Quick Update:: Response

We are so, so excited with the response to engage!08 so far!  In just a week and a half - the *buzz* is amazing!! 

So far, we have confirmed attendees coming from: NY, Miami, Grand Cayman, St. Kitts, the Bahamas, Seattle, Chicago, Maine, Arizona, LA, Savannah, Orlando, Nashville, Atlanta, Tampa and of course, all over Central Florida!!

Even more interesting is the range of industry professionals who will be there including Ritz-Carlton and other luxury hotel executives, high end wedding cake designers, "Get Married" television executives, a number of celebrity wedding planners, top wedding photojournalists and videojournalists whose work appears regularly in In-Style and Grace Ormond, award-winning catering companies, the Bahamas Ministry of Tourism and wedding publishing execs...to name just a few!!! 

It is far reaching and will make for an interesting mix of wedding 'insiders' all coming with a unique point-of-view but for the same reason:: furthering their knowledge of marketing to the wedding industry and taking their businesses to the next level!

Thank you to all who have embraced engage!08 so far -- we are thrilled that you will be joining us...look for more updates next week!


New Speaker Added: Harmony Walton, Editorial Director of Get Married TV & The Bridal Bar

One more amazing speaker has been added to the roster for engage!08: Harmony Walton; recently named editorial director of "Get Married" on Lifetime and the founder of The Bridal Bar in LA and San Diego!! 

I am so thrilled that Harmony has agreed to join us.  She brings the perspective of a unique and very *hot* business model in The Bridal Bar, a roster of [major!!!] celebrity wedding experience and a fully-integrated media presence with Get Married.  

Her popular blog was recently featured in USA Today as one of a very few elite wedding blogs hand-selected by the editorial team at Martha Stewart Living to be added to their new vertical ad network.

As if that was not enough, she is also on the editorial team at the gorgeous Your Wedding Day Magazine which has recently gone national.

So glad that you are joining us Harmony!!


A quick update on the response so far for engage!08.  Quite simply, we are overwhelmed with the interest from the industry!!  We are thrilled to already have attendees coming from New York, LA, Savannah, Grand Cayman, Maine, Miami, Nashville, St. Kitts, Atlanta, Seattle, Arizona and of course all over Central Florida! And that is in less than a week since our official announcement.

The other interesting point to note is that the type of wedding professionals planning to join us is quite varied and represents many different perspectives in the industry including:  a number of 5- star, 5-diamond luxury resorts and hotels, high-end wedding planning professionals, award-winning photojournalists, wedding cake designers, catering professionals, magazine publishers, television producers, sales + marketing executives and public relations professionals!

Not only do we have an all-star lineup of amazing speakers, but the attendees themselves are the tops in their fields and will bring wonderful insights, ideas and experiences to add to the dynamic.

Thank you to all who have embraced this 'engaging concept' - and told us that it is "exactly what you have been looking for..." and it "promises to be a really fun and enlightening day with the speakers you have lined up..." and "sign me up - this program looks fantastic!" to "Oh WOW!  How uber-fabulous!!!". Keep the notes and calls coming - we love to hear your feedback!!

A reminder, space is limited in order to maintain an intimate setting, so if you'd like to be a part of this industry first  - make sure to register soon!

Registering Update

Thank you to the many wedding industry professionals who have embraced the concept of engage!08 and signed up already!  So exciting - it is shaping up to be an amazing day!

A few quick updates to the registration process:

  • Of course, you can always call us at 407.566.2298 or email at engage@engagingconcepts.com with ANY questions or if you simply prefer to register that way.
  • You will then receive a confirmation email and under separate cover an invoice for $899.00 [per attendee] from PayPal.  Note: Be sure to check your spam box as sometimes PayPal invoices end up there.
  • You may pay using Visa, Mastercard, Amex or Check.  
  • Checks may be sent to: PO 470236, Celebration, FL 34747
  • Your payment confirms your participation.
  • If you are traveling in for the conference, you should reserve your hotel room as soon as possible as there are only a limited number of rooms in the block.  The special engage!08 room rate at the Celebration Hotel is $169.  Call 1-888-499-3800 to reserve.  More information on this 'delightfully charming' boutique hotel is available on their website www.celebrationhotel.com.
  • We will be sending you a brief questionnaire in the coming weeks to allow us to customize the program and content to your unique business - so be on the lookout!
Again, if you have any questions do not hesitate to contact us!!


It's Official!!! {Or, a Solution for the Square Pegs...}

Background on engage!08 {warning::long but worth it I promise!!!}:

After many, many years of dreaming, planning, researching and just plain talking [incessantly!] about this concept - we are finally doing it and taking the plunge! The official 'emma-powered' email blast has gone out and so there is no turning back -- engage!08 is here!

