Hashtags for Wedding Vendors; What's the Etiquette?
July 27, 2022 11:55 AM   Subscribe

My kid is getting married and she just shared with me the cute card she's made that will have all the hashtags for her wedding vendors, so guests can tag them in the social media postings. Granted, I am a million years old and she can of course do whatever she wants, but is this a thing people do now? I understand the couple creating a hashtag, but sharing the vendor info?
posted by yes I said yes I will Yes to Grab Bag (20 answers total)
well, in my professional cake groups, cake creators do seem to expect that if you post a picture of your cake to social media, you tag the vendor, to the point where it's considered kind of dishonest not to (and I see the occasional miffed post from bakers whose brides didn't do it.) I guess providing a card goes the extra step of extending a helping advertising hand to all your vendors.
posted by fingersandtoes at 12:00 PM on July 27, 2022 [2 favorites]

Yes. Especially if the vendors are small businesses in your kid’s community, it’s a great way to give the business owners credit for their art or work and helps other potential clients see real-life examples of the vendor’s work. I see this most often for makeup artists, florists, photographers, cake-makers, etc. and would not expect to see it for something like David’s Bridal, for example.
posted by stellaluna at 12:02 PM on July 27, 2022 [13 favorites]

Hashtags or instagram names, yeah. I don't always see it but it isn't remotely weird, especially to the peers of the bride.
posted by DarlingBri at 12:02 PM on July 27, 2022 [2 favorites]

Yes, it's pretty normal, especially if they're supporting small businesses and want to give them a boost.
posted by Stacey at 12:04 PM on July 27, 2022 [2 favorites]

Best answer: I would find it normal for the client to tag them. I personally don’t think it should be a requirement. Since they are getting paid for their work.

But to expect guests to also tag vendors? Like, if they share a photo of their slice of cake at a wedding they have to remember to tag whoever made it?? That feels like putting work on your guests that you invited to a party. I would find that weird and probably just wouldn’t share photos. I thought the hashtags were so everyone can crowdsource the party photos to share and see each others too? Not to “market” the wedding.

Marketing is important, but so is the experience of the clients.

I’m a millennial that has done art as a business, and worked for years in the marketing field with a marketing degree, and spend a lot of time on social media. But I really would find this off putting. Can the wedding just be an event for the love of the couple and the joy of the party and not a social media marketing contract?
posted by Crystalinne at 12:10 PM on July 27, 2022 [33 favorites]

Best answer: I'm an elder millennial and would find this off-putting and tacky. I would like to enjoy the wedding, and I don't need to know who your florist, baker, and decorators are. If i like their work and want to know more, I'll ask the couple.
posted by Sparky Buttons at 12:16 PM on July 27, 2022 [15 favorites]

Best answer: But to expect guests to also tag vendors?

I see this as a distinction between "expect" and the more charitable interpretation of "make it easy in case they want to."
posted by primethyme at 12:18 PM on July 27, 2022 [31 favorites]

This is a courteous thing to do both for the vendor and for other couples looking for vendors. From the perspective of someone who has a lot of friends getting married this year, it has been a real pain for them to find vendors and have been greatly helped by things like this. I don’t think it’s a requirement of people to do so, but I also think you are probably just not the target audience.
posted by Bottlecap at 12:41 PM on July 27, 2022 [10 favorites]

Hi, just had a wedding in the spring and I’m a millennial. I’ll provide an alternative POV. My vendors all tagged themselves and colleagues in various wedding posts (the big part of this is crediting people, but also how Instagram works, that they can then repost the image/story). However, oftentimes they didn’t tag myself or my husband! I suppose I understand it, but it honestly came to a point where I felt like my wedding was a free ad shoot, rather than a wedding! (But on the other hand, often times if client images aren’t shared, people feel as if their wedding choices weren’t “good enough” to be shared, so it’s a double edged sword).

For any professional photos graphs that’s being shared, please do tag the photographer/give them the photo credit, but for anything else that a guest posts I wouldn’t expect a tag. Now, the couple tagging them is another story from what I’ve seen. Take the cards as what was stated above, a “make it easy” rather than an expectation.

And remember that in social circles weddings often come in waves, so those personal recommendations so mean something and generate new work for the vendors. Even among vendors they can generate new business as a photographer is often asked for a coordinator or caterer recommendation.
posted by raccoon409 at 12:44 PM on July 27, 2022 [3 favorites]

Well if your kid is doing it, people are doing it.

I just went to a Gen-Z wedding of someone who is a trendsetter in a particular industry and it was... the complete opposite - DIY, vintage second-hand shop wedding dress, simple venue, groom's mom made the cake, local vegan restaurant did party catering not wedding catering, everyone brought chairs, etc.

