Saturday, February 22, 2014

Brides - How do you choose a Florist?

 Unscientific Wedding Survey 
 reprinted from Sprout/Worcester Florist Cathy Walsh

I posted a completely unscientific wedding survey on the blog here, trying to get a feel for what's driving the calls for wedding consultations.

Every year we get swamped with calls in January for consults, and every year I can't keep up with them, so every year I try to analyse all this and try to figure out how to do it better.

I don't know that I have that all figured out yet.
But I keep trying.

Here is the survey question and responses -

Engaged Couples:  When you call a florist for a wedding appointment, you have -

A. Already decided who you want, it's just a matter of price.                               18%
  8 (18%)
B. A tight schedule and need to meet with the one who can accommodate you.     9%
  4 (9%)
C. Scheduled appointments with several florists and are still researching.              15%
  7 (15%)
D. No idea who or what you need in a florist but you have to start somewhere.     22%
  10 (22%)
E. A vision and want to brainstorm with a creative person.                                  34%
  15 (34%)

I'm still not sure what to do with this information.  I thought for sure answer A was going to come out on top.  I figured that in the era of Pinterest, blogs, web sites, Facebook, etc., that most vendors were researched to death on the internet before the client meeting, that our creativity and skill had already been assessed and compared to other shops', and it was just a matter of whether our prices match the couple's budget.

(And personality fit.  Because it can make a big difference if you and the client "click" - or not.  You need to do that in person for sure.)

So imagine my surprise to find that a third of people who took the survey just want to pick our brains.  And that another 37% want to book an appointment without having a clear sense of what they want or need in a florist or flowers.

It's certainly ego boosting to think your creative brain is worth picking, but I can brainstorm until the cows come home.  Not only does that not pay the bills, too many ideas are ultimately confusing and lead to decision paralysis.  The client needs to have done some research and planning before we get to the flower brainstorming.

  • Dresses need to be purchased.  I can't brainstorm on "the dresses will probably be coral".  
  • Your personal style needs to be determined.  No one is rustic-chic-romantic-elegant-classic-creative-modern-vintage.  Never.  If you think that's your style, you will need to narrow it down a bit before meeting with a florist.
  • An honest and realistic assessment of your flower budget.  I have never seen a cheap flower idea from Style Me Pretty or Martha Stewart.  If you are using styled photoshoots as your inspiration, then be prepared to have a magazine editor's budget.

By all means, get your girlfriends, a bottle of wine, and Pinterest together!  But after you have focused your ideas is the time to sit with your florist.  :-)