Kate Storey is a digital marketing specialist, copywriter and social media expert. As co-owner of Book More Brides alongside her husband, Nick, she helps wedding business owners around the world better understand how to identify their perfect clients, what to say to get them to book, and how to create strategic online content that builds relationships and sales
Topics covered include:
- How to close buy-later couples: Are couples ghosting you or are you ghosting them?
- How to bring in consistent leads on a regular basis (slow and fast methods)
- Blogging & Content Ideas for wedding pros
- How to connect with couples on a deeper level and draw an emotional response
- Email Sequences to keep you front of mind and stand out from competitors
Kate is passionate about helping wedding professionals find the right words that help them speak directly to their couples’ emotional needs (and buying triggers), and add a little fun and personality along the way. She is a big believer in being clear over clever - but her specialty is combining the two to create writing that helps wedding pros connect at a deeper level with the couples they want to book. Her experience extends beyond the wedding industry as well. With nearly 20 years in marketing, social media, public relations, and communications work, Kate has helped everyone from small start-ups, technology and manufacturing companies, national museums and even large corporations like Microsoft create a deeper connection with the people they serve through written and digital communications. Through it all, Kate believes that each business owner intuitively knows their perfect client - they just need a little help sometimes in putting it into words...and that’s where she comes in. When she’s not teaching marketing skills to wedding pros or recording content for the Book More Brides Podcast and YouTube channel, Kate loves going on adventures with Nick and their four children, savoring another cup of caramel creamer-laden coffee and watching way too many YouTube videos.
About Kate Storey & Book More Brides:
Book More Brides Website
Book More Brides Instagram
Book More Brides Podcast
Book More Brides CRM - Book & manage leads like never before!
[00:00:00] Couples who have to make a decision right away about booking a wedding pro they're running out of time planning. They need the book, somebody now, now, now. My conversation with Kate story today, we're going to talk about how this is only 3% of your local market. Those are the people ready to buy now, ready to go.
So Kate poses, a fascinating question. Are you losing sales because you're letting go of your buy later couples. Our couple's ghosting you or are you actually ghosting them? Kate's story is going to talk to us about how consistent leads will come to you on a regular basis. If you're investing in paid methods and at the same time, You're working the relationships with these by later couples.
We're going to talk about blogging and content ideas for wedding pros. Kate is going to give us about 10 different blog posts in about two seconds. That's great. Um, If you think about being motivated to do something, anything. Motivation always stems from emotion. Kate is going to chat with [00:01:00] us about all the ways to bring an emotional response from couples to the point where they're actually giving you these hidden desires about their wedding. That will help you offer the right package to that. I'm a compared to information that you might not have gotten on your typical intro or sales call.
So who is Kate story? She's a digital marketing specialist, copywriter and social media expert. As the Cole owner of book, more brides, along with her husband, Nick, she helps wedding business owners around the world. Better understand how to identify the perfect clients, what to say, to get them to book and how to create strategic online content that builds relationships and sales. It is coming up right here on Funktastic Chats with Kate story.
Mike Zabrin: Hey, Kate, welcome to the podcast.
Kate Storey: Hey, thanks Mike. So get excited to be here.
Mike Zabrin: Over 20 years and marketing, social media, public relations, and you've helped small startups, [00:02:00] technology, manufacturing companies. I just think it's so interesting that your work and your experience goes beyond the business of wedding.
Kate Storey: Yeah. Yeah. I mean, well, just like so many people in the wedding industry, like, I didn't start here. Right. So few of us, like, you know, just, uh, as soon as they're done with any sort of like school or anything goes straight into the wedding industry. Right. So, yeah. That's basically anything to do with writing digital marketing.
That is my jam. That's what I love to do. So I've had the opportunity to do it with a lot of different lot different companies, a lot of different organizations. Different sizes. It's been really fun. And yeah, you learn something new with each group of people that you work with each industry, but landing and staying in the wedding industry here.
This has been amazing because I feel like there's just so many stories that you can tell here. That's what I found with all of these different experiences that I've had is that there's always a story to be told. But I love working in the wedding industry because there's, you're always telling your client's story [00:03:00] too, and the way that works with your expertise and just bringing it all together and just finding this really amazing way to help a couple on the biggest day of their life, the best day of their life.
Now that you're working with a lot of wedding pros, what are some types of things that you help wedding pros achieve in their, in their business?
Kate Storey: Well more than anything with like I was talking about the story element, it's really helping them to understand that. Their expertise is important, but we have to tell our couples story. We have to share why, what we do is going to make their wedding day better. And I think that's something that a lot of wedding pros struggle with.
Mostly. You went into it because you're good at something. Right. And a lot of wedding pros have, done some sort of additional training that had done some sort of a, you know, education, it's artistry in a lot of ways and to be able to learn how to translate that and say, here's [00:04:00] what I'm really great at.
And this is what it's going to do for your day. That's where I feel like that's where the biggest transformation happens. It's when we understand that we are here to serve these couples, but it's so much more than just us taking great pictures or, having being amazing at creating a dance atmosphere.
The music that we play or the venue, the setting that we have, it goes so much deeper when we figure out what it is that they really want out of your service. That's where I find a lot of magic happens with our class.
Mike Zabrin: And Kate gives us a lot of actionable advice on how to make this happen in the book. More brides. I asked, which is where they share all of the best wedding, business, marketing, and sales tips to help you bring in more of your perfect couples online and book more weddings. And I'm a big fan of the podcast and everything book more brides does.
