Thursday, January 28, 2016

You've Probably Made These Wedding Etiquette Mistakes!

Wedding etiquette—a series of rules, formalities, and expectations passed down the wedding industry lineage for centuries. And with all the rules to keep up with and follow, you might be missing a few. So quiz yourself, how many of these wedding etiquette mistakes are you making?

Mistake #1: Leaving off the Date and Location on Save the Date Cards

One of the few purposes of the Save the Date card is to let your guests save the date for your upcoming nuptials. Which means, on your save the date cards you’ll have to include when and where the wedding will be. It’s a common courtesy to give your guests this information sooner, rather than later, so that they can save extra travel days (if necessary).

Mistake #2: Selecting an Inconvenient Date and Location

OK, we’re still on the location and date train here, but it’s a big etiquette no-no to plan your wedding on difficult days and in inconvenient places. Yes, we know you’re the bride, but you have to think about your guests too. Although Friday and Sunday weddings are cheaper than Saturday, they tend to put a bit of a strain on your guests who have to make arrangements at work to attend the event.

Mistake #3: Inviting Some and Not Others

It can be tough to narrow down your guest list, be selective, and make a final decision. But one of the biggest etiquette mistakes that a lot of people make is inviting some family members but not others. We understand that you’re really close to one uncle, and that you’ve never met the other uncle, but in terms of etiquette, all uncles should be invited. In situations like this, it’s best to sit down with your family members and draw up a list of all extended family that will need to be included before moving forward with your other guests.

Mistake #4: Inconsistency with Plus Ones

We’ve all heard/seen/experienced it before. Someone brings a plus one that everyone knows will not be sticking around the relationship for very long. And it seems absolutely depressing that you have to allot $40 for this plus one. However, in the laws of all things etiquette, you can’t be wishy washy on who can bring a plus one and who cannot. You have to remain unbiased in the plus one category. Trust us, being unbiased will help you avoid any potential arguments or fights.  

Mistake #5: Not Having Handwritten Labels on Invitations

Now sure, this seems like an archaic etiquette rule but it’s a mistake that should never be made! Weddings are big events, and your guests need to feel that you are excited and that their presence there is important. Whatever you do, ensure that you handwrite your guests’ names on the envelopes.

Mistake #6: Not Personally Greeting Each Guest

You invited over 200 people to your wedding, and now you’re thinking “there’s no way I can speak to every one of them.” Well my friend, failing to speak to all of your guests personally is a big wedding etiquette mistake. Your guests made the effort to be a part of your big day, so make sure your thank them for making it special. 
Alright, tally them up! How many etiquette mistakes have you made? Let us know in the comment section below or share with us on our Facebook page.

And remember, Inspherio is here to help. From planning weddings to organizing your staff information, Inspherio can do it all. It’s also free for the first 30 days. So what do you have to lose? Give Inspherio a try, now!

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Thursday, January 21, 2016

5 Must-Know Wedding Planning Secrets

Secrets! The wedding industry is full of them, and when you’re a newcomer to it all (or newly engaged) it can be difficult to get the inside scoop and all the know-hows. Well, as we said in our last blog, we don’t see anything wrong with sharing a few secrets. So we’ve rounded up five of our must-know wedding planning secrets to help you get started planning the event of your (or your client’s) dreams. And although these might seem simple, they can save you from potential day-of problems.

Keep reading to find out our top wedding planning secrets!

Secret #1- Think Through Everything

It’s easy to think about the flowers, the flavor of the cake, and the venue, but remember, you have to plan and think about everything. How are guests going to get from the ceremony to the reception area? Who is going to help pass out programs? And the list of questions just goes on! It’s easy to think about the main attributes of the day when you’re planning a wedding, but the secret to minimizing pesky problems is thinking through every little detail.

Secret #2- Always Have Extras

You might have gone over and over the list, had all of your RSVPs returned to you, and the exact number of guests set. But like clockwork (trust us we’ve seen it) someone you weren’t expecting shows up, and they brought someone with them, which is why we always suggest you plan for extras. Set out a few extra chairs (you can keep it to an even number) and increase your catering and program orders. It’s always best to overestimate than underestimate.

Secret #3- Buy Fancy Umbrellas

It doesn’t matter if the weatherman tells you it’s going to be sunny with a high of 100°F, always bring umbrellas with you. We suggest you purchase fancy umbrellas that you (or your client) wouldn’t mind being photographed under, just in case it starts raining. And if it does start raining, think of the umbrella as a cute prop to incorporate into the pictures.

