#126 Unique Venues, Unique Perspective: Mayflower Venue's Veronica Armstrong


February 6th, 2019

55 mins 16 secs

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Special Guest

About this Episode

Hey! We should get married in an apple orchard! Or a castle! I want a private garden for the ceremony and a rustic but elegant open barn for the reception. WHERE CAN WE GET THAT? Check out Mayflower Venues, y’all. They might just feature the perfect venue for you. Here’s teh blurb:
Mayflower Venue’s platform and proprietary event planning software enable nontraditional event
spaces (farms, family estates, orchards etc.) to market, book, coordinate and host custom weddings (or events) for couples who demand more unique and customizable venues.

Big Takeaways
So. It’s a site for venues. Unique, private estates for people to rent for their event day. But the MV platform is so much more than that - we wouldn’t just interview a guest about private venues, right? (Although a lot of listeners ask us about unique venues and how to find them…) We are learning about Mayflower Venues from their marketing director - the property listings are awesome, think AirBnB for wedding venues - but what’s even more awesome is the way that MV walks you through the process both to choose your venue AND to actually host a party there. Vendor recommendations, all pricing online, measurements and specs, rules, schematics, help with communicating logistics to vendors...it’s all a part of the Mayflower process. How cool it that??

We are posting a link below to a Mayflower Venues video - check it out, it’s a real couple sharing their MV experience. Super helpful to understand the site and the process.

It takes a lot of planning - like creative problem solving, you don’t know what you don’t know planning - the unsexy, but critical stuff - to plan a wedding at a venue that isn’t an exclusive event venue. There are a lot of things to think about - flooring, restrooms, parking, tenting, how to light it, do you need a generator? Insurance? Is there wifi? Mayflower Venues helps you with ALL of this as you plan your wedding at one of the venues they represent. They help you implement the vision so everyone on your wedding team is set up for success.

Another way Mayflower Venues is different is because it is a transparent process. They aren’t paying for leads, and they aren’t getting kickbacks when they recommend vendors to clients. They recommend vendors to clients because the vendors are AMAZING and familiar with the venue. There’s not incentive, and no pressure. No professionals are paying Mayflower Venues to refer them - which is huge. MV is doing quality control with their referrals.

Unique Wedding Space, Location, Properties...why are they awesome? Pick a venue that speaks to you as a couple. What are the things that are important to you...do you have a connection to a certain location? Maybe there is something that is reflective of your relationship in the venue itself. Then ask yourself how do you want to remember your wedding day? This is how you can prioritize what’s important to you and you can narrow down the venues. You want your wedding day to feel a certain way and you also need to consider logistics - for your guests, and for your own experience of the day.

Word to the wise - if you want a ‘barn wedding’ - there is a bigggggg spectrum. Maybe you want the view, but not the actual close ups of animals. There are many kinds of barns out there, and many on the MV site, just dig in a little and pick properties to view that have the ‘type’ of barn you want. You know what we mean.

We talk about the wedding venue industry in this episode - there are elements that you, as a person planning their own wedding, might not know about. Like ‘pay to play’ sites, commissions and kick backs. This is not all bad or negative, it’s how the world works in some ways. But we’re talking about it with Veronica because at Mayflower Venues, part of their mission is to be transparent between the properties they represent and the clients. The prices are listed, the amenities are in black and white. MV has properties and estates on their site that they have vetted and visited and KNOW. They don’t peddle venues that pay them to list them. It’s a totally different business model than most wedding listing sites. Important distinction!

Links we referenced

“Why are venues obscuring their prices? It makes no sense. Why are venues changing their price depending on who's sitting in front of them.” - Veronica on how the wedding industry needs transparency

“I hear about family estates. I hear about family farms. I don’t have a family estate! How do I get married on one?!” - Christy, speaking as a panicked bride searching for a perfect estate venue

“This is not a traditional venue-selling model. We represent a lot of different venues. The best way to find the perfect one for you is by giving you a lot of information upfront.” - Veronica, on Mayflower’s listings for each venue

“We’re not a replacement for planners, a lot of people work with planners with us. There’s no right or wrong way to do it. What we really do is ensure the success with this specific venue - whatever is super important to know about this specific location.” - Veronica

“I just want to plan a Wes Anderson type wedding at a private camp site. Can I do that, please?” - Michelle putting it out into the universe!

“The benefit here - of Mayflower Venues - is that NONE of these venues are paying to be on this website. They are on this site because they are unique, they are lovely, great, you’ve vetted them.” Michelle, basically, MV helps to manage the properties for events - but the property owner isn’t PAYING MV to represent them online. It’s about transparency, people!

“You want to make sure if someone is recommending a venue to you, it is because it is truly the best suited to you to execute your vision.” - Veronica. Truth!

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