I have a lot of awesome questions, but before we get into that, because you've got this technology background too, I'm just curious when it comes [00:05:00] to keeping track of your clients, your leads. Your team, is there any sort of system, maybe it's a CRM or just some system in particular that you found can really streamline a wedding pros business from the technology and the things.
Kate Storey: Oh, yeah, sure. So what's interesting. And what's kind of difficult, you know, it's not the answer everybody always wants to hear is that. There's no one system that's going to do everything for your business, right? Some systems are better at some things than others. You might have to have a couple of them.
It doesn't mean you have to go and invest in like tons of them. You could try to find ones that will do the majority of whatever it is that you might need some support, if you some people are really great at the follow-up. And it depends also as your businesses growing, your needs in the beginning maybe very different once you decide to, if you decide you want to take on, if you want to become a multi app, if you want to bring on a big team or a staff or anything like that, your needs might change.
So it's first understanding that your technology needs might [00:06:00] change the support that you need might change. But actually we found that there were a lot of things. Wedding pros needed to be able to get in touch with their couples to stay in front of them. With email, with text messaging, we actually created our own CRM.
So we, we do have our own that we have created the book more brides CRM, and we do have several clients that are Really?
finding that very useful for staying on top of those things and just being able to integrate it's more of the communication side.
Mike Zabrin: Having some sort of system like that, to be able to focus more time on what I love to do, which is perform, so I think that's so awesome
Kate Storey: Yeah. It's well, cause that's the thing. You didn't go into your business and neither did really any wedding pros because you really wanted to like be texting people and making them show up to appointments. That's not why you started the business.
Mike Zabrin: Right.
Kate Storey: Yeah. So having something, some sort of a technology tool that's going to help you do the things, the parts of owning and running a business that like, it's not really why you went into business, but it's still so necessary.
So being [00:07:00] able to have some sort of system technology definitely a CRM helps, whatever you decide to go into until you look into there's a lot of great ones. But it's making sure that.
you find. The right fit for what your business needs needs are Right.
now. And again, being open to maybe changing that as your business grows or as your needs grow, because what we've also found is there's a lot of clients.
Their personal life may change in between as well. You know, They may start a family and maybe they're just not as able to be as responsive and, you know, being able to be on their phone or in front of their computer, you know, checking email as much as they used to be. Or like I said, as their business grows and it's they just have more clients and everything.
It's W figuring out what it is that you need. And then looking For the system, doing the research to find one that's going to fit uh, we're big fans of the concept of automated automation with personalization. That's what we always say is making sure you have some sort of tool that's going to help to automate your business
but also give you the option to [00:08:00] customize things, making sure that you are uh, you know, it's not super robotic, but also be able to step in when you're ready to and when you need to kind of turn that into more of the face-to-face or, you know, more direct customer interactions. But at the same time, have something that's going to allow you to be super responsive to provide the information that you need to.
So that way your clients are able to, your couples are able to really get the info that they need without you feeling like you're like tied to your phone or your computer all the time.
Mike Zabrin: Let's talk about something that everybody wants, which is leads and inquiries. You've got a really great episode on where you talk about low ways and fast ways to get leads where one is paid. One is free. Talk to me about the local train and the express train
Kate Storey: Yeah, exactly. That is one of our favorite like analogies to help understand this is that, What we find a lot of wedding pros end up doing is they focus only on what we also call the [00:09:00] buy. Now couples is people that are like, man, I gotta make a decision. I'm running out of time here on my planning.
I just need to book somebody. Now, those are those leads where it's like, they need to make a decision. And a lot of times that's the. Fast traffic that, when you put out an ad or something, the people who respond and you get leads on that and they're ready to go right away. A lot of times that's because they're in a buy now mindset.
They have to make a decision. But the thing is that is a really small percentage of your local market. Okay. It's really the statistics show that it's about 3% of your local market. Are those people that are by now ready to go? And when we go with these fast methods, which is making sure, bringing in leads quickly and everything, that is what we say, that's going to be like with paying for leads, for ads doing Google ads, Facebook ads, Instagram ads all those things that are going to help to bring in leads and sales quick.
We also have to realize that is a whole mindset [00:10:00] too. If these couples are, they're the ones that we want to make those decisions quickly. Well, we have to speak to them in a certain way. Because that's a very different type of client than someone who is like, they just got engaged. They've got like a year and a half of planning.
They feel like they've got all the time in the world. Right. Being in the wedding industry. We know that's not. So especially right now, it's like people are booking up super fast. You can't just sit there and be like, oh, I got plenty of time to do this. But our couples, a lot of times think they do. So those are what we call the by later couples, the ones who are interested in what you have to offer, but they're not really ready to, put down a deposit just yet or really make a decision.
So that is where you want to do something. Slowly getting meaning you are putting your name out there and you're building a presence slowly. So that's going to be things like blogging. It's going to be doing an email system. That's where basically things are running on almost like an autopilot and going behind the scenes.[00:11:00]
So that way, when you are investing money in. Fast methods, those ads and those paid methods. Then as you're bringing those in at the same time, you're working that relationship with those by late by later couples. So that way, those leads are slowly coming to you and making sure that you're, they're coming in on a regular basis.
And eventually they're going to get to that buy now status. So that's why we say it's like the express train versus the the regular stops is that. the you want to get from where you're at now to making a sale. So if you're going those that fast track, that's like the express train.
It's it goes straight there, but if you go the other line, it's yeah, it's got some stops along the way and it takes its time, but it eventually gets there. You need to have both, you really can't. If you focus just on slow, it's going to take you forever to get those leads in and making sure that your business is growing.
