RSVP Tips: How to track your responses like the pros!
Many of you have started the process of selecting your wedding invitations. After taking the time to select your gorgeous invites, prepare yourself for the RSVP's! A few brides find this process a bit daunting; however, you can take a few steps to make the tracking process a smooth one. You can definitely handle this like a professional or with the assistance of a professional: Your stationer and/or your wedding planner!
Here are a few ground rules to remember before mailing your invites:
1. Create a spreadsheet or utilize an RSVP notebook and get an index card box to track your RSVP's. Get Married, The Perfect Wedding Guide & Brides.com also have great online tools to help with tracking.
2. For your spreadsheet or notebook: use the columns to categorize the invited guests, their date/spouse, child(ren), address, and meal choice.
3. The box is your 'back up file'. Divide your box into three sections: Just In, Yes and No and then store the cards alphabetically (by last name). The Just In section will contain RSVP's you receive that have not been recorded. Once recorded they will move into the Yes or No section.
4. Take all of your RSVP cards and lightly number each card (1 through however many number of RSVP cards you have). If you do not take anything away from my tips, remember this essential tip: number your cards. Why? Someone will forget to write their name on the card, someone else will write in hieroglyphics and you'll be able to easily track who has not returned their card.
5. As you start to address your cards, you will look at the number on the back of your RSVP card and assign that number to your invitees. Assign the number on your printed guest list as you actually stuff the envelope.
6. If you have a wedding web site, you may opt to allow RSVP's to come through the site. Remember to include the key information that you've listed on your RSVP cards. The great thing about RSVP's via your web site is you have a tool that will encourage promptness in the responses from your guests.
The RSVP's will start to trickle in. I know a few of our brides get excited and typically shoot a text or email that says "we got 3 today". Don't obsess on updating your spreadsheet daily. Instead have 2 designated days a week to do this. That way it is not overwhelming or tedious.
If you are spreadsheet savvy, you can set your spreadsheet up to tally up your yes's, no's and meal choices. That spreadsheet will be like gold as you start to take care of your seating and place cards.
Do not fear the word "NO"! The truth is we are all on a budget. There is no such thing as a budget-less wedding. With that said, do not fear telling Cousin George that you invited him, his wife and child...not the entire neighborhood! If you get an RSVP for more than you anticipated, you can put it to the side and make that phone call to politely explain that, "...unfortunately, we can only have so many guests, we would love for you and such and such to be there, however, we can only have the three of you." Also, if people are trying to RSVP days before the wedding day, it is OK to say NO, unfortunately it is too late to accommodate them. Why should you allow them to stress you out days before your special day. If they truly cared and wanted to be a part of your day, they would have been mindful of the RSVP deadline.
Until next time,
© 2005 - 2009 Joie de Vie Weddings & Events, Inc. - All Rights Reserved. All photos used with permission from Liga Photography. Thank you to Amy Morelli for the beautifully designed stationery above. Amy's work can be seen at http://www.2ucollection.com/.