Wait....... we are what????? Expecting???? YUP!!! Completely caught us off guard! But what ...
What is a Sponsored Wedding?
A sponsored wedding is when the Happy Couple has items such as catering or the wedding cake donated at no charge, in exchange for advertising. For instance, the reception hall might offer a free or discounted event in exchange for being able to put their logo on the wedding invitations and place cards. Wedding programs can also hold advertising from sponsors as can the bride and groom’s website.
You Don’t Have to be Famous
Celebrities have always had sponsored weddings, Star Jones is a famous example of this. What better advertising than to be the designer of a famous starlet’s dress or to have baked the wedding cake of a trendy rock star? Famous people have been doing it for years, why not those who aren’t so famous? Now you too can get a high-end wedding package, you just have to be willing to include a list of sponsors in with your wedding invitations.
If you thought those couples who are paying for their own weddings are stressed out and over worked, imagine having to contact sponsors and solicit freebies for your own wedding. Since most of the advertising isn’t blatant, the Happy Couple has to do their best to convince the vendor that his advertisement will be seen. There’s a fair amount of negotiating when setting up a sponsored wedding. In fact, it seems more like the couple is arranging a business merger than a wedding.
Sponsors have to be convinced that wedding guests will be interested in their product, that isn’t easy. For instance, would happily married guests be interested in using the local bridal emporium for their next floral arrangement? Probably not. If a local florist is brought into the mix, the guests might be more interested. In fact, choosing local vendors is key. So is choosing vendors that don’t necessarily specialize in wedding packages. In order for the arrangement to be mutually beneficial, guests have to be willing to use the advertised vendor. Purchasing a wedding dress from a shop specializing in formal wear over a shop that only sells wedding gowns might be a more profitable arrangement for all involved. It’s important to be creative when choosing vendors, but it’s equally important not to stray too far from home. Local guests are more inclined to visit local establishments.
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Ways to Advertise
Once sponsors are brought on board, what’s the best way to advertise without being tacky and obvious? One way is to enclose a list of sponsors in with the wedding invitation. Another is to have a list of sponsors on the back of the wedding ceremony programs. Some sponsors have even had their logos placed on matchbooks, cocktail napkins and place setting cards. There are still other forms of subtle sponsorship, for instance a small sign in front of the wedding cake with the words, “Wedding Cake Courtesy of Acme Bakery” can be placed on the cake table until it’s time to do the honors. The same can be done by the caterer at a buffet. The possibilities are endless.
What you Give Up
There will always be those who feel sponsored weddings are lacking in taste or class. In fact, to many, it’s down right tacky. Product placement and advertisement, no matter how subtle, will dominate the guests' conversation and may even sully a happy occasion. Many guests may feel they shouldn't give such generous gifts. After all, why do you need a large check, for instance, if your wedding and honeymoon have been paid for by sponsors?
If your wedding is turning out to be more than you bargained for financially, you might consider a sponsored wedding. Keep in mind however, that there are many who feel it takes something away from the happy occasion..
Hmm what do you girls think?