Posts Tagged ‘Wedding Vendors’

Top 5 Tips for Hiring a Wedding Videographer

Tuesday, January 22nd, 2013

wedding videographer

Hiring the right company or individual to shoot your wedding videography can be a daunting task. With so many options in the marketplace, it’s easy to become overwhelmed. To help you put together your game-plan, we’ve partnered with Australia’s Borrowed & Blue Productions to put together a list of five important things to keep in mind while making your decisions.

Do your research — If  you’re not familiar with videography options, it’s time to start doing your research. The best place to start is the good ‘ol world wide web. Start your search locally and expand from there. If your budget allows for it, you might be able to afford bringing in an out-of-town professional that meets your needs. You should also determine which style of wedding video you want: documentary or cinematic.

Meet in person — After you’ve done your initial online research and determined who your favorite video professionals are, the next step is to setup an in-person meeting. This will allow you and your fiancé to get a feel for the videographer’s personality and whether you think it’ll be a comfortable fit for you and your guests. Ask questions about style and the flow of the wedding day. The interview is also a great time to discuss pricing.

See their work — You wouldn’t settle on a bakery without tasting their cake first, right? Videography is no different. Get as many sample videos as possible as this is the best way to see if their style is compatible with your vision of a perfect wedding video. Below is an example from Borrowed & Blue:

Ask about packages: Most videographers will have different packages tailored to meet various budgets. Don’t be afraid to ask about the specifics of what you get in each package. Also find out which packages include a second shooter to capture different versions of key shots as this is an often overlooked aspect by video novices.

Find out what type of equipment they’ll be using — You want the highest quality video possible.  Find out the types of cameras, sound equipment and editing software will be used. Also ask what formats you’ll be able to view your video in: DVD, Blu-ray or both.

borrowed & blue is a sponsor of the man registry’s groomsadvice blog

What do you think the key questions to ask a potential videographer are? Share your thoughts in the comment section below.

Nailing the [Wedding Vendor] Meeting

Monday, February 7th, 2011

important wedding vendor meetingBy Guest Blogger Madman from The Groom Says

Working in the events industry in New York taught me one very important thing about grooms: we can sometimes look like total idiots.

For me (I confess) it’s football. Put me on a panel where football is the topic of conversation, and I will excuse myself to use the restroom and never be seen again. I have no clue who had a great season, who had a disastrous season, or who’s been out all season with a torn groin. I know that Brett Favre showed his manhood to a cheerleader and is retiring for the umpteenth time, but that was on TMZ for god’s sake. So when I know I’m going to be in a situation where football knowledge is expected (the Super Bowl, for instance), I do the research. I memorize the who’s who and brush up on stats and practice some unintelligible cheering.


Now most grooms out there know as much about weddings as I do about pigskin. And it’s really painfully obvious in those initial design meetings. You’re meeting with planners and coordinators and vendors and swapping ideas for the first time. And you may have that subtle head nod perfected, but at some point during that meeting, your bride will turn to you and ask, “What do you think, honey?” All eyes will be on you, and you’ll be sitting there, nodding like a damn fool.

Thankfully, grooms, I’ve done the research for you. Here are six simple steps to nailing that preliminary meeting.

1. Easy on the head nod
. You think you look engaged, interested, even borderline intellectual … but after 15 minutes you lose the rhythm, the nod slows to a bob, and the whole room is thinking you’re medicated.

2. Upgrade your palette
. Yes, everyone wants your input. No, no one wants you to pretend to be somebody you’re not. But when the caterer asks you what you imagine serving at your wedding, you could reach for something a little deeper than “deep dish.” Anything can be trendy — but not when it comes with a buy-one-get-one-free coupon.

3. Write stuff down. Women have a lobe of the brain specifically reserved for remembering the names of linens and vases and such. Since your lobe is reserved for the first names of delivery guys, feel free to take notes. Jot down what you like and what you don’t. Then you won’t struggle to come up with a phrase that’s never ever entered your vocabulary, like “diamond organza overlays.”

4. Power down. Words with Friends can wait. Angry Birds can wait. And no, you’re not fooling anyone by playing under the table. Exhibit A: that white glow on your face. Try to keep it in your pants until the meeting’s over.

5. Impress the judges. Not to imply that they’re judging you … BUT vendors are meeting with new couples nearly every day of the week. So dry clean something, dress the part and kill that shameful goatee that you’ve been massaging these last few weeks. Prove to them that you’re not going to be one of those “special” grooms who needs to be escorted to the bathroom.

