It’s the busy season and we are all getting buried in work, so it’s hard to think about helping other vendors. Photographers are heads down getting images turned around for clients, planners are looking forward to their next event, venues are preparing their sites, stylists are doing trials, florists are buying and designing, we are all busy. Not only are we hosting, shooting and working on current weddings, but also marketing to book out 2015! You should be taking the opportunity of working with amazing vendors weekly to grow your network and grow your business.
We built LulaWed as a platform to help bring local networks together online. We’ve seen businesses thrive when they connect, and we wanted to make that process easier for wedding pros across the country.
We discovered a problem in how local vendors worked together when we were working with our own consulting clients (photographers, planners and venue owners). We could see that there were major challenges with the way photographers and vendors were sharing images after an event.
The process was fragmented across apps and websites and was very burdensome. There wasn’t a tool to easily share images. The status quo was causing frustration and strained relationships between vendors. Photographers were frustrated at the ongoing interruption to their work flow when each vendor requested images. Vendors were frustrated at the time it would sometimes take to get images for their marketing efforts. Both sides were trying to help the other, but were facing logistical issues.
This simple miscommunication was causing rifts in vendor relationships. These referral relationships are at the heart of building the value of the wedding industry. These are the relationships that help everyone’s business grow. We realized that this significant problem had a relatively simple solution.
Our mission is to make each vendor the leader of their local network so they can get more referrals by sharing images with each other in a way that saves both themselves and all of their collaborators time.
LulaWed was an obvious solution. We were overwhelmingly supported by the wedding photographer and vendor communities (and the startup community that believed in our growth potential and supported us financially.)
Here are a few ways that LulaWed can help support your marketing efforts and grow your local network:
Real Wedding Tagging
When a photographer uploads images to LulaWed, they start the process by tagging other vendors who worked at the event. By simply entering vendor business names into the appropriate fields, the vendors are notified that the images from the wedding are available for them to see and share on social media. This eliminates the constant back and forth amongst vendors asking for images of their work.
When a florist wants images of her bouquets to share with her Facebook fans, she can go to the LulaWed album and share without having to ask the photographer for images. If a caterer wants to do a 2014 Round-up blog post of their favorite dishes, they won’t have to wait for the photographer to search through old folders to find the images to use. The images will be hosted publically, and everyone will have them saved in their LulaWed portfolio for easy sharing.
Our dynamic sharing capabilities on LulaWed integrate with other tools to give you maximum marketing power. The ease of sharing images creates the network effects as other people do your marketing for you. Not only does it make it easier to promote your own work, but you make it easy for other vendors to share images from your weddings around the social world; via Pinterest, Facebook and Twitter. Each image links back to your profile page, no matter where it gets shared across the web. Engaged couples looking for inspiration will easily connect back to your business and your contact information. This is a win-win situation for you and your potential clients.
Blog Integration For Photographers
We have incorporated a blogging RSS widget that creates drafts on LulaWed from your most recent blog posts. This gives your local network access to your great blog content without you having to do much additional work. If you’re blogging, LulaWed helps spread posts with the world and make sure your expertise and photographs are front and center when engaged couples browse LulaWed profiles. Photographers thrive on the effect of local networks sharing images and information, so every time you post, tag other vendors and promote not only you, but your whole network. This helps put you at the center of your local network and grow as an expert and pro in your field.