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Archive 2012 · Do people realise...
  
 
ricardovaste
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p.1 #1 · Do people realise...


... What impression they give?

I think we all consider what impression we give to clients and potential clients, if you don't... well then maybe you're just too cool to worry about such things.

I have a friend who worked in 'business' in some different capacities, although never for himself. A couple of days ago he facebooked me about photography for his wedding... 'are you available for this date?' and 'what is your best price, can you give us a great discount for the referral for Jack and Janes wedding we recommended you for?' I asked him to send me more details about the day and the sort of coverage they'd like via email, as that was literally all I had... no venue, info etc. 'We're getting married here, reception here'. 'We don't know what we want yet as it's down to cost, budget is already majorly stretched'. 'If you could give us your most basic as a starting point... we definitely want coverage all day though'.

I have no problem with someone wanting a more basic package because of budget. I've done a couple of them and they went really very, very well because they loved my photography and embraced it the way I work. But, gee, if you just bark about budget at me it's not exactly going to win me over...

Truth is I offered them a complimentary session when I found out they were engaged, because he had referred me to his friend earlier in the year. But I didn't even get a reply...

Perhaps I'm just in a bad mood, but feel a little 'ruffled' by a 'distant friend'. My own fault. I already decided months ago to rule out their wedding should they approach me (don't like the idea of shooting for friends), and this just compounds that idea. But my mind half changed direction when they messaged me, probably due to not having as many bookings for 2013 as I expected at this point :/

</stupid rant>
<unleash>



Oct 10, 2012 at 12:08 PM
Kittyk
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p.1 #2 · Do people realise...


too bad you are booked for the date, right? otherwise you would definitely do it!


Oct 10, 2012 at 01:38 PM
WilsonImages
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p.1 #3 · Do people realise...


^yes



Oct 10, 2012 at 01:47 PM
TRReichman
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p.1 #4 · Do people realise...


ricardovaste wrote:
I have no problem with someone wanting a more basic package because of budget. I've done a couple of them and they went really very, very well because they loved my photography and embraced it the way I work. But, gee, if you just bark about budget at me it's not exactly going to win me over...


I think for most clients inquiring about a service they are far more concerned with you winning them over.

- trr



Oct 10, 2012 at 02:05 PM
friscoron
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p.1 #5 · Do people realise...


TRReichman wrote:
I think for most clients inquiring about a service they are far more concerned with you winning them over.

- trr


^ This.

I really don't know what the big deal is, especially with distant friends. You don't owe him anything except a respectful reply. You offered him a free engagement session, he didn't take you up on it. I would quote him your normal rates and if he hires you, great! If not, no sweat. If he wants a deal because of the referral, I would remind him of the engagement session offer (maybe he didn't see the email), and throw in a large print or something like that.



Oct 10, 2012 at 02:10 PM
Ian Ivey
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p.1 #6 · Do people realise...


friscoron hit his head on the nail. (ow)

Look, it's irritating to have someone hammer price out of the gate like this -- it's not the "oh we love your work and just have to have you" that the ego wants to hear. But it's still an opportunity to sell your services to someone. Selling, in this case, will involve reframing your value proposition.

Re-offer the engagement shoot, but definitely as a part of the package, and throw in a token freebie, "because you're a friend." Worst that can happen is that he is ungrateful.

But consider getting on the phone, if you can. Think carefully about how you'll put your offer before you call. Then be gracious but firm when you talk, and try to get the discussion more focused on how he thinks he'll benefit from the photography. Talk value, not price.



Oct 10, 2012 at 02:24 PM
D. Diggler
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p.1 #7 · Do people realise...


friscoron wrote:
I would quote him your normal rates and if he hires you, great! If not, no sweat.


+1

I wouldn't offer any deals or freebies. You already feel like you don't want this job but if you need the money you may have to go along with it half-heartedly. At least if they're paying regular rates it won't hurt so bad to do it.



Oct 10, 2012 at 05:47 PM
 

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TheGE
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p.1 #8 · Do people realise...


ricardovaste wrote:
... What impression they give?


As a rule, no. People don't think about what impression they give. People downplay their effect on others and play up others' affect on them. It's human nature. Ponder on that for a second and it'll make you laugh. But moving on...

'We don't know what we want yet as it's down to cost, budget is already majorly stretched'. 'If you could give us your most basic as a starting point... we definitely want coverage all day though'.

I have no problem with someone wanting a more basic package because of budget... But, gee, if you just bark about budget at me it's not exactly going to win me over


I completely understand, and I ignore any initial statements pleading poverty. They all get the same reply. They'll be weeded out anyway if they're either unwilling or truly unable to afford the service. But I got to give it a chance to see what we got beyond the reflex price statements first. Don't be so tied into it. I've had people claim they could only afford my starting rate, "we're on a budget", "it's a tight budget", who ended up spending five digits.

^ that



Oct 10, 2012 at 09:09 PM
Marcus Watts
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p.1 #9 · Do people realise...


If you are going to shoot for friends and have a discount at all make the discount minimal and then have a price list made up. Any request simply send them the friends price list. If you give a credit with your packages don't give them a $200 discount but an extra $200 print credit (or whatever figure you had in mind).

That way you remember what you did for other friends and it gets it out of your hair fast. No need to get frustrated, simply give it to them and they either book or not.

If no discounts just send out your normal pricing.




Oct 11, 2012 at 01:00 PM
ricardovaste
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p.1 #10 · Do people realise...


@Ian: thank you for the perspective, that was very useful.
@TheGE: I think it's another reason to not do anything for people you know... he's always taking trips around the world, just bought a brand new car, a new house. I'm used to dealing with people who aren't completely in love with that I do, I guess you just look at it differently when you know the person already.
@Marcus: Thank you for your thoughts. That's essentially the way I would have done it, credit towards services/products as I did with the engagement session... but, it seems they went for the 'in house' photographer. No idea who they are, not even a name, just someone associated with the venue. I'm guessing they were either built in or very low end (not to generalise, but that's what I've seen in the past).



Oct 12, 2012 at 03:06 PM
friscoron
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p.1 #11 · Do people realise...


Ian Ivey wrote:
friscoron hit his head on the nail. (ow)


I hit my freakin' head on the nail?

No wonder I've had a headache all day!!!



Oct 13, 2012 at 03:58 AM
williamkazak
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p.1 #12 · Do people realise...


Interesting read. Price shopping is prevelent, we should be used to it by now. Not every "would be customer" expresses it in the same way nor do they all "fall in love with your work" like you do. It all works itself out, doesn't it? Courtesy and kindness in your response, so important!


Oct 18, 2012 at 05:10 AM
cineski
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p.1 #13 · Do people realise...


This is your mistake. You submit to people who don't value you and then go on to empower those people by giving them free stuff (never give a complimentary session in exchange for referrals.....I've lived in LA long enough to know this simply doesn't work ;-). I turn a ton of people away because they're just cheap. I can't pay my bills by working for cheap people, even a lot of cheap people. Every single one of those people start out by talking price. I've even had people ask for my "best price" (what is this, selling a piece of gear on craiglist?!). When this happens, I send them my price list and move on because I know I won't book them....and I'm perfectly okay with that.

Very important business lesson for everyone: Cheap people have cheaper friends.

And the most important lesson for this thread: Do PHOTOGRAPHERS know what impression they give?

ricardovaste wrote:
Truth is I offered them a complimentary session when I found out they were engaged, because he had referred me to his friend earlier in the year. But I didn't even get a reply...
</stupid rant>
<unleash>




Oct 18, 2012 at 04:22 PM





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