Promotions

Category: Promotions

Introducing The New Adventure Hour Package Add-On!

Hey y’all! I am excited to announce a new offering we have called The Adventure Hour, a special add-on for clients who book the Savannah Elopement Experience.

Over the last year, we’ve encouraged our clients who want additional time with our photographers to book an extra hour with their photographer and to also book pedicabs with our partner, Royal Bike Taxi. Using pedicabs adds opportunities to get photos among more squares, options you can’t get by walking or driving. It is also creates a relaxed and fun vibe which is something we aim for with all of our offerings. Many of our couples have said that the pedicabs were one of their favorite parts of their entire experience!

Previously, we required couples to book their extra hour of photography and Royal Bike Taxi service separately, but now they can book them directly with us through the Adventure Hour add-on. You’ll see this as an option on your elopement order form for $495. As part of this add-on, we will take care of all the scheduling, confirmations, and vendor payments. Not only is this more convenient for our clients, it’s a reduced price compared to when they were booked separately

In case you are on the fence about whether the Adventure Hour is worth it, here are some photos of two couples who elected to add an extra hour of photography with pedicabs and the beautiful photos they were able to take in so many gorgeous locations.


Monica & Evan, October 2018

Monica & Evan were married at Forsyth Park in front of their friends and family and then went on a photography adventure across the downtown area with Royal Bike Taxi and Megan Jones of It’s Megan Jones Photography. Monica’s hair and makeup were done by the artists at Royal Hair & Makeup.


Cassandra & Armando, August 2018

Cassandra & Armando were married in Chatham Square and included their son in their ceremony. Transportation was provided by Royal Bike Taxi and their photos were taken by Ashly of Matthew & Ashly Fine Art + Films. Cassandra’s hair and makeup were by Shea Hollister and florals were by Kato Floral Designs

Weren’t all those photos all dreamy?!? We really do live and work in a beautiful city! We look forward to working with you on your wedding. You can fill out the form below if there are additional questions you’d like us to answer, too! 

Until next time, 

Tracy Brisson, Founder of Savannah Custom Weddings & Elopements 

 

 

 


I’m Hiring a New Scheduling Manager & Client Concierge Job Description

UPDATE: This position was filled as of November 5, 2018. Thanks to all who applied!

Hey y’all-

I am very sad to report that our current Scheduling Manager & Client Concierge, Shannon, is leaving us in a few months for Japan where her family will be stationed for the foreseeable future. We are devastated to be losing her from our team, but excited for her new adventure.

But that means we need to find a new Scheduling Manager & Client Concierge and we have big shoes to fill. Please help us with our search!

Job Overview 

The Savannah Custom Weddings & Elopements Scheduling Manager & Client Concierge is responsible for three categories of responsibilities for our business:

(1) qualifying leads who want to work with our business for their elopement or wedding and contact us via our online form, or by email or phone, and then following up and scheduling them, if appropriate,

(2) working with select clients to organize related vendor services (hair and makeup, flowers, restaurant reservations, etc.) for their wedding or elopement and helping the client book them, and

(3) managing our marketing assets, including photos and ceremony documents.

 

The Scheduling Manager & Client Concierge has intimate contact with our clients and his or her work is essential in helping our business maintain our 150+ 5 star rating online.

Responsibilities

Under the direction of the owner, this critical team member will …

Manage Our Officiant & Photographer Schedule for Client Booking

  • Answer leads, using templates and company knowledge, and qualify them for our services via our customer relationship management system, 17Hats
  • Review Google calendars of officiants and photographers to schedule services appropriately and message them as needed
  • Send booking forms to qualified leads
  • Follow-up on needed documents, like questionnaires and booking forms, from clients

Provide Client Concierge Services to Select Clients

  • Analyze client questionnaires and organize follow-up calls with clients around their requests
  • Contact appropriate vendors to obtain quotes or make reservations on behalf of clients
  • Maintain excellent relationships with all of our vendors
  • Monitor progress for each client’s project and conduct follow-ups with client or vendor as needed
  • Keep the business’s customer relationship management system up-to-date for every client

Manage our Marketing Assets

  • Review photo galleries of all of our elopements and weddings and select and organize photos to allow us to easily market our business across online platforms
  • Conduct a fine edit of select ceremony documents after they have been performed

Related tasks may be assigned.

