This blog is a transcript from our Facebook live recording on 23rd January
Today I want to talk about a word beginning with C that I hear a lot - Cheap! And all the words our wedding clients use instead of that, when what they mean is just that they want to save money on their wedding flowers. Join me as I talk about what they say and what as Wedding Florists can do about it.
Hello there , my fellow Wedding Florist friend, and welcome to the Wedding Florist Social Podcast. This is the podcast for Wedding Florist to learn all about acing their online presence. I'm your host, Vicki Laffy , and as a wedding florist of over 10 years now and a certified digital marketer, I want to help you get the right clients, get more followers, and never be stuck for content ideas again, click the link in my description to get your free wedding florist guide to social media content creation today.
Hello there , my fellow florist . I am here with my, my cup of tea. I , I am ready to chat. Today is all about the C word . I love it all over it . It's one we often come across, no , not that C word , I mean the word cheap. Uh, the word cheap and the other terms that our clients and potential clients use instead of it when in fact what they actually want is to just spend less money, which is fine, but I'll come to that later on. The idea for this Facebook , um, the idea for this podcast rather came from a Facebook post , uh, on one of the groups that I'm in where a florist was asking , uh, I think she was asking about hanging some artificial greenery on a beam because that's what her client has asked for, and that's the, the key thing here. That's what the client has asked for. Um, it's not something she suggested or it wasn't an option she was coming up with for a client. It was an option they, they'd stated to hear , they, they'd said that's what they wanted. Now of , of course, you know, having done this for 12 years now, I , I could guess straight away what was going on in the client's mind, but this, this florist naturally was asking the opinions and , um, things of, of, of others on the group about this artificial greenery, which isn't something she normally did. Um, and, and yeah, it , it , it , it just really sparked off a fabulous idea because clearly what , you know, and it , and it turned out I was right. What upon delving into it , um, clearly what the client was asking for is like, they're actually, they , they don't really have the budget for, you know, draping greenery from all of the , uh, uh, branches , uh, sorry, the beams rather. And , um, they , they were looking at a potential higher cost for that, and naturally ASCO's hiring would, would be cheaper. Would it? Well, we'll get to that. Um, but I mean, in general, have you ever heard a client say , uh, some things like, I want a lot of greenery on the tables, or what , what if we added some more green to this? Or can you quote me for artificial as well as fresh please? Or maybe I just want a small amount , uh, sorry, a small to medium sized bouquet, or what if we just had more candles, you know, <laugh> , all of these sorts of things that , that is not a conclusive list, by the way. Well, the chances are, what they're actually trying to say is, I want it cheaper, or I want to keep costs down. Now, to be fair, it's, it's not to say that everyone who asks these questions are , are asking for cheap options. And to be fair, there's nothing wrong with, with trying to , uh, keep control of costs. Um, you know , after all, we're not all Kim and can with unlimited budgets. However, it can become a problem for us flutists because it, it means we can't help them in the way that they need to be helped, basically. Sorry about that tiny pause there. I pressed a button on my computer and it kind of went , uh, something popped up and it totally freaked me out, <laugh> . But, but essentially to get back on track , uh, it , it , it , it , it can become a problem for us Flos because it , it means that, well, we can't help them in the way that they need to be helped or that we're potentially wasting both our time and their time and trying to help them, but not being able to, it's essentially like kind of trying to shove a square pig into a round hole. You know, if we're , if we're not the right florist for that client, it's, it's , it's just not gonna work. Um, sometimes we, we even actually end up losing money cuz we end up buying things , uh, investing in things , uh, to, to try and fulfill this client's wish such as buying in artificial greenery, hang off beams. Um, so we, we don't make any money, you know, in some cases we lose, lose money cuz we end up not hiring those things out again. Or , um, you know, maybe it's just not a service that we offer and, and it just, you know, it just doesn't work. Of course, sometimes we just need to educate a little and then all is well, you know, we've gotta remember that this is the first time these people have probably planned a wedding. Um, in most cases that's true. And they , they don't know <laugh> everything that we do, you know , we, we've planned more weddings than they have, so they just need a little educate and a little guidance and actually often that, that guidance can make them feel more confident in you and more likely to book you. Um, so what can we do about this anyway ? What can we do about those, those people who are, you know , you know, they're not helping us to help them. Uh , the the ones who are , who just, who rather than saying, look, I I only want to spend such and such an amount, or I don't really care about decorating that place. Um, I, you know, so I don't wanna spend much on it, basically. And much rather they said that and they were honest rather than trying to sort of dilly dolly around the <laugh> , um, the issue and just tell us what can we do about it as florist . Anyway, I digress. So I guess