What EXACTLY is a Preferred Vendor List?Dec 11, 2020
You hear me talking a lot about the value and importance of this elusive Preferred Vendor List, you hear other wedding pros talking about it, but really what exactly is it?
Let's start with a definition, you know I love a good definition!
prefer: v. /pre-fir/
to put forward or present for consideration
...and while we're at it, let's add another and break it down...
list: n. /list/
a series of names or other items written or printed together in a meaningful grouping or sequence so as to constitute a record: a list of members
So by definition, a preferred vendor list is a list of members (the most amazing group of wedding pros "vendors" ever), presented for consideration.
As awesome as this is, and it is, there's SO much more to it!
A preferred vendor list ensures a great client experience and smooth event.
Often couples don't even realize what a difference hiring a dream team of vendors who work with each other often makes in their wedding.
At the end of the night, when everything has been magical, and your couple is glowing, and so proud of how perfect their wedding was, they may not even realize that it was because they had hired a dream team of vendors who know how to work well together.
This dream team experience is what will have them referring their loved ones to you over and over again.
They know that when they booked you, and each of these other vendors you recommended, they trusted you and your resources, but beyond that, they don't really get to see what goes into it behind the scenes.
The venue who knows just the right alterations vendor. The DJ who knows the perfect photo booth. The planner/coordinator who realizes that their favorite travel agent will make honeymoon planning a breeze. The caterer who knows a bakery who will provide a flawless dessert, and it goes on and on.
When these vendors align, the result is something indescribably magical, and that's all that matters at the end of the day.
Speaking of vendors aligning, it also makes for a great vendor experience. For you, the wedding pro!
We have a circle of vendors who we absolutely love working with. We know, without question, that when this group is together, everything will go smooth.
This confidence in the event, takes so much stress out of the day.
Even if just a few of us are there as day-of vendors, there's an assurance that is irreplaceable.
We help each other. If the venue has to flip a room quickly, and had someone from their team call in instead of showing up, we know we can jump in and help move tables and chairs around, and even help with decor, light candles, reset tables, and who knows what else! We can just move around like gears on a clock and get it done for each other.
I remember one wedding, it was one of those with a vendor dream team. We were all set and anxiously awaiting the arrival of the couple. They were coming to the reception from an off-site wedding.
We waited. We waited some more. Finally after over an hour, we were notified that the bride had an anxiety attack at some point between the ceremony and her arrival at the reception.
She was at the hospital! A couple of hours into the reception, she made it, but she was heavily medicated and I don't know if she was able to enjoy any of it at all, or if it really was just a blur for her.
The whole time she was stressing, we were just there getting ready, working together, and anticipating the awesomeness of the upcoming celebration.
How sad is this? Also how incredible the reality of it actually was.
This is the effectiveness of preferred vendor lists in its best form.
But what will let her know for sure that she's booking vendors who work well together?
You make a home for your preferred vendor list on your website!
I personally recommend calling it "Resources".
This is a page on your website where your preferred vendor list lives.
An important note, keep this page fluid. Meaning you'll need to add (and even remove sometimes unfortunately) vendors from your Resources list, so make a reminder for yourself in your planner, maybe even monthly, to revisit it so it stays nice and healthy.
There are so many reasons to offer this, just a quick list of a few, and we have an upcoming blog post that goes into it further, so stay tuned:
- A literal resource to make life easier for your clients
- Increase in SEO for your website
- A way to build reciprocating relationships with other vendors
- An organized resource for you to go to when asked for a favorite vendor in a pinch
The benefits of a Resources page go on and on and on... we'll talk more about it soon. This is a good start for now.
I hope this helps you realize the significance of preferred vendor lists. There really is a lot to them. AND they really do give you an edge and make you stand out. Don't worry, we're here for you and will keep helping you along the way.
As always, feel free to email me, I love hearing from you!
*** HOT TIP: One of the best things about having a preferred vendor list strategy is that it keeps your calendar filled with your most ideal clients, without having to chase expensive, and sometimes empty, leads! ***
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