@scbride2015: Congrats! As a wedding photographer, here is some of my best advice:
– It’s okay to create a wedding specific email, BUT, *don’t forget to check it regularly*. Way too often brides put down their dummy account, and then forget to check it.
– Research who is going to be exibiting at the show. Check out their website, and jot down people you want to make sure to check out.
– Pre-print address labels with your info for giveaways. Make sure to include your Name, Phone Number, Email, Wedding Date, and Venue (if you have it). I also ask my brides for their hometown, because I live in a resort area so I’m curious to see where or brides are coming from.
– If you don’t bring lables, WRITE CLEARLY. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had brides win my drawing and I can’t read their card. Emails bounce back, phone numbers are wrong, and they missed out.
– Come prepared to book vendors if possible. This is where researching those you like ahead of time comes in handy. Most of us tend to offer show specials. Incentives (like discounts or add-ons) for those who sign a contract and pay a deposit at the show. You can get some really great deals this way.
– Ask questions, and take notes. Don’t be afraid to engage in converstaion with a vendor you like. We encourage it, and that’s what we’re here for.
– If you’re planning over 12 months out, don’t be offended if a vendor won’t book you yet. Many vendors won’t book a client that far out.
Not all giveaways are scams, but they are a way for vendors to gather info for potential clients. Each bridal show is different and will vary. The one I participate in is very specialized for my area and is much differnet than many where just anyone can set up a booth.