In the United States, alone, the wedding market is a 55 billion dollar industry. Although wedding ceremonies are long rooted in tradition, the way in which we prepare for the event is ever changing.
As new technology takes over our lives, the way we plan for the big day will adjust accordingly. For example, Pinterest has become a bride-to-be’s best friend. Whether she decides to hire a planner or go at it herself, no doubt she is searching Pinterest for ceremony/reception ideas and looks for herself and the wedding party.
Think about it. Today’s couples care about what’s trending. They care what their friends are doing and saying on social media—simply put, they’re plugged in. And the industry has taken note of this, so there is a surplus of apps, planners, and advice available on our smartphones.
As far as weddings go, technology has changed the way we plan and enjoy the event. You have total control of your wedding, and it should be as traditional, quirky, or unique as you’d like! What is great about the new technological wedding market is that brides-to-be now have access to hundreds of photos, ideas, and planning devices that aid them for their big day.
However, with the use of technology comes a certain protocol that you, your wedding party, and guests should all follow. We have compiled a list of “Dos” and “Don’ts” for the use of technology and social media leading up to and on the big day.
If you want to create a web page to keep guests updated and informed about the wedding, that is totally a “do!” However, make sure your wedding invitations and thank you cards are not in the digital variety. These are things that are extremely personable, and people may want to keep them for memory’s sake. Select invitations that match your theme and send them at least six weeks in advance.
Don’t send an email or text thanking your guest for the gift. Make sure you hand write the thank-you cards. You want to show gratitude in a polite way. Also, mention how you plan to specifically use the item with which they gifted you.
Social media is a biggie and, used properly, can nicely accompany your event. However, you should avoid doing a few things that make you look bad.
• Do asks guests to use a hashtag for wedding photos on Instagram and Twitter. This is a fun way for everyone who may not be “friends” or following each other to find other photos of the event.
• A cool idea, if you’re able to do it, is to use a projector or TV screen during the reception to display all the tweets and posts using the hashtag in real time.
• Don’t use social media to vent. Yes, planning a wedding is very stressful, and there will be times where you feel aggravated. However, refrain from bad-mouthing any venue, a member of the bridal party, or guest.
• Another “don’t” for social media: Avoid giving away the details of the event. You want your guests to be wowed the first time they see the venue, dress, or any other unique aspect of the wedding. You don’t want to ruin the surprise for your guests.
• Do create a Pinterest board; however, make sure you set it to private. This way none of your friends sees the planning and ideas you have. Unless you want them to, of course!
• Don’t update your Facebook status at the altar! This should be a no-brainer, but it has been done before. This is a moment to share with your spouse and closest loved ones, not social media.
Cameras and Smartphones
Since everyone has them, chances are highly likely that your guests will want to take plenty of photos on their cameras and smartphones. Here is how to handle that.
• Don’t allow for guests to take photos during the ceremony. The flashes could possibly mess up your professional photographer. Ask them to take as many pictures as they like at the reception.
• Do stash a GoPro in your bouquet! This is a fun way to get personal footage from the bride’s point of view.
• Do take selfies! There is no need to feel bad about this one. This is YOUR big day and, chances are, you are wearing the most expensive outfit you probably ever will.
• Do prepare your speech on your smartphone or tablet. That way you avoid the distraction of a shaking piece of paper due to nerves. Plus, chances are you will have your phone with you already.