But at the same time, if you only focus on the fast, like I said, that's only 3% of your local market, so what's happening when there's everybody [00:12:00] else. Well, you're losing out on business. You're losing out on sales for those couples that are ready to make a decision later. And at the same time, you're wondering why you're throwing money at all these paid efforts.
And you're not getting such a quick return as much as you would like you have to do both.
Mike Zabrin: I'm generally are a pretty impatient person. A blessing and a curse when it comes to my life. But I love what you say, the amount of leads should not be. Depending on how much money you're always spending. In other words if you're not able to pay for these ads all of a sudden your leads just dry up, so the solo method is actually an important and one of these slow methods could be blogging. I always have a hard time coming up with ideas for blogging. Do you ever have vendors reach out to you and they're always are kind of looking for new content idea that will convert to leads.
Kate Storey: Oh, absolutely. Yeah. And that's the thing. I think, again, this is not necessarily something that. Easily to us because [00:13:00] that's not really what you went into your business for. But I, so definitely that is a struggle you're not alone. And especially when you're trying to figure out is this doing anything?
Is it like if I blog, isn't going to do anything and I've got some tips for that too. I'll go into that in a minute, I guess. But but with starting with this, just thinking of ideas, There's a couple ways that you can come up with ideas right away is what I call the five by five method. And basically you think of five ideas for these five different categories.
And here's what they are. One. Think about the questions that your couples are always asking. Doesn't matter if you've got an FAQ section already, it's the ones that you're like, oh my gosh, did they not look at this? What's going on here? It means that these are questions that your couples consistently have and they need regular answers to.
So write five blog posts about five questions. Your couples are always asking you another topic. And two, five found five questions on this. What are the [00:14:00] five things that your couples you wish that they would ask about your service? I find this one, especially really hits a lot of wedding pros because.
I don't know why they don't think to ask this well, think about this, your wedding business, what it, what is needed to hire a really great, a venue, a really great photographer, videographer you have, what's called the curse of knowledge. You basically, too much about your business and your industry.
But your couples think about it from their perspective, they have likely, never planned a wedding or been part of planning a wedding. So this is all new to them. So we have to think about what is it that they, what do we know too much about, but they have never even thought about if you come up with five ideas for that.
Well, think about just those two things. There's 10 blog ideas right there. So this is, these are some of the ways that you can go on this. And I actually, I have a worksheet on this, Mike, I should give you if it's helpful for your listeners to have I'll give you that worksheet so you can provide it for them because it's just a [00:15:00] little bit of brainstorming.
You can come up with a bunch of different ideas. And a lot of times it's just that brainstorming that will get the wheels turning and really make you feel like, okay. Yeah. It just, you, sometimes you just need a little kickstart.
Mike Zabrin: Definitely. I think the most viewed black posts that we have was a blog post. I just wrote one day. The different medleys that the band does, like why that separates us from other bands is because we do a bunch of different medleys. And to me, Obvious when you come to our show, but what have you ever seen this before?
And sometimes I, it's hard to kind of step back and think like that. So I think that's great. That would definitely be at the top of my list if I was right away. If I was thinking about, top five things that I wished couples asked me about, because I love talking about, I love talking about music, so,
Kate Storey: Yeah. And if I can throw one caveat in, though, when we're coming up with these topics, don't talk about like the technical aspects. Let's think about what is from there, because, so you mentioned the medleys that's perfect. But if you said [00:16:00] like the
The five biggest pieces of equipment that we bring to every show, it's that's ultra important to like your performance, but they don't care as much about that because they just want.
What's in it for them. What did those pieces of equipment? Me and for them? Well, then you can say, maybe you talk about how we're able to perform this particular piece, how we're able to get this kind of sound, being able to. From their perspective again, what is it that they're getting out of that rather than the technical aspects?
So like for example I see a lot of photographers. There'll be like, the five pieces of equipment I can't live without. And they'll go into real technical information about the types of lenses that they use or filters or editing techniques. And it's your couples don't care. And it, I don't mean that unkindly.
I just mean they, they want to know what that means for their wedding. So we always have to take it from that perspective. What is it that they're getting out of it and what does it mean for them in their wedding?
Mike Zabrin: In other words, selling the result of the service. And I love [00:17:00] one of my other favorite parts of your podcast is you talk a lot about. Drawing emotions out of people to sell your service. I had Alan Berg on the podcast recently. He was the VP of sales at the knot for a lot of years. And we chatted about a book.
I read one, it, one was a wit wisdom in the business of weddings and other one that I'm reading now, which I wanted to get into, which is if your website was an employee, would you fire it?
Kate Storey: Yes. Yes. I've heard that.
Mike Zabrin: But other podcasts, he was really big about having pictures on your website that sell the service, so, now, we have a video on, right on our header page and there's no sound it.
And it's from, you could only see the back of our heads, but you could see the, the full dance floor, you see that packed dance floor, we made that happen, Um,
Kate Storey: That's exactly what. it is. It's making sure that you're showing this. It's what we call a picture of success. It's making sure that it is, and it has to be their picture of success, not your picture of success. So that's the thing, a lot of a lot of wedding pros, [00:18:00] we'll put a great big picture of this.
Performing. Well, you're not their picture of success, but just like you said, the people dancing out there, having the time of their lives and include yourself in there. Somehow I actually, I love that perspective of that. It's the back of your head. So you can, it's like you're on the stage there.
But seeing out there what it is that they're able to experience and their happiness people's faces, people need to see that. So that way they can start to picture themselves and be like, oh my gosh, that could be my wedding. That's what I want. That's how I want it to look and feel.
