Hello, loverve’s! You know here on Ask the Planner Podcast we never shy away from a hot take! Today we are addressing the vendors who say “It’s okay if you don’t have a planner – I can help with that”. I know these professionals have good intentions, but I believe that they couldn’t be more wrong! It’s also because I value the work that THEY do and want them to spend your wedding day doing what they were hired for.
Whether you've stumbled here on a late-night Google search or are a long-time listener of our podcast, welcome! We love creating content you find helpful, but we love working with you more! If you are looking for a wedding planning team in Upstate New York, learn more about working with us here. Not ready to hire a wedding planner but still want support? You can find wedding planner quality templates here or book a clarity call to pick our brains about your wedding venue before you book!
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EPISODE HIGHLIGHTS: Do I Need a Wedding Planner? AKA Why Your Wedding Vendors Are Wrong When They Tell You They Can Be the Wedding Planner.
To fast-forward to a specific part of the podcast episode, check out the timestamps below:
Wedding planners can help you:
- Why your vendors may be giving you bad advice [4:55]
- The role of a wedding planner to bring in some more clarity. [7:45]
- The difference between a wedding planner and a venue coordinator [10:50]
- How vendors can work with a wedding planner [15:15]
LINKS MENTIONED IN THE EPISODE
- Visit the ASK THE PLANNER Wedding Planning Templates Shop (Use code PODCAST10 for 10% off!)
- Learn more about our Wedding Venue Selection Service
- Book a Clarity Call with Desirée
- Gather Greene
AND IF YOU PREFER TO READ, HERE'S THE SUMMARY OF THE PODCAST EPISODE!
Let us just say – Your wedding day is a once-in-a-lifetime event that should be nothing short of perfect. In my wedding planning company in Upstate New York, I always tell my couples we are planning an heirloom occasion. Your wedding day can and should be filled with moments and memories that you will be laughing with your grandkids about.
With that said, planning is a lot of work! From the dress to the flowers and the food, everything needs to be spot on. As you start to plan your big day, you may be wondering if hiring a wedding planner is worth it. After all, the costs keep adding up and some of your vendors may even be telling you that you don't need one. However, before you take their advice, it's essential to understand why they may be wrong about replacing the wedding planner or foregoing one altogether.
In today’s episode, we'll explore the role of a wedding planner, and why having one can make all the difference. You guys – we spend an average of 150 – 250 hours planning EACH wedding!! And we’re professionals at this. So let's dive in and chat about why your wedding vendors may not have all the answers when it comes to whether or not you need a wedding planner.
If you’re a wedding vendor listening to this episode who disagrees or agrees, I’d love to welcome your take on the reviews page on Apple Podcast or on our Instagram posts.
First, let’s talk about WHY your vendors may be giving you bad advice
You can always count on me to be honest with you, even if you might not like it. Your vendors may have years of experience in their respective fields, but they are not wedding planners. They are experts in what they do. They may offer advice on what they can provide, but it's not their job to coordinate everything.
Additionally, vendors want your business and may be trying to help you cut costs to make their services more appealing. After all, the wedding industry is COMPETITIVE. Who wouldn’t want a wedding photographer who will help you plan your wedding too? Additionally, they may suggest that you don't need a planner because they want to make more money and increase their profits. For example, your wedding venue might insist you don’t need a wedding planner because their venue coordinators take care of everything. Spoiler alert – they don’t. And while this isn't necessarily shady business practices, it’s not in your best interest.
By working with a wedding planner, you have a dedicated professional whose job is to ensure that everything runs smoothly. They can help you with everything from choosing vendors to managing contracts, creating a timeline, and troubleshooting problems that arise. A wedding planner will be the only person that advocates FOR YOU and do what it takes to bring your vision to life. It’s also our job to be UNBIASED.
Let’s say that again. It’s our job to be UNBIASED. So we will tell you when a venue is overcharging you or recommending vendors that give them a kickback. We can tell you that based on YOUR budget and priorities, we can reuse the ceremony florals for the reception statement piece.
While your vendors may offer valuable insight into their specific areas of expertise, it's crucial to remember that wedding planning takes a VILLAGE. So while you might think you can save a few dollars by not hiring a planner, in the long run, it could end up costing you more. A wedding planner is an investment in your peace of mind, but there are real tangible benefits to working with a wedding planner as well.
Let’s take a step back now and talk about the role of a wedding planner to bring in some more clarity.
A wedding planner is not just a luxury; they are a necessity for a stress-free and successful wedding day. Before you roll your eyes, or question me because, I get it, I’m a planner, so I’m biased, but hear me out.
A wedding planner is like a general contractor when you’re building a house. We ensure the carpenters and masons and decorators, electricians, and plumbers are all working towards the same goal.
Similarly to that, a wedding planner brings together all the loose ends and ensures that everything runs smoothly. They handle all the details, from coordinating with vendors, managing the budget, and creating a very detailed timeline for the day of the wedding. A good wedding planner is like a magician, making everything seem effortless and seamless.
