DOcumentary Style Photographer based in AZ

How to Create a Wedding Questionnaire for Photographers [Free Template]

If there’s one thing I’ve learned as a wedding photographer, it’s to be well-prepared. And I mean Well-prepared with a capital W. On your client’s big day, you don’t want to be the one left scrambling. To prevent wedding day panic, a wedding day questionnaire is one of my go-to tools for my clients. This simple tool is an easy and effective way to get on the same page with your clients, build rapport, and, when done right, show off your creativity.

So, What Exactly is a Wedding Day Photography Questionnaire?

A wedding day questionnaire is one of the best ways to ensure you and your clients are on the same page regarding expectations. This questionnaire consists of all the information you may need so that you are entirely prepared for their big day. This is a list of questions you will preemptively compile to fully understand not just the wedding day but the important points of contact, the times of the events, vendor information, and anything you deem important for you to be in the know. 

While your title says “photographer,” your job is to play mediator, middleman, corraler, and even the party starter. Due to the unique wedding and family dynamics of each client, sending out a wedding-day questionnaire will help you know the details and nuances of each couple’s special day. 

Some details you want in your questionnaire include family dynamics, wedding day schedule, reception details, and aesthetic requests, to name a few. 

Want to check mine out? I have a downloadable wedding questionnaire for photographers template that you can snag for free. Click Here to Download.

5 Reasons Why a Wedding-Day Questionnaire Is Essential

Helps You Prepare

As I mentioned, being well-prepared is one of the most fundamental lessons I learned as a photographer. As much as I would love to say that being well-prepared is for the client, it’s not. Being well-prepared is the perfect gift you can give yourself. No one wants to feel panicked, overwhelmed, and stretched thin, especially on someone else’s wedding day. 

Keeps Your Efficient

If you’ve been to a wedding, let alone photographed one, you know the day is full of events, both planned and unplanned. By having a clear understanding of all of the nuances of the wedding day, you can efficiently plan where you need to be, when, and what equipment is needed to capture the special moments. 

Expresses Your Personality

Every wedding photographer is different. Yes, we can use the same equipment and software, but no one has the exact eye that you do. A wedding questionnaire is the perfect place to add your personality, creativity, and unique vision. Whether you’re using a form on Honeybook like I do or creating a PDF for your clients to fill out, don’t shy away from your unique vision. 

Avoids Mistakes

Mistakes happen, but that doesn’t mean we need to expect them. A wedding questionnaire takes all of the guesswork and assumptions out of the equation. Imagine if you could avoid the embarrassment of trying to get a family portrait of the bride’s parents, who divorced 10 years ago and aren’t on speaking terms. Trust me, a simple “any family dynamics I should know about” will do wonders to save you from disaster. 

Builds Client Rapport

As I mentioned earlier, giving the bride and groom peace of mind during the wedding planning process is an easy way to stand out in a crowd. Of all the vendors involved in the wedding day preparation, you want to be the calm and comfort they need to know that their special day is in good hands. 

So now that we know the importance of a wedding questionnaire, let’s get into the micro details. 

When Should You Send a Wedding Questionnaire

I like to send the questionnaire around 30 days before the big day. As timelines are finalized with the venue and vendors, your clients will better understand exactly how their day will be structured. This will also give you adequate time to familiarize yourself with their schedule and other requested information.

What Questions Does a Wedding Questionnaire Have?

As mentioned, creating this questionnaire can be entirely unique to you. Different circumstances require different questions to be asked. For instance, your level of experience and familiarity with the client will greatly determine the types of questions to be asked. 

I like to break out my questionnaire into three different sections:

  1. Family Details
  2. Day of Details
  3. Finishing Touches

I like to break down my questionnaire into sections because it allows the client to take in the questions without feeling overwhelmed. While we both know we have many questions, providing the bride and groom with 20 – 30 questions is overwhelming. Remember, you’re there to help them feel confident and comfortable leading up to their big day, not add more stress. 

As humans, we don’t like to think too hard, and that goes for reading. By breaking down the questions into different sections, you allow your clients to easily take in the information into manageable blocks, allowing them to categorize it easily. 

If you do this, you will look infinitely more professional than the caterer sharing the menu on a Word doc. 

Now, let’s get to the questions. As I said, it’s always better to be over prepared than underprepared, so asking many questions is good. These questions can vary from client to client; however, here is some of the key information that I NEVER skip:

  1. What are the names of you and your partner’s parents?
  2. Are there any particular family circumstances you’d like me to know?
  3. Are there particular individuals you’d like me to focus on for candidates?
  4. Are there any formal family photos you’d like to see?
  5. Can you provide a list of family groupings for family portraits?
  6. Are there any additional groupings you’d like me to include?
  7. What are the names of the bridal party?
  8. What are the names of the groomsmen?
  9. What is the timeline of the wedding?
  10. Are there any particular moments that are important to you before the ceremony?
  11. Will you be doing a first look?
  12. What is the schedule of the ceremony?
  13. Are there particular shots you would like to see for the ceremony?
  14. Will there be any special religious considerations during the ceremony?
  15. What is the reception schedule?
  16. What moments during the reception are important to you?
  17. Are there any restrictions I should be aware of?
  18. Will there be any unique moments to your reception that you’d like captured?
  19. Do you have any photo ideas you’d like me to capture?
  20. Will you have any special elements in your wedding, like pets or props?

Want to see how I organize my questionnaire? Check out my downloadable template, Click Here

What Tools Are Needed to Send a Wedding Questionnaire?

Wedding questionnaires come in all shapes and sizes. The most important aspect of sending out a wedding questionnaire is making sure that it is easy and works for you. 

Here are a few options you can use:

  1. Honeybook: Honeybook is an all-in-one client management program that can help freelancers and businesses send out contracts, manage payments, schedule events, and, you guessed it, send out questionnaires. I absolutely love this platform and even use it myself. 
  1. Google Forms: If you’re on a budget, Google Forms is a great place to start. This simple form builder is backed by Google and links directly to your Google Drive. While I love this platform for beginners and those just starting, I don’t suggest it for more robust photographers who are consistently booking weddings. 
  1. TypeForm: If you’re looking for beautiful and robust forms with logic and all of the bells and whistles, TypeForm is for you. TypeForm gives you all of the freedom to create some of the most creative forms out there, including overlaying questions with video, adding question logic, and so much more. 
  1. Use Your Own Website: While using third-party platforms is great, hosting your questionnaire via your website can be an added touch of professionalism and expertise. If you go this route, I highly suggest connecting with a skilled web developer or marketing agency to make this happen. 

Beyond the Wedding Photography Questionnaire

At the end of the day, as a wedding photographer, we have one opportunity to create the best possible client experience. I firmly believe that with preparation and patience, whether you are a new or established wedding photographer, Wedding Questionnaires will help you be successful in your craft!

One of my passions is not only to capture beautiful moments for my clients but also to pass on my skills to new and experienced photographers. 

If you’re looking to improve your wedding photography skillset, I want to help you. If you are looking for a virtual Q and A session, want to explore how presets can change your eye for photography, or even learn how to shoot documentary-style wedding and elopement photos in person, I invite you to sign up for my photography mentorship

Regardless of where you are and your photography journey, I want to help you. I know the difference photography has made in my life, and it would be my honor to help pass along my knowledge, skills, and passion for this incredibly rewarding career. 

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