This month we’re introducing you to one of our closest vendors: Jessica Johanningmeier Burke! She’s the owner and publisher of New Orleans Weddings Magazine. As you may know, Belladeux Event Design does all design work for New Orleans Weddings Magazine and we’ve teamed up to produce some awesome photoshoots together. We could not do what we do without the help of our fellow friendors!
Tell us about yourself: what are your hobbies, interests, and passions?
I guess the first thing I think of is that I’m a mom of four boys. They keep me on my toes and there is never a dull moment. When I do get a few minutes to myself, I like to read and I enjoy painting (I really wish I had more time for both!). On a professional side, I enjoy working with other businesses to help them grow and I’m looking forward to new opportunities that I’ve recently been given to give back to the community. In general, I’m always up for coffee – I’m a PJ’s girl – or lunch out somewhere new – I love great food!
What made you want to start your own business?
Well, New Orleans Weddings Magazine isn’t my first business. I got started in wedding photography 21 years ago working for my uncle who was a professional photographer and have had the great luck to work with some other really fabulous photographers and videographers after him (David Tompkins, GK, Stacy Marks, Photography by Louis, Brian Crain, Studio Vieux Carre and many others). At one point I was building my own photography business (I started FINE ART EXPOSURE in 2013) and was freelancing for a number of other businesses. In 2014, Julian St. Pierre of Studio Vieux Carre introduced me to the previous owner of the magazine and recommended me for a gig as the graphic designer. Four years later, I was offered the opportunity to buy the business and I jumped on it. The rest, as they say, is history.
How long have you been in the business?
The magazine itself has been around (under a few different names) since 1992. I bought New Orleans Weddings Magazine in 2008.
What sets New Orleans Weddings Magazine apart from your competition?
I’d say it’s our passion. We put an incredible amount of work and attention to detail into everything we do. We’re always striving to take what we do to the next level so that we can engage with our readers and provide more promotional opportunities to our advertisers. Our mission is “To Delight and Engage” and this drives everything that we do.
What services can you offer clients?
We offer opportunities to increase our clients’ visibility in the New Orleans/Southeast Louisiana wedding market. I like to say that we cover all the bases from in person opportunities at our interactive bridal events, to print opportunities (we have the top selling local wedding magazine in the area along with an extensive free distribution!) and online opportunities through vendor listings on our website, sponsored posts on our blog and social media.
In your opinion, what are the biggest trends you see coming for weddings?
The biggest trend we see (and are embracing enthusiastically) is interactive events. This trend goes beyond weddings. No one wants to show up at any event just to passively participate. (think of any event you’ve had to go to and endure 3 hours of boredom – no thank you!). New Orleans has been ahead of the curve on this one (second lines, cake pulls, interactive food stations just to name a few), but it’s going to a whole new level both here and around the world. Our last bridal show embodied this concept and we wanted to show off to brides how they could incorporate interactive concepts into their own weddings. It’s not just about being entertained, but about having the opportunity to meaningfully interact, have fun trying new things and engaging all your senses. If you’re going to throw a party, why not make it one that everyone will remember?
Where can people follow your work?
We regularly post updates to our blog at thenowbride.com and we’re active on social media.