Understandably, vendors may make it seem like they can handle everything themselves, but they only have a specific area of expertise. A florist, for example, may be able to create beautiful centerpieces. They could probably put together a pretty-looking table, but they won't be able to handle the timeline or logistics of the day.
No matter how talented your photographer is, they can’t be in two places at once. While it's tempting to rely on your photographer to help with more than just capturing memories, it's important to recognize that they have their responsibilities to tend to. If they're playing wedding planner, EVEN if they volunteered, they simply won't have the time to take the quality photos that you hired them for.
A wedding planner is the only one who can guarantee that everything comes together with a cohesive and coordinated plan. And by the way? We usually bring our staff because you need more than just ONE person running your wedding day. In my own wedding planning company Verve, I bring at least 3 other staff in addition to me, but usually, 4 or 5 depending on the size of the wedding and the extent of the decor.
Investing in a wedding planner not only ensures that your day is stress-free, but it can also save you money. An experienced wedding planner will prevent you from overspending on unnecessary items. They can also help you avoid costly mistakes and make sure everything stays within your budget.
Getting even more specific now, I want to discuss the difference between a wedding planner and a venue coordinator.
Buckle up – because I’m passionate about this. While a venue coordinator is an important part of any wedding day, their role is limited to the venue itself. They will typically handle details such as setting up tables and chairs, coordinating with vendors who are working in the venue, and ensuring that the space is clean and ready for the wedding. I hope you know by now that a wedding planner is responsible for so much more.
A wedding planner is your advocate throughout the planning process, ensuring your vision for your wedding day comes to life. They'll take care of the details that you might not have thought of, from managing your budget to creating a detailed timeline and handling any unforeseen issues that may arise.
For example, if issues arise or any venue policies change, who is going to advocate for you? Especially since the pandemic, couples need a professional to guide them more than ever and support them when things change. Remember: the venue coordinator works for the wedding venue. The planner works for you.
I’m going to say that again because it’s so important. The venue coordinator works for the wedding venue. The planner works for you.
Not to mention, the venue coordinator has a plethora of events they’re managing in addition to yours. They have conferences, showers, meetings, other weddings, luncheons, cocktail parties, etc. They simply don’t have the time to dedicate to your wedding as a good, professional planner does. And let me clear this up: Different planners have different workloads. At my wedding planning company Verve Event Co, we limit ourselves to no more than 2 weddings per month during the wedding season. That amounts to no more than 6-8 weddings per year. A venue can have 6-8 events in one week!
On top of all this – are you the kind of person that barely finds time to text their friends and family back?
Keeping vendors organized and handling all of the communication between vendors before and during your wedding day is one of the most important jobs of a wedding planner. Even for my type A brides listening (trust me – I see you and I am you), it’s harder than you would expect to stay organized when you are emotionally invested. A wedding planner will stay on top of everything and keep you organized throughout the wedding planning process.
A venue coordinator may answer questions from your vendors, but they will most likely ask that you be the liaison that coordinates all your vendors. They will rarely be proactive about asking questions your vendors may need to know. Some really good venues we work with have excellent venue coordinators that know the right questions to ask. The only thing is the venue is asking at the end when those decisions should be finalized, not during the planning process like we are.
How vendors can work with a wedding planner
Ok, I”m going to step off my soap box for a moment and talk about how vendors and wedding planners collaborate and work together.
Some venues – the really good ones – require their couples to have a planner that works with their venue coordinators. They value us that much because they know they can’t be everything to everyone but want a good experience for their couples.
With the help of a wedding planner, vendors can create a collaborative and successful atmosphere. A wedding planner can act as a mediator between vendors, ensuring that everyone is on the same page and working towards the same end goal. For example, a wedding planner can work with the caterer to ensure that the food is served at the appropriate time, allowing the photographer to capture those perfect moments. A good planner will rehearse the pronunciations of all the wedding party’s names with the DJ to ensure that no one’s name is butchered during introductions. By fostering this teamwork, vendors can create a seamless and unforgettable experience for the couple and their guests.
On top of all that, a wedding planner can also help vendors with communication and logistics leading up to the event. For instance, a wedding planner works with the florist to understand the table floor plan and which arrangements should go where. If the guest count goes down by 20 people, the planner re-works the floor plan and updates the florist on the new floor plan and table layout, adjusts your rentals, and tells your caterer that we only need 5 vegetarians instead of 15. This type of guidance can save time and reduce stress, allowing vendors to focus on their specific tasks. By working with a wedding planner, vendors can also ensure that they are meeting the couple's expectations and staying within the allotted budget.
So here’s my hot take as we enter another wedding season. In the end, the decision to hire a wedding planner is ultimately up to you. However, it is important to recognize that other vendors will never be able to replace a professional wedding planner, no matter what their marketing says.
If you want someone on-site to make sure that your wedding vision is properly executed and you’re getting married in the Upstate New York region, our books are open and we have limited spots left for 2023!
If you have follow-up questions or want me to talk more in-depth about something you heard today, join me Wednesday night for a quick IG live to talk about your questions from today or anything else. You can also leave an anonymous voicemail on our wedding planning hotline at (585) 210-3467.
Not ready to book your wedding planner yet? Save this for later.
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