesn't always guarantee a booking. I have to sell my commitment to them, let them see the passion I have for my work, and always give something for them to take with them, advice and industry info. I can't book everyone I talk to, but I can touch them in a way that they will remember speaking with me. Robbie H Photo is right, the shoppers checklist is an excellent idea, helps to keep them on track, and compare. But I think with a Photographer, DJ, Wedding Planner, or Caterer, you are buying in to that person's style. You might be able to compare a price of the service, picture to picture, hour to hour, and meal to meal. But the value added by the key individual handling your event is priceless!
That they should choose their photographer and videographer according to STYLE, and not price (alone). It is jarring to work with a videographer with a completely different (more traditional) style than my own. (I'm a photographer.)