How To Prevent Nigerian Wedding Vendors From Disappointing You
The purpose of this article is to provide insight on how to avoid potential disappointments with Nigerian wedding vendors on your wedding day and to offer strategies for minimizing these issues.
Disclaimer: The purpose of our articles is to solely provide educational information for potential clients, with the aim of helping them avoid similar mistakes at their own weddings. The intent is not to harm any vendor’s business or upset anyone, but rather to furnish informative information for couples.
My disappointment story
A makeup artist failed to appear for one of our events and informed me only a few hours prior to the wedding day.
I spent the night making phone calls and finally succeeded around the early hours of 3 or 4am.
The new makeup artist arrived just in time and saved the day.
Note: As a wedding planner, it is crucial to have a list of reliable vendors and to maintain good relationships with them. This is just one of the many benefits of hiring a planner for your wedding. It is also important to keep in mind that even the best planners may not always be able to turn around a disappointing situation.
In some cases, vendor disappointments can ruin a wedding day, depending on the specific circumstances.
For instance, if a caterer disappoints, a wedding planner may not be able to salvage the situation.
Related: Red flags to look out for when hiring a Nigerian wedding vendor
Wedding planning is inherently stressful, and every couple deserves to have a smooth and flawless wedding day.
However, for some couples, vendor disappointments can lead to a wedding day that falls short of their expectations.
Vendor disappointments can range in severity, from small details being overlooked to failing to show up at all.
The purpose of this article is to provide insight on the factors that may lead to vendor disappointments and offer strategies to help you mitigate these issues.
What You Need To Know About Nigerian Wedding Vendors
One of the many things we must realize before booking a wedding vendor is that, different vendors have different work ethics.
Some vendors are more professional than others, and it may be necessary to do additional research to understand their work patterns. For example, if a decorator’s portfolio features a lot of flowery decorations, it’s likely that using flowers is their signature style.
Planner’s TIP: Don’t assume that you’ll be able to get a vendor to deviate from their usual style or approach just because you really want to work with them.
Does Binding Contracts Help?
The Nigerian wedding industry lacks strict binding contracts to hold vendors accountable for their actions. Even with a contract in place, it does not guarantee that a vendor won’t disappoint their client.
However, having a signed contract can make some vendors more cautious and aware that there will be consequences for not fulfilling their obligations.
Can Nigerian Wedding Associations Help?
Unfortunately, there are no active organizations that address instances of unprofessional behavior by vendors.
Even when a vendor is called out on social media, the situation usually returns to normal within a few days.
This lack of accountability allows vendors to provide subpar services to their clients.
8 Reasons Why A Nigerian Wedding Vendor may Disappoint You On Your Big Day:
It’s natural to wonder why a vendor might disappoint you after you have paid for their services.
There are a variety of reasons why disappointments might occur, which I will outline below:
1. Social Media Deception
There is no denying that social media has greatly benefited vendors by increasing their visibility and helping clients find the right vendors for their events. Instagram, in particular, can be a useful tool for finding Nigerian wedding vendors.
However, it’s important to keep in mind that social media is not always an accurate representation of reality.
People and businesses often present a polished or idealized version of themselves online, which means that the images you see may not reflect what you will experience in real life.
Some wedding vendors use social media to present an overly polished or misleading representation of their services.
They may post professionally edited pictures or videos of services that they do not actually offer, leading clients to have false expectations of what they can expect.
When clients fall victim to these vendors and receive services that do not meet their expectations, they can end up feeling disappointed and frustrated.
2. Over- Booked
It’s possible for wedding vendors to receive multiple bookings on the same date and not have the staff or resources to properly handle all of the events.
In these situations, some events may receive less attention, leading to lapses in service. It’s important to hope for the best, but also to be prepared in case your event ends up being the one that suffers.
One way to prevent this issue is to ask your vendor if they have any other bookings on the same date as your event.
If they do, make sure they are confident in their ability to handle multiple jobs and consider signing a contract to this effect.
Note: Not all vendors will be honest about the number of bookings that they have on your wedding date. So ensure that you have a binding contract and also let them know that there would be consequences, if they fail to deliver on your expectations. This is just a way to hold them accountable.
