February 28, 2019

7 Tips for Contacting Potential Wedding Vendors

Today I’m sharing 7 tips for contacting potential wedding vendors. While this might seem like a common sense task, there’s always room to improve the efficiency of the process for you and your potential vendors. Often, brides and grooms leave off crucial information or simply just sent a cold email that doesn’t convey much interest in the vendor. If you’re in the process of reaching out to potential wedding vendors, these tips will provide a huge help for you!

7 Tips for Contacting Potential Wedding Vendors. Tips for emailing vendors and getting back the responses you need. 

1. Narrow Your Search

There’s no need to contact 20 photographers or 15 planners. Try to narrow down your search to less than 8 different vendors from the same category. Then, request to meet with or chat with an even smaller subset to make your final decision.
White linen with burgundy velvet chairs and centerpieces with ivory blush red and neutral tones, Pampas Grass Wedding in San Diego on Film by Cavin Elizabeth Photography 

2. Fill Out a Contact Form

Often, vendors create contact forms that are designed to provide them with the information they desire. I strongly prefer that couples utilize my contact form instead of calling or writing an email. Calling usually catches me in the middle of work and those random emails almost always leave off pertinent info I ask for on my contact form.

3. Provide as Much Information as Possible

Sometimes vendor contact forms are really specific; sometimes they aren’t. Either way, be sure to at least include your name, wedding date, wedding venue(s), and any special details about your wedding day. You can never be too wordy, so the more information we have, the better! We really love to know how you found us too.

Bride and groom in front of neutral wall, Fine Art Balboa Park Engagement Photos with an Architecture Focus, Cavin Elizabeth Photography 

4. Add a Lovely Message

It’s really hard, as a vendor, to get excited about messages that only say, “What are your prices?” You’re obviously in love with the vendor’s work or items, so don’t hold that fact back! When I get a message that mentions how much the couple loves my work and would really love to speak with me about their wedding, I’m instantly eager and excited about photographing their day. Now, I totally understand that this might not apply to a large rental company, but it completely applies to boutique vendors and vendors who create or design. They appreciate it more than you could realize :)

Bride in Anne Barge sweetheart gown with red ivory and mauve bouquet and bridesmaids in black dresses at Green Acre Campus Pointe Wedding, film photo by Cavin Elizabeth Photography 

5. Double Check Your Information

Always ensure that you’ve entered your wedding date, name, phone, and email address 100% correct. Definitely the wedding date ;-) This seems like a given, but you’d be surprised at how often mistakes can be made. Also, be sure that if you do happen to be copying and pasting the same email to multiple people that you correctly address the email to the appropriate name. It’s never fun to get a “Hey Julie” when your name is Sarah!

Image of bride and groom with dogs in front of the pink entrance to Sands Hotel spa in Indian Wells, Cavin Elizabeth Photography 

6. Don’t Be Afraid to Follow Up (If You Love Their Work)

I know I typically email all potential clients within 24 hours, but I’m sure my responses have occasionally gotten lost due to an email address typo. If someone you are completely in love with doesn’t return your email within 2-3 business days, don’t be afraid to follow up with them. There are a ton of vendors who, quite frankly, are terrible at email. That’s the sad reality; however, you just never know what the case is. If you have your heart set on them, give them a call to be safe.

The Spa at Rancho Valencia, Cavin Elizabeth Photography - San Diego film photographer 

7. Don’t Dismiss Consultations

Honestly, the smartest thing you can do with your vendors is to get on the phone or meet with them in their office. This is the most efficient and personal way to connect, learn more, and show that you’re serious about the booking experience.
For vendors that you’ll spend a lot of time with, like your planner and photographer, this experience is worth taking an hour out of your schedule!

Sunset Terrace for Weddings at L'Auberge Del Mar - San Diego Film Photographer Cavin Elizabeth Photography 

Bonus Tip

Avoid contacting potential wedding vendors before you’re ready and willing to meet with them. This includes things like price shopping with vendors you’re not serious about or inquiring before you’ve set your date. For vendors, like me, who can only do one wedding per day, there’s not a whole lot I can do for someone whose date is “sometime in October.” I’d never want to waste someone’s or my own time by connecting before a couple is able to book. Contact your potential wedding vendors when you’re ready to start the booking process. It saves you all valuable time!


Thanks for the tips. I’ll share it for a friend who will get married !

[…] you’ve contacted your potential vendors, schedule in-person consultations with your narrowed selections. If this isn’t doable, opt […]