We are thrilled to finally make this happen. Why? Quite simply - in my 17+ years in the wedding industry there has never been anything like engage!. Never. And I have tried - with so
me better experiences than others - I have tried, mostly in vain, to attend wedding events and shows and conferences over the years to make them 'work' for me. But it always seems as if I am trying to put a square peg in a round hole!

Either the events are really focused for the consumer and I am there to try and network, learn about new trends and generally educate myself but in reality taking up valuable time and attention that should be spent on the real target - the bride. Or, they are related 'industry events' for catering or event or photography professionals with a [very] minor focus on marketing to the wedding industry as a whole. Some are targeted to the wedding professional but are too broad in scope and focus on the novice or mass-market professional. Or they are hospitality or travel sales and marketing conferences - and don't even get me started on those...weddings are truly the 'black sheep' of that group....sigh!

I have tried it all - and so have many, many other amazing and talented and successful wedding professionals looking to educate themselves on the tricky art of marketing, selling and servicing the wedding industry. I have met countless other luxury wedding professionals in all aspects of the business who are dying to learn more, meet more and do more with 'like colleagues' who are focused on the high-end weddings in this crazy, fun, "glamorous" field that we have all chosen.

One of the focuses of this first engage! event will be to help wedding professionals have their 'passion meet profit.' Because if there is one thing that this industry has no shortage of - it is PASSION! Passion at every level.
And the profit part - well I know that as creative professionals at our core - we could all use a bit of focus on that...*wink!*

I want to celebrate that passion and really help the best get even better! The power of collaborating, sharing ideas and partnering together is priceless.

I am honored and beyond thrilled that my long-time friends and industry legends, Preston Bailey and Marcy Blum have graciously agreed to come down to Celebration to be a part of this first engage! - words cannot even express how excited I am about that. The president of Preston Bailey Designs and one of the most brilliant minds in wedding marketing and brand building today, Sean Low, will also be on hand which is very cool.

Over the years, whenever we are together, we discuss our businesses and the industry as a whole endlessly. I always come away from these exchanges re-energized, motivated, inspired and renewed - thinking about things in a whole new way. I want to try and capture the essence of some of those conversations and share the insights from them with others.

Special guest speaker Simon T. Bailey - a former Disney colleague of mine and now international best selling author of "Release Your Brilliance" published by Harper-Collins - will lead an inspiring and motivating session guaranteed to examine your potential, insight, genius, innovation, and ideas – just waiting to be released. Truly transformational!

Susan Moynihan, editor-in-chief of "Destination Weddings & Honeymoons" magazine [and former Travel Editor of Modern Bride!] is on board bringing invaluable insight into the mind of today's destination wedding bride and also sharing some insider tips on getting the attention of editors in this overcrowded environment!

And 'new' cyber-friends who I personally am really excited about meeting in person, Liene Stevens of BlueOrchidDesigns and new blog TheSmartPlanner and Christine Boulton of ThinkLikeaBride.com will be joining us as well for what is sure to be a lively and highly informative panel discussion on leveraging new media and blogging to build your wedding business!

And of course - if you know me, read my Blog or have ever heard me speak...you are aware that I am NEVER at a loss for words regarding the business of the wedding industry. It has been my passion and my life for almost 18 years and I have SO MUCH to share - the hardest part for me is going to be decide what topics get covered and what concepts are included!! No easy feat for sure!

Wow - it is going to be an amazing, energizing and impactful day. And it will be special because it will be the first of its kind - so those of you who can take the [precious] time to join us will not be sorry.

Kathryn Arce [who is going to make this all happen!!!] and I invite you to call 407.566.2298 or email us at engage@engagingconcepts.com
with any and all questions. One of the best aspects of engage!08 is going to be how intimate it is - how up close and personal, how interactive and how customized the messages and topics are going to be for YOU - the participant. That being said - space is limited by design - so if you are thinking about signing up - don't delay!!

Looking forward to an 'engaging' day together and to the square peg FINALLY fitting in the square hole!!!


"Something to talk about..."

engage!08 will bring together the unique business perspectives of some of the brightest minds in weddings today: Preston Bailey, Marcy Blum, Susan Moynihan and Rebecca Grinnals. Each will share their unique perspectives on building a global wedding brand, the dramatically changing bride of today, maximizing your marketing and the challenges and rewards of the luxury wedding clientele...and so much more!

Up close, candid and as never seen before - this is an unprecedented opportunity to understand the secrets behind their success, key learnings along the way and how they have built their wedding businesses into ever-evolving and growing brands! They will take your questions and inspire you with their stories.

Prepare to Release Your Brilliance!

