Market Analysis Summary
Nearly $35 billion are spent every year on weddings and receptions. Therefore, professional wedding consultants are a commodity, not a calamity. TLC Wedding Consultants are full-service wedding consultants that offer a variety of services to our clients. We pride ourselves on being professional and courteous at all times and we have packages to suit everyone's needs.
As previously stated, marriage is a billion dollar industry, therefore, just about everyone we meet is a potential client. However, we mostly advertise to brides, grooms, and family members.
4.1 Market Segmentation
Although the flash and excitement of impending nuptials can be intoxicating, it can also be overwhelming. Therefore, we primarily market our services to the people who need them most--brides and grooms. In 1997, 2.4 million marriages took place in the United States. According to the Encarta Encyclopedia, the current US marriage rate of nine marriages per 1,000 people is still the highest rate among the industrialized countries. This marriage rate is expected to remain at the same level in the near future. In the Eugene, OR area where TLC Wedding Consultants plans to operate their business, over 1,500 marriages are registered each year, which creates a sizable market potential for this line of business.
Another customer segment is represented by the numerous family members and guests attending weddings, anniversaries, and similar events. This segment requires event preparation services like gift ideas, etiquette tips, etc.
Besides the wedding arrangements, which TLC Wedding Consultants believe to be their major client assignments, other events the company will provide services to include corporate retreats, etiquette training, etc. This customer segment is estimated to have the annual volume of 1,000 orders in the Eugene, OR area.
4.2 Target Market Segment Strategy
TLC Wedding Consultants will offer its services mostly to the brides and grooms, as well as to the family members. The company will position itself as an experienced provider of wedding planning services. Unlike most of its competitors, TLC will be offering a full range of services and thus provide the convenience of one-stop shopping for its clients. This will significantly reduce the customers' time and efforts preparing for such an important event as a wedding. Moreover, by utilizing numerous supplier contacts that the company owners have established and economies of scale, TLC Wedding Consultants will be able to pass on to its customers sizable cost savings.
4.2.1 Market Needs
The market needs for wedding planning services are strongly shaped by the customers' desire to have a perfectly planned and executed wedding ceremony. Although both major customer segments, brides and grooms and family members, plan and budget for the wedding ceremony as far as a year or more in advance, they often realize that they cannot make all the necessary preparations by themselves in a cost effective manner. Strongly affected by the established social values, such customers seek professional advice to ensure that all the important aspects of the wedding ceremony meet or exceed perceived expectations.
4.3 Service Business Analysis
The wedding services market is fragmented with the overwhelming majority of the incumbents offering only a limited line of services. There are numerous florists, hair stylists, and caterers to choose from. However, there are almost no companies that will provide the full range of services associated with the wedding planning and execution.
4.3.1 Competition and Buying Patterns
Competitive analysis conducted by the company owners has shown that there are 20 companies currently offering some sort of wedding planning services in the Eugene area. However, the majority of the incumbent competitors offer only a limited line of services like catering, flower arrangements or gifts. In fact, of these 25 competitors only three offered a range of services comparable with what TLC Wedding Consultants plan to offer to its customers. The following is the list of the major competitors with a brief description of their services:
- Rent-An-Action offers ceremony preparation, rehearsing and execution services.
- Cross & Reeves provide flower and catering arrangements and wedding consulting services.
- Lafayette Wedding offers its clients entertaining, catering, floral design and hair styling services.
The market research has also shown that customers anticipate the complete wedding consulting services to be expensive and they budget accordingly. In fact, lower prices are very often associated with poor service quality. By aggregating a complete range of wedding services under one roof, TLC Wedding Consultants will offer its customers the ease of one-stop shopping.