It goes without saying that modern couples are planning their weddings online these days, and the way they find inspiration--as well as their vendors--is mainly through social media. The single best way to make sure that images of your best work are delivered to couples on the hunt is through real-life wedding features.
How Does It Work?
When a blog or website publishes a feature about one of your events, the images are shared via social media. It may not feel like it immediately—in fact, I’ve had photographers and planners tell me that they’ve booked clients from an image that was shared two years ago!
It takes time for pins to circulate and generally begin to go viral, but once they’re out there, they are working for you every hour of every day, even when you’re not actively focusing on your marketing.
Which Photos Should You Submit?
Every publication has its own specifications and style. For example, at Love Inc., we want to tell the love story, so shots that show emotion are a must, along with great images focusing on details. Other blogs are inspiration-focused, so they prioritize decor.
Get to know the outlets you are targeting for submission and see what types of images they share. Then edit your galleries down from there. Vertical photos are great for social media, and horizontal images are great for collaging, so present a mix of orientations when you prepare your submission.
How Should You Write it Up?
The submission cover letter is something that submitters stress so much over but guess what … you don’t need to! We’re the writers, so let us do our thing. All you need to do is share the details, even if it’s in bullet-point format.
Do supply a comprehensive list all of the wedding pros involved so we can credit accordingly, and highlight any details that help us describe your wedding to our readers.
Also, anything that is special or unique that isn’t obvious from the photos is helpful, such as the veil is an heirloom piece, or the favors are a nod to the couple’s first date. Even if we do have questionnaires, we don’t always get detailed responses from couples, so it’s essential that the submitter provide as much info as possible.
Additionally, detail on the designers of the wedding dress and bridesmaid dresses is information that is often left out. But, it can amp up a social post as most designers have their own hashtags. So, don’t forget to include it if it is applicable.
Don’t Count a Wedding Out
I often hear that an event is not “publish-worthy,” but the majority of the time, that couldn’t be further from the truth! Just because a wedding is lacking in details doesn’t mean that it isn’t publishable.
Take a variety of shots of the setting, capture raw emotion, and move decor together to create fuller vignettes (just be sure to move it immediately back!). Invest in ribbons and fabric for flat lays--a collection—usually styled—photographed directly from above.
Also, break down your wedding and find elements of it that make it a good fit for niche publications. If you have a budget wedding with two grooms that takes place in the Tennessee Smoky Mountains, well that's four different niche publications--budget, orientation, local and setting--that you could submit to, including Budget Savvy Bride, Love Inc., The Bride Link and Mountainside Bride. Just be sure to respect exclusivity guidelines of each publication. There are truly so many great publications out there!
Marketing your wedding business by publishing feature weddings is a powerful way to reach just the right audience and secure the perfect clients. Think like a blogger next time you’re considering submitting your feature, and increase your chances at success immeasurably!
Brittny Drye is the founder and editor in chief of Love Inc., a leading equality-minded wedding blog and digital publication. Her inclusive efforts have been recognized by outlets including the New York Times, The Advocate, OUT Magazine, Refinery29, New York Daily News and Cosmopolitan. She serves on the 2018-19 North American Advisory Board for the International Academy of Wedding and Events.