Bachelorette party (USA). Hen Nights (England). Hen Door Nights (Ireland).
Hen Parties (Australia). Stagettes (Canada).
It has different names around the world. But one thing is for sure…sophisticated brides are very much “over” the cliche bachelorette parties. Today’s brides are henning it up a with a bit more extravagance. Just to name a few of my own friends’ experiences:
- The Bridesmaids’ week in Cancun, Mexico
- The flyaway weekend at the famed Canyon Ranch Spa
- Jazz Fest in New Orleans
- The four day bridesmaids’ trip to Epcot Center, Disneyworld
Now that SEO trends show an increasing number of brides are searching for boudoir pictures, it’s likely that bridal bachelorette parties may trend in that direction, too. Planning a Bachelorette Boudoir Session, or any group session for that matter, can be a challenge. If you delve deeper into the Psychology behind a Bachelorette Party, you can strategize very effectively.
(And, if you’re unfamiliar with the Bridal Bachelorette party altogether, refer to my previous post here.)
Put yourself in the “shoes” of the bridesmaid (not just the bride).
At times, I’ve been that carefree bridesmaid who’s up-for-anything. In other years, I was the begrudged, broke, or pregnant bridesmaid. So, I can say without bias, I can speak for both of these ladies.
Bridesmaid Psychology 101: A Bachelorette Boudoir Party is a microcosm of women which include:
1. The “bride enablers”:
Bridesmaids are usually in the business of wanting to please the bride in any way possible (emotionally, socially, financially). However, you need to realize that not all bridesmaids are created equal. They might agree to participate, but it does not mean they necessarily have the means. They may go along with the plan set forth, but you cannot expect a sale from every participant.
2. The Outliers:
Bridal parties are usually close friends of the bride and therefore generally share common interests, values and socioeconomic factors. But in every bridal party, there’s always at least one of these:
- Pregnant Cousin Mary (who feels huge and does NOT want to be in this wedding);
- Starving Artist Sue (the perpetually liberal, broke roommate from college)
- Antisocial Annie (who knew bride as a child but refuses to socialize with these new girls!)
- Defiant Debbie (“hell no you bitches are not telling ME what to do”).
3. The Maid of Honor aka “Master of Ceremonies”
The Maid of Honor is in charge of the Bride’s happiness, and is also your new friend. Chances are, she is a future client for you too. Give her special incentives and attention to make it memorable. Let her spread the word of mouth on your behalf, what a great experience you created for them, under her tutelage.
It’s your job as a salesperson to figure out who these girls are right away. Making them feel like stars that are shining in their own spotlight, will be helpful to your overall experience and sale.
I would highly recommend a detailed consultation by phone or in person with each woman in advance of the party. It helps you connect on a deeper level beforehand, so you know how to deliver something that will satisfy her needs.
Consider tailoring the mini-session/max variety approach to your sessions to flatter her individual needs. This may include:
- Turning “Cousin Mary’s” session into a maternity shoot instead of standard boudoir
- Appeal to “Starving Artist Sue’s” artistic side, maybe focusing on a single fine art execution you know she won’t be able to resist, rather than a whole session of images she knows she’ll never buy.
- Connect on a deeper level with Anti-social Annie. Bring your assistant or hostess along, to tag by Annie’s side all day. Keep Annie occupied and engaged since she might not feel as tight with the rest of the bridal party. (Remember it’s sometimes the quiet ones we have our wildest, sexiest shoots with!)
- Let Defiant Debbie feel like she’s designing the fate of her session a bit. Given this is the type of person who feels like she’s lost her voice and decision making among the group, you can empower her with some creativity and vision.
- Get a feel during your consultation of her ability to afford this. Then, offer payment plans to simplify and maximize sales when possible.
By being adaptive to different personality types, you are addressing and delivering to their individual needs. When you fill a consumer’s need you are a stronger salesperson.
Stay tuned as I discuss how to Maximize Sales Among Bachelorette Parties, in my third/final post in this series.
There is a strategy to please and sell to everyone…Let’s discuss! What other types of bridal party personalities have you encountered? How did you deal with them?