Mike Zabrin: Even as I browse other wedding pros websites, some of my favorite pictures are ones that, you know with bands is people dancing, you can't even see the band and the picture
what are some other ways that we could get an emotional connection from a lead when describing what it is that we do, or, even when they, we just talked about when they visit our website, but what about on the phone or email? What are some ways to really bring out that emotion about our services?
Kate Storey: Yeah. Well, sometimes it's just flat out asking them, it's saying, how [00:19:00] do you want to feel when it's all said and done, and again, this is going to be different based on the type of service that you provide. So like for a photographer, That's going to be something that happens after the wedding.
It's like what the day of their wedding, a photographer. It's they're not really focused on that. They're focused on what the photographer's going to capture. The end product, those pictures that they're going to be able to display in their homes. But thinking about from like a musician standpoint, like either, a live band, a DJ, anything like that, it's like asking them say, okay, so how.
Feel on your wedding day? What do you want people to say to you? What do you want your guests to say? When they're on the dance floor with you, what do you want them to say? Like a week, a month after your wedding? And a lot of times you'll end up hearing the same language, but here's the key, make sure you use those exact.
Phrases, whatever it is. And if you're not sure about this, ask your past couples, ask them like, especially ones that you had like a great relationship with and, you got on and say, Hey, I'm just, I'm trying to work on a couple things on my website. And I'm just trying to get a little bit of [00:20:00] information here and really get people pumped up about hiring, and having this for their wedding.
How did you feel when, when we were out there on the dance floor, or what do people say to you about. Ask them, and use those exact phrases because that's how you're going to connect with these couples. Because then when they see you using these phrases that have actually come out of the mouths of people, just like them out of your ideal couples, they're going to be like, oh my gosh, like how? Yeah,
That's exactly it. How did you know? It makes them feel like you've got this. Crazy level of understanding with them and it's you're in their head, right? So the more you can use their exact phrasing the more you're going to connect with them. But there's also another thing you can do with that is make sure that you ask them how they don't want to do.
What don't they want out of their wedding. Because if you think about this, going with the music example again, well, if you say, okay, what is like your worst case scenario with like your wedding and music and everything. And they're probably [00:21:00] going to say something like, well, like nobody's on the dance floor, right?
It's everybody looks bored. There's one or two people out there. When people are checking their watches saying when it's, polite to leave, it's okay. So, so then you can.
Mike Zabrin: A whole different band showed up at our wedding. It was really weird. I don't know who those guys were. They weren't the ones that we saw on the website. It was bizarre. I could, I, could
Kate Storey: Wow.
Mike Zabrin: hear stories?
Kate Storey: Yeah. There's all sorts of different answers to this. But ask them that too. And so you can be like, yeah, wow. That's, that'd be terrible because then not only that, but you can sometimes asking those types of questions are going to also help you offer the right package for them.
Because sometimes those conversations will bring out some kind of hidden desires. And some hidden needs that maybe they didn't immediately identify because a lot of times, especially when you start in a conversation with a couple of, they'll say some pretty standard things like, oh yeah, I want my dance floor to be packed.
I want everybody to just be, having a great time. I want, great music. Well sure. [00:22:00] But asking them some questions okay, well, why do you want that? Like, how do you want that to make you feel, and using the phrase. So that is very helpful. Like I want my dance floor packed so that, and to give you an example, we were, I was working with the DJ recently.
And one of the things that he had heard his clients say before was like, I want my dance floor packed so that people are like running to meet me on the dance floor, because they're like, oh, do you remember this song from when we were in college? You know? And they wanted that feeling of everybody running to the dance floor and every one that they loved, like around them and just filling the dance floor and being able to look around and see all the people that they love out there with them right now.
Isn't that such a different feeling than just being like, Yeah.
I want the dance floor packed,
Mike Zabrin: A hundred percent, I don't necessarily say this out loud, but it is how I feel is that because we sell the results of what we do. If price is the most important factor to [00:23:00] you when choosing a service for your wedding, then we're not the right person for you.
If what matters to you is that, your guests feet were killing them from dancing all night long. And they had the walkout barefoot cause they broke their heels. The kitchen couldn't even get to the dessert course out on time because the dance floor was so bad.
Kate Storey: bad.
Mike Zabrin: From right from the beginning, then that we're the right entertainment for you, but, and I think that that probably kind of leads me into pricing. When you're talking about pricing to, well, first of all, are you a fan of displaying pricing on your website?
Kate Storey: Oh, gosh, it is such a tricky thing.
Mike Zabrin: Yeah.
Kate Storey: on the one hand, I do fully understand people who say they want that because they want to put pricing on their website?
because they're like, look, I want to be transparent for my couples. I want them to feel like I'm not trying to like, You could do some sleazy sales tactics, getting them on the phone, whatever, which just so you know, it is not a sleazy sales tactic to get on the phone with someone.
Okay. Like you're not being sleazy by [00:24:00] trying to do that. I think what I find personally to be the best is to give a range rather than giving the full pricing. Because again, it's just like we were talking about. We have to have a conversation with these couples to be able to provide them with the right package.
And not only that we need to understand from them and they need to hear from us that we understand that hidden desire, right? What is it that they really want out of that pack dance or right. They need to hear that we know this and we understand this to know that we're the right wedding pro for them, because here's what. If you just have pricing here, like one of the biggest mistakes that we tell a wedding pros not to do is that when someone reaches out to you and they say, Hey, can you send me your packages and pricing? The worst thing you can do is to reply and just say, yep, here you go. Let me know if you're interested.
