Social Media and weddings
Good morning lovely blog readers! Well the last two weeks have been a complete whirlwind and I am starting to feel that I am neglecting you! The past few weeks have been a whirlwind. I have done a conference in Manchester, the weekend brought the village gala where I was able to showcase my fancy dress costume making ability as well as wedding consultations and then I was off to Plymouth and Aldershot. Phew! Today I am finally back at my desk and have spent the day looking for caterers as well as styling an up coming photo shoot, but more on that later. The last few weeks I feel I have lived my life through social media, trying to keep on top of what is happening with my friends and family and it got me thinking, about social media and weddings and what are the do’s and don’ts?
Pre wedding social media
Social Media and weddings do’s and don’ts begin before you even start to send out the invites! Before the big day itself there is lots of opportunity to use social media and allow people to get involved. Many brides to be that I know use Pinterest as their ‘go to’ for everything wedding inspiration. It is the perfect social media site for you to gather ideas for your wedding day and you are able to create as many boards as you need, boards for dress ideas, themes, colours, flowers, hair and make up, cakes…the list goes on and you are able to share ideas with your wedding party or make some of them private boards and invite only a select few to have a look.
Facebook is perfect for creating events pages. When you know your date and your venue is booked you can let your guests know what is happening and when and perhaps even get them involved. Ask your guests to recommend songs they want to get up and dance too and introduce the wedding party.
Why not create a wedding website? http://www.gettingmarried.co.uk is a great website where you are able to share all of the details about your wedding day, the wedding party, the wedding after party! You can give details on where to stay and what do to for out of towners as well as share your photos.
Social Media and weddings
Using social media on your wedding day is a great way to keep all your photos in one place. Why not create a hashtag for your day. There are lots of sites that give ideas on how to create a wedding hashtag but they are all on a very similar theme…use your names, play with the date, use puns etc etc. Good hashtags are ones that are original and give a clue as to the reason for their use. They don’t have to be funny or creative they just need to not have 5000 photos and posts already attached.
There are lots of great signs on line to let your guests know your hashtag. I love this. Or perhaps something more rustic like this chalk board? You could even ask your guests to capture something in particular with this photo hunt. Involving your guests when it comes to social media and weddings can help you keep control.
There may be some elements of your wedding that you don’t want to be captured or perhaps you want to look at your photos before seeing them all over Facebook and it is okay to ask your guests not to make your wedding public straight away. You can put something in with your invitations or perhaps use something like this?
You might make the decision that social media and weddings don’t mix and decide to go ‘unplugged’. You may not want your guests to view your big day through their iPhones and would rather they were present in the moment. After all, with an average of 300 hours and £20 000 there is nothing wrong with wanting your guests to enjoy their day. Some photographers also feel that guests with their own devices can get in the way of the photos you are paying for. Guest trying to capture the moment and getting in the way, flashes ruining the lighting and the little red dot from cameras discolouring dresses are to name a few. Last year, photographer Thomas Stewart’s FaceBook rant went viral.
If you do go for an unplugged wedding, how do you tell people? There are several ways to inform guests of your decision. You can pop something in the invitations, have a notice (yes another sign), pop it in your program or have you officiant say something. There are lots of examples of wording out there, such as ‘I invite you to be truly present at this special time. Please, turn off your phones and put down your cameras. The photographer will capture how this moment looks — I encourage you all to capture how it feels with your hearts, without the distraction of technology.’
If you do go unplugged, make sure you have a way of sharing your photos with your guests and perhaps consider a photo booth.
Wedding etiquette for guests
If you are a guest how do you navigate the nightmare that can be social media and weddings? First of all, respect what the happy couple are asking, if the wedding is no cameras and no phones then don’t make things more stressful for them than it needs to be but ask if you can get photos.
If they don’t mind you snapping away, take care so’s not to get in the photographers way, remember they are paying him! Don’t get in the couples way, the aisle is for the wedding party, not for twenty armature photographers.
When I got married we had disposable cameras on each table (do they still even make them?). Half my guests took them home instead of using their own cameras and the other half let their kids spend the night running after them so when I took them to be developed (see link if your too young to know about this) I paid for lots of photos of legs and the ceiling so if there are cameras around…don’t be that guest!
Are you getting married? Unplugged or social media all the way?