Yesterday, I had a chit-chat with a bride to be and got to understand a few challenges couples go through in planning weddings (shhhh! don’t tell the groom).
It was quite interesting to discover the inside story of how things are going without any strings. Hence, my question, What makes a great Nigerian Wedding?
Everyone wants to have a great wedding and in these times that Nigerians are facing some level of hardship, it appears that more people are getting married. I’ve attended a few weddings and fortunately, they were great Nigerian Weddings. Here’s why:
Everyone loves a great party and when preparing for one, it has always been the custom of the couple to just work on ensuring that everyone gets fed and satisfied, hope for a few gifts and some money, then go home. However, one major feature of a great wedding is the engagement of Planning Partners.
These are people called upon to provide services at the wedding. Rather than carry on just regular business, smart couples have chosen to build new business relationships with such service providers. That way, they gain the advantage at their wedding to get the services at giveaway or cheap prices. I have overheard some couples say,
Don’t worry, I would refer you to others. There are 3 of my friends getting married after me!
It’s great news when you walk up to your Boss and say, “Sir, I’m getting married!”. Every Nigerian celebrates that, including the Government and it’s often always a Yes answer you get when you are asking for that great time off.
However, bosses are usually the best sponsors. Some couples have great colleagues that would contribute money across their departments to give the belonging party, intending Bride or Groom.
Most weddings these days have taken advantage of work relationships to get funding. It’s been a great odd to choose your work place wisely for times like this because not every work place has this culture.
People often wonder why couples are able to manage this. I’ve heard a couple say,
Let’s just do it in Rivers State because that’s where we are from. No need for travels!
While it is often clear that most couples grew up and got jobs with organisations in major cities far from their home town, hosting weddings at remote areas have often helped.
Most couples host their traditional and white weddings in cities close to their home town to reduce cost of Hotel lodging, transportation, planning logistics and of course, the crowd. Having that most members of the large crowd would not be present, it would be cheaper to accomodate an audience at the reception. This however does not apply to large size families. For them, there is often no way to reduce the crowd.
Many smart couples however have been able to reduce large crowds by announcing their wedding plans on short notice. That way, most people are not ready to attend. As dissappointing as that might be, that has often been a savings strategy.
Short Term Schedules
In as much as most weddings are done in the same town, traditional and white weddings. In this current state of the nation where Nigerians are going through some hardship, here’s the major reason why most weddings are successful.
The schedule for the traditional and white weddings are in short range. The custom has always been that traditional weddings hold on Thursday or Friday while white weddings hold on Saturday, followed by a Sunday thanksgiving service.
However, most smart couples host their weddings during the week, like between Monday to Wednesday. It’s a sad case to find that most people (like me) don’t attend weddings held during the week due to work concerns (but you can’t be so sure, I might show up). That way, couples are able to save more on logistics.
Social Media Publicity Strategy
I have often heard the word, Photo-Trick! as a friend to my elder brother hosted his wedding quite small and threw great photos on social media pages. That way, he appeared to have a great wedding.
The key strategy here is that everyone believed that someone else attended the wedding. However, it may have not been so. Some people know how to conduct great weddings and I remember how my brother’s friend took charge by having a great time with a few of his friends (including my brother) at a restaurant (for the reception).
Lastly, it has become a rather new adventure – how couples take selfies at weddings. I attended a wedding where the bride took selfies at every table at the reception. This got her photos trending on social media. Every photo she uploaded had her friends tagged in it.
That way, she was on so many Facebook and Instagram walls. The couple is still trending on the walls of their great friends (including me). I guess, that’s an admirable publicity strategy.
How would you prefer to say the Vote of Thanks?
Of course no-one remembers that last stand innovation that holds at the reception. Most people have gone home at that time.
So it’s often good practice to send an SMS to those who were in attendance, just to thank them for their presence and participation in making the events a success.
….and hey, send custom SMS messages already, would you? Thank those who baked the cake, gave canopies, sponsored the venue, provided food etc. separately. Visit www.mobi2sms.com to get started with the sorting of these contacts before sending.
You’re going to need more friends after hosting a Great Nigerian Wedding.
Have a Happy Sunday!