Let me know if you want us to set up. Yeah.
because the problem is now, what is it that they have to go off of your price and that's it. They don't know that you understand there that hidden desire, [00:25:00] that deeper need that they have out of your service. They don't know who you are. What's your, like, all they have now is a price comparison between you and somebody else, one of your competitors and most people logically, what are they going to.
They're going to go with the cheaper option, right? So You're going to end up putting yourself into a price matching war. You're going to find yourself constantly undercutting your services and, trying to just offer deals just so you can get booked up. We got to stop this. We have to make sure that we are building a conversation So I say happy medium is to give a range and say, Packages range from this to this, or on average, most couples, spend this you could say something like that as kind of a happy medium. So that way you can kind of, give people a ballpark idea of whether or not you are, in the right frame for their budget.
But inviting them into a conversation saying, so I want to make sure that I offer you the right package, the one that fits for what you want, how your experience [00:26:00] is going to work and making sure that you're saying that. And not just basing it off of price, we have to get off of that.
Mike Zabrin: Here's the, actually the exact sentence that I use are bad ranges from, and I pulled it up just to read it here. Our band ranges from approximately seven K to 15 K with a majority of our couples falling somewhere in the. For our big band with horns, we also offer live DJs with trio and quartets for this range, which is a cheaper price, but I love having that, that first number really low and the second number really high, because you don't have to spend at the top of our range to get a really great result,
Kate Storey: Absolutely. And not only that, it's, we also need to have these conversations with them. So that way they understand. What the experience, which experience is going to work well for them, right? Because what you just mentioned, as long as I was listening to this, you said, there's this, but then there's also this option.
Well, how do I know?
How do I know if That's the right one for me? [00:27:00] How do I know if I want horns or not, especially if you're thinking about this. Most people are not musically, intelligent. Like they don't know what it means to have horns. They don't know what it means to have that in combination with, anything else.
So we have to take the time to educate them. And there's several ways you can do this. The easiest way is through a sales conversation by having a consultation with them and giving them an idea and say, Hey. The people who choose this package, this is generally the experience that they're looking for.
That's going to help to clarify it greatly. But another way you can do that is with an email sequence, making sure that you're educating them and say one horn, three horns, five horns, big band. What does it all mean? And being able to educate them on those kinds of things. That's how they're going to be able to move forward.
We was making an educated decision. They feel confident when they have that knowledge, because otherwise it's left up to them. And if they're confused, they're not going to buy.
Mike Zabrin: That's a really great point. And, part of the reason why [00:28:00] I really make it a point to. Try and talk to everybody I can on the phone is just because, number one, people want to work with people they like and numb and vice versa. It's a great, it's a great qualifier and both ends. Yeah.
Kate Storey: Yeah.
absolutely. When, listen, you clearly are a fun guy. Like you can tell from your voice, like you are like a fun person. You have a great laid back personality, but that's the thing. They're not going to be able to tell That from a price list, if you just give them a price list, they have no idea who or what they're working with.
We have to have these conversations with them. We can't just give them a price sheet.
Mike Zabrin: That gets into ghosting.
Kate Storey: Yeah.
Mike Zabrin: What are some main reasons why leads are ghosting us?
Kate Storey: Well, let me tell you something a lot of times, it's not that they're ghosting you. You are ghosting them. If you don't follow up with them. And that's a hard truth. That's a hard thing to hear sometimes, but we [00:29:00] think, again, this goes back to the buy now versus the buy later conversation. Okay. A lot of times couples are reaching out to us, you know think about they get engaged.
They're super excited and everybody's throwing suggestions at them. Oh, you should check out my venue. Oh, you should check on my photographer. They were amazing. You guys would love them. They're getting suggestions thrown at them left and right. They're doing their own research. They're getting all these, then they get on, the nod WeddingWire and they're like, send me some info, send me some info.
They're pressing that button. They are full of information. And so what are they going to do? They're going to reach out to us and they're going to try to get information so they can start to sift through it. See, which makes sense for them. So, okay. So, so that's where they're at. What happens on our end.
We get these requests and we're like, yes, a lead. Awesome. And we give them what they want. And we maybe even we get on the sales conversation with them. We have a great conversation and, we feel like, man, this is great. You send them over a kind of. Well, once again, think about it. Where are they at?
Are they making a decision right now or is their wedding a year and a half, two [00:30:00] years away? And they feel like they've got all this time going. If we don't continue the conversation with. After they reach out to us after we have a conversation with them, if we don't continue that. And I always recommend doing that through an email series, it's the easiest way you can automate that very easily.
It keeps you in front of them, but if we don't do our job as a wedding professionals, Staying in touch with them staying in front of them with this follow-up, we're actually the ones ghosting them because they, we reach out to them a couple of times say, Hey, are you interested? Well, yeah, they're interested, but they're just not ready to make a decision yet.
And even if we want to, we can't force them to become a buy now couple, like it has to happen. Their time schedule when they feel confident to make a decision. So it's our job as a wedding professionals to make sure that we are following up with them consistently. So that way, when they change over from that buy later to a buy now, couple we're here for them.
We've proven ourselves [00:31:00] to be a, about, more than just a sale to them. We have been showing them, giving them good quality information, helping them to make a decision. So that way, when they become a buy now couple they're like, yes, No problem. This person has been amazing. They have kept me up to date.
I feel totally confident on what's kind of service and experience they offer. Let's do this.
Mike Zabrin: Talk to me when you said putting it into a sequence is this something that's just not something that you're putting in something like a MailChimp, right? This is coming out to look just like, as if you were sending an email.
