Welcome my friend! If we have not met before, my name is Rachel, I’m a wedding photographer and business coach. I help wedding professionals elevate the quality of clients they attract, position themselves as the only clear choice for their ideal client, so the can confidently close high end sales working with clients they love.
Today we are talking about how to Position Your Wedding Services as Luxury.
So if you are joining me for this topic today, it’s because you’re sensing that your clients need to see you as a luxury in order for you to attract the clients you want to attract and charge the prices that you want to charge.
Let’s talk for a moment about why—why do you need to be perceived as a luxury service provider?
It’s because the middle market is dead. Our economy has shifted and is continuing to shift towards the two extremes of the market: the fast, quick, minimally sufficient, and “reasonably priced” (think Walmart, Amazon), or the luxury items that are worth saving up for or worth investing in because it is truly meaningful.
I see this in my own life—just like when I want something fast and inexpensive, you’ll see me at Jamba Juice, but if it’s our anniversary, we’re going to Beverly’s where they have world-class service and an incredible menu where you can’t walk away spending less than $150. We went there to spend money and the food actually tasted better, we savored it longer, and we enjoyed our experience because we paid more for it. We wanted to pay more for it because it was special. Jamba Juice for your anniversary isn’t super special, right?
Even during this time when our economy doesn’t necessarily look like things are on the upswing yet, this principle is at work. The middle market is dying and the low and high ends are thriving, as folks EITHER want something that is minimally sufficient and inexpensive, or they are ready to invest in something meaningful and WANT to spend more.
The great news is, we in the wedding industry have this kind of baked in already! We specialize in meaningful occasions where people are already primed to spend more because this is a (hopefully) one-time opportunity to get things right.
Remember, people splurge for what is truly meaningful to them. For me, I love coaching and education, so I’ve splurged. I’ve spent more than 10K on a program before that promised to help me achieve the story of myself that I wanted. But I buy other things at Walmart and Amazon that just are not meaningful to me because they don’t contribute to the story of my life. I bet you have some examples of this in your own life as well.
So, the middle market is dead and it’s getting deader by the minute, so you can either stick with lower prices and go volume (which means low touch, low cost, minimally sufficient), or go full luxury and stay there which, if you’re like me—you can’t help but be a high-touch, very involved wedding professional who can’t help but give 1000% percent—is the only answer, because there aren’t enough hours in the day to do high-touch volume. That is the express lane to burnout.
So if you’re here with me today, chances are you are on the verge of making the decision to go full luxury, OR you have already made the decision that you are a quality over quantity business, and you are READY to step out of the middle market and go full luxury.
Now the question is, how exactly do you do this? Great question. Let’s talk about it.
Most everyone I talk or work with already knows that they need to set themselves apart and show their value but they feel very lost about HOW exactly to do that, and consequently do it very poorly or not at all.
You need to stand out in the marketplace and package yourself as the luxury item that is WORTH splurging on. You are the “expensive, but worth it”, the “above and beyond, worth every penny” person.
So how do you stand out to your ideal client? You need to speak their language, understand their vision for their wedding, understand their problems, and most importantly, you need to understand, exactly as if you were watching a movie, the feelings that they want to experience and the idealized story they are envisioning when they think of their wedding.
You need to know how they want to feel, why they want to feel that way, and why those things are important to them. And then, with your marketing, you need to show them how well you already understand them specifically, because you specialize in serving clients just like them.
So for instance, my ideal clients value family, friends, and having a fun, relaxed and meaningful time with them on their wedding day. This is part of their identity and they are excited to spend money on pampering and including their closest friends and family. So this is what I include in my marketing—the VISION that they have and the identity they want to have, showcasing how well I understand them specifically.
This allows me to easily show them WHY I’m the perfect fit for them, which leads me to one of the other big questions we need to answer today: What makes something luxury?
Positioning yourself as a luxury experience is about so much more than your images, so you can forget about it being your portfolio that is keeping you out of the luxury market. This is about much more than the quantity of images they receive or hours they get in their package, this is about their PERCEPTION of the total experience of working with you.
Luxury is exclusive, personalized, customized, detailed, and priced to savor and remember.
Remember, a custom made gown for a very special occasion should cost more than an off-the-rack dress, right? The more custom, the more personalized, the more detailed—the more it costs.
A luxury item or service meets not just the immediate need, but also plays into making the vision of the client (which is the same as the story they want to see and feel themselves in) a reality. Luxury services and goods speak to IDENTITY and the heart of a person, not just their desire.
This is why it is so important to show exactly WHY you are a perfect fit for your ideal client over anyone else they are considering, because when you are a perfect fit, you ARE the customized, personalized service, and automatically, you ARE worth every penny to your ideal client. They will perceive you as a LUXURY!
This is how you talk about yourself in your marketing: you talk about what it is that makes you perfect for them—the values you hold that are in common, the things you are amazing at that match their needs and desires, the things you already do to solve their problems and give them their version of the best experience possible.
Now, don’t forget a very important element. You need to be priced to savor, treasure and remember—and that means not being afraid to raise your pricing above the rest. If you don’t raise your pricing high enough, you run the risk of everything not feeling quite right to the client who actually wanted to splurge.
So to recap, this is the process for positioning yourself to attract luxury clients:
- Decide to get out of the middle market TODAY and make decisions that are in alignment with your new status as a luxury service provider
- Stand out in the marketplace by connecting directly with the heart and the WHY behind the story your ideal clients want to see and feel themselves experience, tapping into their identity.
- Share from the beginning of your marketing journey all the ways you are a perfect fit by showing them how well you understand who they are and exactly how you meet and exceed their desires, align with their values, and solve their problems.
- Don’t forget to be priced for your clients to savor, splurge, and treasure. People WANT to spend money on quality, memorable, experiences. So make it happen.
This is of course the framework that I teach you in the Empowered Weddings program along with lots of personal and customized support to walk you step-by step through the process that will propel your business forward into the luxury market. We start with learning how to attract your soulmate clients, positioning yourself as a luxury service professional, and finally setting rates that serve your end goals and closing those high end sales that bring profitable cash flow so you can have the six figure business of your dreams, while having time to spend with your family and live a wonderful life.
If you want some personalized help with applying this framework to your specific business, I offer free 15 minute strategy sessions. This is not a sales call, they are literally there to help you get clarity on all this, and to help you take that first step forward. If you want to have a free 15 minute strategy session with me, click the button down below.
That’s all for today!