Company Philosophy and History :
Golden Rule : "Do unto others as you'd have done unto you".
The following are some of the fundamentals of www.BerkshireBride.com and Berkshire Wedding Associates :
- We promote, refer and represent Berkshire County businesses only!
- We network Berkshire County businesses with brides getting married in the Berkshires.
- Being a member of www.BerkshireBride.com and Berkshire Wedding Associates also allows for maximum interactive business exposure for our wedding professionals through events and workshops such as guided reception site tours, a flower and gift show, a hair and spa show, ballroom dance seminars and online contests! Plus, it's free to be a featured vendor!
- www.BerkshireBride.com and Berkshire Wedding Associates also offers its members a neutral conference space for members and brides! (for at home businesses)
- www.BerkshireBride.com and Berkshire Wedding Associates only represents respectable and qualified businesses! If a business were to perform a poor service or supply an inadequate product, it would reduce the credibility of what we do! Therefore, the vendor would not be invited to renew their membership.
- The advice we offer brides is FREE and impartial!
- ALL the functions, events, guided tours, seminars and workshops are FREE for the brides to participate!
The Big Idea...
Berkshire Wedding Associates was developed in 2002 after its owners, Diane & Jerrid Burdick, were married in Berkshire County. Because they were already in the wedding industry through their tuxedo business, Tux Express, they knew whom to trust for wedding professionals on their own wedding day. Soon after, the Burdicks realized how fortunate they were to have these valuable resources! Their wedding planning process was far easier than if they opened a phonebook and used the "shut your eyes and point" approach that a lot of other couples did! They wanted to ultimately bridge the brides with the businesses so that the brides could explore what was available to them and the businesses could continue to keep their employees working and generate a revenue that provided sustainability!
For the Businesses...
One of the requirements for a business to be referred by Berkshire Wedding Associates was the business had to be located in Berkshire County. The philosophy of "keeping the business in the Berkshires" was/is the most poignant fundamentals of the Berkshire Wedding Associates philosophy. Secondly, the business must be in good standing within the community and "do right" by all its customers. In other words, the business could not be one that had poor standards and was unethical when handling couples getting married (or anyone else using the service). Thirdly, Berkshire Wedding Associates wanted its members to feel they had made a sound investment and that they were being represented in the wedding industry equally and without hidden gimmicks or false advertising promises of bigger and better things to come if they spent their hard-earned money. The Burdicks themselves were tired of flushing money on newspaper inserts that only appear for one weekend but were very expensive to purchase.
Another standard philosophy of the company was that Berkshire Wedding Associates didn't want the businesses to feel as though they were being "taken for a ride" when it came to referring brides to them. Where others charge for "negotiations" between businesses and brides, Berkshire Wedding Associates wanted to offer businesses the opportunity to invest a small, nominal fee for one year to be a part of a group that represents their voices in the Berkshires in a way that no other advertising medium had ever done for them before. All bridal leads given to the businesses, whether 100 or 300, would be given to the businesses at no additional investment. Also, because the Burdicks owned Tux Express, they knew the necessary need for proper representation in the advertising world. As a fellow "Mom and Pop shop", the Burdicks also knew how expensive it was to have a "voice" in a community of expensive advertising options that eat up a small business's profit!
For the Couples Getting Married...
The Burdicks wanted the couples getting married in the Berkshires to be able to use the Berkshire Wedding Associates resources for FREE! Thousands of dollars are invested in weddings yearly- advice shouldn't have to cost any money! Berkshire Wedding Associates also wanted couples to enjoy their wedding planning experience without a lot of headaches or worries! For the longest time, couples were feeling overwhelmed in a sea of choices between cake places, deejays, photographers and the like! It was hard for them to make a decision because they didn't have the tools to choose the right businesses. Because of that, the Burdicks wanted the couples to feel that they had a sounding board to ask questions and express concerns regarding their wedding planning and realize that it could be fun again to plan a wedding.
