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Ethical sales techniques to get that venue booking over the line

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Ethical sales techniques to get that venue booking over the line

Ethical sales techniques to get that venue booking over the line

Whether you’re a natural salesperson or find the process a little tricky, if you want to run a successful wedding venue you need to know how to get a booking over the line. Recently The Venue Expert’s CEO and founder Stacey, along with General Manager EJ, have been travelling to wedding venues around the country providing sales psychology training, and it’s clear it’s this final part of the sales journey that many teams seem to struggle with.

With decades of sales experience under their belts, this is something Stacey and EJ know inside out and that’s why they love sharing their experience and knowledge to help other wedding venue teams nail the sales process. If you find you’re getting the enquiries and the showround bookings, but not the final venue booking, we guarantee you and your wedding venue team would benefit massively from our sales psychology training. To help get you on the right track, here we share some of our tried and tested sales advice on navigating that final step.

You Got this sign for ethical sales techniques

Get over the sales ick

Hate the idea of pushy sales? Good, because that’s really not what this is about. We can’t stress enough how important it is to approach a wedding venue sale ethically. Build a genuine connection with the couple, get to know what their dream wedding looks like and help make that a reality.

Think of it this way – a couple visit, on average, 3 venues for in-person viewings. If you have a couple who have all the information and are qualified (meaning you have their date free, they can afford you and the capacity works, etc), the fact they are in your venue looking around means that the percentage of success in getting that booking over the line is pretty high.

wedding venue showround
Credit: Megan Wilson

Ask for the sale

Don’t shy away from getting the sale straight after the viewing, while the couple are with you. Ask for a provisional hold once they’ve looked around and you’ve answered all their questions. If you’re not doing this, think about what is stopping you?

Ethical sales techniques that work

There are lots of subtle – and ethical – sales techniques worth trying to get that booking confirmed. Consider the kind of language you’re using. For many couples this will be their first wedding and are often led by what ‘other couples’ do. For example, use phrases like “Couples would normally hold the date at this point, then check with their registrar about their availability” or “Lots of our past couples found it best to…” when it comes to securing the booking, post showround. Gently leverage psychological triggers such as limited availability or time sensitive offers, to create a sense of urgency too.

Also, without question, money talks! A quick tip if you are offering any discounts always use figures rather than percentage. Explaining to a couple they are saving £100 rather than 5% makes a difference. When it comes to discounting in general I do prefer the overall approach of not discounting but added value!

bride and groom holding hands in a field

What to do when you have a provisional booking

If you’ve got your couple to commit to a provisional booking with a 7-day hold, you’re halfway there. Make sure you reach out during those 7 days to check in and subtly apply pressure, but equally see if they need any assistance. By reinforcing you’re there to help them every step of the way and make their wedding planning stress free and fun, you can help get that booking confirmed.

Find a closing technique that works for you

The most successful technique to close a sale comes down to your personal style and the specific couple you’re dealing with. By this stage you’ve built up an authentic connection with the couple and know the sale is ethical, but you just need a way to help in the final stages of the booking.

  • Urgency close – This is about leaning on the time limit of the provisional booking. Simply say that the provisional hold is coming to an end and ask if the couple are ready to look at final prices, etc, or if you should open the date back up for other couples.
  • Reverse close – If you’re a natural problem solver, this one is for you. It’s also ideal with nervous or hesitant couples. Ask if they have any specific reason for not confirming the booking and then address any of their uncertainties to get the booking across the line.
  • Question close – Simple and straightforward, just ask if the couple would like you to get the paperwork sent over to finalise the booking. Direct questions that require a yes or no answer tend to get a response.
  • Assumptive close – Introducing Stacey’s favourite technique. Here you just assume you’ve already got the sale. Best used when you have a good connection with your couple and have built up a level of trust, just email at the end of the provisional hold to say you’ll get the booking paperwork sent over, asking when works best for them. Remember, this isn’t a pushy sales technique when you’re dealing with qualified couples.
Stacey standing in front of creativity takes courage sign for ethical sales techniques
Credit: Megan Wilson

When it’s just not happening

Sometimes, despite your best effects, your venue won’t be the right venue for your couple. This could be down to their changing circumstances or simply a change of mind. If you’ve worked through everything we’ve mention here and are still receiving no response, it may be time to move on – temporarily at least. Move the couple to a ‘Ghosted’ column and then try and reconnect in 3 months’ time to see if anything has changed.

Wedding venue sales techniques training

The psychology of sales and the ethics behind it is such a massive part of running a successful wedding venue. We’ve only just touched on some of the ways to get that booking over the line, but the sales journey starts from the initial point of contact. Whether you’re struggling with moving forward from the first enquiry or want to work on how to host the perfect viewing, The Venue Experts’ Sales Psychology training is a game-changer for businesses. If you’d like to find out more about the training we offer and how it can transform your venue, we’d love to hear from you. Click here to get in touch or email us at hello@thevenueexperts.co.uk Let’s do this!

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