Creator Spotlight

Melissa Andre Is Creating the Parties (And Guides) of Event Enthusiasts’ Dreams

by Emily Reid · Published Dec 1, 2023

Want to plan the perfect wedding or throw the best birthday party ever? Then you’ll want to hit up Melissa Andre’s TikTok profile.

Within the event planning space, creator Melissa Andre stands out from the rest for her keen eye for design — and 15-plus years of experience orchestrating events for celebrities and luxury brands. Through her company MADCo., Melissa not only imparts wisdom but crafts bespoke experience that extend far beyond the dreams of hosts and party-goers alike.

When she’s not planning parties for stars like Drake, Sofia Richie Grainge, and Charli D’Amelio, Melissa is sharing her expert event tips with her over 230K followers on TikTok and Instagram. Her informative videos range from big-picture to the specifics, including advice on how to nail details like candle centerpieces, how to craft elaborate themed events, and how to throw a great party on a small budget.

Here, we sit down with Melissa to talk about the strategies behind her compelling content, the invaluable digital resources she depends on, and the impact they’ve had on her business. Read on as we delve into the world of a visionary creating at the intersection of education, digital products, and awe-inspiring event design.

Both your Instagram and TikTok presence is impressive with a dedicated and engaged following. What are your strategies for creating compelling educational content?

Most wedding and event-related content on social media is created from the perspective of an attendee or a bride. So, while it can be entertaining and relatable, the information doesn’t come from the viewpoint of someone who has over a decade-and-a-half of experience running an entire team of event professionals, or operating at the ultra luxury-slash-celebrity level. So, my strategy is to educate and inspire people who may not be able to hire my company or a professional like me, but who wants to creative-direct and execute events.

MADCo. clients don’t actually receive the lessons or information that I offer on social media because we’re a full-service events agency, which means we do absolutely everything for them, including acting as a VIP guest concierge.

@melissaandre

Testing blue silk orchids for a 5 day wedding ceremony installation we have coming up! Whats your fave? 🩵💙🦋🌀🫐 #weddingtiktok #bridetobe #orchid #silkflowers

♬ original sound – Melissa Andre I WeddingPlanner

Due to the nature of social media, audiences are fed short-form content in whatever order the algorithm has decided is most relevant to them (if relevant at all), which isn’t an accurate representation of all the necessary and useful information needed to plan an event. Putting all my processes, checklists, and guidelines into a digital guide is a way to deliver all the information one needs to plan an event in a concise format.

Why are your digital products important for your business?

I launched the digital products around the same time I started making short-form video content, so the two kind of go hand-in-hand. In my industry, the standard is to demonstrate your expertise via a portfolio of beautiful imagery, but I don’t find that this kind of portfolio adequately showcases the full scope of an event designer’s approach or expertise.

There’s no barrier to entry within this industry, and it’s not uncommon for someone to plan their own event and then use photos from their own wedding to launch a website. Therefore, it’s not fair for people who are looking to hire an expert to be comparing a bunch of beautiful images without any context, or without the ability to see who has the right experience and approach to provide a service that will exceed their expectations.

The guide “Pro Event Planning and Design Tips” is another digital product you offer. What are some of your top tips from this resource?

When planning for your ceremony time, it’s best to look into when the sunset takes place during the time of year in your location, and work backwards from that. Your ceremony should be about 2-3 hours before sunset to ensure the best natural light for your photos. 

Secondly, when selecting vendors, it’s important to ask to see photos from real weddings rather than styled shoots or close-ups. Oftentimes, styled shoots with beautiful models and Photoshop gives couples unrealistic expectations, so asking for real wedding photos gives you a more accurate representation of their work, and helps you manage your expectations.

Lastly, adding extra time and a buffer of 15 to 30 minutes between cocktail and dinner is important in your wedding timeline. It always takes guests longer to enter the reception space and get seated than presumed.

I’m in the field every single day, so any changes that happen in the event landscape tend to come from people like myself. A lot of what we do at MADCo. isn’t influenced by the wedding industry. Our specific niche and clients want things well before they have become a trend on social media. We definitely do work that turns into a trend, and people regularly reference work of mine from 15 years ago, and have no clue that it was from that long ago!

In a crowded market, what strategies have you used to effectively market your digital products and stand out? 

I’m just really using my expertise, point of view, and over a decade’s worth of knowledge as my strategy to differentiate myself from other creators who might not otherwise have the same experience, and using my social platforms as a tool to educate my audience.

Your journey is inspiring for many aspiring creators. Can you share a key lesson you’ve learned about the intersection of education, digital products, and content creation, which might motivate others in your industry? 

Some of the information that I think is the most valuable to someone who’s planning an event without an event professional isn’t the same as the pieces of content that go viral. On the contrary, there are some tips that I think are self-explanatory that get millions of views.

So, I think it’s important to remember that you are not your audience, and you are not creating content for yourself — you’re creating content for other people. It’s always important to keep your audience in mind, and to recognize that the information that resonates with a professional isn’t the same as what resonates with a bride, host, or someone in the industry. (I call them event enthusiasts.) 

Some of my content is really there to inspire rather than education. In the event space, it’s important to have a mix of content depending on who your audience is, whether they’re brides, hosts, event enthusiasts, other professionals, or people who just love beautiful things.

Lastly, what’s on the horizon for you and MADCo.? Are you working on any new projects that we should be on the lookout for?

We recently launched a hosting newsletter that allows my audience to step into the world of MADCo. It features all my favorite hosting tips and products, and some special holiday offerings as well. You can subscribe at melissaandre.com.

This interview has been edited for clarity and length. 

Photo: Courtesy of Melissa Andre

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emily reid
About the author

Emily Reid

Emily Reid is an Executive Assistant, content writer, and UGC creator living in Canada. She is passionate about sustainable fashion and storytelling through various creative mediums.
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