There are so many different names that can be used to described how I work with my brides. Day-Of Coordinator, Wedding Planner, Wedding Consultant. It can be a little difficult as a bride to know exactly what type or how much service you really need. And also as difficult to know what kind of person you are looking for to fill this very important role. I'm going to try and help you with this.
First, you are looking for someone to work with who has both ability and professionalism. Ability comes with experience, personal education in the wedding industry, and desire to do a job well done. You can determine a wedding professionals ability pretty fast. Does she return your phone calls or emails promptly? Does she have supporting materials to offer you about the quality of her work? Materials like service listings for you to review, or hand written notes of thanks from previous brides. Does she belong to a professional organization that offers education?
Professionalism shows thru with her manner. Is she kind and courteous? Does she dress appropriately? Does she take the time to talk with you about your needs and what she can do for you? This is a business about helping people. Helping brides have one of the most wonderful and memorable experiences of their lives. A true professional gets that, and considers it a pleasure to work with you and help you plan and execute your perfect wedding.
Next, determining the level of service you need can be a little confusing, so here are some general descriptions:
Wedding Day-Of Coordinator- Should meet with you at least once before your wedding. And the meeting should be held at your venue. All of your planning should be reviewed as well as all of your vendor contracts. You are looking for guidance to get everything wrapped up for your wedding day. Your coordinator should place your vendor follow-up calls for you and prepare your wedding day itinerary. Also a timeline for all of your service providers. On your wedding day your Day-Of Coordinator should be prepared to manage your entire event from start to finish.
Wedding Planner - Will work with you from the beginning of the planning process. Starting with preparing a budget, scheduling and meeting with vendors, putting together a calendar for you to follow, helping you with design and decor for your event, and putting together everything needed to make your wedding day a success. I offer my brides complete wedding planning and partial wedding planning. That way the bride can decide how involved she would like to be in the planning process. Each service has a specific price attached to it, and specific items to be carried out throughout the planning. But the wedding day remains the same for all service levels. And your Wedding Planner should do all of the things mentioned as a Day-Of Coordinator's responsibility. A wedding Planner will also be there the entire day of your wedding to manage your event.
Wedding Consultant-Will meet with you, typically in two hour time frames to offer guidance, suggestions, planning advice and vendor referrals for you to contact. You plan as many meetings as you need-I suggest at least three during the entire planning process. This is perfect for the DIY bride, because it is a great way to save time. And when you save time, you also save money. A wedding Consultant can keep you on track, answer questions, help you solve problems, and generally make planning your wedding much less stressful. It is very helpful to receive guidance from a professional who knows what to expect and what needs to be done. The Consultant does not attend your ceremony or reception on the day of your wedding.
I hope this post helps in some way. If you have any questions, please leave a comment and I will respond with an answer for you.