6. Don’t show up drunk. Worse than the groom who appears out-of-it during the table meeting is the groom who’s laughing hysterically at a flower that mildly resembles genitalia. Save the cocktails for the post-meeting lunch. Yes, that goes for all jokes about genitalia, too.

the groom saysMadman is the founder and editor of The Groom Says — a real groom’s blog that details a year of wedding planning from the guy’s perspective. Check it out for inspiration from Brian (aka Madman) as he recounts the planning of his October 2010 wedding. You can also follow The Groom Says on Twitter.

Have you met with any vendors yet? How did you survive? Do you think any of the tips listed above will help future grooms nail the meeting? Tell us your answers in the comments section below.

Wedding Vendors: To Tip or Not to Tip

Monday, August 30th, 2010


With so many wedding expenses, it’s easy to forget about tipping your wedding vendors on the big day. While it isn’t necessary to tip all of your vendors, some will definitely appreciate — and expect — it. A wedding planner, if you’re using one, best man or family member typically handles doling out gratuities.

First, make sure to check your contracts. Oftentimes, gratuity may already be included for some services, such as your caterer’s wait staff or limousine driver. But if not, tipping is a nice gesture, especially for those vendors who exceed your expectations or do an outstanding job. At the bare minimum, thank you-notes are always appreciated.

Remember, every couple is different and some can tip more than others. Here’s a quick cheat sheet based on averages we calculated after talking to grooms, brides and vendors:

Ceremony Musicians – if you’ve hired an orchestra, band or vocalists for the ceremony, $15-$20 per musician is customary. (Note that you don’t need to tip the solo organist at the church.)

DJs or Bands – $20-$25 for musicians/individual band members; $25-$50 for DJs.

Officiant – while it isn’t necessary to tip your officiant, a separate donation to the religious institution is a standard gesture.

Wedding Planners, Photographers, Videographers – tipping isn’t necessary for vendors who own their own businesses. But for those who go above and beyond, we highly recommend a 10% tip. If your budget doesn’t allow for that, providing professional photographs displaying the vendor’s handiwork is a solid gesture.


Connect with post author Chris Easter on Google+, Pinterest and Facebook.

Grooms and brides: do your vendor contracts have tips built in? Have you and your fiance talked about vendor gratuity? Let us know in the comments section below.  Vendors: we’d love to hear your thoughts on the topic as well.

6 Ways to Avoid Wedding Day Scams

Monday, May 10th, 2010


People planning weddings spend a lot of money, and that of course, attracts a lot of scammers!  Think about some of these basic tips for avoiding wedding day scams:

1. Avoid paying large fees up front. Often scammers will pose as legitimate businesses and disappear on your wedding day.

2. Talk to friends, family and trusted sources about what wedding vendors and wedding planners they used and their experiences.

3. Monitor your credit, get in the habit of getting credit reports.

4. You’ll be getting a lot of e-mails from new and unknown sources, consider anti-virus software.

5. Many people sign contracts with vendors without reading through them with a critical eye. Read everything and make sure you understand what you’re agreeing to before making it legal.

6. Pay with a credit card. Disputing a transaction is easier with a credit card than with a check. Just be careful not to let the credit card become a vehicle for spending more than you can afford.

In addition to serving as OneWed’s VP of Marketing, Jennifer Napier is a guest contributor to the GroomsAdvice blog offering a little local flavor for the grooms. You can connect with Jennifer on Google+ and Twitter.

How are you protecting your wedding from scam artists? Let us know in the comment section.

8 Simple Rules To Finding A Wedding Planner

Tuesday, February 16th, 2010

During a recent bridal fair, I got a ton of questions about what to look for when going after a wedding planner.  You know you need one, but you want to make sure you get the right one.  You don’t want a “CCP” or a little old blue haired lady that has no idea what the current trends and styles are, so you need to know what to look for yes!?!  Oh, “CCP” is a phrase I coined that means “Clipboard Clutching Planner”, this planner resembles a deer in the headlights, but with a clipboard!  So below are my 8 Simple Rules To Finding A Wedding Planner.

Finding the right wedding planner is essential for a smooth wedding planning process

Finding the right wedding planner is essential for a smooth wedding planning process

1. Can They Provide “The Hook Up”?
Does the Wedding Planner have good relationships with vendors and venues?  Can they pull you the discounts?  Do vendors and venues want to work with them?  We pass on all the discounts that we get from vendors DIRECTLY to our clients, and we get those discounts because we bring those vendors a lot of business and they love working with us.  Having your planner be able to “hook you up” is one of the reasons you hire a planner in the first place.  Your planner should be fighting for you to get you the best deals they can.

