People suggest topics for WeddingIQ blog posts all the time, and we love when they do - we always want our content to be relevant and interesting. The most common theme we've noticed is topics that address wedding professionals' pet peeves about other vendors or clients, industry-related rants, and commentary on controversial topics. It's completely understandable. As much as we might love working in the wedding industry, there just isn't enough honest discussion about what's wrong with it. Not to mention that honestly discussing other vendors' business practices, ethics and behaviors is hard, especially when our own reputation is at stake. It's hard to be completely forthright when you know there may be career repercussions, or when your opinion isn't going to be popular.
We see value in some of the forums that have been created to address wrongdoing within the industry - the Vendor Meals VA-MD-DC Facebook community is one example; the Stop Stealing Photos website (and former Tumblr) is another. Some may disagree with the idea of publicly calling out caterers and venues who give their fellow vendors poor-quality meals (often far below the meal planned and paid for by the couple), or photographers who steal other photographers' images, but what's inarguable is that these sites foster discussion. And, in our opinion, discussion is what separates the hobbyists from the pros, and raises the bar for professional business standards.
It is within that spirit that we've unveiled our "Super Secret, Super Anonymous" Feedback Form! This is your place to rant and rave about vendors (or vendor behavior) you despise, clients who drive you crazy, business practices you find shady, hot-button issues in the wedding industry and more. This form is completely anonymous - it doesn't require a name or an email address, and no IP address or any other identifying information is collected. Here's where you can let loose about whatever's bugging you about the wedding industry and the people in it, and we'll never know it was you (unless you want to tell us in your comments, which we don't expect! But feel free if you want us to follow up with you for some reason!).
So why are we gathering this information, you ask? Well, we have two main purposes in mind. The first, of course, is to generate useful content for blog posts. We're already drooling over being able to give the industry a place to let other vendors know what they do at weddings that drive their colleagues crazy ("DJs: Everyone Hates When You Do These 10 Things," anyone?). Of course, in some cases, the topics we harvest from these submissions will be more general, and may explore broader issues in our industry. That's great, too - as long as our posts are always real, and provide value to our readers, we're on board.
The other purpose is also related information-gathering - we're hoping to gain insight into what really matters to wedding pros, so that we can tailor our presentations for speaking engagements, as well as our resource materials for coaching clients, to be even more helpful and address real concerns. Not a bad thing, right?
As we mention in the text accompanying the form itself - some folks might perceive our effort as negative, and we couldn't disagree more. There are tons of sites out there for cheerleading and hand-holding, and while we value support and collaboration as much as anyone, we also value authenticity. We value looking at the industry as it is, not just as we wish it would be. By addressing real problems, real interactions and real issues, we think we're ultimately doing a service to the wedding industry. And that's always been the goal of WeddingIQ.
We'd love it if you'd send us your thoughts via the anonymous rants form, and share the with anyone else you know who may have strong feelings on other vendors and the industry as a whole. Hopefully lots of your industry friends and colleagues will do the same.
We can't wait to hear from you!