Interview: Susan Tosounian of Especially For You Gives Us Her Insight Into Wedding Coordination
We reached out to Susan Tosounian, owner and Lead Wedding Director at Especially for You Event Consulting Services in Los Angeles. Susan talked to us about the challenges of day-of wedding coordination, the trends in weddings this year, and how Eventup helps her clients find the most unique venues.
Tell me a little about your business, Especially For You.
We’ve been in business for almost eight years and we're a referral-based company. We know our strength is execution, so our niche is day-of [wedding coordination]. We’re kind of like a free resource for our clients that book for day-of.
Do you plan other events besides weddings?
We just love weddings. If they book us early enough, they usually walk us through the engagement as well. We rely on quantity, we do 70+ weddings a year. Everyone gets a deal, we’re very competitively priced.
Tell me about your process with your clients.
We’re basically doing everything for them that’s left three weeks out. Our process starts about three weeks before the wedding and by that point we’re setting up loose ends with the vendors. A week before the wedding we’re familiarizing ourselves with the wedding party. We are the first vendor in and the last vendor out. There’s not one wedding we’ve had that there’s been a bad experience, which is basically how we’re a referral company.
What are the most common trends you see in wedding planning this year?
The whole Gatsby theme, Hollywood vintage, vintage glammed up. Signage is also very big this year, every couple is incorporating as much signage as possible to optimize their wedding. Another one is mirrors. Mirrors are huge this year.
What are some of the challenges you run into with wedding planning?
My number one problem is underperforming vendors. I am there basically for the day, I can’t make them pick the vendors or pick the best product for their budget. Whatever vendor they have not booked they use my vendors because they know they’re going to get the best vendor for their budget. Another problem is making sure everything is running on time. For certain religions, ceremonies have to start to the minute on time. Sometimes that ends up being my problem.
How has Eventup affected your business?
If [clients] are looking for a venue, Eventup is the one I refer. Anything that’s helping them, that’s our goal, that’s basically how it works for a service company and accommodating my client. We’re an industry where clients are trying to do something new, unique, and Eventup venues provide unique venues. That’s the number one way a client can set themselves apart from someone else that season. With the right venue, they don’t have to work as hard to make the venue nice. My clients are always looking for something new, something wow.
What are some pieces of advice or insights you can share with other event planners who may be hesitant to take on weddings?
I would have to say perfect your organization skills and be aggressive, otherwise you’ll drown in your own mess. Being aggressive is the only way to show people how much they need a wedding planner. It’s just too high of a risk to spend so much money to not have it go the way you want it to go.
Thank you Susan for sharing your insight with us! Click here to check out Especially For You. Do you have experience with day-of wedding coordinating? Leave a comment below or on Facebook or Twitter! Interested in the trends Susan mentioned? Check out our previous posts on a Gatsby-themed wedding!