Stationery is a huge wedding necessity; bridal shower announcements/invitations, thank-you notes, guest book, rehearsal dinner invitations, ceremony and reception programs, escort cards, menu cards, paper favors, table cards – all part of most weddings.
But why is it that wedding Stationery is a detail rarely thought of by venues? Granted, all necessary Stationery is not part of the actual day, but that’s no excuse. Weddings = money to be made, so venues should be prepared to grab as much of that cash flow as they can.
Most brides (myself included) would be over the moon if they didn’t have to search elsewhere for their Stationery needs. Offer a solution that’s both sustainable and easy for all of this, and you immediately differentiate yourself from the competition; helping the bridal couple take a much needed sigh of relief.
How do we shake that money tree?
To start, you should look at your own internal resources. Do you have a graphic designer on staff? If so, you may want to consider offering his/her services to design custom Stationery for the bridal couple. The Stationery could be digital or printed, produced internally or out-sourced.
Obviously the best and most profitable option is printing internally, but if that’s not possible, a local printer might be your answer. Again – make it simple for the bridal couple; try to have all business transactions kept on hotel property. Have a representative from the printing company come directly to your venue for a consultation with the bridal couple or train someone on your staff to walk the bride and groom through the various products the printer has to offer. Either way, you’ve kept their business in-house and easy. Should all else fail, the bridal couple can at least have their design customized and deal directly with the printer at their location.
Whatever the arrangement may be, it will result in a reciprocal win; you get extra revenue on the front end by charging for the design service plus a referral fee, and the printer increases their business.
Looking beyond your own back yard
If none of the above options proves feasible, help your bridal couple stay in-the-know; informing them about the many companies, from all corners of the globe, that offer some very cool eco-friendly paper products:
Paper Based: Most printing companies offer a recycled paper option. Some even offer soy or vegetable based inks that provide more vivid and accurate color, and make the invitation easier to recycle. There are also companies, like Botanical Paperworks, who make plant-able Stationery with wildflower, vegetable or herb seeds embedded into the paper.
Paper Alternatives: Tree-free paper alternatives abound. Companies like EcoPaper, pride themselves on producing paper from agricultural waste products including fiber from bananas, coffee and tobacco. Their paper products include those made from hemp, sugar cane, cigars, mangos, coffee, lemons and bananas. Though they are not yet producing wedding Stationery per say - interested couples may find comparable items of interest here or contact the company directly for further information. And let us not forget, Creative Paper Wales, a company that specializes in sheep poo paper; and yes, they do offer wedding Stationery.
For the bridal couple choosing vendors is all about price and experience, and they are generally willing to pay extra for a better and more all-around convenient experience. And let us not forget that a happy bride and groom will give glowing reviews to their guests; alerting any future brides and grooms in their midst that your venue is the best place to go for their big day.
Contributor: Bride-to-be Melinda Pauls works in the energy business, with an emphasis on sustainable energy management. Her personal quest for the ideal wedding has made her the perfect official “Green Wedding Guide.”
This article first appeared on greeningtheinn.com
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