Ok friends. Let’s have this talk. We hope you and your loved ones are well. I’m sending each and every one of you all the warm fuzzies and positive thoughts. I know this all feels super weird like we’re in some zombie movie. I’m 99.9% sure we’re not. ;) Although, we sort of saw this coming, it escalated quickly in the last few days so we’re going to reassess, regroup and talk about how we’re all going to get through this together.
So much of what we do happens in person, however, we are very well equipped for virtual consults and alternative sessions. In fact, I actually get a bit excited about having obstacles. I love playing MacGyver and get a huge rush when I get to feel like I’ve used my ingenuity to overcome a problem or obstacle. So this will be a good test. Going for a walk in the middle of the snowstorm when everyone is sleeping and making breakfast and hunkered down, when I’ve got the world to myself; that’s my favorite. Raining on a wedding day? Great, sometimes that’s when some of my most creative shots happen. So, challenge accepted. I hope you’re up for a good challenge right along with me.
Overcoming this particular challenge is going to take some teamwork and support from clients and friends like you. This thing isn’t just impacting me and you, but the entire wedding, events industries as well as artists and small businesses. If you aren’t following us on Instagram. Start now, we’re going to be sharing some ways you can help and some fun things in between, and like always some gorgeous photos.
I know you’ve gotten a hundred emails from every email list you’re subscribed to about what they are doing about the Coronavirus. But hopefully, this is informative on how we can survive together personally and in business. And is also a bit uplifting.
We love you all and all the people you love (and ours of course) deeply. FaceTime, Skype, JoinMe, etc, we can still chat, although we *might* be wearing yoga pants 😃, (work from home perks)! We’ve been Skyping destination wedding clients for over a decade, so we’ve got it down. When the time is right we will absolutely want to see your smiling faces in person again.
We’ll reach out to each of you individually and tackle our game plan. :) Don’t stress, as always we’re here for you.
With the inevitable rescheduling that is happening, your first vendor might not be available on your new date. We know choosing a new vendor isn’t what you want, but we want to make it as easy as we can for you. Talk to us about your budget. I’m not scared and you won’t offend me. (Business relationships, just like marriage are all about communication.) Ask about a smaller retainer or adjusted wedding package. I’m more than willing to work with you to make your dream day happen if you’re coming to us from another vendor. Common sense and compassion above all else.
I lived with people with immune system challenges for years, so I’m pretty well versed in disinfecting the heck out of everything I or anyone in my environment touches. We might be grabbing wipes mid-session and using hand sanitizer often. Don’t be offended, I won’t be if you ask for some too. All that gear has a lot of nooks and crannies and has to go right up against my face for me to do my job, so in order to protect you, the people you love, me, my people and every client that comes after you, I’m going to be over the top vigilant. I promise to be just as careful with any client whose session is before yours. Better safe than sorry.
I’m not into panic. Never have been. I do make sure to stay vigilant and considerate. I always strive to operate my business that treats my clients the way I would want to be treated, with compassion, love, and common sense. There are so many people including so many in our industry who may not have a savings account to fall back on, who have employees who depend on them, while this is super stressful for me, I am fully aware there are plenty of people worse off than I. This will be devastating to some businesses. Even well prepared, well run ones. Be kind to each other friends.
How can you continue to support and help this amazing, creative, community of awesome humans? The incredibly talented and selfless group that makes dream wedding days and events happen when all events have been canceled? Here’s the shortlist.
Even if your wedding isn’t until October, go ahead and pay off your invoice if you’ve got the money. This will help more than you know (and it’s one less thing you’ll have a to pay off 2 weeks before wedding day). Ask if you can make monthly payments. Even if it’s just a small amount, it will still help.
Go ahead and book future dates.
Just starting to plan your wedding? Go ahead and book for next year, things are going to be packed in 2021 with all the rescheduling from this year. Lock in your date now and put down a deposit. Especially if there are specific vendors that you want on your dream team. The retainers that you’ll put down for each vendor will help keep us all afloat until business returns to normal, and you’ll feel better about having your team in place already.
From your favorite coffee shop or photographer. Ask your cake lady if she sells cake or cupcakes on the side. Add to your order from your rental company or add uplights from your DJ. If you’ve been waiting to buy engagement or wedding prints or albums from your photographer do it now.
FROM US: Buy a Gift card for Mother’s Day/Birthday/Anniversary – Put down a deposit on a session for this summer/fall/holiday season. You probably aren’t going to go shopping out in the world. Your family will appreciate something so unique and personal that celebrates your family connections. Gift card expiration deadlines will be extended until the end of 2021.
Put some art on that naked wall. At home staring at a blank wall? We’ve always loved helping clients create beautiful collections of art in their homes. Helping you select images, arrange pieces, choose sizes, etc, is something I’ve always loved so much. Whether it’s photos from your wedding, past session or some of the awesome art we’ve captured throughout Kansas City or on our travels (we’ll be updating and adding to this gallery over the coming days). So, if you’re staring at a blank wall, give me a call I can help you with that. And we can do it all virtually. If photography isn’t your thing, then watch our Instagram highlights coming up. We’re going to be posting some of our favorite local artists. Maybe what you really want is on Etsy or can come from an awesome local creator.
Wedding or Portrait Albums you’ve been waiting on? Let’s get that thing going. We can be flexible with your deposit, walk you through options virtually and you can come out the other side of this craziness with a gorgeous album that showcases one of the most awesome days of your life.
A lot of us will be working on putting together massive digital marketing campaigns over the next few weeks. SHARE, LIKE, AND COMMENT ON WHAT YOU SEE. That doesn’t cost a single penny and it will help get your favorite vendors more exposure and more business in the long run. Tell your best friend who just got engaged about your favorite wedding vendors and make sure she contacts them. Word of mouth referrals and sharing social media posts does more to boost a small business than you’ll ever know.
Tell us what we can do to help you. We’re in this together, so if you need something, let me know. I’m here for you too.
We know this is a huge ask, but trust us when we say that we know how big of an impact this is on your lives as well. You’ve been planning wedding day for a long, long time and having to change everything at the last minute isn’t ideal for anyone. We promise that as vendors we’re trying to figure out the very best way to help you out with everything that you need that will also still allow us all to continue to work for ourselves and run our own businesses doing what we love.
Love you all. **Now go wash your hands you filthy animals and stop touching your faces!** <– That’s Melissa’s line, but it’s too good to cut or reword
(modeled on and modified from with permission from Rivas Photography’s post. I was gonna write this whole thing from scratch, but our bullet points were basically the same, so I put most of it in my own words since she laid it out so well ;)