Never before have so many people been saying so much by saying so little. Brides and grooms are finding that social media sites like Twitter and Facebook are making it a lot easier to see the options available to them as they are planning their wedding. Why resist it? Why deny it? My only concern as a wedding professional is that as people shy away from face to face interaction in favor of facebook to facebook commerce, the most intimate part of the event industry will also begin to fade away. On the upside, brides and grooms can now, with a few keystrokes, follow their wedding planner, become a fan of their caterer or subscribe to their photographer's blog. While you shouldn't expect to become "BFF's" with your vendors, these tools offer visual representations of their products and services that provide validation of their expertise, giving you added peace of mind.
Photographer Cheyenne Schultz says, "Twitter, Facebook and my blog are invaluable to our business. Twitter is great for networking with others in the industry. Facebook is awesome for me because I post my pics after a session and tag the bride and groom, [allowing] all of their friends and family to get to see them, which can help to bring in some new business. My blog is the biggest single thing that we have done to grow the business. As soon as we post, the bride will send it out to everyone she knows, as she is anxious to show off her pictures."
While Twitter has become more of an internet "networking luncheon," Facebook has become a great way to keep up with your vendors and share elements of your wedding with your friends and family.
As a wedding vendor myself, the biggest suggestion I have for brides and grooms is to sign up for a free RSS feed reader like Google Reader, NewsGator or BlogBridge and subscribe to every blog you can. Most wedding professionals (especially planners and photographers) have blogs that are updated at least once a week, if not more. This is the easiest way to get suggestions and ideas from some of the largest names in the biz.
Times are changing, and getting information from your vendors has become easier, cheaper and more technical. Blog posts, tweets, fan pages, oh my. While convenient, it can all be a little overwhelming. If you feel a bit like Dorothy on those yellow bricks that's fine – you may not be in Kansas anymore, but at least you can reach out to those who are.