Do a bridal show 1/28 - input please

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rickryan.com

DJ Extraordinaire
Dec 9, 2009
14,921
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Hendersonville, TN
www.RickRyan.com
#1
We've decided to do a bridal show this year in our county. It's a fairly new show and had about 200 brides last year. I believe there will be only 3-4 photographers at this one. I'm in the process of putting together our booth. Planning to do a P&D backdrop, double-swag, white background with maroon swags on the ends. I'll likely uplight the backdrop. Just bought a 3-section, wire gridwall that is free-standing and will hang the framed portraits from our studio. I'm still debating on whether to setup a TV with slideshow on it. Wifey thinks we'll do better with hard-copy product; portraits and books than we will with a TV. I'm also debating about whether I should put up my two Chauvet Intimidator 255 movers on the back corners of the booth. Wifey thinks not, but I'm inclined to use it catch attention. Last year, I think there was 1 DJ who had any kind of moving lights.

For promotion, I'm looking at handing out rack cards and price lists. If they want to book the day of, I'll offer a 10% discount, across the board. I'm not sure about giveaways at this point. Booth price is $350. I'm probably spending another $600 for the display (display racks, curtains, photobooks, new rack cards, etc). Would appreciate your thoughts and suggestions in regards.
 
Likes: ittigger

ittigger

Hundred Acre Industry Icon
Feb 1, 2011
14,885
11,499
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Western Maryland
#2
Can't you do both - a slideshow and hard copy? I don't know that I would bring moving heads - but if you bring lighting, aim them at the ceiling. I think lighting like the Freedom Stick / Pixelbar would be good for something like this.
 
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Jeff Romard

Moderator
Staff member
Sep 4, 2006
16,690
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Sydney, Nova Scotia
#3
We've decided to do a bridal show this year in our county. It's a fairly new show and had about 200 brides last year. I believe there will be only 3-4 photographers at this one. I'm in the process of putting together our booth. Planning to do a P&D backdrop, double-swag, white background with maroon swags on the ends. I'll likely uplight the backdrop. Just bought a 3-section, wire gridwall that is free-standing and will hang the framed portraits from our studio. I'm still debating on whether to setup a TV with slideshow on it. Wifey thinks we'll do better with hard-copy product; portraits and books than we will with a TV. I'm also debating about whether I should put up my two Chauvet Intimidator 255 movers on the back corners of the booth. Wifey thinks not, but I'm inclined to use it catch attention. Last year, I think there was 1 DJ who had any kind of moving lights.

For promotion, I'm looking at handing out rack cards and price lists. If they want to book the day of, I'll offer a 10% discount, across the board. I'm not sure about giveaways at this point. Booth price is $350. I'm probably spending another $600 for the display (display racks, curtains, photobooks, new rack cards, etc). Would appreciate your thoughts and suggestions in regards.
What about using your booth as a photo booth. take a pic of the people going through and print it on the top of a rack card with your info below and just give it as a handout?
 

rickryan.com

DJ Extraordinaire
Dec 9, 2009
14,921
10,958
115
54
Hendersonville, TN
www.RickRyan.com
#6
Likes: ittigger

rickryan.com

DJ Extraordinaire
Dec 9, 2009
14,921
10,958
115
54
Hendersonville, TN
www.RickRyan.com
#8
Ouch. I got another one online (I can look it up if needed), but that one is a 20ft backdrop that I sometimes use behind my setups... not necessarily sure how big your booth is and if you'd want to go that route. It was about $120 but shipping was more realistic.
I dunno, wifey may veta anything I come up with. Right now I'm planning double-hung drapes. White center with uplights and maroon swags on the end. Width is 10 feet (single booth) with 8 feet height.
 
Likes: ittigger

Valerie Hicks

Moderator
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Oct 21, 2006
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Eastern South Dakota
www.squareonesd.com
#9
What I learned doing a ton of bridal shows for ourselves plus renting booths for others....make sure it's obvious what you are selling. We had booths for our DJ business with lots of photos, and had people ask if we were photographers. If you have moving heads, you will confuse the brides as to what you are selling. Think big. You have about a second and a half to 'tell' the prospects what you are selling. If they first think DJ (moving lights) they will skirt around your booth all-together if they already have a DJ booked or in mind. Small giveaways slow them down--good stuff...pens, chocolate....doing a drawing for something worthwhile like a wedding package (has to be significant). We always had some sort of drawing because it gave us a pre-sorted list of attendees who might actually be interested. We could follow up before the lists from the fair came out, which meant before other vendors had a chance.
 

Jeff Romard

Moderator
Staff member
Sep 4, 2006
16,690
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Sydney, Nova Scotia
#10
Think big. You have about a second and a half to 'tell' the prospects what you are selling. .
That's another reason I suggested the picture on the handout leaflet. You are giving them your advertising and they will keep it because they are on it and you get to keep them there at least 2 minutes
 

DJ Ricky B

DJ Extraordinaire
Mar 9, 2015
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#11
If you are going to offer a show special to every attendee, Make your Special ONLY AVAILABLE THAT DAY. Also, make sure you have a big enough sign letting attendees know about the special.

Getting as many dates booked AT THE SHOW imo is the best. Not waiting until after the show to try to sell to them. Another way about this is booking appointments at the show. Booking future appointments at the show is another great way of getting dates booked, BUT this is hard to do if it is a cattle drive type of show.

I have to say...10% OFF isn't going to excite attendees much to book on the day of though. You need to have a serious discount, or a WOW price for a inclusive package. ..That is if your goal is to fill as many dates as possible with the show.
 

rickryan.com

DJ Extraordinaire
Dec 9, 2009
14,921
10,958
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Hendersonville, TN
www.RickRyan.com
#12
If you are going to offer a show special to every attendee, Make your Special ONLY AVAILABLE THAT DAY. Also, make sure you have a big enough sign letting attendees know about the special.

