We have all seen the viral video of the bride texting down the aisle (well, at least now you have). Classy stuff! But it’s not all bad… really.
We are using social media and tech gadgets in all facets of our lives from guiding us on the road to planning our busy social calendars. Another way technology is helping make our lives a little bit easier: planning what might be the most important day of your life, your wedding day. We aren’t advocating having your phone in hand while walking down the aisle… but going online just makes the headache of wedding planning and coordinating a little more manageable (you can only work so many miracles!). Did you know 1 in 5 couples now use a mobile app to help plan for the big day? A lot more organized than having a Filofax stuffed with Post-its and vendor cards. Brides going viral even made our top 11 moments of 2011 list!
Let’s take a look at how social media is reinventing the wedding game as we enter 2012:
A whopping 65% of couples create a site to manage RSVPs, stream video and keep guests in the loop. That is just one of the staggering statistics about how modern brides are incorporating social media into their big day.
Including out of town guests
Probably one of the greatest things about technology is the ability to connect with loved ones who are long distance. Sometimes we have friends or relatives who are unable to attend the big day. Programs, such as Skype, are helping change that. Now you can Skype in bridesmaids to the ceremony or live stream the big day for those unable to attend. About 10,000 weddings have been broadcast live from the site — Ustreamtv.com — over the last 12 months.
How many of us liked the Royal Wedding Facebook page? Guilty! You don’t have to be Kate and William to create a Facebook Page for your wedding day. In fact, it is a lot easier than setting up a website. Odds are most of your guests are already on Facebook and Americans spend nearly 11 hours a month on the site so why not be where your guests are? There are tons of widgets and apps to allow for fun interaction on the page as well. They include a wedding day countdown, a map widget that displays the event venue’s locations, an RSVP widget, and we could go on and on. It can be the hub where you update guests on the planning, such as a cake tasting or posting a teaser picture of the centerpieces. They also make those who are unable attend feel part of the big day.
Nearly 1 in 5 couples go paperless for invitations or save-the-dates. Remember this awesome 90s rap music video invite? Going digital allows guests to easily add it to their online calendars. (I’d be lost without my Google Calendar!) You can add QR codes, which allow your guests to scan by phone and automatically be directed to your wedding page. Or you can also conduct the entire ceremony via your iPad with the sermon or the reading of the vows.
Interactive seating charts
Creating an online seating chart allows guests the opportunity to get to know each other before the big day. You can manage RSVPs, meal choices and hopefully prevent awkward conversations. There are many free sites to browse, such as Wedding Mapper.
Let your guests be the photographer
Your wedding photographer can only cover so much ground during the ceremony and reception. Let your guests get involved and share their own pictures. uSnap.us is a mobile app that your guests can download to view a slideshow of the event. They can submit their own pictures, which are then aggregated into one presentation for all your guests to enjoy.
Social media allows for brides and grooms to add personal touches to their ceremony in a way never thought possible. Embrace the opportunities but also remember to keep the phone tucked away while you enjoy your special moment down the aisle. We don’t want to see you on YouTube! Unless you’re these guys.