Wedding TIP: As an additional measure, you can have a trusted friend or family member make inquiries about the same date with the vendor a few days or a week after you do. This can help you confirm whether the vendor is managing multiple bookings and if they will be able to handle them effectively.
If you are not satisfied with their assurances, you may want to consider finding a different vendor.
3. Not experienced in the field
For example, in Nigeria, it is not a requirement to receive formal training in order to become a wedding planner.
The perception is that if you can find and bring together vendors for a client, you are qualified to plan events.
However, we all know that event planning involves much more than simply coordinating vendors.
A planner who has never organized an event before is likely to make mistakes, not because they want to disappoint their client, but because they lack the necessary experience and knowledge.
4. Not Professional
Some Nigerian wedding vendors simply lack professionalism and have poor work ethics, which can lead to disappointments for clients.
These vendors may be rude or have a casual, nonchalant approach to their business, resulting in a lack of seriousness in their work.
5. Too Professional
There are some vendors who act as though they know better than the client and refuse to listen to or follow the client’s preferences.
I once encountered a decorator who insisted on doing things their way, rather than following the client’s vision for the event.
Without my knowledge (as the planner), the decorator had disregarded the mood board that had been created and provided to him and instead used one that he had come up with on his own.
The result was a decor that, while visually appealing, did not match the client’s desired aesthetic and was not at all what they had requested. It was a major disappointment for the client.
Additionally, the decorator’s decision to deviate from the agreed upon plan caused a domino effect and disrupted other elements of the event, such as the caterer’s table settings, which ended up conflicting with the altered color scheme.
6. Not listening to your planner
It’s important to note that your wedding planner wants nothing more than for your event to be a success.
However, some couples hire planners without fully utilizing their services, such as failing to communicate necessary details, booking vendors without consulting the planner, or ignoring warnings about certain vendors.
These actions can create challenges for the planner and may result in disappointment, if the vendors do not perform up to standards.
It’s important to remember that your planner is there to help and that their warnings are not personal attacks on your vendor choices, but rather an effort to help ensure the success of your event.
7. Client’s budget vs Client’s expectations
It’s important to remember that negotiating with vendors is not the same as haggling over prices at a grocery store.
Instead of trying to bring the price down to the absolute minimum, it’s usually more effective to ask for the lowest price the vendor is willing to offer and then try to negotiate a slightly lower rate.
Alternatively, you can simply let the vendor know your budget and see if they are willing to work within it.
Some vendors may be willing to accept lower prices in order to add another event to their portfolio, but this can lead to disappointment if the amount paid is insufficient to meet the client’s expectations.
You need to know where to draw the line. Having a wedding planner can be very effective in handling negotiation with vendors.
8. Murphy’s law
Murphy’s Law states that anything that can go wrong will go wrong.
This means that even with thorough planning, unforeseen events or disappointments can occur on your wedding day.
These could include things like unexpected traffic, emergencies, vendor staff issues, or even a car breakdown. It’s important to be prepared for the possibility of setbacks and to have contingency plans in place to minimize their impact.
Planner’s Advice: Since these are the things that we do not have control over, I normally advise my couples to try to enjoy their day regardless of whatever that may happen on the day, because you don’t get that day back.
How to avoid vendors disappointment
The simple ways I am about to list here does not guarantee a 100% that a vendor still won’t disappoint, but it will reduce the risk of getting disappointed by at least 60 to 70 percent by a Nigerian Wedding Vendor.
1. Hire the services of a seasoned wedding planner and listen to them
These professionals have experience working with a variety of vendors and are likely aware of those that may not meet your expectations.
After you’ve done your research and selected a reputable wedding planner, trust their expertise and judgement.
They can also recognize red flags to help you avoid potential disappointment from vendors by approximately 70 percent.
Related: Red flags to look out for when hiring a Nigerian wedding vendor
Note: Make sure the planner is genuinely concerned with your needs and preferences, rather than just focusing on using popular vendors in the industry.
2. Giving adequate details to the vendor prior to making enquiries about their services.
It is important to provide vendors with thorough information before hiring them, so that both parties have a clear understanding of the expectations and scope of work.
This helps vendors accurately charge for their services and ensures that they know exactly what is required of them. Wedding planners can also assist in conveying detailed instructions to vendors on behalf of the client.
For instance, if you as the bride express to the vendor that you desire a beautiful hall decoration, but do not provide any specific details, the vendor may not have adequately factored in the cost for creating your desired look.
