Posted by admin | General Blog | Friday 31 December 2010 11:21

A lot has happened during the last year, we had a very stressful time before our departure from the U.K., getting everything packed, booking travel, visas, etc. and then more stress caused by family after a few months of being here. We’ re still not out of the woods as we try very hard to get our businesses up and running, but I would like to say…

“Thank You to our New Orleans & Mississippi Family,
Friends and Business Colleagues throughout the world and
Best Wishes for A Very Happy and Prosperous New Year to all.”

My 1st American Christmas….

Posted by admin | General Blog | Monday 20 December 2010 12:28

I would like to extend my good wishes for Christmas and New Year to all the wonderful people that I have met since I arrived in the USA in March of this year and also everyone working in the Wedding Industry worldwide.

I hope to make a lot more friends in the coming year and look forward to working closely with other wedding professionals here in America.

New Wedding Directory for New Orleans…

Posted by admin | General Blog | Friday 17 December 2010 09:34

After a few months of work I have finally launched my Wedding Suppliers New Orleans directory. Not only launched it but also added over a 100 new listings in the first week.

I’m hoping that this new website will be of great value to all those seeking to plan their weddings in New Orleans. Take a look and let me know what you think…

OMG… you’re joking? That’s really your website?

Posted by admin | General Blog | Saturday 11 December 2010 10:31

OMG…. I honestly did not realise that business owners could be so unprofessional in the way that they show their products or services to the world….

Wearing my other hat as a web designer, I have been putting together a Wedding Suppliers New Orleans directory and in searching the search engines for listings to include in the directory, I have discovered some really bad websites. I am talking about websites run by professional people who pay a few bucks, sign up with the one of the many ‘Build your own website’ companies and just waste their money.

A few years ago I was told that ‘Everybody wants to be a Webmaster’ and it is so true in today’s market. Business owners think that they can save money by putting together their company website on a ‘Site Builder‘ but how wrong they are. I was recently approached by someone, wanting to sell their product online, regarding a price for designing a website for their company. I gave our standard price and the business owner never came back but a few weeks later I was asked for a link exchange from this domain name. You can imagine my curiosity as I surfed to the site… and the laugh I had when I got there. The website the company had put up was worse than those that my 11 years old students tried to create when I was teaching. Photographs didn’t show, links didn’t work, it was a complete mess and I can’t see anyone buying from this website. I researched the page and found that the site had been built using a ‘site builder’ and not only that, the company was charging twice as much as I do per month for hosting and I do updates free of charge.

If you want to portray your company as a professional business to your prospective clients, start with your website. Remember that most people these days ‘Google it’ when researching services or products, so find a web designer who will work for the price you want to pay and get a professional website that doesn’t  look like everyone else’s.

Jacob & Rebecca Getting Married….

Posted by admin | General Blog | Monday 6 December 2010 11:13

Jacob, age 92, and Rebecca, age 89, are getting married and are all excited about their decision to get married.

They go for a stroll to discuss the wedding plans and on the way they pass a pharmacy. Jacob suggests they go in.

Jacob addresses the man behind the counter: “Are you the owner?”
The pharmacist answers, “Yes.”
Jacob: “We’re about to get married. Do you sell heart medication?”
Pharmacist: “Of course we do.”
Jacob: “How about medicine for circulation?”
Pharmacist: “All kinds ”
Jacob: “Medicine for rheumatism?”
Pharmacist: “Definitely.”
Jacob: “How about suppositories?”
Pharmacist: “You bet!”
Jacob: “Medicine for memory problems, arthritis, and Alzheimer’s?”
Pharmacist: “Yes, a large variety. The works..”
Jacob: “What about vitamins, sleeping pills, Geritol, antidotes for Parkinson’s disease?”
Pharmacist: “Absolutely..”
Jacob: “Everything for heartburn and indigestion?”
Pharmacist: “We sure do.”
Jacob: “You sell wheelchairs and walkers and canes?”
Pharmacist: “All speeds and sizes.”
Jacob: “Adult incontinance pants?”
Pharmacist: “Sure.”
Jacob: “Then we’d like to use this store for our wedding presents list..

Music for your Wedding Reception…

Posted by admin | General Blog | Monday 6 December 2010 10:29

I was recently asked by a Bride-to-be how to choose the music for her wedding reception.

I asked firstly, if she wanted to use a band or a DJ, as this would have a direct effect on the type of music provided. Most, but not all bands play music in certain style or genre, whilst any DJ worth his salt normally carries music from all types of genre and should be able to comfortably change the music to suit the occasion. If you are using a band, make sure that the band have worked at a wedding previously as weddings are very different from other functions and events.

An ideal balance can be achieved by hiring both a band and a DJ but you still have to choose the kind of music that will be played and what is appropriate.

Commonly, a lot of your guests will be older, so it is appropriate to play music that they will enjoy. Most guest will remember two things about your wedding and they are the food and the music, so getting it right is important.

Whilst the dinner is being served or guests are eating it is common to play quiet dinner music followed by music that is appropriate to your guests. At the start of the evening it should be played at a volume that allows your guests to speak to each other without shouting, as some of them will be meeting for the first since the last family gathering they attended. As the evening progresses, the music usually becomes more modern or contemporary as the older guests leave.

Whilst the music will probably be a range from the 60′s to the modern day, you may want to have a few traditional waltz’s, foxtrot’s, etc. or maybe a few 2-steps or some line dancing which are very common. If you don’t know or are not sure what sort of music your parents danced to in their earlier years, just ask them. You should be familiar with the type of music that your friends like and can make suggestions to your band/DJ.

An experienced band/DJ that have worked at weddings before will be able to provide music from a full range of rock/pop, funk/latin, R&B/reggae, etc., etc. After all they are the professionals, they should know. Talk to your band/DJ about choosing your wedding music before you book them and only choose them if they can play the type of music you want.

Last but not least, remember, most people will only dance to music that they know.

A little professionalism goes a long, long way…

Posted by admin | General Blog | Wednesday 1 December 2010 08:41

Take it or leave it, the way you run your business reflects immediately upon the amount of business you are likely to do. It’s simple, treat people the wrong way and they will not trade with you.

As a trained English Toastmaster, I try to run my business in a professional manner, with care and consideration for clients as well as my fellow professionals. For the most part just using good business etiquette and protocol seems to work.

I am therefore amazed at the amount of large businesses that think that they are beyond professionalism and treat smaller businesses, who often recommend clients to them, like something that the cat dragged in.

In a day where ‘spam’ is an everyday occurrence, I quite understand that companies probably get an inordinate amount of emails in a day and some do not get answered or end up on correct persons desktop. But when a follow up letter, sent by’ snail mail’, is not answered or even acknowledged, you have to think about the way the company is being managed.

Recently I sent an email, followed by a letter to a large company in New Orleans offering them a unique service that would only be made available to their company. I waited for 3 weeks for a reply but this company did not have the courtesy to reply to either my email or letter.

Had they use a little professionalism and replied, even if just to say ‘no’, I would not have been left waiting for a reply. Needless to say, I will not be sending any more offers to this company and neither will I be recommending them to any of my clients, as a little bit of professionalism goes a long way and this company showed none at all.

So all I ask is that you think about the other business when you don’t answer emails, letters or telephone calls… it could mean the loss of valuable leads.