Hours & Pay

The Scheduling Manager & Client Concierge will be an employee of the owner, not a contractor, and be paid $17 an hour. This employee works approximately 10-15 hours per week, with the busiest times in the spring and fall. Scheduling management work, including answering voicemails, must be done twice a day, in the morning and late afternoon/evening.

Additional Client Concierge work can be scheduled on a weekly basis, based on your schedule and the volume of clients, but all calls, texts and emails must be answered within 12 hours.

This is a remote position. If the final candidate is located in Savannah, there may be opportunities for in-person work at weddings, but not required or guaranteed.

We ask that the final candidate we choose commits to our business for at least one year.

Qualifications

Minimum:

  • Highly organized with excellent communication skills
  • Experience with using mobile applications for work
  • Experience in customer service
  • Experience working with difficult people and unique situations
  • Values promptness and establishing relationships with vendors
  • Owns a computer with access to high speed internet and a dedicated place to conduct work

Preferred:

  • Experience with self-employment or working for a small business
  • Familiarity with Savannah geography and tourism

Finally, our Scheduling Manager & Client Concierge must also believe in and share our company’s values about our work.

  1. We believe that modern marriage ceremonies, in both language and action, are the perfect way for couples to express their unique commitment to each other.
  2. ALL love is beautiful and there is no wrong way to be married.
  3. We fiercely defend the right of same-sex couples to marry in our state and country.
  4. Every wedding celebration, whether small and intimate, or grand and bold, deserves the same level of attention and love from their vendors.
  5. We provide solutions to every client’s question and focus on successful outcomes, positivity, organization, and responsiveness in our work. We never say “I don’t know.”
  6. We value the expertise of our internal partners and team members, and work with people who share our values in both thought and practice.
  7. We take great pride in showcasing diverse forms of love and championing the beauty of elopements and intimate weddings to audiences across the globe.
     

Application Process

Interested applicants should send a resume or link to a LinkedIn profile via email to tracy [at] savannahcustomweddings [dot] com and tell us why you want to be our Scheduling Manager & Client Concierge AND why you would be great at it. Interviews will take place on a rolling basis and we hope to hire someone by mid-October for training with our team. Only fully-qualified applicants will be interviewed. We recommend all applicants view our Facebook Live video with Shannon about her experience with the position. 

We look forward to your application!

Tracy Brisson, Founder of Savannah Custom Weddings & Elopements

Changes for 2019 for Savannah Custom Weddings & Elopements

Happy Friday!

 
If you caught my Facebook Live video a few weeks ago, you heard my announcement that I am making some adjustments to my business for 2019 and here is a quick recap. Beginning October 1, 2018, I will be focusing on the Ceremony + Photography packages that I organize and officiate, and taking limited Ceremony Only bookings over 50 guests for the foreseeable future. That means instead of being a wedding officiant who also offers elopement packages, I will be focusing on creating elopement and intimate wedding experiences that I also officiate. The difference may be nuanced, but is really important to me and how I run my business.
 
Since I began officiating, I have been proud of the fact that I have been a full-service officiant agency, meeting the needs of all couples who support modern love, but who may be having different types of celebrations. However, in 2018, a few things changed the officiating landscape for me, which is what is prompting me to make changes.
 
Photo by Matthew & Ashly Fine Art + Photos
Photo by Matthew & Ashly Fine Art + Photos
 
One, is that over the last four years, my Ceremony + Photography packages have grown in popularity and have outpaced the Ceremony Only celebrations I am asked to do. From a business perspective, that increase alone is a good reason to focus on these!
 
I believe these packages are more popular for a few reasons.  One, smaller weddings are on trend worldwide. A second is that as I have become more experienced and expanded my repertoire, my prices have increased to reflect my expertise and I have found that couples prefer less expensive officiating options in the Savannah market. Our local market also, in my opinion does not emphasize the importance of an authentic and meaningful, professional ceremony experience. Our local magazine, Southern Coastal Weddings, recently published an issue with a 20+ page planning feature. Of all the wedding components mentioned, from guest gifts to transportation, they NEVER mentioned the ceremony! That brand messaging about Savannah weddings makes it hard for me to reach couples planning larger events, as well makes it hard to be a profitable professional officiant.
 
