Expanding on my recent “stay in your lane” post…and just my $0.02…though I suspect, based on many recent conversations, that others are seeing the same thing…
If you wouldn’t sell yourself as a professional provider of a given service (music, photography, videography, stationery, desserts, whatever) for a wedding, then why on earth would you provide that service — either officially or unofficially — at another industry event?
Professional photographers should be the ones shooting networking events. DJs, bands or individual musicians should be providing the music. Stationery designers and printing companies should be doing the invitations. It should go without saying that networking events are not only a place to meet people, they’re also an opportunity to promote one’s company and brand. And the real pros in each category deserve the exposure and recognition for their efforts. To veer so far out of your own lane, just for a kind of completely irrelevant self-promotion (or for the hell of it), is so egregious an insult to the other pros, I can’t even wrap my mind around it.
And if you’ve decided that self-promotion isn’t irrelevant — that providing a service that isn’t part of your actual company is so essential that it’s worth offending other wedding pros and potentially losing their respect, their goodwill and their referrals — then you can’t be surprised when there are very real consequences to your business.