Secret #4- Map it

Before sending out invitations with directions to the venue, ask a friend who isn’t familiar with the location to test them out. Even if you use services like Google Maps, MapQuest, or venue-provided directions, you’ll want to make sure they’re accurate. Trust us, it could save you a headache and a lot of phone calls on the big day.

Secret #5- Know Your Surroundings

Congrats! You’ve found the venue of yours (or your client’s) dreams, and you’re excited to start decorating. But before the big day, take a little drive around the area of your venue to locate the closest ATM, drugstore, liquor store, or any other convenience store. That way, if you have any last-minute items you need to get during the party, you’ll know exactly where to go.

So now you know a few of the industry’s biggest secrets to help make the big day a complete success. And although Inspherio isn’t a secret, be sure to check out our event planning management solution designed specifically to help you stay organized on everything from the guest list to the inventory. We’re here to help you plan your success. Try Inspherio free for 15 days!  

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Thursday, January 14, 2016

Event Guide: Handling Difficult Bridesmaids (and Groomsmen)

You love, love, love, being an event planner. From the flowers, to the taste of the cake, to the exchanging of the vows—there’s nothing better. Well, except for Cranky Candy, Diva Daniella, Whiner Wendy, and Too-Perfect Patty. You know, the bridal party?

As an event planner, you not only deal with the bride’s and groom’s emotions, you also have the bridesmaids’ and groomsmen’s emotions to constantly consider. Ugh! Can you handle anymore?

Although we can’t be there in person to help you handle this “difficult-to-manage” bridal party, we do have some tips that might help.

Bridesmaid (and groomsman) #1- The Drama Queen/King

Forget about it being the bride’s and groom’s special day, it’s all about the Drama Queen/King. This person is out to steal the show, the thunder, the spirit stick, whatever you want to call the special moment. And there are a couple of reasons why they choose to act like this:
  • If they are unmarried, they’re most likely jealous
  • They envy the attention others are getting
  • They’re feeling sad about “losing” a friend, sister, brother, etc.
You can handle the Drama Queen/King bridesmaid and groomsman by pulling them aside and having a heart-to-heart with her/him. You can ask what’s going on or how they’re feeling. By calling into question their feelings, there’s more of a chance they’ll recognize and correct their actions.

Bridesmaid (and groomsman) #2- The Everyone’s a Critic

Not to sound too judgmental, but this bridesmaid/groomsman might just be the toughest to deal with. They’re full of opinions, “advice” and plenty of critique. It can be disheartening for your clients to constantly have their ideas and dreams bashed by somebody else. And this type of bridesmaid/groomsman isn’t just trying to be critical, they might be doing it for these reasons:
  • They regret the details they’ve decided for their own wedding
  • They can’t accept that their moment is over
During moments like this, your clients will be glad you’re there. As the event planner, if the critic offers advice you and your clients don’t agree with, politely thank them for the help, but don’t waver from your final decision. Or, you can always have your clients give the critic complements of their wedding, but have them insist this is what they would like for their big day. If worst comes to worst, you can always choose to ignore the critic. People tend to give up complaining or criticizing if it’s not being listened to.

Bridesmaid (and groomsman) #3- The Complainer

Let’s just say, having a bridesmaid/groomsman that agrees with every decision but then complains the entire time is tiresome. Every step you make, or any task you ask them to do is a chore. And even more so, it’s hard on your bride and groom to constantly have someone dragging their feet along in the party. This person is probably doing it for one reason:
  • Sad they’re “losing” you as a friend, sister, brother, etc.
It’s hard for them to agree and to go along with activities when they’re feeling sad. Unfortunately, there’s no magical line that will make the person feel better about the situation. But your clients could have a one-on-one meeting with the upset bridesmaid/groomsman to ask them how they can help them make feel better. It’s all about being open to communicate, willing to hear how the other person feels, and being there to offer comfort and encouragement.

Bridesmaid (and groomsman) #4- The Have-to-be-Here

They might be their third cousins, twice removed, or best friend of your Uncle Tom, but your clients felt like they had to invite them to be a part of the wedding party. Be it pressure from extended family or friends, your clients should never feel like they have to include someone. Because in the end, a person knows when they’re asked out of obligation, and it will make for a very disinterested bridesmaid/groomsman.

When it comes to situations like this, your clients have to be the ones to decide whether not inviting a person to be in the bridal party will cause too much of a rift or divide in the family. 

For more event tips, keep up with Inspherio. We’ll be here to always offer you advice on everything from flower arrangements to handling the bridal party. And if you haven’t already done so, sign up for a free 30-day trial of Inspherio. It’s the business management solution tailored just for event professionals, like you.  