A planner can help by breaking down the desired decor elements and communicating them to the vendor, avoiding potential disappointment from the vendor not charging enough for the job.
3. Draw up a contract and have the vendor sign it
While a contract cannot guarantee that vendors will fulfill their obligations, it can serve as a precautionary measure and help establish clear expectations from the start.
By putting the terms of the agreement in writing, it can provide a sense of accountability for the vendor to adhere to their end of the deal and reduce the likelihood of disappointment.
It is advisable to draft a contract for your vendors and have them sign it.
Related: Nigerian Wedding Contracts: Everything you should know
Ensure that the contract includes a comprehensive list of all the items the vendor will provide, as well as the agreed upon price and payment terms. Be sure to include the amount already deposited, the remaining balance, and spaces for the signatures of all parties involved.
4. Always remember that all that glitters is not gold on Social Media
Keep in mind that not all popular vendors on Instagram always deliver as expected. Before making a decision to hire a vendor based on their social media presence, be sure to do thorough research and due diligence to ensure they will meet your needs for your special occasion.
5. Make enquiries
It’s great that you are taking the time to research and reach out to others who may have had experience with the vendors you are considering.
Asking colleagues and others who have been tagged in the vendor’s social media posts can provide valuable insights and help you make an informed decision.
It’s also helpful that you are willing to share your own experiences with other friends that are planning to get married in the future.
I have also received similar calls from my colleagues in the wedding industry, asking about other vendors that I may have worked with before.
So it is completely fine to do same.
6. Don’t over-negotiate a service
If you negotiate with a decorator who initially quoted a price of 1 million Naira for their services and arrive at an agreed upon price of N300,000, be aware that you may not receive the same level of service and fulfillment of expectations as originally offered.
It’s possible that the vendor may not outright reject your offer, but they may cut corners and not meet all of your expectations in order to compensate for the lower price. Consider this before proceeding, to avoid disappointment on your wedding day.
7. Repeatedly go over all the details of deliverables with your vendors
If possible, consider visiting the vendor’s location to see the items they will be using for your event. This can help prevent disappointment as you can see the products firsthand.
Alternatively, using messaging platforms like WhatsApp or email can also be effective for discussing details with vendors, as long as the conversations can be documented.
Just be sure to review the details thoroughly to ensure clear communication and to convey that any form of disappointment will not be tolerated. Phone calls can sometimes lead to a vendor forgetting important details or misinterpretations of details. Either party can forget what was said at any point.
So I would advise that you go the writing route and subsequently put a phone call through to further explain what was said on the messaging platforms.
8. Pray and believe God for the best
If you believe in God, after all is said and done, pray and commit everything into God’s hand. Hope for the best and remember to enjoy your day.
What to do when a wedding vendor disappoints or don’t deliver on their promises
If a wedding vendor disappoints you or fails to deliver on their promises, there are a few steps you can take:
1. First, try to communicate with the vendor and see if the issue can be resolved. It may be a misunderstanding or a simple mistake that can be easily corrected.
Planner’s Note: Don’t be afraid to speak up. If you are unhappy with a vendor’s performance, don’t be afraid to address the issue and advocate for your needs.
2. If communication with the vendor does not resolve the issue, consider seeking mediation or legal action, depending on the severity of the situation and the terms of your contract.
3. In the event that the vendor fails to show up or deliver the agreed-upon services, you may need to find a replacement vendor on short notice. It’s a good idea to have a list of backup vendors in case of emergencies.
4. Consider sharing your experience with other couples who may be considering working with the same vendor. This can help prevent other couples from experiencing similar disappointments.
Sometimes, your wedding vendors do not mean to cause you disappointment. It is everyone’s responsibility to work together and do their part to prevent these disappointments from occurring. By effectively fulfilling our roles, we may be able to avoid some disappointments.
Thank you for reading our article. I hope you found the information provided to be helpful and that it gives you some strategies to minimize the risk of vendor disappointments on your wedding day.
If you have any additional questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to reach out HERE Best of luck with your wedding planning!
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X.O.X.O The Best Wedding Planner In Nigeria
Olamide~ The Heiress
La’ Heiress Weddings
You can also check out our Instagram page for more pictures on events we have planned: @laheiress
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