WPPI is proud to be hosting several new speakers at the 2018 Conference and Expo. In an industry that's constantly changing, our goal is to provide attendees with presenters that are thriving in today's market and can share some of the secrets to their success. Here, Jane and Steve Pilkerton, a husband-and-wife duo serving the Washington, D.C., Maryland and Virginia market, tell us about their experience with local wedding shows, a topic they'll be discussing in greater depth in their seminar, "Acing the Wedding Show." Don't miss their presentations taking place at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Convention Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. See you there!
Name: Jane and Steve Pilkerton
Title: Wedding photographers
Topic: "Acing the Wedding Show: How to Get More Bookings and Leave the Competition in the Dust" on Tuesday, February 27, 2018, from 1:00 - 3:00 p.m.
WPPI: How many wedding shows do you attend per year?
Jane and Steve Pilkerton: We usually attend three to four a year. Most tend to be on the weekends, so we have to decide which ones are worth attending versus booking a wedding instead.
WPPI: How do you determine which ones might not be worth the time/effort?
JP+SP: Over the years, we've kept track of the costs to attend versus successful bookings from each show that we have participated in. From those records, we figured out which events have yielded the best results and those are the shows we continue to attend.
WPPI: Roughly how long does it take to prepare for a show?
JP+SP: It only takes a day to prepare nowadays, however, our first show took months of preparation. We had to build a booth, decide which photos to display, figure out what kinds of print materials we wanted to hand out, discuss how we were going to capture leads, etc. There's a lot of thought that goes into each decision.
WPPI: What are some steps that you take before a show to prepare?
JP+SP: Since we have the general setup already in place, the biggest thing we do to customize each show is to market our brand. To do this, we run a highly targeted Facebook and Instagram ad the week before and after the show.
WPPI: What’s the craziest thing you’ve had happen at a wedding show?
JP: We both were recovering from a cold and had just shot weddings back-to-back the Friday and Saturday before a Sunday show. By the time Sunday rolled around, we were exhausted. About an hour into the show, Steve lost his voice completely and I barely made it until the end! It was quite the marathon, but we made it through.
Check out more interviews with the new instructors of WPPI by visiting rangefinderonline.com/wppi-instructors.