A few weeks ago we posted a marketing survey and here are the results – thank you to the 168 respondents. I hope you all find the information as interesting as I do!
Where do you advertise you floral business?
Facebook Page for your business 94.64% 159
Referrals by Previous Clients 89.29% 150
Instagram 72.62% 122
Referrals by other Vendors (Baker, DJ) 70.83% 119
Pinterest 64.88% 109
Referrals by Wedding Planners 57.14% 96
Wedding Wire Website 45.83% 77
Preferred Vendor Lists 42.26% 71
Your own Blog for your business 41.67% 70
Twitter 37.50% 63
Bridal Shows 29.17% 49
Other Networking Groups 22.62% 38
Yelp 22.02% 37
Local Regional Magazine in your area22.02% 37
The Knot Website 16.67% 28
Chamber of Commerce Networking Group11.90% 20
Style Me Pretty Blog 10.71% 18
Local Resources Blog (ie, in CO we have “Couture Colorado”) 10.12% 17
Wedding Chicks Blog 5.36% 9
Google Ads 5.36% 9
The Knot Magazine 4.17% 7
NACE Networking Group 1.79% 3
Elizabeth Anne Designs Blog 1.79% 3
ISES Networking Group 1.19% 2
Any other place where you promote your floral business? (blogs, websites, magazines, networking groups not mentioned above?)
We started an alternative wedding show/vendor networking group here in Pittsburgh called Hitchburgh, which focuses on local and artisan vendors and products.
free add in the local Independent wedding issue
Wedding Wire, Snippet and Ink
I put flowers (leftovers usually) at a winery that gets a lot of traffic and fits my aesthetic.
Maybe that would fall under blog, but we try to get a newsletter out as often as we can without being annoying to our customers. Top of mind awareness.
Targeted email newsletters on a quarterly basis
A Practical Wedding (planning blog)
Local bakeries, dry cleaners.
Local events/workshops with other small business owners
Statement stuffers in other local businesses that have house accounts
I am on Grey Likes, but won’t do that again.
Active in community charity donations
Wedding unveiled magazine. Grace Ormonde platinum member. Business Network International
Once Wed, Be Inspired PR
Newspaper. During holidays or bridal book.
None, it’s mostly word of mouth. I’ve tried ads in magazines and it’s pretty much like throwing money out in the wind. Getting featured on blogs or magazines is great too.
University alumni group
We send out 2 newsletters via email, a month.
Green Wedding Shoes
I give back sponsorships for local golf and ski course fundraisers. I also donate to the local high school arts program
Wedluxe and Elegant Wedding Magazine
Any networking with fellow event professionals proves most affective for my business. Relationships in general and getting my floral designs seen.
Local networking groups
Stylized shoots that get published.
Our own website
Local events and local charity.
Creating photo shoots with other local vendors to get in their market.
Biz cards at local businesses.
I’m the florist that teaches. I network at BNI and with an artists/creatives group. I regularly send press releases to the local paper and recently applied for and received funding for a floristry/arts project, which has built my mailing list and raised my profile recently.
Word of mouth…everywhere. I never miss a opportunity to talk about my shop after all I am my biggest fan!
website, networking groups
florist networking group, social media campaign starting in 2015
Of the places where you promote your floral business, which ones do you feel truly provide the best leads?
Referrals by Previous Clients 83.44% 136
Referrals by other Vendors (Baker, DJ) 48.47% 79
Referrals by Wedding Planners 38.04% 62
Facebook Page for your business 30.67% 50
Preferred Vendor Lists 19.63% 32
Instagram 17.79% 29
Wedding Wire Website 16.56% 27
Bridal Shows 9.20% 15
Your own Blog for your business 7.98% 13
Yelp 7.36% 12
The Knot Website 6.75% 11
Style Me Pretty Blog 5.52% 9
Local Regional Magazine in your area 4.91% 8
Chamber of Commerce Networking Group 3.07% 5
Pinterest 3.07% 5
Other Networking Groups 2.45% 4
Local Resources Blog (ie, in CO we have “Couture Colorado”) 2.45% 4
Google Ads 1.84% 3
Twitter 0.61% 1
NACE Networking Group 0.00% 0
ISES Networking Group 0.00% 0
Elizabeth Anne Designs Blog 0.00% 0
Wedding Chicks Blog 0.00% 0
The Knot Magazine 0.00% 0
Where else do you promote your business that you feel produces qualified business leads?
The best place I get qualified leads is from wedding planners that we work with. Its the best way for us!
Google – general SEO of our website; making sure our website shows up on page 1!
Meeting clients in-person at wedding shows, then following up with an email.
Neighborhood women’s group, fellow non-profit board members in my community service work,
On my personal twitter account; I’ve ended up doing flowers for lots of friends’ weddings this way.
