Posts Tagged ‘preferred vendor’

Preferred Vendor Lists – This Planner’s Take on the Pros and Cons

The Preferred Vendor List

(c) fotonuova.com

(c) fotonuova.com

In it’s simplest form, a Preferred Vendor List is a compilation of vendors and their contact information. Naturally, one would assume that the vendors featured on the PVL appear to have the endorsement of the preparer, and are intended to help the recipient (client, consumer, etc.) select qualified and reputable vendors. But is there more here than meets the eye?

What You Need to Know
The reality is that the actual purpose or genuine validity of the list may not always be clear to the recipient. Generally speaking, the caterer or venue where your event will be held will likely provide a Preferred Vendor List or an Approved Vendor List. Or you may receive one directly from your wedding or event planner (we hope you are fortunate enough to have one!). It’s also common for other vendors – such as a photographer or DJ – to present a client with a list of their preferred vendors.

5 W’s of Preferred Vendor Lists

Who: It’s imperative to understand who is on the list and why. It’s always a good idea to ask “How do you select the vendors on your list?” or “What is the criteria for becoming a preferred vendor?” and “Do you have personal experience with each of these vendors?”

What: Is the PVL a select list of  tried and true vendors?  Or is it something else?  Try to assess the type of PVL.  Some vendor lists are “pay to be included”  (advertisers) while others are more akin to a list of “favorites”.   In my opinion, the first type is the best.  The second two list types have little if any value. Why? Because they are not based on specific criteria or qualifications. You can’t possibly know whether a vendor is on a list because they wrote a check, give or receive a referral fee, or have a cross referral agreement (I’ll scratch your back if you scratch mine).

When: “How recently has this list been updated?” The answer may surprise you!

Where: Where are the vendors located? Some lists are based proximity (such as nearby to the venue)… But how convenient is it for you to meet with them? You may prefer to hire someone who is based closer to where you reside.

Why: If you are able to qualify the list as a good resource, then it’s wise to give strong consideration to the vendors listed. Why? Consider this example: My company prepares a custom list for each of our clients based on budget, personality, style and positive past experiences. I feel that it’s extremely important to tailor my PVL to the client because no two clients have the same needs, personality or style.

PROS and CONS of Preferred Vendor Lists

PRO: Vendors on a PVL may offer you a discount; you should always ask “Do you offer special pricing or exclusive promotions to couples getting married at Such-and-such Hotel?”

PRO: Vendors on a PVL typically have better knowledge of a property. They won’t get lost, they know where to go once they arrive, they know who to speak with if they need something (instead of coming to you with their issue) and what is expected of them. Hence, you won’t find a flip-flop wearing DJ, chronically-late officiate, or a beer-guzzling photographer on a PVL.

CON: Vendors on a PVL may not be the best bet for you IF the person who created the list is not in tune with what today’s couple’s are looking for. (This problem is more common if you are not in a metropolitan area.)

CON: Sometimes venues and hotels are reluctant to work with vendors they don’t know (and with good reason). You may need approval from the venue in order to bring in ‘outside’ vendors.

PRO:  If the PVL is comprised of vendors who have built a relationship with the caterer, venue or planner, then you can rest assured that you are being referred to trusted professionals.

CON: If the PVL is comprised of paid advertisers, you certainly would want to know that up front, and that information should be disclosed to you.

Related post : Hello – I’d like to be added to your Approved Vendor List

A Flair for Affairs is a preferred planner and coordinator for many Central Florida wedding locations, including Mission Inn Resort and Club, Wydham Orlando Resort, Casa Feliz, Buena Vista Palace, Isleworth Country Club, Rosen Shingle Creek Resort and many others.

© 2009-2010 E. Delgardio All Rights Reserved

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06 2010
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