Kate Storey: Well, you're putting it out through, through, a MailChimp or a CRM or whatever it is, but they don't know that. Especially if you use these kinds of good tools. Technology now is just it's. So. Easy for us to stay in front of people and to make it more natural, there is all sorts of personalization options using their name.
And you can get in there and add things in, and it's some very specific details, but having a sequence, especially an email sequence where you [00:32:00] basically lay out, this is something that I do with my copywriting clients is I work with them and we come up with anywhere from, I recommend 27.
Don't panic. I'm here to wanting seven to 52 weeks of. Because again, think about this. If our couples are, their wedding is not for a year or more out and they reach out to you at the very beginning of their journey, as soon as they get engaged, they're super excited, but they've got a year or more until they're well, We need content regularly in front of them.
And it's not as scary, especially once you're working with a professional, it's not as scary as it seems, but coming up with something, that's going to allow you to do it. Then you plug it into your CRM system and that's that slow method. You've got this going in the background. So you've got a lead that reaches out to you, but they've got a year and a half and two.
They're ready to make a decision. Well, those emails are going for you through, through MailChimp, through your CRM. They're constantly staying in front of and doing that work. While in the meantime, you're working with these by [00:33:00] now couples, the ones that are ready to make a decision that you're turning into clients right now.
And basically it's like the way that I heard it described recently, and I love this analogy and this visual is it's like people in line, right? Like they're in queue and it's so you've got the one at the front. You're helping them right now. Cause they're the, by now. They need help right now.
You help them with their wedding. They step aside and the next one comes up. Well, someone who's at the back of the line, eventually they're going to get to the front. So we have to make sure we stay in touch with them while they're in that line and waiting that's the violator so that when they get to the front of the line as the, by now, we have stayed consistently in front of them.
They remember us. They're not going to go searching on Google because they don't remember the conversation they had with somebody a year and a half ago.
Mike Zabrin: Yeah, trill. I just think about all the people who reach out to us that even that don't even have a venue yet, so, the sequence, it would be so, so great for that. And it's something that I haven't utilized and you're just putting a bunch of sparks are just going off of my head, like crazy as you're talking to me.
Kate Storey: Absolutely. Yeah. And it's so easy to do. Like I [00:34:00] said, especially if you've got someone who can take some, if that's a concern, like the writing part there's people that can help you with that, just like if you don't have time to be like emailing people directly and everything, well, then use some automation and find ways to do that.
There are so many ways that you can help your business to run smoothly without you feeling completely overwhelmed. And at the same time growing your business, there's so many options.
Mike Zabrin: Hearing no actually is could be a great thing, right? It could let you.
Put it away and move on, so, this is one example and the subject of the email is called witness protection program. Question Mark A. Little Winky face. Hi Ashley. As of today, I have followed up by email about your wedding date three times. I suspect your rate of response might be due to the following one.
You arranged to have another wedding band. If that's the case, just let me know and I will stop contacting you too. You would be stoked to have us as their wedding band. And was hoping I would make contact again because we lost my details and [00:35:00] apprentices. Thank goodness I persevered.
Number three, you're currently undercover with a witness protection program and are unable to email from your current location. And then four, it says . You wish I would stop emailing you in which case all you need to do is say anything. This boombox is getting heavy, and then there's a little gift of John Qstack holding up a boombox.
It says, please just bound with the appropriate number in the subject box. And I would take, and I will take the appropriate steps. And I got to tell you, having that has been great because. Most of the time, it's not personal. And a lot of these times couples are working, they actually have jobs.
And and I don't, it's just that, a lot of couples will respond and just, and laugh. It's just something kind of, kind of adding some humor, to somebody's day. So I just thought it was pretty.
Kate Storey: No, that is awesome. And I love that. Yeah. The aspect of adding in some humor, cause yeah that's the way I love to write too. It's like you have a little fun with this, but what it would, it really comes down to is making sure that [00:36:00] I liked that it asked for. You know, Because if for a response, because the thing is sometimes yes, we do need to push a little bit, especially if it's comes from someone who reached out and, we just don't know what their status is.
But the thing is, even if they don't respond. I would highly recommend you continue to email unless they say, yeah, take me off the list basically until they tell you one of three things, one yeah. We're, or take us off your list too. We're we've already booked somebody else.
We're no longer interested or three. Yeah, I'm interested. Whatever number that was on there let's have a conversation until you get one of those three answers, then definitely keep emailing, because like you said, people are busy, they have lives going. And again, so many of them will reach out simply for the fact that they're excited.
They want to get information. Think of like, uh, like an Uber organized, bride or something where it's like, they're pulling together all the information just so they can have it and be ready when they're going to sit down and make these decisions. We have to [00:37:00] think about it from their perspective, what do they need?
So I agree. It's good to, to kind of. Push a little bit and try to get a response, but make sure that we're not taking it from a perspective of, oh, well, they didn't reach out to me. So one, they must not want me, I think that's the biggest mistake people make or too well, if they don't, if they didn't jump on it and want to book me right away, then I don't want a client like that.
I find that sometimes people take that kind of like they have kind of an attitude about it. And that's not doing your business any favors, because like you said, People that are busy. They've got other demands going on in their lives and sometimes they just can't get to it quick enough, or they're not ready to make a decision.
So we have to be there for them.
Mike Zabrin: Yeah, there was one more. He utters one more. He, he sat on a, uh, Maybe like a webinar. And the knot and the subject was, did you run off? And the lope? I was like no, I'm not going to say that's too much for me but I think that's so great. I think a lot of people will just make up this number in their head, including myself, four attempts, five attempts done, and [00:38:00] that's just so not true. So I appreciate you saying you talking about that because it's just something that I ha I haven't even thought of. So that's just really great.
