When it comes to marketing yourself, there’s no better time than on the job. There’s also no worse time to be slacking off and looking like you’re not working. This tip will kill two birds with one stone, giving a huge benefit to the couple and their guests, as well as bringing in great leads and spreading your name.
Receptions are a great time to really show your personality as a photographer. You can mingle with guests to make them comfortable with you as you photograph them. You can be engaged with what is going on in the wedding by reacting along with everyone to funny and touching moments. Most of all, you can show people the real you while you’re working, and not have it detract from your present job of capturing the moments of your couple’s wedding.
I’ve found that one of the best ways to maintain the attention of the wedding guests after the wedding day is to make sure they have something to go home with that they want to interact with. Obviously for us, that is the photos from the wedding day. The hard part is making sure the guests know where to go and not just relying on our couple’s Facebook wall to make sure they get there.
We give out “Table Cards” at our weddings to all of the guests so they have a physical copy of the website link for the gallery, as well as a small photo from the couple’s engagement session which may have likely not seen. At most weddings, we will print off 5 different photos for the table cards, and they’re almost like trading cards, people love them!
If you would like my Lightroom 5 Preset for an 8x12 sheet of table cards, you can get it here.
Select 1 - 5 photos from the engagement session and highlight them (you may want to select a few extra in case some of them don't work well with text going across the image)
Click on the “Print” tab in Lightroom 5
Select the 8x12 table card preset that suits your printing system (border or no-border depending on whether or not your printer adds a border automatically or needs bleed)
Edit the text watermark to include the correct URL and the proper positioning and color for the image
Select “Print to file” and choose a destination folder (If more than one image works well with the text watermark layout and color, then you can highlight each of them and they will all be saved with the watermark)
Upload your images to your print lab (I like to use PASS as they end up costing me $2 per 8x12 and shipping is spread over 4-5 weddings usually, making my entire purchase per wedding around $12)
I will often order the table cards all at once for each month or two of weddings so I can save on shipping costs and keep my system efficient. When you receive your prints, simply cut them using a good paper cutter and ensure your lines are straight. There’s nothing worse than crooked borders!!
WHAT TO PUT ON THE CARDS
We've been handing out these table cards since day one of our business, mostly because our wedding photographer did a similar thing at our wedding. Through trial and error we've found a few key things that are important to keep in mind when making these cards.
1. Readability is key. Strong lettering and contrast from the background is important. You need to be able to easily read the URL, because people with much worse eye-sight than yours will be looking at this in a dim room. Use as short of a URL as possible, and real words and names are always the most readable.
2. Make it all about the couple. Don't make this a business card. Don't try to get likes on your page and people to your website with this. Make it all about them and people will appreciate the gesture. You'll get people who assume this is sleazy marketing before they see it, and then they'll be impressed and grateful when they see that it's all about them and for them.
3. Have one call-to-action and very little instructional text if any. People can figure out how to get to the site and how to use it, and when you're giving it to the guests you get to have a 10 second interaction with each of them which is priceless when it comes to referrals.
4. If using a double sided layout, have just the image on one side, and the URL on the other side. These cards will likely cost you much more, but they do give off a high-cost appearance which may be more suited to your brand. www.moo.com is a great option for these.