First of all, a great big “THANK YOU” to my clients, past and present who participated in my brief survey last week. The survey is now closed and the results are in…

1. How important is calligraphy to you for your wedding or event? (on a scale of 1 to 5, 1 being essential) 95% = 2.0 *important*

2. Do you generally prefer handwritten calligraphy or computer fonts?  95% = handwritten calligraphy

3. What are the most important features / qualities you look for when choosing a calligrapher?  1) price; 2) service; 3) artistic talent; 4) location; 5-6) ink color variety and etiquette advice/ consultation

4. How has the current economic climate affected your event planning? 40% were not affected; 40% omitted services to save money; 20% chose a cheaper venue; 13% cut back the guest list.

5. What influences you the most when selecting a vendor?  52% = word of mouth / referrals; 23 % = online search and quality of website; 10% = portfolio / gallery or other; 5% event planner recommendation.

From what people are saying, calligraphy is important for the large majority and they also prefer to have it done by hand for their events rather than computer printed. However, price remains the number one deciding factor for them when choosing a calligrapher, with quality of customer service a close second (I was surprised to find out that artistic talent of prospective calligraphers only came in third!). While many of the respondents’ budgets were not affected by the economic downturn, 40% opted to omit certain services altogether in order to save. Finally, the majority of people are selecting their vendors through word of mouth and referrals.

Calligraphia by Melissa strategies are to improve the following:
1) continue completing all work by hand
2) maintain low, affordable prices (currently $1.75 / per envelope vs. an average of $2-10 per invite)
3) encourage YOU to continuously spread the word!