Kate Storey: Yeah, to give you a real life example. We have a student in our growth academy who he is doing this. We have a series of emails that we help to provide in terms of like topics and everything like that. And he was on week 22. And he was on week 22. So for 22 weeks, he had been sending out emails to this couple that he'd already had a conversation with.
He had already been on the phone with them. It was a great call, but they just weren't ready. They were like, oh, well, yeah, don't take me off your list. We're going to figure it out. Definitely check back in with me. He was on week 22 and they finally responded and said, oh yeah, we were planning to reach out to you anyways.
It's okay. Yeah, sure. You are like you just because he was consistent. He was staying in front of them and they said that. We were just going to contact you. Cause my fiance was saying, we have to make a decision on the DJ. We gotta schedule this. So yes, Risa and the [00:39:00] contract we're ready to sign.
And it's like, and he made the sale because he stayed in front of them. He stayed consistently in touch with them. So that way, when they were ready to move it, we want them to move faster, but we can't make them do it. It has to be on their time schedule. So we need to be there and ready for them when it's their time to.
Mike Zabrin: I think one mistake, a lot of wedding pros could make is simply not asking for the sale. If not asking for the sale, when are you looking to make this decision?
Kate Storey: Well, yeah. And a lot of times this goes back into our own. Our own mindset and our own views on how we feel about sales the concept of sales and everything. And if we view it as this like sleazy transaction, that nobody likes and everything like that. Then, yeah, of course you're going to be uncomfortable and you're not going to want to ask for the sale because you're going to feel uncomfortable and you don't want to make your couples feel uncomfortable.
But if we take it, first of all, from a different [00:40:00] mindset and we realize, okay, well, You are really good at what you do, right? That's why you have a business around it. This is why you went into business because at some point, not only is it something you enjoy, but at some point somebody said, wow, you're really good at this.
You should do this for a living. People would love to, have this. You are good at what you do. And the thing is, whatever it is, whatever service you provide. It is genuinely going to make couple's wedding day better. It is going to make it better because you were part of it. So if we take the, these, if we take that mindset and think about it from that perspective that, wow, I actually have something.
Valuable that is, I have a genuine desire to make their wedding day better. Then it's, that's worth something. Okay. And that's worth being able to ask them, Hey, I want to make your wedding day better. These are my rates. This is what I charge. And if we can help them to understand how, why, what we do.
[00:41:00] Connects with that deeper desire. Like we said, going back to the emotional side of things, if we can help them to understand why we are uniquely suited to deliver on that desire that they have, what it is that they really want out of their wedding day. Then for them, it's going to be a no brainer because this is their one and only wedding day, they are going to be willing to pay, to have the experience that they want.
So we have to have the right mindset. First of all. Once we have that. Correct. Then it's just a matter of making sure that we're weaving in both giving high value information to help them understand that we know what we're doing, that we have a plan for them that is going to truly accomplish this vision that they have in this experience that they want.
But making sure we're also balancing that out with asking them every so often. Hey, are you ready to move forward? Are you ready to make a decision on this? Hey, I'm here for you. So that's why we always recommend a formula and a pattern in those email sequences in [00:42:00] particular of given. Ask. So now you're providing, you're giving high value information, helping them to feel well-educated about choosing your service and why you are the right choice for them.
We're giving them good quality information to make a decision twice as much as we are asking them to take an action. And that could be anything from, Hey, are you ready to, to choose a package, here's a link to my packages and pricing page. Let me know which one fits well or why don't we set up a call here asking them for a consultation, those kinds of things, any sort of an ask, that's going to lead to a sale.
We can't be afraid to do it. And, but weaving it in, especially with high value information, helps everybody to feel. A little bit better about this process, right? Because one year you're following the reciprocity factor you have given them all sorts of good information. So now they feel like they want to reciprocate by booking with you, or by at least having a conversation with you if they haven't yet.
But at the same time, you also feel good about it because [00:43:00] you've demonstrated to them.
That you care more than just the sale you care about more than just the sale and you want to actually make that dream for their wedding day come true. And again, having that conversation about how you guys can make that possible by working together.
Mike Zabrin: Totally. And I love, maybe this is on your first couple of emails with the client, but having a couple of easy questions at the end and its own paragraph things that the client or the lead doesn't need to really think about, but we'll just keep the conversation going. Like what you said earlier.
If I kind of start asking these technical questions are you interested in a jazz trio with a vocalist or a jazz trio with the horn and a lot the talking to my fiance, I dunno. And then, and. Go to work and conversation is over, forget about us, a little things like, Hey, how many guests are you anticipating on?
Or what kind of music are you into? I think that little things like that will really keep that conversation going to, and then lead to those really high value questions that, that you said.
Kate Storey: Yeah. Well, and even making it more relatable than that, like [00:44:00] what if you said something like you asked, you know, SRE, you know, are you interested in a jazz trio or jazz horn or anything like that? Or they don't really know what that means. So maybe ask some What's your favorite song that has a strong jazz vibe to it, or what's this, what's your favorite song that, that has trumpets in it, do you remember mighty Bosstones?
You know, are you more of that fan or you
Mike Zabrin: Yeah.
Kate Storey: have some fun with it, but it's. Making it even more relatable to them, ask them like a preference question and Morse and one that's not necessarily related to your packages and pricing. Hey, what is, what's something that you love about this? So if you were.
