Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Ever Wonder How We Are Different than Other Networking Groups?
We know there are many good networking groups to attend.  Some are monthly, some are every once in awhile.  Some are industry driven, some are general.
But even within our industry, we all have a common goal of networking for the purpose of gaining and giving referrals to one another but each networking group's mission is a bit different.
OC Brides' mission is to connect venues and wedding professionals that truly are both in the market for more business. We like to find venues that need new vendors for their preferred vendors list and continue to promote them long past the event.
Our events aren't strictly about finding a great place to meet nor are they in any way to be compared to bridal shows.  We strive to be different and to bring value to our members!
We believe that it is quality vs. quantity when it comes to networking.  Sometimes the best connections are made at our most intimate events!  And we have seen that the wedding professionals that attend regulary tend to consistently get the referrals.  It takes a bit of work, but it's fun while you do it!
So get out there and get NETWORKING!!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Vendor Showcasing FAQ
1)   How do I get more People to Stop at my Table?
First and foremost, OC brides is a Networking Event.  Which is very different than a Bridal Show.  We don't provide chairs behind the tables because we encourage EVERYONE to mingle.  Get out from behind your table and walk over to people with some cards, brochures, or a sample product.  But FIRST introduce yourself and ask about THEM!  Everyone likes to talk about themselves.  Get to know what they do, why they are there, and what they are interested in.  Then tell them about you and your product or service.

Second, make your table stand out! What catches YOUR eye from the other side of the room?  You can spruce up your table with candles, bling, lighting, signage, and related decor.  Also building some height makes a huge difference.  You can use empty boxes or crates and cover them with fabric or linen.

You can also work with other vendors that specialize in decor.   If you know you don't have the items to bling up your table or don't have the know how, not to worry.  That's what Networking is all about.  Prior to the event, check and see what other members are showcasing.  Contact the florist or one of the wedding planners and ask for their help.  They would love to help you!

2)  Why Don't I get More Tickets in the Box for My Raffle Item?

Sometimes people don't really know what the item is, including the DJ announcing it.  Be sure to bring a Certificate, sign, or large legible label describing exactly what the item or service is.

Be sure that it is something people actually want.  It must be a tangible item.  A discount off of a service usually doesn't get much attention but if it is a service that is in demand then it could work.  But in that case you might want to add something they can take home right away like a Starbucks card or something.
3)  How Do I Get More People To Want to Learn About My Product or Service?
People don't want to feel they are being sold to at a Networking Event.  They are there to meet new people and build trusting relationships.  Think about becoming friends first.  Friends refer friends and people they trust.

Don't push business cards on others.  Having the mindset of learning about them first will get you ahead faster!
4)  What Happens If I am Late for the Event?

Our event starts promptly at 6:30.  We often times get attendees wanting to check in earlier than that.  We ask vendors to be set up and ready by 6pm.  Our featured photographer takes photos of every table with the vendor that gets put in the slideshow.

If you are not there by 6:15 and have not contacted us to inform us you are on your way, the table may be moved out of the room or used by someone else.

 5)  What happens if I Register to Showcase and I don't Show Up?
There is a $50 penalty in addition to the showcasing fee.  Having empty tables is a detriment to our events in addition to the time and effort that went into promoting each company, creating floorplans, programs, name badges, etc.  Vendors and Brides alike sometimes look forward to particular showcasing vendors and are disappointed to find them not at the event.  It doesn't look good for the company that didn't show up nor does it look good for OC Brides.

Planning for Retirement

I am proud and excited to announce that we will be putting on a series of seminars this year starting with Sam Legaspi.  Sam currently owns a photography studio but originally came from Wall Street.  He started his business as a business not as a "creative outlet".  His business practices are sometimes controversial but "eye-opening" nonetheless.

Most of us in this day and age are working day to day just to barely make the bills.  No matter what age we are, everyone "should" think about retirement and some of us at our age "need" to think about it.  But how can we if we barely make it month to month?   

Sam has a program that has been proven to build any business and help plan for retirement.  As a DJ, photographer, wedding planner etc., would you still be working this hard and getting brides at 60 as much as your "hip" 30 year old competition?  Have you planned for your retirement or will you have to go work at McDonalds?  It is a difficult thing to think about as we get older in this industry but it is definitely time to take action!

Stay tuned for more info on these high energy, motivational seminars coming to Orange County and LA soon.  Sam will be the featured speaker at the next OCBrides mixer on February 23rd at the Women's Center/Rose Garden in Orange.  You don't want to miss his tips!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014


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