In my store – being with customers.
I feel Business Marketing International will be great. I’m in the process of joining now.
Flowers in local businesses
Through fundraising partnerships. I give a discount to have my marketing material present.
Word of mouth is #1. Providing good service and product gets us more business than any other means.
I know it sounds weird, but I volunteer with flowers at church without any expectations, but have met clients this way.
Going directly to venues seems to help. Venues are typically the first stop for a bride, so going straight to the venue seems to help.
Out in the community networking
Getting featured on popular wedding blogs. The first photo shoot we did with a new planner 3 years ago got featured in 4 different blogs and we are still getting brides coming in with the pictures or they are on Pinterest boards .
Photographers in general seem to be good leads
Out of all the blogs that we have been featured, Style Me Pretty is really the only place were we have seen qualified paying leads.
Local orchard as preferred vendor
Through my own community volunteer service
*The preferred vendor list is one a photographer’s website
I have found that collaborating with photographers on styled photoshoots is an excellent way to promote business. If you’re slow, it gives the impression that you’re busy, and if you’re busy it’s a great excuse to get really creative and try something kind of off-the-wall. Photographers have been my best leads and being able to consistently post high quality images of your work is an excellent way to stay top of mind for potential clients.
Best leads come from Preferred Vendor Listings
My business website leads to contacts and bookings. I created the website myself, and worked quite a bit on my SEO so I would be found easily on google, and it has paid off.
So far we have seen Yelp give us the best increase in orders.
Wedluxe and Elegant Wedding Magazines
Handing out business cards
In our small town, the bridal fair is great. It’s not large but produces a lot of results. It is small enough you have a chance to meet with nearly every bride who may still be looking for a particular vendor.
Referrals from other vendors and wedding venues is where I get most of my business.
Woman’s only seminars Classes in the community Free small vases at local businesses and coffee shops
We belong to several small, local and informal wedding professionals groups, basically coffee groups.
Foot traffic at our storefront. We’ve been in business for 3 years, but 2014 was the first year we have had a storefront and not just a studio/workshop. Our wedding business has increased significantly as a result.
Actually, word of mouth has gotten me the most business so far.
Word of mouth works best for me.
I’m new so still searching out possibilities
Facebook is amazing! Strangely enough it’s my best advertising, and it’s even better that it’s free!
Complimentary flowers to our local banks and business’s with our business card
Once a month a local art galleries.
Any current places where you advertise that you feel are not worth the investment of your money and/or time?
Most blogs beyond SMP, I still get a lot from them
We used to advertise on wedding blogs but they are so diluted with other competitors that we hardly even get any web traffic from them, much less leads.
Sometimes I wonder if the Knot and Wedding Wire are worth it for what it costs. We do get leads, but not as many as from local venues and planners. Sometimes I wonder if it would serve me better to take that advertising cost and put it into freebies or gifts for industry professionals.
Bridal shows…so much money for florists to participate in and not enough return.
Wedding Wire paid package
Online advertising has not worked for me. Print is questionable…..
Lots of time invested in facebook but nothing so far..!
I’m very reluctant to do wedding fairs & paid blog spots
Hate to say it, but local newspapers and tv ads will not do it in our area, Bozeman MT,
When it comes to social media, you really have to work hard and make sure you’re updating every so often and not every few months. It’s also important to find that balance were you aren’t bothering people with constant updates.
Not sure if Wedding Wire is worth it. I don’t seem to get many inquiries from there.
Wedding wire leads all are low budget weddings and brides just gathering quotes, find myself not charging full labor on these trying to fill my calendar. Chamber of Commerce here great people – but that involvement has led to multiple requests for donations (which I try to honor when possible) but no wedding leads.
I regret locking into a monthly contract with yellow pages ( the main phone directory online in canada) as i truly don’t think I get much in return from it. When it ends in the summer I am going to just switch to a basic listing with website line.
Newspaper and phonebooks
some bridal shows
I stopped advertising with the knot because I felt that it wasn’t generating enough leads and the brides that I was connecting with were very low budget brides.
Wedding planners – don’t usually pan out because the planners are shopping for the best deal not the designer that best fits the couple:(
local small newspaper, advertise 3 times a year and don’t feel it’s worth it
The knot, wedding wire
I’m not sure about Once Wed, It’s only been a couple months, for the money if I get one wedding it’s worth it to be out there.
Yelp ads – but just having a regular good maintained Yelp page is awesome
Wedding shows / magazine
local blogs, paying services of any sort. Our advertising budget is now $0 because anything we’ve ever paid for has not had a return.
Grey is the only place I’ve ever advertised. Not renewing.
Wedding Wire doesn’t seem to really be worth it.