If you were a venue owner, you can say things like, what is your favorite time of day for for sitting outside and just enjoying, is it sunrises, sunset, something like that, where you can, because people love to give their opinions. So asking those kinds of questions, that's going to make them want to give their opinion is what's going to help to encourage those kinds of things.
Mike Zabrin: There is one of a few. [00:45:00] Programs on your website, the wedding business acceleration program that you could sign up for. And each workshop is designed to include a step-by-step action plan to attract quality leads and booking weddings at the price you deserve. And some of these workshops include a book more brides by telling you a couple of story, how to use storytelling to connect with your ideal clients before they even contact you.
Or ask about price, how to present your client contract, which is a no, what you need in your client contracts and how to present your contracts to clients confidently. Kate I'd love. Have you just kind of told us a little bit about this program because it looks super interesting and there's just so many high value, actionable things that I think a lot of wedding pros will take from this.
Kate Storey: Yeah. So the, yeah, the wedding business acceleration membership is something where we wanted to be able to provide an opportunity for wedding pros to learn on their own time. Because [00:46:00] this is, we all have. Schedules and our schedules tend to be all, a little funky, a little off, sometimes as wedding pros. And especially if we're still we're still doing this as a side gig or anything. So we find that the acceleration membership is a great way for a wedding pros to be able to stay on top of some things, some really high value activities for their wedding business.
And since it's all basically marketing related marketing and sales, making sure that you stay on top of that because it's so. Vital to your business and knowing what's working right now and leveling up on some things, especially as your business grows. So yeah, this.
is something that I'm, if you go to book more brides.com under our services to have, you can find that more information about that, but it's something.
Allows you to learn on your own time. We bring in a lot of special guests and experts on this. But a lot of times Nick and I will teach on our expertise as well. Again, mine is on, on writing digital marketing all sorts of things that have to do with that social media. And my husband, Nick is really [00:47:00] strong at helping you to understand helping wedding pros to understand.
How their business operates, making sure they feel strong in their sales. He's really good at coaching people on their sales process and building a business based on the end goal because not everybody, has big lofty dreams of having a giant wedding. But some people do. And how do you get, from where you're at now to where you eventually want to be in your wedding business?
It can be hard to figure out sometimes, so that those that's some of the content that we share in each of those workshops each month, as well as on-demand office hours and a few other goodies that we're looking to introduce in the coming months.
Mike Zabrin: Yeah. I We've been talking really from entertainment perspective, but Kate and Nick worked with every type of wedding vendor and they could even schedule a consultation call with you.
Kate Storey: Absolutely. We love to talk with people and we, as you might be able to tell from this, we love digging in and hearing your story, hearing what it is, that's driving you.
as a wedding pro. So yeah, we would [00:48:00] love to just have a quick conversation, see where you're at and where you're stuck. See if we can help.
Mike Zabrin: I want to leave with this last question. Do you ever have business owners that come to you and say that they actually want to step back from the day-to-day and instead focus on building the business, but I have, but I'm really having a hard time. So.
Kate Storey: Yes, absolutely. I actually, a great example of that is a a wedding venue operator that we're working with right now. And, she has a couple of small kids and she wants, she's spending all of her free time right now. Responding to emails, making sure that she's doing the site tours and everything, and she's starting to grow her team to help with the kind of physical onsite things that she needs to do for site tours and all that.
But, as the manager of the venue, she needs to also manage the business side. So we helped her to set up through our CRMs. Text messages that make it really easy to respond back. So she doesn't have to be glued to her phone all the time. She only gets notifications or calls if it's coming in and they want a [00:49:00] conversation, but also setting up those things.
So, absolutely. I always recommend having some sort of a system technology that's going to help you to do that. So that way yeah, you can focus on the part of your business that you love. That's like we talked about at the beginning, you went into this because you wanted to do. Whatever it is you're doing in your business, whether that's, helping to really capture amazing photos, provide a beautiful location for your couples, anything it is that you're doing in the wedding industry, you got into it for a reason, not for answering text messages and sending out emails. So.
definitely work with somebody to be able to put some automation in place. That's going to allow You to step back. Help you to focus on what's important, not only in your business, but in your life as well. There's absolutely ways you can do that. And sometimes it's just a matter of talking with somebody to figure out where that could be.
Mike Zabrin: Listening is literally just got a college education course today on the business of weddings. And so this is just one. Element, please go on [00:50:00] BookBar brides.com and check out the wedding acceleration program. Check out the book. More brides podcast. We'll have links in the show notes to everything below on this episode.
As a co-owner of book more brides Kate, along with her husband, Nick, she helps wedding business owners around the world. Better understand how to identify their perfect clients, what to say, to get them to book and how to create strategic online content. That builds relationships and sales. Kate, thank you so much for hanging out with me today.
This was so much fun.
Kate Storey: That was wonderful talking with you. Thanks so much.
Thanks so much for making it through this whole episode today make sure you check out the book, more brides podcasts. It's a really, really great podcast and it's all about them sharing the best wedding, business marketing and sales tips to help you bring in more of your perfect couples online and book more weddings.
And make sure to check out their CRM to book more brides it's about our own CRM and a lot of the things that we talked about today, like email sequences. Being able to sift through [00:51:00] your, by now and bilateral couples and making sure that you're still maintaining those relationships. You can do things like automated email sequences, automated text sequences. Things that will really keep your business on autopilot. And we'll allow you to spend your time with couples who are actively reaching out to you.
We've got episodes coming out every Tuesday here on Funktastic Chats. We'll see you next week. You are extraordinary.