having , uh, and I say this all the time, but having an online presence to attract the right sort of client for you massively helps. You know, if you're putting the sort of stuff out there online, like on your website and your social media, that y y you know, is, is the sort of thing your ideal clients want to see , first of all. Um, and, and if it's the sort of, you know, if you're using the sort of language and, and wording and marketing that, that you know, is the sort of wording that your ideal client would use. Um, my ideal client for example, is , um, it's not that they're not concerned about price, but they want to get the, you know, the , the other , their main concern is, is getting the look that they want. Um, and, and, you know, budget is, is also a consideration, but it's not the main consideration, you know, so that's, therefore I, I attract those sort of people with my , uh, online presence and , uh, you know, that I'm , in fact, this kind of segues into number two here, so I'll not go too far, but , um, but , but just having that great online presence really, really helps. You need to sort of , uh, almost pre-qualify people before they come to you. Now, number two is, is getting a budget and asking questions up front before you have consultations or produce quotes or proposals or whatever you like to call them . Um, this is crucial, you guys. I , I think, and , and , and it's a question that people often like to dodge. Um, it , it , it's a question that clients often mistake for, you know, that they , they kind of think, I'm asking them guess how much wedding flowers cost ? When , when that's not the case at all. I'm asking them what sort of budget they have set aside for such things. Now asking that in my online inquiry form, which every inquiring client has to fill in, by the way, they don't get to a consultation stage with me without it. Um, asking that question on their , as well as other questions helps me figure out where they're coming from. It helps me establish whether they place value on flowers or not. Um, for example , uh, I have, I had a a a couple the other day , um, who were , who were a lovely couple, but they didn't fill in the , the , the budget question on the phone , or rather they did fill it in, but they wrote a percentage rather than a a pound amount. Um, which, you know, a percentage was a very little use to me. Um, they were saying they'd spend 10% of their overall we wedding budget on flowers and, you know, if , but if their budget, you know, if their overall budget was only, you know, a thousand pounds or something, just to use an extreme example, then we're not gonna get very far in terms of florals, you know, so, and then , you know, vice versa. I also had another couple , uh, who were , you know, I could tell straight away from the inquiry form that they were the couple for me, that we were right for each other. Um, they're in the process of booking now. We just sort of tweaked a couple of things on the court and they're in the process of booking now. So , um, fingers crossed that that all works out and because we're, we're perfect for each other, and I could tell straight away , you know, the , the , the budget they stated was kind of in line with the , the vision , um, and everything they described on the form was right up my street and things like that. So , um, establishing this sort of thing in advance not only helps you get all the information you need, but it also helps , um, the , the , the client I think kind of it , it helps sort of, you know, usher them into the right way of thinking. You know, it makes them think of things that they didn't perhaps think of before or , um, it just helps guide them and helps them. It helps set ex expectations as well. Uh, you know, sometimes I can immediately tell, you know, to give an extreme example, you know, if somebody had say , uh, had put a budget of 500 pounds, but also in the description said they wanted 20 cent pieces or something like that, that then, you know, naturally there's gonna be a bit of a mismatch there and there's possibly a bit of educating education, education to , to be done before it even gets to consultation stage. Something like that you can easily reply to and just say, you know, thank you so much for getting in touch. I've got a , I've got the date free. Would love to chat. Uh , you , you're looking at , um, approximately, I dunno , 2000 pounds or whatever it is , uh, for that, if that's suitable, let's talk more. So getting this information, this is budget and asking questions before producing quotes or proposals, et cetera . Uh , having consultations and all of that , um, can, can read really help you , uh, kind of establish this and, and also help you come up with ideas in advance of the consultation, which, which may fit that. Um, thirdly, I would say spotting someone asking these things and, and just reading between the lines a a little bit can , can really help, you know , um, so for some people asking to have more candles might just mean they love candles and that's their vision and that's great, lovely, go help them. Um, but for some, you know, and , and this, you probably won't be able to base this on just them asking just one question, but you know, for some it would be a case of , uh, you know, that they're actually trying to cut down. They think perhaps candles are a cheaper option because there's no flowers or foliage in them, for example, when in fact we all know <laugh> that , uh, uh, you know, candles can sue add up, you know, cuz we, we have to charge for not only the candle itself, but obviously the higher of the vases and or , you know, glass sort of candlesticks and , uh, all the , you know, therefore the cleaning of them and then the setup and, and , and all of that sort of thing. So it's, it's often , um, more expensive any , if anything, but just, just