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Thursday, January 7, 2016

3 Reasons Why You Should Share Your Event Planning Secrets

Event planners need to share their secrets. Yes, really! During my time as an event planner, I’ve noticed one major aspect of this industry: it’s guarded and secretive. Try to ask a fellow event planner about a design idea of theirs and you’ll probably get a politician sort of answer, where they skirt around the question and talk about something else. You say, well what about books? Aren’t event planning books designed with all the need-to-know secrets? Nope! Books and event planning certifications are chock-full of how to run a wedding and technical advice, but they contain no realistic details or help when it comes to a planning and designing an event.

What gives? As many other event planners will tell you, the event planning industry is oversaturated with people, making competition a huge deal. Well, let me just say this, event planners, there’s enough people getting married out there for everyone to have a slice of the pie. If my Facebook feed is any indication of the weddings to come, there will be plenty of need for event planners. But if you need more convincing to get you to share your secrets, here are three additional reasons!

Reason #1- The Right Client

Event planners all have unique styles and techniques for how they plan/design weddings. A client might approach you with an idea for their wedding, or have eclectic requests that simply don’t fit your style of design. What do you do? Do you force it and try to make it work? Well, if you knew another event planner’s style and design, you could recommend the client to try their services instead and vice versa.

Don’t force yourself to work with a client that isn’t a good fit for your business. Define your niche and what makes you, you in the event planning industry!

Reason #2- Raise the Bar

Thanks to Pinterest, everybody thinks a professional event planner is irrelevant. This only makes the argument for sharing your secrets stronger!  When you share ideas, trends, and styles with your fellow event planner, you are setting the bar—no one else!

Work together and take the event planning industry back from the DIYer. Start working together to do so, today.

Reason #3- Inspiration

Although you might share your idea with a fellow event planner, we’re all individuals and will have a different way of creating something. What you do to gain clients, decorate a reception area, or stay organized is what works for you, but it can also be inspiration for someone else to find what works best for them. Sharing secrets can help you become someone’s inspiration!

There’s plenty of fish in the sea, so don’t be afraid to share your secrets with your fellow event planners. When you do, not only are you helping the industry grow stronger, you’re honing your skills and standing out in the crowd as a voice of the industry. Here at Inspherio, we’re an open book! Stay tuned to hear all our secrets on how to be successful in the event planning industry. Or to stay a step ahead, join Inspherio. It’s the business management solution designed exclusively for the event planning industry. We’ll help you plan your success. And did we mention, it’s free for 30 days?

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Tuesday, January 5, 2016

5 Reasons to Start Your Year with Inpsherio

It’s the new year, and do you know what that means? Time to set some goals, make resolutions, and dream bigger than you did last year. And what better way to make it all happen than with Inspherio.

Inspherio is an event professional’s dream, helping you manage all aspects of your business from finances to contracts, while also helping you plan events. Sounds unbelievable, right? Well believe it! Check out the five reasons to start your year with Inspherio, and let us know we convinced you by joining our program.

Reason #1: The Dashboard

Wouldn’t it be great not to have to search all over your computer for important documents, finance reports, or contact information? We thought so, which is why we created the dashboard, giving you the power to keep everything organized in one online location. That’s right, everything you will ever need for your business can be found on the dashboard. You can view pending documents, see a snapshot of tasks and your calendar of events, and so much more.

Reason #2: The Cost

We know you don’t do what you do for the money—it’s seeing the look on your client’s face when they see your great work. At Inspherio, it’s not about the money, it’s about helping you plan your success. We’re proud to offer low-cost plans for every type of event professional.

Reason #3: The Features

It wouldn’t be a business management solution without amazing features, am I right? From our information on leads, to the Know Your Event form, Inspherio has all the features you’ll ever need to plan dream events. And when you sign up for a free trial, you’ll have access to all of them. Don’t you want to see what Inspherio can do for you?

Reason #4: Inspiration

Here at Inspherio, we do more than just provide you with features. We also provide you with inspiration and ideas. With our blogs and social media, we’ll share with you all the ideas, trends, and suggestions that are circulating through the event industry. We’ll be your one-stop-shop for all things event.

Reason #5: World-Class Support

How many business management solutions offer 24/7 support? Well, I know of at least one—Inspherio. The Inspherio Crew is in the office Monday through Friday 9am to 6pm, ready to answer any questions you ask, whether it’s via phone, email, or live chat. But we don’t stop there, we always offer 24/7 email support to all of our users. Any problem you have, you just let us know and we’ll help you fix it.

So what are you waiting for? Start your new year off right with Inspherio! It’s free for the first 30 days. We’ll be here ready to help you plan your success.

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