'She doesn't need to be a bridesmaid': Regina bridal owner's hot takes blow up on TikTok
Morgan Mayer says she's just here to be honest (with a bit of humour)
Regina's Sweet Pea & Noelle Bridal Boutique is getting some international attention thanks to its viral TikTok account.
Boutique owner and director Morgan Mayer said it happened by accident.
She downloaded the app — which lets users share short videos — while having some wine with a friend. It quickly went from a fun way to pass the time to a powerful marketing tool.
"It's been really wonderful to be able to connect to people all over the world and do it in a way that is lighthearted and fun and … still promoting the business," she said. "It's definitely been a wild ride for sure."
TikTok, Mayer says, is like the "highlight reel of YouTube," with most videos between 10 seconds and one minute long.
"It's just constant punchlines," she said.
She says her TikTok account shows her personality, rather than just her products.
She jumps on TikTok trends to make funny videos, sings original songs and even gives wedding advice. Most of the time she's wearing a dress sold at her store.
She credits that versatility for allowing her to reach more people.
After making just five TikTok videos, her account took off. Now, her videos consistently get tens of thousands of views — with some hitting well over a million views.
Her tips for brides have been some of her most-watched videos.
That advice includes reminding viewers that "You don't have to invite them" to the wedding, or "she doesn't need to be a bridesmaid."
"It really becomes a group, a team, a support system," said Mayer. "It's honestly just so wonderful to be able to … be that support system for people, even if it's just virtually."
In her videos and in the boutique, she said she aims to encourage body positivity, break down stereotypes and make sure everyone feels welcome.
"We want this to be a safe space," she said. "We're here to be your cheerleaders and to make you feel beautiful."
In some of her videos, Mayer jokes about how unsupportive people can affect the planning process, but she does have ways of defusing tough situations in her shop if needed. Sometimes, that means telling a member of the wedding party to keep things positive or making the bride feel more comfortable in her decision making.
"It's especially really discouraging when you have the people who are closest to you come in and not support what you want," Mayer said.
"So having someone, even if they are a complete stranger, say, 'no … if you feel beautiful, that's all that matters,' it makes a huge difference."
According to Mayer, it's kind of bizarre to be well known on TikTok.
"I've had people at the gym be like, 'Hey, are you that girl?'"
She said recently, a bride at her shop who was working with another stylist stopped her in the hall and complimented her on her videos.
She's received comments from people in countries all over the world.
Most people usually think she is from the U.S., but she said many are "overjoyed" when they realize she is Canadian. Others are disappointed that she isn't in Australia, the U.K. or their state or province, she said.
But so far, the platform has proven to be effective.
"We've had a lot of girls that were just, like, 'What? You're in Regina? I just got engaged. This is a sign. I'm coming to you,'" said Mayer.
"We've had girls from Manitoba and Alberta.… They have come here and been, like, 'I saw you on TikTok, I had to come.'
"And it has gotten us out-of-province sales, which is really, really lovely."
So what's the formula to making a viral TikTok? Well, Mayer said she isn't really sure, but she did give some advice.
"If you have an authentic message and it's coming from an authentic place, I believe you will succeed, and not just on TikTok, but in life," Mayer said. "People can sense that authenticity, for sure."