Second, as I have expanded our Ceremony + Photography options, including the Intimate Destination Wedding package, I found that I love everything about small weddings that are ceremony focused. After many of these ceremonies, I find myself wanting to dance and yell to the rooftops about how much I love LOVE! I feel like I am championing a movement as much as I am offering a service and my gut tells me to listen to that and see where it takes me. 
 
Photo by It’s Megan Jones Photography
 
Third, and maybe most importantly, my larger Ceremony Only bookings mostly happen on Saturdays and as every weekend that I am gone passes, I find I miss my son, Alex, who is now two and goes to school during the week. Some Saturdays in 2018, I have been gone all day, hopping from ceremony to ceremony, and often miss bedtime when things run late at large events, which they often do.
 
Photo by Shannon Christopher Photography
It has been making my heart ache.
 
Alex is the most important thing in my life and while I want him to be proud of his mom and her accomplishments, the time I spend with him- and my husband, Josh- is even more important. Most of our Ceremony + Photography packages happen during the week while he is playing and learning at school and is a better fit for my family’s schedule.
 
Photo by Shannon Christopher Photography
 
While I am excited about these changes, they were not easy to make because I am an overachiever and like helping everyone. Tears were shed before I made up my mind as it is not in my nature to want to work less! But at the end of the day, I believe I am making the right decision.

 

So what does all this mean for our clients? Here is a summary. 

 
 
  • If you have a ceremony planned with under 50 guests and need a Ceremony Only officiant, nothing has changed with our Tracy’s Choice package.  

 

  • I’ll be working fewer Saturdays personally, but my partners– are ready to celebrate with you if I am not available on your date, just like now.
 
  • If you have a ceremony planned with over 50 guests, I am offering one package, the new Create Your Story package, to reflect the type of service I am best at offering, and I will only take 15 per year. My Partner Officiants will be handling all Choose Your Own Adventure ceremonies. They are a great team!
 
 
I married our team’s 1,200th couple a few weeks ago (August 2018) and I am looking forward to marrying the next 1,200 under our new plan. Thanks for being with me on this journey!
 
Tracy Brisson, Founder of Savannah Custom Weddings & Elopements

Ten Random Facts About Tracy, Your Savannah Wedding Officiant!

I recently updated my Meet Tracy page and as part of that project, had some copy that did not make the final cut, including some random facts and photos. The facts were fun to write so I decided to use the content for a blog post for those of you who would like to get to know more about my background before I became a professional wedding officiant and what I do in my spare time.

So without further ado … here are ten random facts about me!


1. I am a self-described high-achiever, just like Hermione Granger. My first career goal at 5 years old was to be a professional writer and I sold my first story to a national publication, ‘Teen Magazine, when I was a sophomore in high school. Luke Perry was on the cover and there was an insert for Beverly Hills 90210 perfume inside.

I am reminded every time I watch Riverdale how old I am.

Photo by The Empowerment Photographer

2. My first job after graduation from college was as a Teach for America corps member in the Washington Heights section of New York City. I am friends on Facebook with many of my students who are all now in their early 30s and living life to the fullest. I am proud to have even been a small part of their lives as I see them unfold in real time.

My experience as a teacher led me to two of my proudest professional achievements before I started this business- (1) helping to start the NYC Teaching Fellows program, which was the largest alternative teacher certification program in the country in the mid-2000’s, and (2) writing my book, Confessions of a Teacher Recruiter: How to Create an Extraordinary Resume and Hook Your Dream Job. 

3. I have a Master’s in Public Administration from New York University, with a focus on economics and finance. It may seem like a strange skillset to bring to weddings, but I’ve found that absorbing and analyzing information to create stories is my jam, whether that data is numbers, words, or photos for my website.

4. I listen to Spotify playlists while I write ceremonies.  My playlists include songs from The Vitamin String Quartet and Rockabye Baby, with a little Beastie Boys, New Edition, Janet Jackson and Tegan & Sara thrown in if I need an energy spike. I ask all my couples for a song to listen to while I write their ceremony and I’ve created a public playlist of all those songs on Spotify (10+ hours of music and counting!) .

