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How can you be sure that you hire professional and dependable vendors for your event?

We have seen many articles on this subject over the years. The truth is, this is NOT as simple as finding the list with the “good ones” on it. It does take some leg work and a bit of homework in order to separate the good from the “not so good.”

Some people say, “just go to the bridal show, thats where all the top vendors are, all in one place.” THIS COULD NOT BE FURTHER FROM THE TRUTH. Yes, this is a place to see a large amount of vendors in one place and yes, this is a great idea to go and find good ideas and new trends in the industry, but it is NOT where all the top high end vendors are. In fact . . . most of your highest end vendors are not at these bridal shows at all. Now we do want to be clear here – there are some excellent vendors who attend bridal shows. We are simply saying that on average, this is NOT where you can find all of your best vendors for your event.
Why you ask?

In most cases (not all), the highest end vendors are either already booked for that upcoming season, or they simply do not need to spend the money to book the day. These vendors are a little harder to find, but many times are miles above the average and are well worth the extra effort.

So how can you check out these vendors to insure that they are what they say?

Are they the ones on the facilities “preferred vendors list?” Some are, and some are not. Many times a facility will recommend a vendor only based on a few past experiences and personal relationship with the vendor. They rarely follow-through with the client months later to see what they thought of the vendor and how the transaction ended up afterwards

Are they the ones who have big ads in the bridal magazines? Again, some are, and some are not. Just because a vendor can afford to pay for a $600 to $3000 ad, does not mean they are at the top of their profession. It simply means they paid for an ad. Remember, the magazine will take money from anyone for an ad. They do not require any form of proof that the vendor is who they say they are.

So then HOW do we find the good ones? The ones who are worry free . . . act professional . . . communicate well and someone that we will be very glad we hired after the event is over.

We recommend to ask the vendor to see a list of the last 12 events they did in your area and/or at your desired facility. From this list, YOU the potential client randomly pick 4 of their clients and ask for their contact information. In so doing, the vendor will not be able to pick “the good ones” that will more likely speak highly of what they do. In a timely manner (it would be best to do this right away), call each of these clients and tell them that you are considering hiring _______________ vendor and would like to ask them a few questions so you can make an informed and educated decision. If they are willing, (yes, it is a red flag if they are not), we would ask them the following things:

  • Was the vendor professional and on time?
  • Did the vendor communicate to you and/or other appropriate vendors/people effectively?
  • Were you pleased with the final outcome of the product or service?
  • Would you have any suggestions for this vendor to help them improve in the future?
  • Would you hire this vendor again?

These 5 simple questions can not only put your heart at ease, they can help you quickly find who you should be hiring for your event. This works for florists, photographers, D.J.’s, Limo Services, Caterers, Event Facilities, Tuxedo Rentals, Wedding Dress shops, Bakeries, Clergy, Wedding Coordinators and many, many others.

We heavily suggest that you follow this and choose your vendors wisely. A bad vendor can ruin an event that cannot be re-done. A good verdor, as well as a group of good vendors that work very well together, can make your event, a “one of a kind memory” that every guest, family member and wedding party¬†participant¬†will be talking about for years to come.

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“Oh my God Jim . . . did you see what the D.J. did, and the flowers are an hour late. The photographers are threatening to leave . . . what are we going to do?”

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