Weddings are not just "I do" these days- They are more about branding and hashtag #vows and #that.
I recently attended a friends wedding and I realized that weddings are not just about vows, cake and white dresses. They are about branding.
It struck me odd that all these years of being a "brand executive" and "event planner" that I never really gave much thought that planning a wedding wasn't about "the kiss" anymore but, more about how you are going to market your commitment.
How many of us have attended a wedding and left with some sort of promotional item that reminds us of the big event? I know I have in fact when I started looking at the content on my collection of photo-booth images, koozie covers, flip-flops, snack packages, sunglasses and much more it became apparent weddings are branded events and I have the stuff to prove it .
What we get now when we are invited to a wedding is first the "save the date" eblast or paperless post, then later we get a beautifully designed (branded) wedding invite with instructions to view a wedding website that contain details of the wedding activities, the couples registries (which are additional branded sites), images of the happy couple, stories of how they met and links to their Facebook event page, Instagram, Tumblr and their twitter #tag. Followed by a after event link to the images. Weddings are no longer just about "the kiss".
The thing is, what does all this added branding get the happy couple? We all know weddings are not cheep. Traditionally, the rule of thumb was a wedding couple could expect to get back (ROI) in gifts and money, a little more then half of their overall spend. Today, do couples even recoup half? Do the websites make them money for their effort? Who is really getting the ROI from branding the wedding? Don't misunderstand my questions, I am not against branding and I am all about making a wedding memorable. In fact, I too fall victim to the branded wedding. As I stated above, I just wonder for all the time and dollars spent, by the couple, do they achieve an ROI sufficient enough to make it worthwhile? I am confident the web designers, the promotional product companies and the social sites are.
-- These are my thoughts only. #weddingroi