Do you have an event space that is lying empty when it should be generating income for you? A marquee that is busy for a few weeks of the summer instead of a few months? Lindsey Hunter, founder of Get Knotted & Get Talked About explains how to look at your events space with a fresh pair of eyes to uncover its real potential.
Step 1. Look for hidden space
Have a really good look at how you are using, or not using, the space you have. Are valuable areas being used as storerooms? Do you have a dusty cellar that would make an atmospheric bar? Would a gazebo or marquee in your grounds provide much needed space? Adding a small reception or bar space alongside your main event room can open up a world of possibilities.
Sometimes an event space can be right under your nose, but you might need to use a bit of imagination to spot it. If you can find these spaces, and present them in a way that will appeal to your clients, you may discover you have been sitting on a little goldmine all along.
Step 2. Showcase your space
Large, empty rooms or marquees can feel cold and uninviting, and brides don’t really want to see a room laid up for a conference. You can’t assume that your clients will do the hard work of picturing how good a space could look. Make it easy for them by showcasing how they can dress the space with lighting, furniture, props, and florals that bring it to life. Demonstrate how areas can be used for drinks, dining, dancing or relaxing.
Step 3. Photograph your space
It’s not always practical to have the room dressed for a client viewing, which is why a portfolio of up-to-date, inspiring images is crucial.
According to research conducted earlier this year by bridebook.co.uk and TWIA (The Wedding Industry Awards), whether a venue is ‘stunning’ is the number one deciding factor for a bride. And in most cases, she will make that snap decision based on photographs she has seen online, ruling out uninspiring venues before she has even made a phone call or paid a visit.
Video is a great way to give potential clients a feel for your venue before they visit and well worth whatever investment you can make. Short videos with relatively simple production is still worth having, as people are used to viewing this type of video on social media. It doesn’t have to be a grand production.
Step 4. Be on-trend & on social media
Greenery & foliage wedding styling is up 300% YOY on Pinterest, according to the Pinterest 2017 Wedding Report. This is just one trend that your potential clients will be searching for this year.
The modern bride or event planner has extremely high expectations fed by social media, and she expects to be wowed by her suppliers. Looks matter, and the most successful venues are those who can showcase the creative possibilities for their spaces with on-trend, Instagram-worthy images.
The better your images, the more likely they are to be shared again and again. There’s no escaping the fact your brides and event planners are using social media to shortlist their venues, so make sure your images are available to them.
Step 5. Be yourself
Keep in sight what makes you special. Your location, the character of you building, your grounds, your chef and your team all make you unique. Make a list of keywords that reflect this unique personality, and use them to inspire you when developing and promoting your event space. Celebrate what makes your venue different; people will be drawn to you because of it.
Lindsey Hunter runs wedding planning business Get Knotted, and Get Talked About, a venue styling business that specialises in helping hotels, restaurants, clubs and other venues increase their wedding and events revenue. Visit http://get-knotted.net/ for more information.