Source: OffBeat Bride

It's a scary thought but This Planner's generation is the last generation to have grown up both without and with the internet. (sheesh, I just aged myself). We're the ones who played outside until the streetlights came on, our research was done in a library/through books, the phone and snail mail was our primary source of connecting (that and actually knocking on our friends' doors), Milestones and Weddings were celebrated together and photos were shared afterwards in-person. But things have changed. For the Millennials and the generations to come it's all about online and connecting. Services and professionals are researched online. They get their ideas from places like Pinterest. They get their advice through forums and social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter. They share celebrations online including platforms like Instagram.

And with this generation's dire need for constant connectivity comes a host of services that are targeted to weddings to supply this 'need'. This Planner has seen it all. Some services are pretty cool and some are...well...just plain ridiculous. The reality though, is that This Planner already has clients who have jumped at the opportunity to incorporate such services into their weddings. And the services often are not a "want" but a "need".

...'Cause you know. Being tagged in a gazillion Facebook photos or hashtagging your wedding isn't enough these days...the wedding has to be has to trend.


One pretty cool company that This Planner came across is Hashtag Events.  It's a social media based company founded by Frank Fusaro in Toronto. One service that this company offers are Selfie Print Stations. These stations are customized to the wedding theme and will allow guests to interact at the event and take home a branded keepsake. Think photobooth-concept-meets-the-selfie. Hashtag Events can also create a customized hashtag and their team will bring all social media posts like Instagram and Twitter right from the guests' fingertips to the large screen in real time. That's a unique concept for the social-media-junkie-couple.

Live streaming is one of those upcoming trends that is actually quite useful when it comes to weddings -- especially for those couples who have many out-of-town friends and family who are unable to attend the festivities. Companies like Wedding Live have developed services to bring the wedding to them. Wedding Live creates a customized wedding site upon which family and friends can watch the action. A live camera-man attends the wedding and captures every moment sending the action to the website in real time. Friends and Family can even chat and comment on what they're seeing through the Live Chat feature on the web site.

What makes the above services brilliant ways to tap into the social media mayhem is that they add to the guest experience. They utilize social media to entertain and connect which is one of the reasons that social media is so huge. 

What do you prefer for weddings? Constant connectivity or old-school?


By now This Planner is sure that you realize the value in having a wedding planner by your side while you embark on this wonderful journey of wedding planning. After all, your Wedding Planner can save you countless hours (not to mention stress) by way of keeping you on track both with budget and planning duties, recommending solid wedding professionals to create and execute your wedding day flawlessly and being that golden voice of reason and assurance.

But there are some big myths out there about what wedding planners do and how they operate. And sometimes these wrong impressions can affect your relationship with your wedding planner and the effectiveness of their work. So we thought we'd shed some light on these myths so that you can have the most effective partnership with your Wedding Planner.

MYTH. Now don't get me wrong! Wedding Planners DO enjoy their work (we wouldn't be doing this otherwise). However Wedding Planning is a very challenging career. It's not all about sampling cake, dreaming up glamorous concepts and smelling roses all day. It's a lot of scheduling, negotiating, managing expectations, number crunching, problem-solving, project management, endless research, resolving personality conflicts (a.k.a reducing drama), collaborating, meetings, more meetings, risk management, administrating, did we mention meetings?...and that's all for just ONE client. Now add on multiple couples -- each with their own wedding agenda that requires an equal amount of attention. And that's just leading up to the wedding day. On the wedding day itself, your Wedding Planner is the point of contact for all of your vendors, family, wedding party and guests, your personal wedding-day-tour-operator and the ultimate problem solver, in addition to managing and directing your itinerary and ensuring that your day is as close to perfect as humanly possible.

Still think that being a Wedding Planner is glamorous?

Wedding Planners do love what they do and equally love the clients with whom they work, but like any profession there is a lot of sweat and tears that goes along with the glittery side.

MYTH. While it's hard to imagine with all the tender loving care that your Wedding Planner gives you, you are not your Wedding Planner's only client. Wedding Planners have multiple wedding clients at any given time (some even have corporate or event planning clients as well) and every client is a priority.  While Wedding Planners are the royalty of multi-tasking (trust me, we are), to expect your Wedding Planner to drop everything to cater to your every wish or to respond to your email/text/phone call within minutes is very unreasonable. You also have to realize that Wedding Planners have lives outside of wedding planning too. They have significant others, children, hobbies and/or daily responsibilities that they have to tackle outside of their careers just as you do. Just as you don't work at your job 24 hours a day, the same can be said for Wedding Planners. A good Wedding Planner will do their absolute best to have an answer for you, tackle an issue (or at least provide an update), do a favor or respond to your inquiry within 24 hours. Think of it this way: imagine your busiest day at work -- managing multiple projects at one time -- and your Boss suddenly demands that you drop everything to make an appointment for him or her. Frustrating right? Ahhhh, now you get it.  To have a good relationship with your Wedding Planner you need to cut them some slack and know that you are not merely being brushed aside. You are most definitely a priority. You are just not a priority at that exact moment.