5. I love Marvel comics and my hobby is to devour both vintage and new comics on the Marvel Unlimited app. I love Chris Claremont’s 1980s X-Men run, Dennis Hopeless’ and Javier Rodriguez’s take on Spider-Woman becoming a mom, and Brian Michale Bendis’ Alias (Jessica Jones). I wore my Captain Marvel jacket to lead Savannah’s Women’s March in 2017 and 2018 and CANNOT wait for that movie.

Photo by The Empowerment Photographer

6. My mom superpower is that I can make any lesson to my son sound like it is an original Daniel Tiger song. The secret is to channel your inner Tom Haverford.

7. When I am not working or mom’ing, I try to spend my time on civic activities that elevate other women in Savannah. I’ve run a number of women’s leadership groups and I am also a board member of a non-profit called Shelter from the Rain that provides mentoring and other support to low-income single moms in our community.

8. I grew up off the beaches of Cape Cod and will always prefer the Atlantic to the Pacific and the ocean to the mountains. When I lived in New York City, I rented a house every summer with friends on Fire Island, a secluded island off Long Island only accessible by ferry and we had a famous neighbor. Her name begins with a T, her book begins with a B and she has a TV show with a number in it. I found that celebrities REALLY are just like us. I love living close to Tybee Island and going around 5PM during the summer when you can see the dolphins swimming on by.

9. I love a good bourbon on the rocks, especially out on our deck in April or October. It is the quintessential Savannah experience.

Photo by Matthew & Ashly Fine Art + Films

10. Everyone ALWAYS wants to know my craziest wedding stories and two stand out. For the first, the bride was four hours late for her ceremony and was not bothered at all. It was my first wedding back from maternity leave and I almost took down my website and closed up shop when I got home!

The second involves a gentleman who showed up to his elopement with a marriage license, but without his bride, and told me that he didn’t think their wedding was important enough for her to ask for time off from work. I did eventually marry them- together- on another date … and less than two years later, he tried to schedule another elopement with me to marry someone else (I politely declined).

And I still love this job. The easygoing couples- and those that bring me challenges- make this experience the best. And yes, I plan to write a book all about it someday!

Photo by Matthew & Ashly Fine Art + Films

Thanks for reading! I can’t wait to learn more about you, too!

Tracy Brisson, Founder of Savannah Custom Weddings & Elopements

 

Hiring Savannah Wedding Officiant

I’m Hiring Partner Officiants for Fall 2017

 

Hey y’all! I am hiring three new partner wedding officiants for our team to start this fall. Partner wedding officiants officiate weddings when I am unavailable or double booked. Depending on the season, and their availability, partner officiants can marry 2-10 couples per month.

Hiring Savannah Wedding Officiant

I am looking for one officiant based in Savannah and two officiants based in Hilton Head and the St. Simon’s and Jekyll Island areas, respectively. Because we are so booked in Savannah and Tybee, we usually have to turn down all requests for those coastal areas and I would love to change that. 

Here is a brief overview of how the Partner Officiant process works.. Partner Officiants conduct wedding ceremonies written by me. Partner Officiants usually only communicate with their clients a few weeks before the wedding, those some clients may want a pre-hire consultation via Skype or FaceTime. 

If you would like to apply, please send an email and resume or link to your LinkedIn profile at tracy [at] oppsproject [dot] com. Qualified applicants only, please. 

 

Responsibilities:

  • Officiate pre-written wedding ceremonies and Signing Services as assigned
  • Provide high level of customer service to all clients with enthusiasm
  • Keep information about weddings and clients confidential
  • Dress appropriately for the occasion (generally cocktail or formal business wear for women, suit for men)
  • Be prompt for all events and arrive before the scheduled time
  • Respond to emails from clients and Slack notifications from our team members promptly.

Qualifications:

  • Significant experience with public speaking or performing
  • Experience working with difficult people and unique situations
  • Experience as an independent contractor who organizes his or her own work and has been responsible to customers
  • Ease with mobile technology and apps (our job is very mobile and we use a lot of technology)
  • Flexible schedule on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and weekends
  • Belief in the concept of a modern marriage
  • Belief that ALL people deserve to be married, regardless of their sexual orientation
  • Belief that weddings can be joyful and fun while recognizing the importance and responsibility of the event
  • Comfort with performing ceremonies that are both non-denominational and non-religious

Partner officiants must have reliable transportation to get to weddings.

