I am so heartbroken for all of the couples who are struggling with navigating COVID-19 and how it is relating to their wedding day.
Being so close to so many couples, I've started to see a lot of them who are having to make difficult decisions. As well as all of the couples who are anxiously awaiting the green light confirmation that their wedding is still a go. This has increased daily as things have been changing so rapidly.
I am all about sharing joy and celebrating love in every stage of life. This post for me is so heavy to write because as of this moment, there is not a lot of "good news" to share. However, finding silver linings is important in life. I hope that this is more of an encouragement that you are not alone in the feelings that you feel.
I find that when I'm focusing on how I can encourage and support others, it helps settle my own anxiety because I'm not wrapped up in my own head.
Before I move forward, I want to share a quick encouragement to couples who are in the midst of the madness:
The most important tip that I want to share is the importance of navigating this together. I always share with my couples that I am a part of their team, and you need a REALLY strong team to surround you at a time like this.
Just a little back story on my personal experience: My husband and I actually had to replan our whole wedding (from 2 states away) just 2 weeks out from our date. This was due to a wildfire near our wedding venue. We weren't the only ones affected, and luckily our support team was so gracious and accommodating to our needs.
However, it was still one of the most stressful things we've ever had to deal with. We don't wish that level of stress on anyone. Hearing all of these stories of postponements and cancelations for couples and their celebrations has been so tough because in a way, we relate to all of those anxious feelings. As an empathetic person, I'm channeling all of my energy into doing all I can to reach out to our couples. I want to be a source of support in any way I can.
The primary focus of this post is 8 tips on how you can support photographers in the midst of COVID-19.
Being a wedding photographer myself and having many friends in the wedding industry, I am hearing all of the stories. So many spring weddings and events being suddenly cancelled or postponed. Even though most of us are taking this time to work on the back end of our business that we don't typically have time for (such as, working on the website and blog, social media, creating or refreshing PDF's and resources for couples, etc)... There is still this underlying anxiety. We are wondering how long this is going to last and what we can do for income while we wait it out.
Ultimately, all small business owners are struggling. Being based in Seattle, we really are seeing it all. Restaurants are closing - some temporarily and some permanently. With the desire to keep everyone safe and to stop the coronavirus from spreading, a lot of businesses have had to stop their services or close their doors. This affects every small business owner, and is hurting those in the wedding industry right now.
Now is the time for us to come together and support one another.
For this post, I primarily want to share how you can support wedding photographers in this moment. Whether it's your own photographer, or a friend that you know, I hope this post shines some light on what you can do to help. The wedding industry can already feel isolating. Now that we're called to be isolated until further notice, those feelings are escalating.
Here are 8 ways you can support the photographer in your life in the midst of COVID-19:
1. Postpone/reschedule, don't cancel your wedding or event: If it feels right for you. Every wedding is different and should be approached with that in mind! If you can help it, consider rescheduling your wedding instead of cancelling it. Or, opt for a smaller elopement with a larger ceremony/reception later on in the year. Personally, I am not charging couples any fees if they have to change their date due to the Coronavirus outbreak. I am doing my best to be as flexible as possible and giving couples dibs on the available dates on my calendar.
2. Book a session for a date late run the year. Our livelihood is dependent on retainers and payments. We use paid retainers to pay our bills and to buy our groceries. The money you pay us goes to our family. This money is our livelihood. If you know you want to book a session, allowing us to schedule it and paying the small retainer can help get us through.
3. Purchase prints from a past session or an album of your wedding photos. For the couples and families that I work with, they have access to their online gallery for 10 years. The prints they can purchase through the built-in store of the gallery comes from a high-quality lab that only professional photographer's have access to. I even help design gorgeous albums to share your favorite memories. Now is the time to have tangible prints and albums to display in your home and cherish forever.
Fill your home with gorgeous albums, prints and artwork from your favorite artists.
4. Ask if they have landscape and/or nature prints for purchase. Most photographer's do, and you can find ours here. (We will be updating it soon!) My husband and I not only travel for weddings but also for leisure. Throughout those trips we are always snapping photos. If you're looking for new artwork to display in your home, check with your favorite photographer's before heading to Target.
5. Send a virtual gift card for groceries. If one of your top love languages is gift giving, these next two points will be up your ally. If you don't feel the need for photos right now, sending a small gift card would still be an incredible way to help. Every little bit counts.
6. Send some happy mail via snail mail with a small thoughtful gift or words of encouragement. It doesn't take a lot for our hearts to swoon over moments of feeling appreciated, seen, and loved.
7. Write a review on their google listing, Facebook page, The Knot, Wedding Wire, and other networks they may be listed on. If you're not sure where you can leave a review, shoot them a message and ask! They can get you the direct links and make it quick for you to do so.
We use the words describing your experience working with us and how you feel with the ending result across all of our platforms. Your words help us tremendously by showing potential couples what it might be like to work with us. It can help in their decision of choosing to book us for their most important moments.
8. Share the review publicly on social media as a referral, you never know who may be looking for a wedding photographer! Those who are already following us on social media know that we are photographers. The friends and family in your network don't know that unless you share your photos and experience. Personally and individually referring us, of course, is also an incredible way to help our businesses. But sharing publicly may speak to someone who is quietly looking.
I hope you've found this helpful! If you want to share, please feel free to do so using the links below, or in the graphic I made for Instagram stories.
Need a wedding photographer? I would love to chat with you and see how I can serve you!
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