spotting someone asking, you know, really listening to someone throughout a con consultation, I think, and, and just listening to what's important to them and how you can help them. Reading between the lines a little bit can really help. Um, and I guess finally just number four, sticking to your guns in terms of your style and your procedures and, and what you're willing to do, et cetera . Uh, you know, to , to go back to the case of the, the , the florist I mentioned at the beginning with the artificial greenery. Um, you , you , you know, if , if that's not something you, you offer, you know, if the client's asking for something like a load of artificial greenery, you hang off , uh, some beams or I dunno , some , uh, you know, an artificial bouquet instead of a fresh flower bouquet, or maybe they want to , uh, go look at artificial options for their centerpieces or something like that. And if that's not something that you offer, you are within your rights to not do it. Absolutely plain and simple and you don't have to be polite about it, you know , um, you , you can just say, I'm so sorry, that's not, it's not something I do. Uh , maybe recommend another florist, you know, and, and say maybe , maybe they will be able to help you with that. Um, you don't have to take on that job. You know, you , as I said earlier, you could perhaps lose money on that , uh, if , if , if you went out and bought stuff that, that you are never going to use again. And to be fair, quite often, you know, in the case of this artificial greenery, for example, or extra candles or whatever it is, they can cost just as much in , in terms of you charging the client to , to hire and then , you know, but then set up in advance, you know, and , and then come back. I think this particular forest was looking at , um, potentially setting up a couple of days in advance , uh, which was part of the reason for the, for the artificial greenery, but not all. Um, and , and you know , so that's a charge to, to go set up a couple of days before and then dismantle it , uh, carefully so that you can use it again , uh, a couple of days after. Um, and then, you know, obviously whatever needs to be done on the day as well. So it can actually work out just as expensive if, if anything. So, you know, if a client's asking for stuff like this is something that's not normally your thing, I would say stick to your guns or, you know, perhaps just educate them a little if, if needs be and, and just tell them, look, maybe that's not how it works. Maybe it's not something you offer. Or, or maybe you can just say like , um, that, that, you know, if you went for that, that could actually end up costing you just as much, you know, or something like that, you know, and maybe , perhaps not in as many words <laugh>, but yeah. So I hope that helps you all. I think we all encounter clients or potential clients , um, who , who, who ask for this sort of thing. Who, who want to keep control of costs? You know, I certainly, I certainly get asked about , um, you know, I , I don't want a huge bouquet. Uh , I just want something little, and when in fact what the mean is, most of the time I don't wanna spend much on it. And that's fine, that's fine. Uh , but that's not my client. Um, I produce, if you haven't seen my work on Instagram at floral quarter weddings, I <laugh> I have mostly quite big bouquets if, if anything, so why they came to me in the first place , I don't know , but that's sometimes some slip through the net , that's absolutely fine. Um, so I would , uh, uh, I would just have a conversation with them , have a dialogue, find out what's important. That's the beauty of having online consultations , um, or in-person consultations, however you , you choose to do them. I do my initial ones via Zoom, maybe you choose phone call, whatever you do. But that's the beauty of having a dialogue around it and, and kind of getting them to meet you because people buy from people. And, you know, I have considered doing just, just on quick online kind of quotes before, you know, and, and , and giving, getting people to fill in an , an inquiry form, which is very exact and just tell , telling me exactly what they want and then me providing a quote and then them booking and et cetera , et cetera. There's lots of ways to do that. But, you know, I I , for me, people buy from people. People buy from me. What , what , you know, by the end of their consultation, I , I want them to feel like, ah , yeah, Vicky has our vision in her head. You know, in fact she's, she suggested things that we hadn't even thought of and we feel so confident in , uh, that we really wanna book our , we feel so much better about our wedding, you know, how our wedding's gonna look now, now that we've met her. And, you know, I want 'em to feel really good at the end of a consultation and feel listened to and heard and , um, confident in me. And, and the only way to do that for , for me is to, is to have a consultation with them. Um, I do mine over Zoom because that works just as well. Uh, so, so yeah, just have this dialogue around it and find out what's important to them. But I hope that's really helped you guys. Uh, do, do, let me know, feel free to reach out to me on an Instagram. Uh, it , it's just at the content quarter on Instagram or feel free to drop me an email, which is , uh, hello at the content quarter dot code uk . And , uh, do let me know if you've got any stories to share, if, or even if you've got any requests for new podcast topics. I would love to hear from you. Uh, so I hope it's been really useful to you guys. It's been a pleasure listening , uh, and talking about all of these things as , as always. And , uh, I hope you have an amazing productive and, and , uh, positive day <laugh> . All right , take care of you guys and , uh, flower on.
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