Wedding marketing was the substance when Veronica Smith Katz of David’s Bridal presented “Enhancing the Customer’s Experience by making the Most of Multi-Channel Strategies During a Major Life Stage Event.”
They have something like 30 million unique visitors a year (or 10 percent of the US population), and because people spend more money in the five years after getting married than they do during the rest of their lives, David’s is in good position to introduce partners to people who are about to spend a bunch on honeymoon trips, opening bank accounts, buying houses, and much more. Wedding marketing leads to all sorts of other marketing opportunities.
The wedding dress is typically the first purchase in the bridal cycle, and the gateway to lots of other purchases, such as photography, catering, tuxedos, bridesmaid dresses and much more, as I recently learned first-hand with my daughter’s wedding.
We did things in an understated way, but as I heard in this presentation, we’re in the distinct minority.
Veronica spoke on enhancing the customer’s experience by partnering with “best In brand” companies. For example, they have partnerships with Sandals to host Caribbean nights, for brides and grooms to learn about various islands. A high proportion eventually convert to buy a Sandals honeymoon.
Brides are looking or this kind of information on associated needs. Veronica quoted a customer email that said: “All the discounts and goodies included when you purchase your wedding gown go beyond what you could ever imagine…” Customers see this as a benefit to them, a bonus that they get while buying their dresses. So, it’s a case of David’s doing well by doing good for their customers.
Clearly we have something of a relationship like this in Rochester, with restaurants, hotels and other organizations in the community providing services to Mayo Clinic patients and their families when they come to town. I believe Mayo tries to be neutral and not pick one community vendor over another, so the benefit from these community collaborations are indirect. But without community service providers it would be impossible for Mayo to serve the number of out-of-town patients we do.
To what other kinds of major life events might this approach be applicable?