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Side Notes About Today's Bride

Currently, I know 12 people who will be getting married in 2020, one of which is my brother. And although I have not been formally asked by his fiancée yet, I have it on pretty good authority that I will indeed be invited to be part of her bridal party.
    So. . . wedding is currently the word at my house. Therefore, it makes sense that as we put together this issue’s cover feature on Bridal Demographics (pg. 46 in the November/December Issue of VOWS), I kept relating my life and what I am experiencing behind the scenes to the facts and figures shared.
    What I found is they are pretty accurate. . . the people I know planning their I Dos are college educated and have professional jobs, and they are excited to plan ceremonies that reflect who they are and what matters to them. Most of these couples are already living together and while it would be inaccurate to say budget doesn’t matter at all, let’s just say it’s not their primary concern about the Big Day. They are, in fact, most interested in enjoying and also creating for others a wonderful experience.
    I watch with particular interest the behaviors of these brides-to-be, some of whom know about myVOWS connection and others who don’t. Three things stand out that can’t be found in the statistics:

Almost every gown image they’re showing me is from a generic Instagram page. By generic I mean not affiliated with any particular boutique, manufacturer or designer. Rather they’re flocking to accounts like Wedding Dresses Guide or Wedding Dresses Official, which have hundreds of thousands of followers and post images of different gowns daily. They like these sites primarily for their variety and also because they’re easiest to find. The problem is. . . sometimes these sites identify the designer in their photos, sometimes they do not. I have lost count of the number of times I’ve been asked by a friend to help identify or locate a particular dress. They literally do not know where to begin.
  Lesson: it’s definitely worth your while to monitor these sites. If you see a post of a dress you carry, comment on it! Proactively submit images of your best sellers to them.

They’re frustrated with store websites. Basic information about designer, style and price is typically hard for them to find. Generally speaking, they don’t appear to appreciate the “contact us to learn more” approach because it feels like a sales trap. As a result, they move on to the next site pretty quickly.
  Lesson: there’s a fine line between oversharing and undersharing. Provide enough information to make brides’ initial searches easier. They actually don’t want to waste your time; withholding important details only frustrates and makes them more likely to avoid you.

They don’t know tradition. In the age of personalization and customization, wedding traditions of old are not only being bypassed but also, apparently, forgotten. I am shocked to learn how many of my friends are simply unaware of basic stuff like who is supposed to pay for what or when wedding gifts are typically opened. The interesting thing is they truly want to know but are afraid to ask for fear of looking silly.
  Lesson: this could be a fun blog or video topic. Education is always a good thing!

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