In the course of our business, we encounter a lot of equestrian businesses including some that are extremely successful and well-known. Here we will share from our experience some guidelines for ordering and using our costumes and horse accessories for photo shoots and pony parties to make sure your events run smoothly and your customers are not disappointed. These tips might seem like common sense, but many have been tempted to cut corners with disastrous results, so if you are planning to order our costumes for your business or thinking of starting your own unicorn rental/photography business, please take the following as a friendly reminder.
Tip 1: Get your costumes before scheduling events.
This is the biggest pitfall for both pony parties and unicorn photographers as many wait until the last minute when it is too late to get any costumes. Custom horse costumes take time to make and when you add the time needed to transport an item to your location – which can be hundreds or thousands of miles away – they usually arrives 2-3 weeks after the date you place your order (or 6 weeks for horse armour). Sometimes you can get costumes faster by paying for rush service and express shipping, but you can actually save a lot of money and stress by simply ordering your costumes early. Though we sometimes have ready to ship items in the shop, they may be sold out by the time you have scheduled an event and need a costume in a hurry. So to avoid disappointing your customers, make sure you have your costumes in hand before advertising services with them.
Tip 2: Measure your horses and order the correct size.
Do not compromise your business image with floppy or too-tight costumes. Measuring your horse can feel tedious but it will save you hours of frustration from trying to use the wrong size costumes. It can also save you the aggravation of having pony-sized costumes break when you try to stretch them over a horse. Many of our products such as unicorn browbands and armour require a good fit so it is essential that you get the measurements requested in the product listings. And do not “guesstimate” because parts of your horse are usually much larger or smaller than you imagine and people have submitted draft size measurement for ponies and ordered pony sizes for draft horses. Costumes in the wrong sizes are useless to you so don’t waste your time and money by skipping the essential task of measuring.
Tip 3: Do not share costumes between horses and ponies of different sizes.
If you have horses of similar height and size (e.g. two thoroughbreds) they can often take turns wearing the same browband and look really nice. But if you have two different sized animals such as a large pony and a mini, you cannot order a browband in the larger pony’s size and put it on the mini. A unicorn browband that is too large for a pony will not stay upright and may even fall down over a pony’s eyes. Using a costume of the wrong size is simply unattractive and unsafe. So for the sake of your business image, if you have two ponies requiring different sized costumes, either order one for each pony or if you are only willing to buy one costume, only use it on the pony that it fits.
Tip 4: Advertise with your own photos.
To accurately show the services you are offering, promote your business with photos of the horse or pony you will be using in your photo shoots or parties wearing the costumes you will be offering for those events. It may be tempting to take a pretty unicorn photo from someone else’s website, but your customers will be angry if your pony or costumes do not look like the photos on your website or Facebook page. By doing your own photo shoot before scheduling events, you also make sure that you have your costumes in time and that they fit your horse or pony. Another reason not to advertise with photos belonging to other people (unless they gave you permission) is that taking someone else’s images (and words) without permission is illegal and you can be sued for $150,000 for each photo you take and every time you posted the photo. You can also get your Facebook page and website taken down for copyright infringement so if you are serious about staying in business, take your own photos showing the exact services you will be providing whether it be ponies, costumes, or your own photography skills.
Tip 5: Never use hard unicorn horns around children or in public places.
If you are used to being around horses, you may not notice how frequently horses and ponies bump their heads against you. This is why hard plastic unicorn horns (whether they are sold as resin, pvc, or polymer clay) should never be used except by professional equestrians who knowingly take the risk. Hard horns are especially dangerous around children who can get excited and run into into a horn or spook a pony into throwing its head. This is why we recommend our softest unicorn horns for children’s parties and photo shoots. If your horn won’t bend when it hits a child’s face, don’t use it. Soft horns are also a good idea in public or celebrity events because you cannot control how people will behave around your unicorn and you don’t want your business to be blamed for someone losing an eye. Our soft unicorn horns also look very realistic when put on properly and are used by professional photographers around the world.
Thank you for visiting Wishpony.com. We hope these tips will be of use to our commercial customers and wish you good luck in your unicorn businesses.