Wedding Conference

Calendar Icon

16 March 2023
09:00 - 16:30

Location Icon

Leicester City Football Club

Ticket Icon

Book your place

The Wedding Conference

This information-packed day is aimed at event venues and hotels that would like to maximise performance and profitability for the weddings they currently offer, or venues that are considering offering weddings for the first time.

It will suit those with roles in business development, event sales and marketing, event coordination or venue operations with minimal to advanced levels of wedding experience.



9:00 - Doors open for networking and morning coffee. 

10:00-10:05 (Main Room) - Welcome 

A brief introduction to the day. 

10:05-10:45  (Main Room) - The "Cookie Cutter" Wedding 

Speaker: Nikita Thorne 

To fully understand the opportunities and challenges around hosting weddings, we’ll set the scene by looking at the typical structure of a “cookie cutter” British wedding; what couples expect, language, venue logistics and operations, facilities required and your team. 

10:45-11:00  (Main Room) - Weddings in the Modern World.  

Speaker: Alison Hargreaves 

What's the opportunity? Using industry data, we’ll uncover the truth about the size of the market and tackle some myths and pre-conceptions. We’ll look at geographic variations, challenges and opportunities, the imminent changes to marriage laws, as well as the impact of the pandemic, Brexit and the recession. Working sensitively in the modern world, we’ll look at the importance of social pressures around inclusivity, diversity, sustainability, accessibility, and reputation. 


11:00- 11:25 Networking Break 


11:30 - 12:15  (Main Room) - Diverse and Inclusive Weddings 

Speakers: Nikita Thorne in conversation with Farima Perry  

This session helps you identify new opportunities and reach a larger and more diverse market.  Industry expert and luxury wedding planner and florist, Farima Perry, will share knowledge on the luxury market, LGBTQ+, South Asian and fusion weddings to address challenges around catering and ceremonies. Understand how small changes to your social media and digital marketing strategy can grow this opportunity. 


12:15 - 13:15 - Networking Lunch 


Session 1. 13:20-14:00 

Main Room - Increasing your Enquiries 

Speaker: Nikita Thorne  

Position yourself as a wedding venue in the digital sphere. Nikita will share her expertise in data-driven marketing strategy to help your venue provide the right information online and develop an effective social media, website, email and SEO campaign to drive enquiries that are the most likely to convert. 

Room 2 - Lawyering Up to Protect your Venue 

with Farima Perry 

Protecting your venue starts with ensuring you have the correct documentation and contracts in place for hosting different types of wedding ceremonies or receptions. This session will also cover working with suppliers 

Room 3 - Ask the Expert 

Emily-Jane (EJ) Gordon - expert in digital marketing, understanding your target market and enquiry conversion.  

Session 2. 14:10-14:50 

Main Room - Converting your Enquiries 

Speakers: Stacey Ferguson and Emily-Jane Gordon  

Stacey and EJ from The Venue Experts will share their expertise and knowledge on how to maximise your conversions and turbocharge your sales and marketing processes. From the initial enquiry to the point of booking, they will be highlighting the key steps of the journey and how to optimise these to achieve success. 

Room 2 - Marketing for the Future  

with Alison Hargreaves 

Wedding marketing guru Alison Hargreaves will help venues understand where to invest their time and budgets to attract couples in the future. This session covers effective traditional strategies including wedding fairs, open days and styled shoots, as well as emerging opportunities such as Podcasts, TikTok and influencer marketing. 

Room 3 - Ask the Expert 

Nikita Thorne - expert in digital marketing, traditional marketing, SEO strategy, marketing strategy, user experience.  


14:50 - 15:15 - Networking Break 


Session 3. 15:20-16:00 

Main Room - Enquiry to Booking: Through the Eyes of your Client 

Speaker: Nikita Thorne 

Get inside the minds of engaged couples and explore the enquiry and booking process from their perspective in our final session. As a 2023 bride-to-be, Nikita will lift the veil on your customers mindset and share her experience of the wedding venue booking process. She will help you identify and remove any obstacles that may be preventing couples from saying "I do" to your venue. 

Room 2 - Who are your Superstars? 

With James Matthews 

With a reputation for attracting, developing and retaining “superstars” in the venues he has managed, James is well placed to advise on organisational structures that will work for your venue, how to develop, motivate and retain a superstar team and how your venues’ wedding, corporate and leisure activities can work in harmony. 

Room 3 - Ask the Expert 

Alison Hargreaves - wedding venue marketing consultant and expert in wedding industry data, marketing and business growth strategy.  

16:00-16:20 (Main Room) Reaping the Rewards 

Moderator: Alison Hargreaves. Panel: James Matthews, Nikita Thorne, Stacey Ferguson. 

Top tips from industry experts to take back to your teams in order to make the most of your opportunity for recession-proof growth. 


16:30 - 17:00 Networking and Leicester City Venue Tour. 

Cost- £175 + VAT for mia members, £245 + VAT for non-members

Book your place

Meet the speakers