The Long Beach Gay & Lesbian Chamber of Commerce had me as a guest speaker in this months meeting and interviewed me for this nice profile for their newsletter.
I recently met with Alan Katz, owner of Great Officiants for 11 years now. After speaking with him for a little while about his business, we chatted for just about an hour on life in general. Let me start by describing Alan.
Alan is like that cousin or uncle you know that has a joke about everything. I think he even had one when the topic of funerals came up. In other words, Alan is that guy that can break the ice in any situation because he is comfortable in his own skin and likes to see you smile. With a background in the entertainment industry, I can totally see why. Ever seen the movie, The Big Lebowski? (True Story) Alan is an officially ordained minister of the "Church of the Latter Day Dude" or a "Dudist Priest!"
So if you were to have him be any part of your event, having fun or getting what you want would be the least of your worries. Want traditional? He does that. Want something a little more creative, or off center? Alan is adaptable. Want a Star Wars/Harry Potter fusion wedding? Just ask to see some of his pictures 🙂
Speaking of events, that's his business. When two people get married there needs to be a licensed officiant to perform the ceremony and certify it. In addition to providing that, Great Officiants can also take care of the marriage license for you so that you don't have to go down to the City Hall and wait in line.
Need some help with securing a venue or actually planning the details of the event? Great Officiants can handle that too! They have an onsite chapel for a small, private ceremony, and several beach locations in Southern California too.
Did you know that there was a recent law change in California? If you want a confidential marriage license, you can apply for it anywhere you live instead of having to get it from the county where your ceremony will be. There are 29 officiants that work with Great Officiants: anything from the religious (Priests, Rabbis, Ministers), to the non-denominational.
They are a one stop shop for all your wedding event needs. In a wedding industry that has a lot of competition, Alan confidently asserts that "there is always someone biting at my heels, so I've just got to get bigger boots."
There are 4 services they offer:
Marriage Licenses (instead of going to the county courthouse)
Wedding Chapel (a place to have your wedding)
Wedding Officiant (perform ceremony)
Event Location and Coordination on the beach locations (full service A to Z wedding taken care of by Great Officiants)
Alan spoke at our January lunch at The Federal Bar and had a great perspective on building your business. He has over 1000 positive online reviews for Great Officiants. Imagine what it would do for your business if you had that many positive reviews online! His tip for that is to ASK for the review.
However, the methodology is important. For example a Yahoo or Google review you can give them the direct link to your page. Yelp is much different and as Alan says, "Yelp Sucks!" You'll have to direct them to Yelp.com and have them search for your business within Yelp in order to leave a review. Just make sure you're asking for a review from someone who is likely to give you a good one!
"All couples deserve the wedding of their dreams." –Alan Katz
Want to see one of his review videos from our very own Keir Jones?
Thank you Russ Marchewka for the nice story
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