Surviving a Bridal Expo: 5 Tips For Attending a Bridal Show | Nittany Weddings

Picture it! A cold morning: you pull into a parking lot already half filled with cars. As you approach the facility, you notice a line has already formed, but you arrived 45 minutes before the doors open. The line begins to funnel into the now opened doors. Finally in the warmth of the facility, you are wrangled into the registration line. The line progresses, you fill out the necessary paperwork, are handed a welcome packet and a trinket labeling you as a bride and enter the Expo to find another line of eager brides waiting to enter the maze of vendor booths.Bridal Expos have been providing a great source of information for brides and grooms for years, but can be highly attended and difficult to navigate for a novice. The following 5 tips will help you gather information quickly while maximizing your time.1. Research the Expo! It takes many months of planning and organization to put together a bridal expo. Advertisers want to inform you, and will distribute information regarding the expo in local newspapers, magazines, local calendars, billboards, posters and through local wedding vendors. Individual show websites are usually established and provide a great glimpse of what to expect including schedules, prizes being distributed and maps of vendors attending. Previewing these items will help you navigating efficiently among hundreds of brides and grooms.2. Pre-Registration! To avoid the scenario at the beginning of the article, most expos have begun pre-registering show attendees. Show organizers understand that you would prefer not to stand around being herded like cattle, only to be handed a stack of forms to fill out in triplicate. Shorter lines, special promotions, and beating the crowd to your favorite vendors are all benefits of pre-registering, and can usually be done on line to save on paper. Who doesn’t want to save a tree these days? Bridal Expos are usually heavily attended in the opening hours. You may avoid long lines by arriving fashionably late. Monitoring attendee numbers is much more sophisticated with technology, so the chance of you missing out on promotional materials and prizes is very unlikely.3. Prize registration. Special promotions and prizes are always a staple at bridal expos and usually include a separate registration form from each vendor. Skip all the writing and maximize your limited time with each vendor by printing adhesive address labels or wedding business cards. Personalize these items with wedding colors and monograms to easily display the personality of your wedding to vendors. Printing color swatches on the back of wedding cards is a new trend, but be sure and include the basics like: you and your fiancé’s names, mailing address, email address, wedding website and wedding date.4. Organize! Take the time to organize your information during the show. This tip stems from attending countless industry trade shows, and will really help you filter through the clutter. Bring a binder, collapsible file folder or an attache case with wheels to separate your documents. Quickly file your lute using a system that will help you to follow up in a timely fashion and keep ahead of the game. Many companies sell wedding specific organizers ranging in price. Find the one that fits your style and organizational needs.5. Take Notes and Follow-up. Bridal expos may be attended by hundreds of people, and are usually intended for information gathering and sampling. It is difficult for vendors to answer each question from each bride and groom. Take notes and pictures, review information and schedule follow-up appointments with vendors after the show. This will allow you and the vendor adequate time and attention to confirm all the details.Remember to enjoy the wedding planning process, and organization is the key to a stress-free event.

via Surviving a Bridal Expo: 5 Tips For Attending a Bridal Show | Nittany Weddings.

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