More importantly, Berkshire Wedding Associates wanted to offer brides "peace of mind" when planning their weddings. They didn't want the brides to be weary about using a service of someone. After all, a wedding is one of the largest events in a couple's life together. Most of the wedding planning comes from the recommendations of friends, family and other events the brides may have gone to. Although family and friend support is valued, it's hard for them to professionally assess the quality of one's performance as a business. The Burdicks wanted the brides to feel they could pick up the phone and call Berkshire Wedding Associates and know that whatever service they were inquiring about, the business recommended would be a reputable, qualified wedding professional.
The company philosophies quickly caught on among the various Berkshire County-based wedding professionals. They realized that they could have a "voice" in the wedding industry and it didn't have to cost a lot of money to get their name out there. The brides were ecstatic that they had somewhere to go that wouldn't charge them hourly for advice and were able to get all their wedding-related questions answered in just one visit.
As the demand of businesses joining Berkshire Wedding Associates continued to grow, Diane and Jerrid Burdick realized that it was time to expand the nature of what they had grown so passionately about through the conceptual phases.
In 2004, www.BerkshireBride.com was launched as an offspring of Berkshire Wedding Associates offering brides the opportunity to log on and see all the vendors who were represented by Berkshire Wedding Associates but in an online fashion. Quickly,www.BerkshireBride.com grew to be a valued resource among brides. For brides who lived outside of the county, they didn't have to wait for an appointment at Berkshire Wedding Associates to get advice. All brides could register on www.BerkshireBride.com, sign up to win free wedding-related merchandise and read the useful articles, tips and advice pages to help the process of their wedding planning go more smoothly.
In addition, through the launch of www.BerkshireBride.com , Berkshire Wedding Associates members started having greater success getting their names out there to the brides. Their "voice" in the industry was being heard and they welcomed the business! However, the Burdicks weren't done bridging the brides with the businesses and they wanted to offer more!
At the Berkshire Wedding Expo in January 2008, www.BerkshireBride.com started launching various seminar signups, reception site tours and other events where the brides could register and attend for free during the winter and spring months! The concept of bringing brides to the establishments hadn't ever been thought of and the response was huge! Businesses were catering lunches, hosting champagne and wedding cake receptions, afternoon teas and the like! After a few events, the businesses started realizing that if they networked together as members, they'd have greater success! Florists started furnishing centerpieces for seminars, cake artists were donating sheet cakes for the brides to try, photographers came to document the events and more!
Another positive result of hosting the workshops, seminars and tours was that the businesses started independently networking together aside from thewww.BerkshireBride.com sponsored events creating ideas and promotions to execute within their own businesses! The sense of community among the Berkshire Wedding Associates members that emerged was/is one of the most rewarding results of the creation of Berkshire Wedding Associates.
Continuing to Grow...
To date, www.BerkshireBride.com / Berkshire Wedding Associates is the largest and most reputable wedding referral firm in Berkshire County. It represents OVER 100 Berkshire County based wedding-related professionals! It also sponsors and hosts the Berkshire Wedding Expo held in early January, a hair and spa show, various reception site tours, ballroom dance seminars, pampering sessions, online contests and much more!!
The Burdicks attribute the success of www.BerkshireBride.com to all its well-respected Berkshire Wedding Associates members. In addition, the value that one gets from using the www.BerkshireBride.com (whether a wedding professional or a bride) is immeasurable because of the useful resources that are available on it!
The company philosophies of Berkshire Wedding Associates are still upheld with the Golden Rule ("Do unto others as you'd have them do unto you") being the forefront of every new idea and marketing strategy. The Burdicks continue to develop functions and events to create business for its investors while maintaining the principles of affordable advertising and the concept of sustainability for each wedding-related professional. The brides are offered an opportunity to get "wedding educated" and know that they can plan their own weddings (and have fun!) without spending a dime for the advice that should be free!