Compensation:

  • Partner Officiants are contractors and paid a flat fee per gig or rehearsal. They will be issued a 1099 at the end of the year. Payment is monthly by invoice.

Hiring Process:

  •  If interested in becoming a Partner officiant, please send a resume and cover letter by September 1st to tracy [at] oppsproject [dot] com. Interviews will happen on a rolling basis. Finalists will be asked to conduct a mock wedding ceremony in front of the Fountain at Forsyth Park. If the opportunity arises, you can also watch me officiate a wedding after being interviewed. 

Please note:  I am looking to bring in a person that I can work with long-term and is a part of my organization, not someone I can simply refer weddings to when I am booked. If you are looking to market yourself as an independent wedding officiant in the future, or currently have a website or Facebook page marketing yourself as an officiant, this is not the position for you. 

I look forward to your referrals and applications!

Meet Buffy Nelson, Partner Officiant

Since 2016, Buffy Nelson has been working with me as one of my Partner Wedding Officiants when I am unavailable or double booked. Buffy was originally hired to just cover my summer 2016 maternity leave, but has become a beloved member of the Savannah Custom Weddings & Elopements team and our clients love her!

Savannah wedding officiant Buffy Nelson

Buffy brings rich experience to her job. She has lived in Savannah for 20 years and is a graduate of the Savannah College of Arts and Design. She was born in Dalton, GA and was lucky enough to fall in love with her best friend, Adam, and they have been together almost 25 years.

Here are some questions I asked Buffy and some pictures of her officiating ceremonies! Here is probably my favorite picture from all her ceremonies. 

Savannah wedding officiant Buffy Nelson

 

What made you want to officiate marriages?

I wish I had a definitive explanation, but I don’t. When I discovered you were looking for another wedding officiant, I knew I wanted to do it, and I knew I would be good at it. I have never been that confident about anything ever! LOL!

I really like being around happy people. It makes me happy!

What has surprised you the most about officiating?

How calm the couples are when they get married. How intimate the ceremony really becomes. We could be on the beach, in the park, one of the squares, people all around, and for those few minutes, it doesn’t matter. It’s just them. It’s so sweet.

Is this your only job?

Actually, I am also a licensed real estate agent with Seabolt Brokers, LLC.  This is not my only job, but this job can turn a bad day into a good one. On any given day, a couple gets married, I get to marry them and everyone is happy. Who wouldn’t want to do that?!?!?

Thanks for all you do for your couples, Buffy! 

Modern Elopement Photo Shoot at the Savannah Cozy Chapel

UPDATE FROM MAY 2020: I closed the Savannah Cozy Chapel permanently in May 2020 due to COVID-19 and the uncertainty this created in Savannah. I was deeply proud of my work there and this photo shoot so I have left it up. Someday, I hope to open a new space for couples who want intimacy and privacy.


Hey y’all!  I did a model call for a photo shoot at The Savannah Cozy Chapel to demonstrate what fun a couple can have in our space. Luckily, the amazing Renee & Vanadis volunteered, a week before they were actually married in front of their family and friends at the chapel! Renee & Vanadis met on Instagram and it not surprising that they attracted each other on that platform because they are so photogenic.

Here is a list of other vendors who participated in the shoot.


First up are some shots of the Savannah Cozy Chapel’s space.

Savannah Cozy Chapel at 2421 Waters AvenueExterior of the Savannah Cozy Chapel Flannery O'Connor Book Trail Stop at the Savannah Cozy ChapelLighted Wedding Arch in SavannahNon Religious Wedding Ceremony at the Savannah Wedding ChapelSand Ceremony Ritual at the Savannah Cozy ChapelUnity Candle Ritual Table at the Savannah Cozy ChapelSigns and bench for your Savannah elopement photographyEvery love story is beautiful but ours is my favoriteThe Cupcake Parlor in Savannah, GASavannah Cozy Chapel back wallHappily ever after starts herei want to love you every single day


And then here are Renee & Vanadis during their photo shoot, being romantic and playful all at the same time.