Everything was super personal but nothing was personalized. So I suspect the highly-social-networking every-detail-instagrammable hashtagged wedding is a trend that may be seeing its day (not that in certain groups big fancy wedding won't always be a thing) and will pass through the waves of time...just like the huge bow my 90s wedding dress had on my butt.

As for your child's wedding, enjoy it! It will be lovely.
posted by warriorqueen at 12:48 PM on July 27, 2022 [2 favorites]

Is this an explicit expectation? Or could it also be a hey these are the vendors we're using sort of thing. Like if I'm eating some bomb ass potatoes at an event and want to go get them for my own event at some future date, this way I can look at the card and see oh nice, they're from @PotatesBySara, instead of having to remember to go and ask the happy couple in a few weeks by the way who did your potatoes.
posted by phunniemee at 1:00 PM on July 27, 2022 [8 favorites]

I don't think it would be inappropriate for the happy couple to tag vendors in wedding social media posts, especially if they're a small business you wish well. I can't imagine expecting guests to do it.
posted by praemunire at 1:11 PM on July 27, 2022

I’m a middle of the pack millennial and I would think this is great if I saw it at a wedding. It seems like a perfectly normal thing to do and it’ll help vendors get the name of their small businesses out there.

I have a private instagram with a small friends-and-family-only following, but I’d still be happy to tag, say, a florist or a venue if I were posting photos from a friend’s wedding.

Does it put “work” on the guests? Well it takes maybe 1-3 seconds to add a tag to an Instagram photo if you already know the name of the account you want to tag. So this would add maybe 15 seconds of “work” to my post. To me that’s perfectly reasonable if it brings extra eyes to a local small business whose product I enjoyed.
posted by rodneyaug at 1:11 PM on July 27, 2022 [3 favorites]

If I were a wedding vendor I would give the couple a discount for tagging me, proportional to their reach. Maybe they have that kind of contract?
posted by spraypaint at 1:55 PM on July 27, 2022 [1 favorite]

How do you feel about not-actually-optional tipping and mandatory 5-star reviews? I would file this #vendors card in the same category. Covid concerns aside, this sounds like an extension of that - people supporting other people.
posted by aniola at 2:02 PM on July 27, 2022 [1 favorite]

This adds a bit too much expectation to the guest. If the guests don't tag, did they just forget, or did they not like the venue/cake/dress, etc.? Also, there's the risk that people are going to take the usual amateur pictures of relatives, friends, and the bride and groom and then freak out and tag them with a vendor name because they think they have to, adding a bunch of useless information to the hashtag. Also what happens if (God forbid) the service turns out not to be very good on the day?

A five star Google or Yelp review from after the fact or a personal recommendation--when asked for--would be more powerful, I think.
posted by kingdead at 2:35 PM on July 27, 2022 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Congrats to the happy couple! Since it seems as though the card I may still be in draft form, what about suggesting a clarification for the guests who might not be familiar with the reason for including the hashtags? (I am on the X/Millenial boundary line and had to read the comments before I even really understood what might be happening. Upside-down smiley face emoji.)

Something like, “Kid, I was a bit confused at first about the hashtags - for guests like me who might not understand why they’re included, maybe you could put in a little explainer, like, ‘We love and support our local businesses - if you post photos of the wedding to social media, you could help them, too, by including their hashtags below! #flowersbybadass #letthemeatcakes #djmatrimonium’.”

This might be especially pertinent if Kid is including the hashtags because they want to help out friends’ businesses, businesses that are struggling to to recover from COVID, etc. (As a guest, even though I probably wouldn’t use these hashtags, seeing them framed as a request to help support businesses for some personal reason would help them at least make sense, and not seem off-putting.)
posted by rrrrrrrrrt at 3:48 PM on July 27, 2022 [8 favorites]

I dont see it as an expectation for guests to tag the vendors in social posts. But people do like to tag instagrammable users/brands and people like to tag local/small business.

Also, if you, the guest, tag a vendor in a post, they might like/share/interact with your post, giving it a boost in the algorithm and helping you as well, so it's kind of a rising tide lifts all ships situation.
posted by never.was.and.never.will.be. at 5:30 PM on July 27, 2022 [1 favorite]

If I were the wedding couple, I would think it was etiquette to tag the vendors. If I was a guest, not at all, why? They weren’t provided with a service - they deserve to enjoy the wedding without the expectation to provide free marketing. It would be like tagging along to a coffee shop with a friend who ordered a coffee yet the coffee shop expects you to promote them as well.
posted by Jubey at 7:07 PM on July 27, 2022 [1 favorite]

I would say that the couple should tag the vendors, and that the card could be used to let guests know who the vendors are (which might be through providing their social media handles). I wouldn't put any pressure on guests to tag the vendors, though some people might do so if that's what they're into.
posted by kinddieserzeit at 5:55 AM on July 28, 2022

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