Choosing the best place to put your advertising dollars is one the most challenging marketing tasks for wedding and event planners. With the huge increase in popularity of wedding blogs over the past five years, they have become a top advertising option for many planners.
Today, we are sharing the expertise of pro wedding blogger Christie Osborne of Mountainside Bride. Mountainside Bride is the go-to resource for planning a mountain wedding. Let’s hear what advice Christie has about advertising on wedding blogs.
As a wedding and event planner, what are three advantages to advertising on a wedding blog?
1) High-touch experience: Most reputable wedding blogs are small businesses themselves so you get high-touch customer service and customizable ad options. For example, I always “break the rules” for my vendors. If a wedding planner who is an advertiser wants some extra exposure for a campaign or project, I bend over backwards to give it to them.
2) Loyal Audience: Many professional bloggers have worked hard over the years to develop a loyal audience. If you do your research to make sure a blog’s brand and your brand are a good fit, you will get the benefit of a loyal, highly-targeted, and qualified audience when you advertise on a blog. An example again is the Mountainside Bride. My audience is a highly qualified group of mountain brides, so if you’re a mountain wedding vendor, you may have a better chance of converting brides to clients from my blog than you would on a larger national blog.
3) Value adds: Many bloggers will offer value-adds, or additional promotion at no extra cost. This most often includes social media coverage or discounts on one thing if you purchase something else. (i.e. buy a sponsored post and get 50% off a banner ad)
There are many wedding blogs out there. How do I choose the best blog to advertise with?
Start with your ideal bride, or your target market (which ever makes the most sense for your business) and find out where she likes to hang out online. Where is she finding her inspiration and planning advice? Once you know which blogs and platforms are the right fit for your market, you can start inquiring about advertising.
What advice do you have for wedding planners who would like to have their work featured on a wedding blog?
1) Make sure you read the submission guidelines. They vary from blog to blog as each blog’s audience is different. Mine are here.
2) Get permission from the photographer to submit the images to a blog (or to a magazine). They are the ones who own the copyright for the images. They also may want to submit the wedding elsewhere so make sure you keep the communication lines open between you and the wedding photographer.
3) Think beyond submitting a real wedding or photo shoot and consider writing advice articles for a wedding blog. This will position you, the wedding planner, as an authority in your field and build trust among brides considering a wedding planner.
4) Take the time to track your links for featured blog submissions the way you would for paid ad campaigns. Even though you may not pay money for these features, you are still spending valuable time on them. I like ClickMeter for link tracking.
5) Have a lead-generation program in place before advertising and guest posting. I prefer creating a special landing page on my website with an email sign up, but you may also consider a free consultation, a call to action to follow you on social, or what ever else your campaign goals are. Don’t just dump brides into your homepage and let them figure it out. Create a way to continue the conversation with them and turn them into one of your loyal audience members!
Christie, thank you so much for sharing such great advice with our planners today!
Christie’s newest project is Mountainside-Media.com, the smart marketing website for savvy wedding professionals. She’s offering her new Fast Start Guide to Market Research (including how to spy on your competition) for free.