Happy Pride, love champions!
I’ve been celebrating Pride since I came out as bisexual in 1997. My journey discovering my identity led me through a variety of terms for my sexual orientation until I landed on what feels the most accurate for me: queer. I’m a queer femme cisgender woman, and my pronouns are she/her. I’d love to know your pronouns and how you identify. When you’re working on someone’s wedding, engagement shoot or other special life occasion, it’s critical to understand your client—who they are, what challenges they face, who they love. Opening up this discussion with your client will help them feel seen, validated and celebrated. This is just part of what we’re teaching over at Equally Wed Pro, the educational division of Equally Wed, the queer-owned LGBTQ+ wedding magazine, book and vendor directory.
At Equally Wed Pro, we have just launched an online LGBTQ+ inclusive certification course to teach love champions everything they need to know about working with the LGBTQ+ community, including what LGBTQ+ inclusivity means and why it’s so important to add this element to your business. Once you’ve completed our intensive LGBTQ+ inclusivity training, you’ll be able to confidently speak with and market to the LGBTQ+ community.
Throughout the Equally Wed Pro LGBTQ+ Inclusive certification course, you’ll learn:
- The ABCs of LGBTQ+
- Marriage equality around the globe
- Elements of LGBTQ+ weddings and proposals
- Best practices with LGBTQ+ clients
- Gender-neutral word choices
- How to be inclusive without feeling fake
- Attracting LGBTQ+ clients
- Building your business with LGBTQ+ clients
- How to talk about pronouns, sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression with ease
Graduates of the course earn their CIP credentials, which stands for Certified Inclusive Professional, as well as a badge for their website and marketing materials and an official signed certificate mailed to them.
They'll also receive:
- An invaluable comprehensive education in LGBTQ+ inclusivity for the wedding + event space
- Ongoing educational series with guest experts specializing in weddings, events and LGBTQ+ awareness
- Private Facebook group membership where Kirsten and Maria offer live Q&A sessions
- Lifetime access to exclusive certification program materials
- Early bird specials on premium offerings with partners
- VIP Customer support
- A community of LGBTQ+ inclusive wedding and event professionals
- The knowledge to grow your business in the LGBTQ+ wedding market
Learn more here!
A ton of research went into creating this course. My wife and I started Equally Wed 10 years ago after we experienced discrimination when planning our own same-sex wedding. Prior to that moment, I had been a journalist for 10 years in magazines and newspapers and she was a graphic designer and website developer. We created Equally Wed because we saw a need in the industry and wanted to give back to our community. And that’s been the same with Equally Wed Pro.
Since the launch of our online LGBTQ+ wedding magazine and the publication of my book by the same name in 2017, we’ve been cataloging complaints and problems that LGBTQ+ couples have experienced, as well as saving all the frequently asked questions from wedding and event professionals—many from within the LGBTQ+ community! All of these complaints and questions led to our decision to address these pain points in the wedding and event industry with a one-stop online course.
The Equally Wed Pro LGBTQ+ inclusive certification course is housed online at equallywedpro.com. It’s incredibly easy to navigate. There are two hours of training videos divided into sections. You can watch them at your own pace from your own place. There’s a downloadable 25-page study guide that includes a glossary of terms we discuss in the videos as well as many more that are unique to our LGBTQ+ community. (It’s totally OK if you don’t know the difference between queer and non-binary or trans and cis—we’re going to teach you all of that and so much more.)
Once you’ve watched the videos and studied the guide, you’ll sit for the exam, also at equallywedpro.com. It’s an intense but short multiple choice exam that truly tests your knowledge and understanding about the subject matter. Once you pass, you’ll know immediately, and you’ll be in on your way to growing your business by building more authentic relationships with the LGBTQ+ community as an LGBTQ+ inclusive certified professional.
Two Bright Lights love champions are invited to join us for a 25% discount off the course using TBLPRIDE19 at checkout. This coupon is good through June 30, 2019.
Kirsten Palladino is the cofounder and editorial director of Equally Wed and Equally Wed Pro. Her book Equally Wed: The Ultimate Guide to Planning Your LGBTQ+ Wedding is available wherever books are sold. She lives in Atlanta, Georgia, with her wife and children. For more, visit equallywedpro.com.
Photos courtesy of Heidi Geldhauser / Our Labor of Love