Did you know – there are over 100 5 star rated hotels in london alone, and one soon to be 6 star (self appointed) hotel arriving in London come 2012
I have touched in a previous blog about what I feel is the main difference between any of the five star offerings on the market at this time, and why the level of offering that exists in the market place from both hotels and other more “interesting” venues dictates more than ever, the need for flexibility – as potential clients look to spread their savings even further, and get as much as they can for every penny spent.
It would be fair to say that the choosing of a venue, and possible retaining of an external events organiser would rate highly on the “to do” list for any new client (wedding especially), and with so much competition out there, I ask myslef daily – in the same way as every shop on the high street seems to be doing, should we discount our prices in order to attract the business?
I would say this, that without the element of flexibility, you will lose business. No question. However, there is also a worth to the product you sell, and to discount yourself at any point, then makes it extremely difficult to pull yourself out of the “bargain basement” bin in which you may well land. No one wants to be the £3.00 Blockbuster DVD in the HMV summer sale…..and to be fair, why should you be? Its a similar problem when you are approached for a favour from friends, or asked to donate something to a worthy cause – there are those times when you are happy to set the precedent that will follow, and other times that you become pushed in to a corner and from then onwards, you are using the adage of “on this occasion” as you try and create a buffer for one off “give aways”
I am always having other people’s proposals put in front of me, and being assured that “if I can match or even reduce the cost by 10%, the business will be mine”. Even if the proposal is comparative to the venue I represent, and even knowing that we will always to everything we can to be as competitive for our clients as possible, there is a line that will be drawn, as I will not compromise the service, presentation, reputation or overall value that I believe is represented (and has been earned) by holding your event with us.
I understand that a budget can only stretch so far, and in some ways I think it is a little sad, to hear clients tell me that they will blow their budget on a venue, and leave little left for other, possibly more important, aspects of the event, so that a Mayfair postcode can grace their invites. It also then creates a difficult scenario when it does come to finalizing other details, as something always has to give – and the overall feeling this creates can be very uncomfortable.
My over ridding advice is this (for starters and more experienced individuals alike). If you genuinely believe in yourself and the products you represent, then don’t sell yourself short. It may be harder at first to gain the wider client base that others may have, but you set your marker and work from there. Be creative, producing stunning events that let people be very clear about how right they were to believe in you. The saying is true – you will get what you pay for.