I am beyond thrilled to announce that the amazing Simon T. Bailey, author of best-selling book "Release Your Brilliance" will be joining this first engage!

Wow.  Simon is just an incredible speaker and travels the WORLD inspiring business leaders, entrepreneurs, CEO's, other motivational speakers, hotel sales and marketing professionals and so many others on how to release their personal and professional brilliance.  He and I have a long history and were colleagues at Disney for many years and it has been incredible to watch his phenomenal rise to success over the past few years!  It is an honor indeed that he will be sharing some of these profound insights with us at engage!08.

Participants will be getting a signed copy of his latest book, published by Harper-Collins and I promise - you will leave more brilliant than you came!!!

Read MUCH more about Simon at his website here.

Sign up for some advance inspiration - his weekly "Brilliant Carat" e-newsletter here.

Prepare to be inspired to live your most brilliant life!!


Blogging + New Media Discussion

This symposium just would not be complete without a dedicated session to the opportunities and challenges facing wedding professionals with new media.  I am delighted that wedding 'new media innovators' Liene Stevens of BlueOrchidDesigns and TheSmartPlanner blogs and Christine Boulton of 'must read' industry site ThinkLikeaBride.com have agreed to join us!

They will each be bringing unique perspectives and insights to the discussion which will enlighten and get everyone thinking about the latest and greatest ways to approach the dramatically evolving way in which our brides consume media, research and make decisions!!

An Overview

Introducing an unprecedented opportunity for luxury wedding industry professionals:


• engage your business

• engage your brand

• engage your clients

• engage yourself

What: A high impact wedding business symposium designed to take you and your company to the next level. An intimate networking opportunity to learn the secrets behind the stunning business successes of some of the wedding industry's most celebrated innovators.

Details: A rare and priceless opportunity to gain priceless business perspective and insights from world-renowned superstar wedding designer Preston Bailey, celebrity wedding planner and media darling Marcy Blum and leading wedding industry marketing expert Rebecca Grinnals.

Join some of the industry's best known experts for candid conversation on the business of building and growing your wedding brand. Highlights include:
  • Secrets to their success
  • Building a global wedding brand
  • Diversifying your business
  • Targeting [and managing!] the affluent bride and groom
  • Insights into the mindset of millennial matrimony
  • Blogging and leveraging new media for wedding business
  • Turning your passion into profit
  • 'Romancing' the destination bride
Real, honest, inspirational and interactive including an "Inside the {Wedding} Studio" style Q+A session with Preston and Marcy!


Special guest speaker Simon T. Bailey - internationally reknowned author of "Release Your Brilliancewill lead an inspiring and motivating session guaranteed to examine your potential, insight, genius, innovation, and ideas - just waiting to be released. Truly transformational!

"Destination Weddings & Honeymoons" Magazine editor-in-chief Susan Moynihan will talk about trends in the market as well as insider tips on what gets editor's attention.

A Blogging and New Media Panel discussion with Christine Boulton of ThinkLikeaBride.com and Liene Stevens of BlueOrchidDesigns & TheSmartPlanner.com

Who will attend: Professionals targeting the luxury wedding industry who are looking to maximize the return from their marketing/PR and sales efforts with a special focus on expanding destination weddings business and embracing new media.

Including: Wedding planning and design professionals, travel industry professionals and executives, destination wedding photojournalists, hotel sales & marketing executives, public relations professionals, catering and event executives, creative professionals, floral/design professionals, invitation designers, wedding internet entrepreneurs and anyone targeting the high-end, luxury bride.

When: Tuesday, June 3rd from 9am until 5:00pm

Where: The Celebration Hotel in Celebration, Florida [part of the Kessler Collection]

Fees: $899 per person for full-day symposium session including breakfast and lunch

*Space is limited by design and demand is high - so secure your position as soon as possible!

Travel: Limited number of special rate rooms offered at $169 plus tax and resort fee based on availability.

Visit: The engage!08 website for all the details and to reserve your spot. 

This unique networking opportunity is not to be missed!

Where:: Celebration, FL

We chose to host this first engage! symposium right here in our {very appropriately!} named hometown, Celebration Florida!

It is only fitting for many reasons that we kick-off this initiative here. The most obvious being it is home and where Engaging Concepts is based. Also, the 'delightfully charming' Celebration Hotel was our very first official client back in 2001! Plus, we wanted to share it with you. It is an intimate setting to host this first event - and that was really important to us.

You can read more about Celebration on the 'official site' and see the hotel here. A limited number of rooms have been reserved for engage!08 at the special rate of $169 plus tax and resort fee. Call 407-566-6000 to book and mention the engage!08 event for the special rate.

Introducing engage!08: a high impact wedding business symposium

Click on the image to view the entire email announcement on myemma.com!