How to Use Social Media at Your Wedding

Gather tips on encouraging your guests to use social media throughout your celebration.

With the prevalent use of cell phones and social media at special events, it's important to set some ground rules for your nuptials and share them with your guests.

Photo: Brett Hickman Photographers

Social media is such an integral part of everyday life, and for many, this means including it as a fundamental part of the wedding day. Even if you and your future spouse want your loved ones to take photos and share them on social media sites throughout your celebration, there is a fine line between your friends sharing images and having your professional photos ruined with iPhones shooting out of the crowd to take the perfect Snapchat or Instagram post. With the prevalent use of cell phones and social media at special events, it's important to set some ground rules for your nuptials and share them with your guests.

Here are some ways to use social media to your best advantage:

Create a Wedding Hashtag 
Come up with a clever hashtag to use for all your wedding festivities. From the engagement photos, to the bachelorette party, and of course the big day, a personal hashtag will help everyone share in the fun. Create a cute sign displaying your hashtag to put up at your ceremony and reception so guests can easily tag their photos. Then, enjoy looking at everyone’s selfies and pictures from your wedding since your photographer won't be sending you photos for 6-8 weeks after.

Make a Personal Snapchat Filter 
Making a personalized snapchat filter is a great way to add to the excitement, engage your guests, and promote your wedding hashtag. It will also add a unique element to your guest’s social media and encourage them to post more with the added surprise element.

Politely Tell Guests Your Expectations 
While some couples want to have their wedding documented on social media by all their guests, others would rather wait for the professional photos to come out – especially for certain aspects of the day like the ceremony. Communication with your bridal party and guests is the easy solution! Make sure you let everyone know your expectations from the beginning – if you don’t want any photos posted of you and the girls getting ready, just ask. If you want the whole pre-wedding morning on Snapchat, encourage your friends to do so. Remember it is your day; ask for what you want!

Ask Guests to Put Away Their Phones During the Ceremony 
If you don’t want to risk a phone ringing in the middle of your vows, or have the perfect photo of the moment you say “I do” ruined by someone wishing to capture it on their smart phone, politely ask that phones be put away during the ceremony. This can be done by placing a sign near the ceremony entrance at the guest book table, or by having the officiant mention it before the ceremony begins. Technology is so integrated into every minute of life now that sometimes people need a gentle reminder to put it away for a special occasion. 

Provide Information on Where to Find Professional Photos
If you want to share the professional photos taken with all of your guests, let them know where and when they can expect to find them. You can have small business cards printed with information detailing the platform you will be sharing photos and an approximate time frame. This way, guests can take the information with them and look at all the beautiful photos when the time comes. Knowing they will have access to the high-quality, professional photos might lead to them taking less photos with their personal cameras or cell phones.