When I first googled around the internet before diving into officiating, I remember thinking, “Wow, officiants my age are basically nonexistent and the rest have websites from the 90s.” It’s been six years and really nothing has changed. I’m not trying to toot my own horn (toot toot!) but I have yet to see another officiant with a bright, bold, fun, colorful site like ours.
As much as I wish I could be in multiple places at once, I can’t, which means I can’t accept every wedding request we receive. So how on earth do you find a cool officiant that doesn’t have any preconceived notions about your wedding?
Well, here’s some real truthful knowledge about the wedding industry and real places you can find a cool officiant like me.
The Knot/Wedding Wire/Other Large Wedding Websites
Yes, I advertise on The Knot and WeddingWire in a few select cities. And yes, wedding vendors pay for positioning. It doesn’t matter how many reviews a vendor has, how long they’ve been in business, or how talented they are. If I pay the right amount, I’m listed higher than the rest. I once heard a complaint about how terrible these sites are because of that aspect, but why do I pay for it? Because it works. (Not in all cities, but a few of the smaller ones.)
So why should you look for an wedding officiant on The Knot or Wedding Wire if I’m only paying for visibility? Anyone willing to pay for advertising is a damn serious business. The Knot and WeddingWire aren’t cheap! You can be sure that someone paying to be there has their ish together, especially on the important elements like having insurance and backup.
This is also a great spot to read reviews about the vendor. While most of us have clauses in our contracts about not shit talking us on these sites, you can be sure that if a couple is freaking pissed, they’ll deal with a lawsuit and blast their real feelings on the web. Read the reviews, people!
This should be an obvious one, but ask your vendors who they’ve worked with. If they can’t remember any officiants, they’re clearly not paying attention to the ceremony, which is disappointing. Officiants are usually awkward, quiet souls who are either extremely annoying to meet at a wedding (from vendor to vendor) or hardly exist in the online world. If a wedding vendor remembers an officiant and talks highly about them, they’re exceptional.
I have a love/hate relationship with Facebook Groups. Too often you’ll read someone claiming how wonderful it is to have a friend officiate and why you shouldn’t pay for an officiant (even if their own wedding hasn’t happened yet…). While Uncle Joe may be a great speaker, maybe he wants to enjoy your wedding without the pressure of screwing it up. Or maybe you both don’t have the time to write a ceremony. Or maybe Uncle Joe isn’t 100% certain how to file the marriage license correctly.
Though, you can find referrals in online groups for decent officiants. Contact the referrals from the group if there are multiple comments about the person within the group. If a couple posts only their name without any comments, they’re probably a friend or family member starting their business or conducting one-off ceremonies. But if someone wrote about how fun they were or how fantastic their writing is, you can believe they’re the real deal!
Wedding blogs, personal blogs, blogs blogs blogs.
A professional officiant needs to write constantly in order to write a personal ceremony exceptionally. Do you adore a blog you follow and love their writing? Ask if they officiate! Have a favorite writer on Thought Catalog (ahem me) or another website? They might officiate, too! You’re hiring a writer, so search for places you know writers digitally hang out.
A lot of officiants aren’t on Instagram. Why? It’s difficult to figure out what on earth to share there. Young, cool and hip officiants will be on social media, and this is a fantastic way to see how they write content. You’ll know if they write their own content by their stories – if they include in-depth story captions on Instagram posts, they didn’t hire someone for their content. If they write Instagram posts that capture your attention, they’ll also write a ceremony that will, too.
I probably shouldn’t write this one, but whatever, I’m going to. As much as I like to lie about my age and say I’m older than I really am so people take me seriously, I’m young. Yes, when I’m not at a wedding, I like to go to a bar and be a normal late twenty-year-old. (I forget to be social!)
When I’m not secretive about my work (you try explaining this work over blaring Nicki Minaj music), I beam about weddings. Someone always knows someone getting married, so ask that cool person at the bar if they ever witnessed a wedding ceremony they absolutely loved.
Curious for more? Check out our other posts below for more ceremony and writing inspiration.
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