Not sure about Grace Ormonde at this moment
Once Wed, Be Inspired PR, Twitter,
Newspaper. Some places I think are just for building brand awareness in people’s minds.
In the last two months I’ve had no return on my SMP ad, or the local bridal magazine ad that I tried last year.
Ive tried numerous magazines.. it’s not worth the money.
Wedding wire…low budget brides. I’m now doing free listing.
Local Wedding magazine
I was part of a wedding conglomerate studio and it was a horrible investment
Have previously been on multiple preferred vendor lists including Once Wed and WedLuxe (Canada) and received very little business because of them. Decided to discontinue my membership to put money elsewhere.
At this time, I have no desire to invest money in advertising. I feel that word of mouth is the best advertising I could get-because it comes from people who have worked with me and are highly satisfied with my work.
face book. we tried the paid ads that redirect to our website, but the numbers they “claim” and what we got were very different.
magazines and venue’s brochures
Weddingwire and The Knot are marginally effective I think.
Facebook Paid adds
Wedding wire seems to have low quality leads for me. Very low budget.
I feel like The Knot gets me a lot of leads but few bookings. Being on the Knot and recognized as ‘Best of’ does however speak to brides who found me elsewhere but are also on “The Knot”.
Local business or parish magazines, tried that, no good. Also Google ads, unless you’re prepared to spend a LOT of money
I stopped advertising on SMP and Grey Likes Weddings. I just never saw much of a return on those ads.
Not that we can think of for the most part we have fine tuned things to where we see a return on most all efforts in place.
I did a bridal show and got no replies back from many of the leads. Just feel I dumped a ton of money and time into it and nothing in return. Time will only tell.
Wedding shows do not produce well for us. We are more of a boutique, non-cookie cutter company and we don’t compete well against the biggies who show up with huge budgets and truckloads of flowers.
any type of print advertising
On line florist sites which charge money. Doctors surgery cards
Anything online that you have to pay for
Tried for a year – Wedding Wire. Not renewing. Many followers on Pinterest but I’ve yet to receive one business inquiry.
I also advertise with mywedding.com however it has not generated any leads. Not worth the investment for my business.
Country Club membership books
Recently dropped Blue Ribbon Vendor on Southern weddings, Wedding Chicks, and Grey Likes..nothing accomplished from these except building my ego
Facebook changes have made it hard to connect with people. I do pay for advertising but in not sure it’s worth it anymore.
No paid for ads, or free sites.
Bridal shows…so much money out, for very little return
local wedding magazines are to expensive and they rarely if never use me
Yelp.com not one phone call. Giving out free flowers don’t work.
Anything else you’d like to share with us regarding the marketing your business:
Instagram has been huge for us and we are returning to blogging. I think it was a big error to quit blogging. The internet is loaded with old images.
Work with your peers!
I have found that the various media we use to advertise are important for different reasons. Meaning… Facebook is great for connecting with those in the industry in our local market by making sure everyone sees our latest work (and therefore hopefully sending us referrals). Instagram is great for engaging with current clients and can boost sales by being able to showcase new products. Also, a younger crowd (aka the modern bride) is on Facebook. Vendor relations, especially when it comes to venues and planners, is by far the best source of leads for us. So taking a planner out to dinner = advertising… believe you me.
I did some market research myself (small scale, amongst married women as I do mostly weddings) and 3/4 of my sample (about 60) used a florist recommended to them by a friend or family member for their wedding (I asked them how they knew of the florist they used).
I’m trying to work out to attract more clients without spending a fortune!
Instagram has been very good for my business!
when it comes to flowers, two things are important: the quality of your printing materials and the quality of your work. Printed materials (say for example trade and bridal shows) will give customers that don’t know about you an idea of your arrangements and what you can create for them. The quality of your actual flowers will get people talking at events and they’ll always remember something special you did, and word of mouth starts. On that note, always support your local businesses. Ordering printed materials online can be Chelsea, but I’ve gotten weddings purely out of the local print shop (who also do a great job). And always be kind to your customers.
highly targeted marketing has prevented me from having to respond to lots of non qualified potential clients or write a lot of proposals for low end competitive bid jobs that I don’t want to do in the first place.
Partnering with other wedding industry professionals bring me qualified leads which often result in business.
Located in a very small town in Oregon, area not fully recovered from recession. All my costs are rising but brides budgets are not – no dollars available for marketing right now.
I feel like i spend 24 hours a day thinking about, worrying about and working on marketing my business. it is consuming me. I’ve read a whack of books about instagram, pinterest, facebook, linkdin, I’ve taken a pr course and listen to marketing podcasts on my commute everyday. It is a constant uphill battle to make time to do good marketing, and even when it is good it doesn’t often get much of a result. I have to say that I find marketing of my everyday business harder than weddings. It is hard to be a small local business with a small local reach trying to get the word out. Somedays i think I’m making progress, others not so much. would love to hear what other people are doing that isn’t wedding related marketing!
