More Appointments, Less Cancellations, Happier Brides - BridalLive

July 6, 2017

There is just something about watching a bride find that perfect dress! Somehow, nine out of ten times, the process appears seamless and the bride walks away confident and ready to walk down that isle.  So how do the shop owners ensure the perfect dress will be in stock and how do the stylists seek out that lace veil at the perfect moment? This Atlanta startup provides the technology platform that helps make that "Say Yes to the Dress" moment happen in bridal shops all over the world.Founder of BridalLive,Tom Esposito, holds the keys to what truly goes on behind the scenes to make magic happen for brides.

What is BridalLive?

BridalLive is an all-in-one retail management SaaS application designed for the specialized needs of brick and mortar formalwear stores.  Our customers sell wedding gowns, bridesmaid dresses, prom dresses, tuxedos and other attire for formal events. Our application is integral to the day-to-day operations of a retail store and includes CRM, inventory management, Point of Sale and procurement features. It even has cool features like flexible staff schedule & fitting room setup, the ability to book (or request) appointments on your website, and sending reminders automatically (via text or email).

What is the problem you are trying to solve?

Everyone knows that the brick and mortar retailers are under pressure from internet sellers.  Retailers that can only differentiate on price will succumb to that pressure.  The wedding industry has been somewhat insulated from disruption because, in many ways, trying on dresses is still an 'emotional experience' for brides.  However, many independent bridal shops struggle to differentiate.Our goal is to help bridal shop owners deliver an experience that trumps online shopping.  We help our customers focus on what matters by removing inefficiencies and providing smart tools like work-flow automation, self-service appointment booking, timely alerts and more.

Who is your ideal customer?

Our ideal customer is a store that has been around for many years and is seeking to optimize their operations.  The lifetime value of these customers is very high and they typically thirst for change.That being said, an entrepreneur that is opening their first bridal shop comes in as a close second.  These customers have no preconceptions about how to run the business and easily receive tremendous value from the product by adopting our recommended best practices.

What traction do you have?

BridalLive is used by 700+ retail locations and we crossed the $1M ARR mark last year.  Our customers are concentrated in North America, UK and Australia. We recently expanded into the EU and have started to gain good traction in France, Spain, Netherlands, Germany, and Belgium.

What do you love most about being in the Village?

The community at Atlanta Tech Village is amazing.  Everyone on our team loves the energy, atmosphere, and, of course, all the wonderful perks that come along with being a Villager.  As the company founder, I find it energizing to learn what others are building and how they approach the challenges of running a SaaS business.  The folks at the Village do a great job of creating an atmosphere that fosters this kind of communication.

Any words of wisdom for other entrepreneurs?

I don't know if you can call this wisdom, but I can share some things that I have come to realize on my journey:

Build something that is used every day and makes a real difference in someone's life.  This makes marketing, customer retention and product development much easier.  And as an added bonus, the positive feedback will keep the fire inside you burning.Have a few close relationships with people that you can lean on for emotional support.  You'll have the highest highs and the lowest lows.  There will be times when you hate what you've built.  Having a relationships with people that can help you see through the mud is invaluable.Go your own way if you want to be truly fulfilled in life.  I've always placed high value on the freedom that comes with being a bootstrapped company.  For me, it's all about building a profitable business while having the freedom follow your gut and grow while learning from your wins and losses.

BridalLive. The #1 Bridal Software that is taking the industry by storm.[caption id="attachment_14348" align="alignnone" width="455"]

Founder of BridalLive, Tom Esposito[/caption]

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The BridalLive Team[/caption]The post was written by Kelly Anne O'Neill, Community Development Manager.

July 6, 2017
Karen Houghton