Savannah Cozy Chapel is located at 2421 Waters Avenue. We got married at the Savannah Cozy Chapel! Wrapped in flowers at the Savannah Cozy Chapel Love at the Savannah Cozy Chapel You're my favorite of all time sign Your love story is my favorite sign You're my favorite love story in the garden at the Savannah Cozy ChapelAll because 2 people fell in loveKiss at the Savannah Cozy Chapel Wedding Officiant at the Savannah Cozy ChapelRed & white wine unity ritual Sand ceremony ritual at the Savannah Cozy Chapel Asking if you vow to love forever Officiating a Savannah wedding after the first kiss at the savannah cozy chapelI love you quote at the Savannah Cozy ChapelLook of love at the Savannah Cozy Chapel Love pillows at the Savannah Cozy Chapel Happily ever after starts here for this Savannah couple first dance at the Savannah Cozy Chapel The modern Savannah Cozy ChapelPopping confetti at the Savannah Cozy Chapel Confetti in the air after a Savannah wedding

 

Thank you so much to Renee & Vanadis for participating and being great sports about all the poses I put them in. If you’d like to book your elopement or intimate wedding at the Savannah Cozy Chapel, you can learn more about it and contact us about your date.

 

‘Til next time!

Tracy Brisson, Founder of Savannah Custom Weddings & Elopements

Get married for free in Forsyth Park

Celebrate Georgia’s Historic Day for Same-Sex Marriage

As June 2015 closes, I’ve obsessively refreshed Twitter each Monday at 10AM to find out which Supreme Court decisions were released that day. Before their session closes on June 30th, we will receive a ruling on the case Obergefell vs. Hodges, which will determine if same-sex marriage will be legal in Georgia.

The Supreme Court usually only releases decisions on Mondays, but with 7 major cases left in the session, they’ll also be releasing decisions on June 25th and June 26th. My phone is fully charged and my thumbs are ready to track the updates!

Last fall, I wrote my first blog about marriage equality and this spring, I was able to take action on my belief that ALL love is beautiful. I spoke on a panel for Georgia Equality on the positive economic impact that same-sex marriage will have on Savannah, I married four beautiful LGBT couples in South Carolina, and I was even interviewed for NPR!

Tracy Brisson speaking about marriage equality at Georgia Equality's Savannah Town Hall.
Tracy Brisson speaking about marriage equality at Georgia Equality’s Savannah Town Hall.

(Photo courtesy of Kinzie Ferguson Photography.)

But more than anything, I am ready to stop tracking the legal debate and the nuances of the law and marry all the people who want to be married. In anticipation of a ruling that paves the way for LGBT couples to marry in Savannah, here’s what’s next.

  • To celebrate the historic decision, I’ll be marrying people for FREE in Forsyth Park for the first 48 hours after Chatham County issues its updated marriage license once the decision is issued (the Chatham County Probate Court has indicated they will expedite the process as much as in their control). My colleague, Megan Jones of It’s Megan Jones Photography, will be taking FREE photos, too! ALL couples with a valid marriage license, regardless of sexual orientation, are welcome. Call 912-226-4097 to book your appointment.

Get married for free in Forsyth Park

 

  • I am actively booking weddings for Fall 2015 and Spring 2016, if you are interested, please check out my packages and contact me.

All love is beautiful- let’s celebrate love’s win! 

Download our free guide, 5 Coaching Exercises for Writing Your Own Wedding Vows

Reminder: Download my Wedding Vow Writing Guide

Hey y’all!

Our FancyHands contest ended last week- congrats to the winners!  Hopefully I’ll run another contest, but remember that you can still download my FREE vow writing guide, 5 Coaching Exercises for Writing Your Own Wedding Vows.

Download our free guide, 5 Coaching Exercises for Writing Your Own Wedding Vows

Grab my guide using the form below and we’ll send it to your inbox and send you periodic updates on specials and wedding and elopement advice.





 

And if you have any questions about vow writing after using the guide, or want to tell me how it helped, please send me a note. I love hearing from brides and grooms who want to create an authentic ceremony, whether you decide to use me as an officiant or not.

Thanks!

Tracy Brisson, Founder of Savannah Custom Weddings & Elopements