2. Are They Insured?
Pretty simple question no???  A lot of planners are not insured, they rely on venue insurance which doesn’t always cover them.  You MUST make sure that in the event of any kind of accident, both you and your planner are covered.  Wearing a lampshade on your head at a party (when it’s your choice) can be hilarious, having a lampshade fall from the ceiling and bonk one of your guests on the noggin….not so funny.  It’s your ass, so cover it guys!!!

3. You Got A Real Purdy Website
What is their web presence like?  Do they have a great site out there?  People seem to love this internet thing and do tons of research before they even contact a planner.  So take a look at the planner’s website.  And this is always a red flag for me…do they have a real email address.  Is it or is it  Have they taken the time to set up a real email?  This may be the web snob in me, but I feel that real email addresses are REALLY important!

4. And Speaking Of Websites…
Really look at the portfolio section.  Does the planner have a varied portfolio or do all the weddings kinda look the same?  You want your wedding to be as unique as you, so you need to know that the planner can pull off a unique wedding.  You don’t want to become just another wedding in the eyes of your guests.  Also look to see if the venues in the back ground are different.  If the planner works mostly with the same venue I find that they become “lazy” in their design strategies and reproduce old weddings, and you don’t want that either.


Good wedding planners exist so grooms & brides don’t have to remember all of this stuff.

5. Full Time, Part Time Or Just Time To Time
Does the planner you’re looking at work as a planner full time?  You want to be able to contact your planner when you need to.  If they are at their day job from 9-5 do you really think you’ll get their best when they get home and THEN start planning your wedding?  When I’m done at work, all I want to do is watch TV and veg the hell out.  So are they planning weddings full time or is this a hobby business for them?  I don’t want to knock newer planners or part time planners, but if I were building a house, I’d hire a guy who builds homes for a living, not a guy who builds them in his spare time.  Hire a professional.  I’m just sayin’…

6. “Preferred” Isn’t Always A Good Thing
In the wedding industry there are things called preferred vendor lists.  When you meet with a venue they may recommend people to you.  This seems great, the venue says they’re cool…so they must be, right?  Well not always.  Preferred vendor lists can be bought.  A vendor can give the venue a chunk of money to be on that list.  The venue may not have EVER even worked with them, but they pay, so they play.  Ask the venue if their list is based on reputation and talent or if companies can simply buy a spot on the list.

7.  Is Your Planner An “Expert”?
Does your planner travel?  Do they attend conferences?  Hell, do they speak at those conferences?  Is your planner an Expert in their field?  I feel planners should travel and always be learning more stuff, because let’s face it…you can’t be trekking all over hells half acre looking for new wedding trends.  It’s the planner’s job to do the learning for you and bring that to the table when planning and designing your wedding.  Ask them if they belong to any Associations, if they speak at conferences and if they travel to track down the latest and greatest in wedding stuff.

8. And Finally, Do They Know You Exist?

Yes, believe it or not, grooms do exist.

Yes, believe it or not, grooms do exist.

When I was getting married, I had to insert myself into any meeting I wanted to attend, because most planners only focus on the Bride.  It’s not their fault, they don’t know any better.  They focus on the Bride because history tells them the groom wasn’t interested.  Well that was THEN, this is NOW and we’re re-writing history here fellas.  Make sure your planner knows you, the Groom exists and that you want your opinion heard.  When you meet with your planner for the first time, make sure you attend that meeting.  You can get a lot from a first impression, if the planner doesn’t ask you your opinion when they first meet you, it’s a good bet they won’t…ever!

Simon’s Gutsy Groom Advice

I know some of the above points may seem a little harsh, but after some of the questions I got last weekend I had to write this.  I hate having the Groom overlooked in the planning process.  Now I can’t do anything for you if you take yourself out of the process, but you won’t do that will you???

The thing is, the odds are very good that you will not figure out you hired the wrong planner until your big day comes and it all goes pear shaped.  So if you follow these 8 simple rules, you’ll have a better chance of getting it right the first time.  And don’t be afraid to ask the planner for references, ask them to hook you up with their past clients, the parents of past clients, hell…ask them for vendor references from photographers or DJ’s etc they have worked with in the past.  See what the other pros in the industry have to say about them.

It never gets any better than a first impression, you’ll be spending a lot of time with the planner you choose so make sure it’s a good fit.

Simon Daykin is an award winning event designer, planner and groom stylist with Fire Fly Occasions. Simon strives to get grooms involved in the wedding planning process and have their opinions heard. He understands that grooms can get left out or pushed out of the planning process so he’s here to help. You can connect with him further on Google+.

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