If you read my blog, have heard me or other wedding professionals speak, listen to small business guru podcasts, etc., there is no doubt that you have heard about the concept of the ideal client, or in our case, the ideal couple. When moving your business from “all couples are your market” to focusing on attracting and working with your ideal couples, the most important step is to figure out who are your ideal couples are, and then the second most important step is to figure out if there are enough of your ideal couples to support the business success you want to achieve.
Business 101 says that if you have a great product or service, but nobody who will buy it, your business will most likely fail. Yes, I know that there are businesses that have created their own markets, but for most of us in the wedding industry, we are doing something that is already being done by others. We might be doing it in a different way or using a new technology, but we are not usually recreating the wheel. Thus, making sure there are enough of your potential ideal couples out there to support the business success you envision is an important step. Some tips I recommend you use to determine the size of your market are:
1) Use existing market research and surveys. WeddingWire, The Knot, and other wedding industry leaders do yearly surveys on the wedding market that contain large amounts of helpful data. How many weddings are in your market, average size of those weddings, average age of the couples, average budget spent, plus so much more… all data that is at your disposal.
2) Do your own market research and surveys. Although not always possible or practical, creating your own questionnaire and getting it out to couples can prove helpful since you are getting information specific to what you want to know vs. trying to interpret other people’s data to get your answers. This method is more in-depth since it requires an understanding of how to create and ask survey questions and the need to be able to get enough of a sample of returns to draw valid conclusions. You can do this type of survey by creating a questionnaire and then buying a booth at a wedding show, buying a list, and/or surveying couples through others in the industry.
3) Actual testing. If you have a decent-sized initial marketing budget and the time to build your business, you can start marketing to your ideal couples in the places that you think they are looking. Obviously, this can be expensive if there isn’t enough of a market of your ideal couples to support your business. However, it is the most direct way to find out, since you will either start to get enough business to validate that you can be successful with this set of ideal couples, or you don’t get enough and know you need to adjust.
Knowing that there is a market, and a large enough market, of your ideal couples to allow your business to reach the success you envision is a key step that you should not skip as you elevate your business. If you have questions or need help determining your ideal couples and/or doing research on market size, please let me know and we can work together to figure it out.