We appreciate all YOU guys do to support and promote florists!
We have become almost completely reliant on social media to promote out business. Collaborations with local blogs and vendors has far outweighed editorial magazines and other big dollar amount advertising, etc.
Instagram has been one of the most surprising and beneficial tools in my business development. Almost every bride that I book mentions it as one of her reasons for hiring me. In addition, it is a wonderful platform to connect with brides in the months before their big day!
Take the time and take advantage of free marketing via facebook and Instagram.
we take advantage of social media to create our brand and gain fans. Our top source of referrals is always vendor recommendations by other wedding pros.
good seo on website
Having a good website and reviews from our brides.
I never pay to run an add for my business. The only thing I pay for is to be on Wedding Chicks preferred vendor list. I try to tag and blog as much as possible to boost my SEO so Im #1 or 2 in Google searches. I get most of my referrals from Google, past clients and other vendors
I have found collaborations with other planners, photographers, rental companies etc. To be very helpful.we form friendshio s and refer each other.
Facebook has become more of a reference people go to (like a website) rather than a new lead driver.
I recently booked a bride who contacted me and communicated through Pinterest .
Its definitely a constant battle and you really can’t let this slide. You have to market every single day, reach out to new contacts every single day.
Word of mouth & Facebook has been my biggest marketer.
SEO Is The Best Marketing Tool For Me. Yelp Is Second.
While a lot of items are checked in question #1, I’m really bad about actually keeping up to date with so many advertising outlets (ie: I don’t tweet or blog nearly as often as I’d like, I don’t keep our business pinterest account very active, etc). I devote most advertising time toward Facebook, Instagram and networking with local vendors. I’ve found that referrals from local vendors (specifically planners, photographers and venues) give me the best bookings!
Making it different than what others in the area offered. Be prompt and flexible.
GET ON INSTAGRAM! We get about 90% of our business from Instagram. It’s huge and if you aren’t there you’re definitely missing out.
Making your current clients the happiest they can possibly be is the best way to get those referrals.
We’re still looking for that magic place to advertise! 🙂
I have found just being nice and a friendly face, I also have found being part of The Lonely Bouquet movement has been great
I keep business cards handy at all times.
Some of my floral friends have passed on leads during their maternity leaves so it’s good and important to have good relationships with others in the same line of work.
It’s hard to know what works! But I try to stick with a type of advertising for at least a year plus to see if anything comes from it.
Marketing is a daily task!
In general-make friends, (clients and vendors alike) love what you do and be the best at it you can be and the rest falls in place. If you love what you do, you will want to share and so will the clients and vendors you worked with and your business grow.
its bloody difficult, I’m not a marketeer by trade and I often feel I’m lost, floundering and wasting my time effort and resources! A “how to market being a florist” course would be a godsend!
Networking! It is the best way to generate business. It take time and patience but it is with it in the long run.
Be creative. We see a bigger results when we add out if the box eye catching details. Like or girl with orchid hair and speech bubbles http://www.stacykfloral.com/floral-subscription-program/
The advice I give to newer folks in the business is to meet and greet, meet and greet, meet and greet. The more people you put yourself in front of on any given day, the more exposure you create. It’s a numbers game. The other thing we do is to execute our job flawlessly time after time. This is the best marketing there is.
yelp has been a huge source of business and we have gone from a free listing to a paid one for the past 3 months and we have see a 25 to 30% increase in that short time. Positive reviews on yelp are key.
Always changing. I look at the cost and x it by 3 and ask my self will it be likely generate this level of sales.
Yelp is powerful
Regular updates on social media is key
I’d like to hear from those who advertise with national wedding magazines, how long they have to advertise in order to get enough business to pay for the ads.
I would rather do styled shoots than buy ads. Getting my work out there for folks to actually see is my favorite marketing tool. Plus submit as much as possible!
I wish there was a better local blog that didn’t focus so much on DIY. I think having a good blog that is specific to your area is a great way to advertise as long as it’s done right.
Blog regularly to keep the google ratings up!
It is difficult to keep up with updating ads, Facebook, blogs, Instagram and everything!
We are in a small town with another flower shop so we try to stay very involved with the community and promote our customer service. We have even done the library’s reading dogs birthday! No cause too small.
Being patient and knowing your product and competition well is a bonus. People who want your product will be repeat customers which is worth a great deal more than one off orders. Look after your customers and respect their money and they will respect you and your business.
The views and opinions expressed on this blog post are solely those of the original contributors. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of Flirty Fleurs.