Virginia wedding

Tips on getting people to RSVP

In modern times, getting people to RSVP can be a challenge.  Here are some of the best tips to get people to RSVP.

PHASE I: SEND PRINT INVITATIONS

PREPAY FOR POSTAGE ON RSVP CARDS

In the modern world, people may have a mailbox, but they do not necessarily mail anything.  People do a great deal online.  So more and more people don’t have stamps around the house.  Cut out a trip to the post office, and a discouraging factor, by including postage on the RSVP card.

*Even though people are hailing the end of paper invitations and promoting e-vites …gross 😉 people are also embracing scrapbooks and buying special stationary, so don’t let the hype fool you.

INCLUDE THEIR NAME OR LINE NUMBER ON THE RSVP CARDS

Stay on top of who is RSVP’ing by including their name on the back of the RSVP cards or put the number of the line their name appears on your spreadsheet.  Many people will overlook addressing their envelop or putting their name on the card, so you may get a few RSVP’s without a clue as to who they came from.

MAIL OUT INVITATIONS ASAP

I saw the tip about setting the RSVP date two weeks earlier than needed, but thought the worse thing in the world is to give people too much time to respond. The longer people get, the longer they have to forget. So RSVP as soon as possible. ASAP invitations.

SET THE RSVP DUE DATE EARLY

Once you’ve mailed out invitations, make sure to get the replies as soon as possible. So set the RSVP due date maybe a couple of weeks after you expect everyone to get the cards, not a couple of weeks earlier than you need. One that passes, on to phase II.

PHASE II:  Engage Technology

SEND AN INVITATION VIA EMAIL OR TEXT SMS

We are all going to have people who are on their smartphones, just like we are going to have people who are not, so your wedding invitations will have to be delivered to two fronts: paper and electronic.

EMAIL INVITATIONS

Most of us are familiar with e-vites, and you may have your feelings about them. They can be so beautiful, but they can get lost in the junk mail people receive.  Also, it is hard to keep track of what email people use reliably. You probably don’t have the emails of everyone you want.

And while people are letting their personal email overload with offers, reminders, bills, newsletters, and receipts, they are more fastidious bout their texts.

TEXT / TEXT SMS INVITATIONS

Text invitations can be as cute and beautiful as emailed invitations. They also can be pricey, so if you are doing a full blown invitation presentation, you may have to do this instead of paper invites. They can cost as much.  BUT if you are just doing a follow up to the print invite, you can send people simple and snazzy SMS for free.  There are services that will let you send bulk for free to a point.

WEDDING INVITATION from “NAME” & “NAME” / RSVP by replying YES / WHEN: “DATE” WHERE: “ADDRESS”

FOLLOWING UP WITH A TEXT SMS

If you are just sending a follow-up:

“NAME” & “NAME” HOPE YOU WILL ATTEND THEIR WEDDING / DID YOU RECEIVE THE INVITE? RSVP by REPLYING YES / It would be lovely if you could come. Love, “NAME” & “NAME”

PHASE III: CALL

Once your RSVP date has come and gone, don’t assume people are ignoring you or your invitation.  It’s a hurly-burly busy world. And it is acceptable to pick-up the phone and call stragglers. You won’t believe the positive responses I have gotten when I’ve done this for events.

“OH! I’m so glad you called! I have so much going on I nearly forgot!”

“We moved. If you hadn’t called, we would have missed out!”

“I got locked out of my account. I lost my phone and didn’t have my password.”

“It’s been softball season and all the girls are on different teams. We kept meaning to RSVP.”

You may or may not be able to handle a three step plan to get people to RSVP, but if you mail out your invitations or email, strongly consider texting a follow-up and then finally calling. It is a sad state of affairs, but the truth is people will often respond quickly to a text but may go forever before checking their voicemail and then calling you back.

So…

  1. INVITE (paper perfect for some, email better for others)
  2. TEXT FOLLOWUP #RSVP
  3. CALL

Best to you and for your wedding!


Virginia Bride Magazine features the best Virginia weddings and Virginia bridal shows. Find it all in one place. Check our blog posts regularly for the latest show information.

The author: Dawn Van Ness

Dawn Dickson Van Ness grew up at the beach and has published her work in print and online. With a BA in English and a MS in Mass Communications, she has used writing and multimedia to promote artists, art shows, writers, small businesses, and other self-employed individuals by building websites and maintaining social media pages. She feels most fulfilled when she is helping others achieve their dreams, which includes writing self-help and steps-to-success articles for various websites. It seems a natural fit for this wife and mother of two to write features that help soon-to-be wed couples. For more about Dawn, go to www.dawnvanness.me.
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