Too many mobile devices?
5 Tips to keep your guests present for your wedding.
Although very popular, not everyone has a “hashtag” for their wedding, so it is perfectly acceptable if you prefer to minimize social media exposure and avoid potentially overzealous guests stepping in front of your photographer to get their “shot.” While you can’t expect your guest to leave their devices home, there are ways to tastefully request that they refrain from using them, particularly during the ceremony. Here are some tips for those who want their guests to be present.
1. It’s all how you say it
How you say something is often as important as actually saying it. You could just state “turn off your cellphones,” but that could potentially come across harsh. A clever sign can present your wishes in a more playful manner, and if you can’t think of something cute or clever, a quick internet image search should provide all the inspiration you’ll need.
2. Ask your officiant to announce it
Your officiant is a great way to start your reminder. They command authority, particularly for those guests who may have “accidentally missed” the signs. Another person who can command authority is one of your parents. Perhaps part of their welcoming remarks can be a humorous reference about how much was paid for the photographer, so “please let us get our money’s worth! “
3. Put it in writing…everywhere!
Add something to your ceremony program so your guests will know your wishes from the start. If you have a wedding website, put it there as well. Make sure any signs you make are concise, easy to read and clearly visible at the entrance to your ceremony and reception. If being device free is a critical point about your wedding day, you may even consider including something with the invitation.
4. Be clear about social media
Maybe you don’t mind guests taking their own pictures, but if you don’t want your wedding showing up on social media in real time, be specific about it. Let your guests know you prefer to see the work from your videographer or photographer first. Also, make sure to inform your DJ or emcee to periodically remind guests about your preference that people refrain from posting photos.
5. Give them a target window to remain device free.
Let’s face it, many people have a borderline addiction to their mobile device, so you can’t realistically expect them to go 5 or 6 hours without their phone. Rather than put them in a situation where they will eventually defy your wishes, specify a time like “after the first dance” or “after the toast” for people to begin taking photos.
Mobile devices have achieved omnipresence in most people’s lives, so it is unlikely that everyone will comply, but if you try some of the above tips, you should be able to significantly reduce the problem.
Photography by Allheart Photography (Chanel & Jon’s Wedding)