Having worked with hundreds of wedding professionals over the years I can tell you for a FACT:
Leads from your website are the best quality leads you can get.
If this is not the case, there is something wrong with your website.
If you want to book more weddings, focus an effort on getting more inquiries from your website.
Sure, you may get leads from your advertising at The Knot or WeddingWire, but leads from your website are ALWAYS going to be BETTER QUALITY and MORE LIKELY TO CLOSE.
Advertising at The Knot and WeddingWire is often a significant cost to most wedding businesses. If you get a good ROI then fine, advertise there.
Do your own analysis (which most people advertising there have never done) to find out for yourself.
Some say it’s great (advertising at The Knot or WeddingWire). Others have told me it’s like throwing money into a blowtorch.
Sidenote: If you advertise at The Knot or WeddingWire be sure you have optimized your vendor profile.
One of the things that makes leads from The Knot and WeddingWire poor quality is that they use an auto-generated “lead” system that effectively creates what I call “fake leads” or “add-on” inquiries.
Very few wedding people I talk to that advertise at The Knot or WeddingWire are aware of this.
“What do you mean, “fake leads,” Chris?”
Here’s how it works.
Engaged couples make an inquiry to one vendor and then The Knot WeddingWire “system” allows them, and even prompts them, to click a couple of check boxes and quickly make additional “inquiries” to other vendors.
As you might guess, The Knot & WeddingWire says it’s a fair system for all wedding vendors who are advertising.
That debate aside, it still creates poor quality inquiries, inquiries that I can prove are low-quality leads and less likely to close when compared to leads/inquiries from your own website.
And I have the data to prove it.
I did an exercise with one of my clients where we reviewed all of their leads from the past 6 months. They have three primary sources of leads:
• The Knot
• Their Website
Here’s what we found.
Less than 5% of the leads from The Knot and WeddingWire resulted in a sale.
40% of the leads they got from their website resulted in a sale.
By far, the majority of their new business is a result of inquiries FROM THEIR OWN WEBSITE.
The leads from their website tend to be less focused on price, are actually easier to close, and close faster.
How do you improve the quality of your leads and book more weddings?
And become less reliant on expensive advertising with an often uncalculated ROI at The Knot or WeddingWire?
Here are 5 things I recommend to my clients.
#1 – OPTIMIZE your website in a way that turns the engaged couples who visit into inquiries and then sales. In other words, GET MORE INQUIRIES FROM YOUR WEBSITE.
#2 – INCREASE YOUR ONLINE VISIBILITY, particularly by getting your website better ranked at Google (aka: search engine optimization SEO)
#3 – OPTIMIZE all of your internet marketing so that it drives traffic to your website. Focus on using social media channels like Facebook and Instagram as traffic-building tools.
#4 – OPTIMIZE how you use social proof – awards, testimonials, reviews, photos of happy couples you have worked with, and memberships in professional associations.
#5 – Follow up on all of your inquiries faster. Can you follow up by text message or phone within 30 minutes of getting an inquiry from your website? Maybe less? If you can it’s not unlikely that you can increase your sales 25% OR MORE in less than 90 days. I see it happen ALL. THE. TIME.