Getting as many dates booked AT THE SHOW imo is the best. Not waiting until after the show to try to sell to them. Another way about this is booking appointments at the show. Booking future appointments at the show is another great way of getting dates booked, BUT this is hard to do if it is a cattle drive type of show.

I have to say...10% OFF isn't going to excite attendees much to book on the day of though. You need to have a serious discount, or a WOW price for a inclusive package. ..That is if your goal is to fill as many dates as possible with the show.
I thought about 15% off, but wifey is fighting me on discounting. I'm pretty well decided, if we can book 4 at the show, I'm likely going to buy a booth for the March, Perfect Wedding Guide show downtown. It's a much bigger show, but I want to be sure that the formula we have is working first. Good points on the moving heads guys. I really want to lead with photo and have DJ a secondary service. I have a 3-panel grid wall coming that will hold a bunch of portraits and we're going to have nice photo books available as well. Now, if I can just find a good giveaway that will slow them down enough to chat.
 
Likes: ittigger

DJ Ricky B

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Mar 9, 2015
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#16
My experience with all the bridal shows I have been a part of are that I don't book anything if I am not offering any kind of wow deal. That has been the reality with bridal shows.

The amount of follow up I have spent on shows trying to book clients was totally not worth the effort either.

Like Tunes said...The last show my brother and I did was last April in a mansion house that I would consider very middle of the road in terms of price. It attracts budget to mid level wedding clients. ...And that is what most shows attract to be honest. ...We decided to offer a 55% off deal...Yes 55% off. Our price was real low. However, we booked 4 weddings at the show. We were offering the special as a "SHOW ONLY - PAY IN FULL TODAY" type of deal to get it

The way I look at shows is that I need to make sure my total customer retention cost is $100 or less. If a show costs $395. I better make sure I book 4 weddings from it. I have done shows before that cost $395 to $495, and booked zero from them. That is a terrible feeling knowing you spent all that time preparing for the show, money on materials, time spent at the show, and to come out of the experience with nothing. Even 1 booking is going to suck...$395 to obtain 1 paying client...Terrible ROI.

I have done shows before where our raffle price was a $199 Wedding DJ for 4 hours. ...That particular show, that raffle winner was the only booking we received from the show.

We also did a show where we offered 8 free up lights with any booking...Zilch at that show. I believe show goers are prompted by great deals. ...The same reasons DJs go to a DJ Expo/Convention....to get great deals on gear. Bridal shows give brides ideas, but outside of that they are find walking around, having some free food, and making an afternoon out of it. They need a solid reason to book vendors there.

I'm doing a open house this Saturday...I'm offering a pay in full deal at the open house too. We will see if I book anything at the open house.
 
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rickryan.com

DJ Extraordinaire
Dec 9, 2009
14,921
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Hendersonville, TN
www.RickRyan.com
#17
My experience with all the bridal shows I have been a part of are that I don't book anything if I am not offering any kind of wow deal. That has been the reality with bridal shows.
That's about what I expect. I'm intending to do a 10% or 15% discount for booking on the spot. I'm going to end up putting a fair amount of $$$ into this one, probably $1k. The saving grace is that I'm pushing packages that are in the $2k-$4k range so my ROI is much easier than DJ-only. If I can book a single job, I'm happy. If I can book 4 jobs, I'm immediately going to book a booth at the Perfect Wedding Guide show in March. As for follow-up, I have a database and a mass emailing system. If I can drop a few hundred leads into it I can almost guarantee picking up another handful of dates. The leads from PWG show will be far more than this little one.

I'm still working on the booth. Planning to do double-hung curtains on P&D. I have solid white and I just ordered sheers today, as well as a set of curtain lights (LED/Christmas) that I'll use behind the sheers, if we go that route. I think my plan at this point is to have several different backdrops, which we'll setup over at the office to decide which one is best. If we do the bigger show, I've already put my eye on a more professional-looking setup that'll run about $600-$1000, depending on options and signage. This thread has been helpful. You guys have helped me think about several items that I wouldn't have thought about otherwise.
 

tunes4046

DJ Extraordinaire
Jul 24, 2008
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Fennimore Wi
#18
That's about what I expect. I'm intending to do a 10% or 15% discount for booking on the spot. I'm going to end up putting a fair amount of $$$ into this one, probably $1k. The saving grace is that I'm pushing packages that are in the $2k-$4k range so my ROI is much easier than DJ-only. If I can book a single job, I'm happy. If I can book 4 jobs, I'm immediately going to book a booth at the Perfect Wedding Guide show in March. As for follow-up, I have a database and a mass emailing system. If I can drop a few hundred leads into it I can almost guarantee picking up another handful of dates. The leads from PWG show will be far more than this little one.

I'm still working on the booth. Planning to do double-hung curtains on P&D. I have solid white and I just ordered sheers today, as well as a set of curtain lights (LED/Christmas) that I'll use behind the sheers, if we go that route. I think my plan at this point is to have several different backdrops, which we'll setup over at the office to decide which one is best. If we do the bigger show, I've already put my eye on a more professional-looking setup that'll run about $600-$1000, depending on options and signage. This thread has been helpful. You guys have helped me think about several items that I wouldn't have thought about otherwise.
In my opinion 10-15% won’t be enough to entice anyone
 

tunes4046

DJ Extraordinaire
Jul 24, 2008
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Fennimore Wi
#20
Again they don’t want to do the math save $500 book today would be much more attractive and I don’t think -250 -400 is enough to sing anyone intobooking in the spot unless they were already considering you and had a a standing quote