In today’s economy I get asked how things are going quite often. It feels as though I should not be doing well, as we here about companies going bust and people losing their jobs. The reality is that I am personally not doing bad at all. In fact if there was not so much media coverage then I may not necessarily know that we are in recession……….apart from one significant change.
When I speak with other businesses I hear people say that “people will always get married”. This is true, but have you heard any statistics lately.
It seems that you cannot get away from the media coverage about statistics, but how realistic or true are they?
Statistics in my opinion are one of the reasons why the economy is in the state it is in. I personally do not feel particularly affected when I hear that Burberry has had to lay of 350 people, or that Mini has laid off 850 casual weekend workers. However I begin to watch my spending when I hear that next Christmas is going to be a lot harder financially, and that by July there are to be 3 million people unemployed. It is not so much hard fact that causes concern for me, simply predictions that everything is going to be so much worse. If everybody listens to and feels the same then everything will get worse. People will stop spending so much so business lay off people, more people are unemployed and cannot spend and it becomes a vicious circle. Let me ask you this, if a news story went out today that there is to be a significant shortage in petrol tomorrow, will there be? I can guarantee that there will. This is because mass panic will occur, petrol forecourts will be inundated with motorists buying petrol to ensure they do not run short, and the petrol stations will sell out. People listen to the media and the media have a lot to do with consumer spending and the potential for the British economy to work its way out of a recession. Unfortunately the British media focus very much on the negative than the positive and little is ever reported about how some small businesses are booming and some companies are creating new positions to cope with an increase in demand.
In terms of wedding statistics however I regularly hear of the average wedding costs being so many tens of thousands of pounds. This figure varies greatly, depending on who you listen to, and personally I do not hold much credence with any of it. I also hear that the number of people getting married has increased because in these times people want security, but then I hear that this number has fallen due to the costs involved and young people not wanting to get married. Who do you believe?
What I can tell you is that people are still getting married but naturally they are a little cautious at the moment about how much they spend. The cost they are willing to pay for professional services is less than it was, and more people are concerned about money and are wanting to negotiate on price. Whereas I would receive bookings for weddings 6 months to 2 years in advance of a wedding date, I now regularly receive enquiries for weddings only 6 weeks away. Couples are waiting longer to book services to ensure their finances are in place, and that they have the finances to book the services they want. It is a significant change that I have seen, but is not stopping people getting married. I also personally believe the average cost of a wedding is not £27k, £22K or even £15k, all of which I have read recently. I believe it more to be around the £10k-£12k mark. I believe the figures are skewed by the small elite weddings that cost £100k+. Couples spend the money on the things they class as really important and save money on areas they do not consider to be so. Venue, bridal wear, florists, and photographers for a lot of people are considered to be of great importance to a wedding which is why we get booked up so far in advance.
Statistics in my opinion, should be taken with a pinch of salt. Unfortunately they have the ability to influence a lot of people but if you were to listen to everything you heard none of us would eat anything, but we would also eat everything.