MYTH. First off, I need to preface this with the note that as a couple, it is YOU who makes the final decision when it comes to selecting vendors. That having been said, you can't realistically aim for that $10K photographer and expect your Wedding Planner to wave a magic want and get that photographer for the $3K that you can afford. Now don't get me wrong, Wedding Planners can save your money, however it may not be in the way that you expect. Your Wedding Planner cannot obtain discounts from every vendor that you want to hire. In some cases they can and in other cases they can't. Some vendors, as much as they adore your Wedding Planner and want to work with her/him, just cannot afford to offer discounts on their services or match your budget. But they WILL go to the moon and back for you (which is a very important quality to consider). And while Wedding Planners can, in some cases, negotiate great rates from vendors, expecting your Wedding Planner to "nickel and dime" your vendors into doing a service for you for what YOU WANT to pay is NOT negotiating and is a sure fire way to expect the impossible.

In most cases, Wedding Planners will recommend professionals that will provide you with the same quality of service that you're looking for but that also fit your budget, not exceed it. And that, ladies and gentlemen, is how Wedding Planners really save you money. You're getting quality vendors for what you can realistically afford.

MYTH. Wedding Planners are your advisors -- your Go-To for advice on all things weddings. They are also your creative input, your financial consultants (in terms of your wedding budget), and your product researcher among other roles. However, your Wedding Planner is not your personal assistant. No, they will not assemble those three hundred pouches of confetti while you watch reruns of 'Friends'. No, they will not cut out those die-cut banners you so desperately want while you look through Pinterest all day. No, they will not be your personal receptionist and handle your RSVPs for you. Will they help you if you ask nicely and IF they have the time? Maybe. 

But to expect your Wedding Planner to do absolutely everything involved in planning your wedding is unrealistic. After all, this is your wedding, not your Wedding Planner's and there are responsibilities on the To-Do list that you will have to tackle yourselves. Your Wedding Planner is there to guide you through the planning process so that you have a beautiful, memorable day, not to complete every task on your To-Do list for you. Remember everything that your Wedding Planner is doing for your wedding behind the scenes (see Myth #1). So it's important to expect that there will be certain tasks that you will have to do yourselves and your Wedding Planner will assist where they can and within reason to eleviate any stress.

MYTH. Here's the easiest way I can put this: take a look at what your photographer charges for their services. Their fee includes a set number of hours on the wedding day and post-wedding work. Now take a look at the fee of a Wedding Planner. Their fee includes an entire year (or in some cases more) of work on your wedding, plus the management of the wedding day itself.  Still think Wedding Planners are expensive? Take a look at Myth #1 and now imagine yourself handling all those responsibilities on top of your full-time job, family responsibilities and, well, life.  Now tell me that Wedding Planners are expensive.  Hard to say now isn't it?

In regards to the myth that Wedding Planners have expensive taste and will drive your budget out of of the many responsibilities of a Wedding Planner is to help keep you on track in terms of your budget. That said, to recommend vendors, designs or ideas that are completely out of your budget range is obviously counter-productive. If you're dangerously teetering over-budget (trust me, your Wedding Planner will tell you when you are), chances are it's because of decisions that you have made, not your Wedding Planner. Remember that Wedding Planners can only guide you towards what you realistically afford and it's important that you trust your Wedding Planner's recommendations. But if your heart is set on a particular design, flower, concept, etc that will exceed your budget then of course they'll recommend the vendors that can pull it off -- with the disclaimer that you will go over your budget. In the end, it will be your decision. Remember that Wedding Planners have a good idea of what things cost and so if you're head strong on that particular element for your wedding that exceeds the budget, then you'll have to expect that you will pay for it.

And if your first reaction is that your Wedding Planner should be able to just negotiate a discount so that you can afford it, refer to myth #3.

Just as Wedding Planners have to manage what they expect of their clients, wedding couples have to manage what they expect of their Wedding Planners. And when realistic expectations are met by all parties involved, what you have is a wonderful business relationship with a dash of friendship and a planning process that is enjoyable and stress-free.