How social media in the wedding industry is changing

In May, I was invited to Martha’s Vineyard to speak to a small gathering of luxury wedding vendors. I wrote recently about areas where the wedding industry needs to change – a conversation we had over cocktails at this conference.

But I want to share more practical tips from my talk! For my fellow wedding vendors, this is for you. For content creator couples getting married, or thinking about getting married, this is also for you!

@planwithlaur What are your thoughts on wedding content creators? #weddingdaycontentcreator #weddingcontentcreator #weddingcontentcreation ♬ original sound – Laur | Wedding Content Creator

As a wedding content creator and bridal influencer, I live and breathe wedding social media from both sides of the coin. I ultimately gained a following on TikTok by sharing about my wedding as I planned it.

So from the client/couple side, I get it. If you want to build a platform, or leverage your wedding to grow your existing presence online, social media is your primary tool to do it. It’s still an honor and accomplishment to have your wedding published in traditional print and digital media. However, it doesn’t carry the same prestige as 10 or 20 years ago.

After my wedding, I founded wedding content creation (are we saying that? We’re saying it). I saw the same social media opportunity on the vendor side. Many (most?) vendors underutilize their platforms on social. Your platform, especially as a small business, is a tool to attract new clients, educate future clients, grow your reach, following, authority and, ultimately, your influence!

I recognized quickly how hashtag strategy can be used to your advantage.

wedding Hashtags

#weddingtiktok: 41 billion views
#weddingtok: 7 billion views
#weddingtoktok: 10.2 million views

YES, even the misspelled one has 10M views on TikTok.

Being a wedding content creator, these numbers show you what I already knew from TikToking my wedding: There are so many couples–current and future–looking for wedding wisdom online. 15-20 years ago, you found this on blogs.

But couples, especially millennial and Gen Z, they just aren’t looking to blogs anymore. And they’re definitely not getting the quality info they should from social media! One of my favorite writers is a former wedding planner herself, Xochitl Gonzalez. She talked about this wisdom deficit on a recent podcast for The Atlantic.

There are two certain truths about our current moment:

#1 – If you’re already a content creator or influencer, your wedding is a one-time opportunity to leverage. As the Gen Z adage I just made up goes, your engagement leads to more engagement. I’ll share more on this in a sec below.

#2 – If you’re a wedding vendor, your clients are looking for you on Instagram and TikTok. Will they find viral content? Or a random recap from a few weddings you worked, stitched together without purpose?

Here’s how viral content from your wedding can be leveraged by both groups.

a case study

As a wedding content creator, I really focus on the content production aspect of my work. It’s not enough to just capture iphone wedding video behind the scenes. Otherwise, you’re just another person with a phone in your hand at the wedding. At the event I shot right before Martha’s Vineyard, this focus on content production paid off with engagement.

Toni and Miles have multiple platforms online documenting their lives as entrepreneurs, sneaker heads, fitness experts and, of course, their wedding. Before the wedding they’d built a following of about 120,000 on their wedding TikTok account. They planned to livestream their wedding ceremony, and they asked for as much quality content as I could produce from their 3-day wedding weekend.

I studied their brand for a few months leading up to the wedding – how do they talk, what fonts do they use, etc. – to prepare to manage their social media across Instagram and TikTok. This involved creating a detailed content plan with transitions, trends, transformations, and before-and-after shots. Here are a few numbers from their wedding:

  • 25 pieces of unique in-feed content with 5 million likes

  • 130,000 new followers (250,000 total) during their wedding weekend

  • 250,000 live stream viewers

  • 6 viral TikToks with more than 1 million views

Mission accomplished: We made Miles and Toni’s wedding go megaviral! This obviously isn’t everyone’s goal for their business or for their wedding day. But if you’re an influencer, and you’re open to sharing aspects of your wedding with your community, this is your shot.

Even more intriguing to me is that the vendors also benefitted from the virality of Toni and Miles’s wedding. The couple helped shine a light on their vendors, and their vendors in turn showed out for the couple. The power of viral content translates to more impressions, more clicks, more inquiries, more booked clients. It’s an amazing feedback loop!

Here are some basic tips to going viral:

  • There’s an opportunity in the wedding market right now, especially on TikTok and Instagram

  • Clients want to understand the lifecycle of working with you behind the scenes.

  • Clients want to understand what it’s like to work with you–the person!

  • All it takes is a moment – shorter content is naturally more likely to “pop” than long-form video

The conference at Martha’s Vineyard was a three day event with vendors from everywhere, but everyone wanted to know more about how social media wedding trends are changing.

In the corporate world, you have places like the water cooler and the kitchen (or even Zoom lol) where you get to hang out with people and have those conversations in passing. I work at home most days and travel on the weekends to shoot weddings. While that’s SO fun, it’s really cool to be able to make your own peer group within your industry and connect, outside of the stress of a wedding. I can’t wait to continue to share the stage with more wedding vendors in the future!