Led by Kimberly Hedmark, senior manager of corporate business and development at Drizly, the free concierge service is an expansion of the company’s existing White Glove branch, initially geared toward corporate events. During the pandemic, Hedmark explained that White Glove witnessed an increase in wedding occasion requests, particularly from the do-it-yourself audience, where first-time wedding planners (perhaps the bride or groom themselves) required professional assistance.
“There is an unprecedented need–and white space– for this kind of service right now, particularly coming out of the effect COVID has had on how we gather and celebrate,” Hedmark told Forbes, sharing that when it comes to weddings, an estimated 1.1 million weddings were cancelled in 2020, while 2021 saw a 30 percent surge in weddings due to rescheduling. “Weddings–and large events, in general–are shifting to a more at-home, DIY style. The options for handling at-home alcohol event services are limited and challenging to manage, so it was a perfect opportunity for Drizly to step in.”
The process starts with a preliminary form, where the customer fills out the basics—budget, theme, event size, drink preferences—and is then contacted within 24 hours, regardless of when your event is, by a White Glove Weddings concierge with custom recommendations scouted from Drizly’s network of over 5,000 retailers nationwide. The team at White Glove Weddings consists of alcohol and event planning experts who provide direct consultations on everything from sizing orders for guest count and budget to personalizing drink offerings and theming cocktails, just as an onsite wedding planner would.
“Once you align on the proposal, our team will take care of the rest – they’ll help coordinate the delivery, remain on standby should you need to restock anything and help send back anything you don’t use that can be returned,” added Hedmark, noting as of current, the assistance is strictly logistics; the team does not help stock the bar or bartend during the event.
Similar to Drizly’s online application, the retailer provides delivery service directly to the venue, for which weddings, specifically, the delivery fee is waived. “We believe in being there for good times, big and small,” said Hedmark. “Sometimes that’s delivering the perfect red for a Tuesday night dinner-for-two. Other times that’s delivering the whole damn party.”
As the on-demand space continues to extend from food and beverage to rideshare services, Hedmark thinks this service will set a new standard for end-to-end experiences, whether online or offline (OR as she says, “in real life”). She concluded, “White Glove is raising the bar for other delivery platforms by bridging the two and meeting the consumer in a moment where they need personalized, on-demand expertise more than ever.”