By Paul Pannone
The word “wedding” is synonymous with bride; the event is all about the bride and rightfully so. But eWedNewz watches the emerging trend to defend the rights of the groom; not that they need defending but simply put, they’ve not had any rights until now. Groom’s thoughts and feeling have traditionally been squashed by the bride and her mother, particularly if the bride’s parents paid for the wedding. But according to recent information, that is changing now that couples are funding their own weddings.
But does it make good business sense to direct all the attention to the groom in any part of wedding planning? It depends on who you ask. For the most part traditional thinking planners take the findings of major wedding intelligence like Great Bridal Expo and find reasons not to carry out the findings. CEO of GBE, Bill Heaton, gave a strong statement in favor of grooms getting more involved in wedding planning. Heaton told eWedNewz of a rising participation rate (up to 40% in some cities) and greater response in all facets of wedding planning.
Should brides be allowed into a groom-only event?
eWedNewz learned of a case where one planner is sticking to her original idea to give total attention to the groom; a move contested by a partnership overture that suggested the bride somehow be included. Diane Freeland of Events of Sophistication recently launched a groom-only project called Cigar & Cuff Links with the idea of not having brides anywhere near the event.
“That’s what makes it unique and special for the groom– only. I’ve been contacted by companies that want to partner in the project but want me to change my idea and include brides,” she told eWedNewz.
Freeland’s thoughts were posted in the Wedding Water Cooler for comment to see what other members thought. Nearly all supported her decision to stick to her original idea based on the fact there is so much attention given to the bride already. To include her in any shape or form would water down results, according to the replies.
In the same trenches as Freeland, wedding planner, Khalilah Olokunola advised, “Grooms are an untouched market for shows and for most of the industry with the exception of tuxedos. We’ve assumed for too long that they didnt want to be involved but this past weekend’s event proved me wrong. Most of the planning was with Brian; the groom who wanted his own area signature to his career and likes, so the cocktail hour was all about him. Some of the touches - the drink– was called the badge- made with coffee and Kahlua paired with a on site donut bar and yes he is a cop! This is becoming more of a trend; and when the groom doesn’t want it, the bride wants something special for him!” according to Olokunola.
Davies said, “Keep the project limited to Grooms only. Brides do their thing and they still don’t come to shows with the numbers of grooms-to-be we are told are helping them plan their weddings. Make it a classy, exclusive event with lots of sizzle and do a lot of promo and if you build it they will come. The key is to make it attractive and macho for the guys. (sorry but it’s a marketing fact) Do what you need to do to make them curious, special and engage them.
This is a new step forward in the wedding industry and guys tend to travel better in a pack of other males.”
Duhe’s position also favors sticking to the original plan, feeling there is too much attention given to the bride.
“There already are more bride/groom shows in this country than are countable. Does the world need another one? No AND Yes. I assume that Diane’s purpose in launching CIGARS & CUFF LINKS was to create something innovative and successful. Frankly, I haven’t seen a highly successful “grooms only” event before. That doesn’t mean that it may not or can’t exist. It’s just that I haven’t personally seen one. I don’t believe that a “grooms only” program is conceptually flawed. People who attempted it in the past may have had developmental problems or an errors in execution. Maybe Diane has calculated a way around these issues. If she has . . . congratulations! Don’t change it to include brides — build upon it to create an even stronger “groom only” event. There are many out here who will help you in any way that they can,” feels Duhe.
More applause came from planner, Marcinho Savant, that gave Freeland a thumbs up for sticking to her original plan.
“Sticking to one’s guns indicates integrity, courage, confidence, faith, grit and strength! KUDOS! There’s a vast difference between sticking to one’s guns, stubbornly, endlessly and CHOOSING to hold on to one’s vision with bold, industry-changing bravery and mettle! Clearly, Ms. Freeland BELIEVES in and trusts in her market analysis. She trusts in her vision and in her mission. Congrats to her bold foray into uncharted waters! COWARDS NEVER THRIVE! I hope she makes a zillion dollars and claims her niche in the market. BRAVA!
In a clear, concise voice, the Wedding Water Cooler learns how to stay ON TOPIC and give correct, lucid information to help its members and give wedding industry members a chance to weigh in on their conclusions.
Now it’s your turn. Should brides be included in a “groom’s only” project? Post your thoughts here or contact us privately at Paul@ewednewz.com or 516-312-0090
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