I rarely win anything, so I was so excited to win a ticket to WedTech Summit SF15 via Evolve Your Wedding Business podcast giveaway. Forgive me if this recap is a bit muddled. I jumped on a red eye and arrived just as David Adler of BizBash was giving the keynote speech with a lot of great insights including how all events have a commonality with weddings, how events are now averaging 25% of marketing budgets and how event planners are the new tastemakers.
I then sat in on a panel “Run your Business Better: Solutions for Simplifying and Success.” The speakers consisted of: Kurt Kunselman of AccountingSuite, Shadiah Sigala of HoneyBook, Yaron Lipshiz of AllSeated.com and Karen Martell of Square, moderated by Marley Majcher, The Party Goddess. This was a great panel because people didn’t just focus on their companies, but interacted with the crowd and gave suggestions as well. Marley also did a great job moderating and keeping the panel focused and on-topic. I also feel like I learned a lot about these companies that I never would’ve otherwise. Did you know that Square also does loans and so far has given $100 million in loans? Who knew?
I want to mention that there were generally two panels going on at the same time, and sometimes it was difficult to choose which panel to go to. I’m hoping that we will be able to see videos of the panels that we weren’t able to attend.
Next up I was at Fashion + Tech for Wed World with panel Tito Chowdhury of FashioNXT, Dorian Smith-Garcia of The Anti Bridezilla, Lauren Miller of Le Tote and Leah Bourne of StyleCaster. This talk was about where they saw fashion going and their roles in it. It was discussed that it’s necessary to find people’s pain points and address them, like having 3-D body scans to avoid having to leave your home and getting the perfect fit for clothes. Le Tote was new to me and I’m still amazed by it and hope to be ordering from it soon. Dorian also spoke of how part of her website is devoted to destination weddings in non-typical locales and how to go about it from her personal experience marrying in Japan.
The only other solo speaker and super insightful was Bob Gilbreath, CEO of Ahalogy whose talk was Pinterest Bridal Breakdown: Trends and Facts. Here were some highlights:
- On social media, Twitter documents the present, Facebook the past, Pinterest the future
- “Vintage” is the most searched wedding related word
- 67% of Pinterest users are under 40 and 75% use it on mobile devices
- A small percentage of pins will drive all the engagement. 18% of pins drive 80% of overall Pinterest traffic. 11% of wedding pins drive 80% of all engagement traffic. 6% of beauty pins drive 80% of all traffic.
- Thoughtful copy on photos will get more engagement
The day ended with Wedding Vendor Roundtable: State of the Union with speakers Robin Weil: World of Wedmin, Alexis Asbe: Brave Love Tribe, Kay Raymond: Blissful 2 Be and Harmony Walton: Bridal Bar, who served as part moderator, part speaker.
Key takeaways from this panel included being authentic in person and in your business, collaboration is key and can be profitable for you by making those connections, sometimes making good business decisions could cost you financially in the short term, but you need to trust yourself.
I have to say that Robin has the best business name ever. He said that the term “wedmin” came from Prince Harry originally. Brilliant and I am so going to use it.
The day ended with a cocktail hour/mixer and I was glad to finally meet Christina & Rob Farrow of Aisle Planner, who have an amazing product. Planners, if you are still using clunky binders or antiquated checklists, check it out.
I’m personally excited about the future of weddings and technology and the next steps to come.
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