What it feels like to be a Hampshire Wedding Supplier Awards Finalist 2017by Liz Gatherer
5 months after my first wedding fair I decided to enter Wedition into the Hampshire Wedding Supplier Awards 2017, here is my account of the process.
Liz's diary of the awards process
Back at the end of August I entered Wedition into the Hampshire Wedding Supplier Awards, the categories entered were: Newcomer, Wedding Extra and Stationery. This was the first time I had entered an awards like this. I choose these awards because they supported local suppliers in my home county and it was not based on votes. I felt as a new company I wouldn’t stand much chance in a vote based competition! I had to answer a number of questions about Wedition, for example: How would I describe my product? How did I support other suppliers? What made me think of the idea? Where did I see Wedition in the future? I also had to leave reviews and contact details from two customers and two suppliers within the industry. I really enjoyed answering the questions, it certainly gave me something to think about when answering the question on the future! Where do I see Wedition? To be honest, everywhere! I have such big ideas! Wedition doesn’t just work for weddings but for Christmas parties, corporate events, Christenings, milestone birthdays and anniversaries, funerals. I could perhaps one day have my first Wedition venue, host Wedition wedding fairs, perhaps even my own awards ceremonies. But that’s the future, this blog post is about my recent experiences.
I thoughtfully answered all the questions, provided images, reviews and a video and then kept my fingers crossed. I was also given the opportunity to enter the People’s Choice Award, this was the only award based on votes. I didn’t plan to have a go at this, again I thought to myself, “how can such a new business get lots of votes?”. My husband pointed out to me that if everyone thought like this then I could win just with 10 votes so I dutifully set about emailing every single person I knew, posting Facebook posts, Instagram posts, LinkedIn, Twitter, actually the list goes on!
Lets fast forward a few weeks later, to 9th October. I received an email innocently titled “The Hampshire Wedding Supplier Awards”, I opened it, my heart skipped a beat as I read the words:
“I am delighted to let you know that Wedition are a finalist for The Hampshire Wedding Supplier Awards 2017 in the Wedding Extra category – congratulations!”
….and then, about half an hour later, a second email:
“I am delighted to let you know that Wedition are a finalist for The Hampshire Wedding Supplier Awards 2017 in the Stationery category – congratulations!”
I couldn’t believe it! I was leaping around and jumping for joy! My husband thought I had won the lottery, but actually, in a way, I had! Wedition’s first wedding fair was in March and in 7 months I had been nominated for 2 awards! But wait a minute…there’s more! The next day, Wedition was tagged in a Facebook post, I had only gone and made it into the final four for the People’s Choice Award! So exciting! By getting through to the final for this award it proved that I had good social media presence, in this digital age, that is very important for all businesses.
Awards ceremony time! My husband and I set off nice and early for Southampton as it was his Mum’s birthday, we met her for lunch and then had plenty of time to get ready for the awards. Colette from CJ Beauty & Co was up for two awards as well, she is a Wedition Star Supplier. Colette met us and the three of us walked in together. What a wonderful evening! We were greeted with prosecco and had chance to do a bit of networking before going in for our meal, we shared our table with CJ Beauty & Co, Balloonique, Exclusively Weddings and Party Dexx. It was such a laugh! Unfortunately Wedition did not win any of the categories that we were finalist for but I have since received the feedback from the judges, I must say, I have an overwhelming sense of pride in what I have achieved with Wedition over the past few months and I feel like a winner.
STATIONERY: The personal touch to this service/product is fabulous and the first time I've seen something like this used as a favour for guests on the wedding day, it must be a real conversation starter! I love the quality of images presented and I wish you all of the best in the future with your business – I think you'll go on to be really successful with such a unique product.
NEWCOMER: I love this concept, totally unique and I can see what a hit it would be at weddings! I appreciate that you are a very new business and as such you have little information to give me in terms of growth, financial data etc. You have most definitely scored top marks for USP, creativity and enthusiasm though! I look forward to seeing what the future brings for you.
WEDDING EXTRA: This product has a great USP. I haven't seen this offered anywhere else so congratulations, it's not often you see a unique product coming to the wedding market. Your images are clear and high quality so make an excellent addition to your entry. It's clear from the application that you are a newer business but I really hope you can grow and continue as I think it's a wonderful product and idea, that couples and guests can have as a keepsake.
Will I enter Wedition next year? Absolutely!