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Archive 2013 · Client needs vs personal beliefs
  
 
ricardovaste
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Client needs vs personal beliefs


"I do not need a wedding album"

I had an inquiry (no doubt fruitless) that contained this phrase exactly, with no real elaboration beyond wanting a disk with edited images.

Do you personally even question this, or just give a price for what they ask?

I guess this is a question about how far you go to push you personal beliefs, philosophies, values onto your client or potential client. This is something I feel quite strong about (within reason), but if someone specifically tells you that they don't care about what you care about, do you bother challenging this, or just roll over?

My example isn't a deal breaker of course, just wondering what your thoughts were on the topic in general.



Jan 19, 2013 at 08:34 PM
TRReichman
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Client needs vs personal beliefs


Is it rolling over, or is it core to your brand value? I have a small set of beliefs that I need to be in alignment with the client on. If we agree on those things I can accommodate almost anything. The biggest big-picture things are deal-breakers to me, the details don't bother me. I care about the photography and what it means and what the intent is, the album is not the hill I want to die on. That's just me, you're welcome to your own set of parameters.

- trr



Jan 19, 2013 at 08:44 PM
jammin
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Client needs vs personal beliefs


If they don't want an album. What's the big deal?

I tell all my couples that if they want an album I can do it, but depending on how much they value an album, they can just do their own and I give them ideas or they can come back at anytime and I'll do it for the difference in the package price.

Maybe it's not great business but I am not in it to McSell and ask if they want to upgrade to larger fries.

They have what they want and within their budget. Weddings are a racket and photographers try to squeeze every last bit out of people, couples like me because I am not this hard selling wedding salesman.



Jan 19, 2013 at 08:58 PM
ricardovaste
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Client needs vs personal beliefs


jammin: I think you have misunderstood my post, as well as the point of the discussion. If you are trying to label me as a pushy salesman then please do not.

TRReichman: Thank you, that is the question I guess, if it effects your core beliefs. I guess I've got some vague principles, whereas making an effort to outline them individually for myself would definitely be a beneficial exercise.



Jan 19, 2013 at 09:11 PM
awad
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Client needs vs personal beliefs


I usually give an estimate based on their needs, but then I spend time educating them on the importance of an album.


Jan 19, 2013 at 09:15 PM
Eyeball
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Client needs vs personal beliefs


Interesting question. Here is what occurred to me as to questions I might ask myself related to this.

- Am I meeting my sales goals now?
- Is the situation currently one where I'm really not "selling", but "order-taking", or am I "selling" and just questioning whether I should be more aggressive?
- Am I better with a soft-sell approach or a hard-sell one?
- Do the prospects in my area respond better to soft- or hard-sell?
- Am I good at sizing up prospects?
- How important to me are the goods and services that I want to sell and that aren't selling or not selling as well as I would like? in terms of profit? in terms of personal satisfaction?
- How much artistic control do I want to retain over my final product and will I be able to meet my sales goals if I hold to that level of control? If I can't make that happen today, what can I change to make that happen in the future?



Jan 19, 2013 at 09:17 PM
jammin
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Client needs vs personal beliefs


Well...1st thing you mention is they didn't want an album and then you talk about personal beliefs.

I may be confused? What are you actually asking?
What are your personal beliefs when it comes to weddings?



Jan 19, 2013 at 09:21 PM
cordellwillis
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Client needs vs personal beliefs


jammin wrote:
Well...1st thing you mention is they didn't want an album and then you talk about personal beliefs.

I may be confused? What are you actually asking?
What are your personal beliefs when it comes to weddings?


Some photographer's personal and/or business beliefs are that albums are an important part of the story telling. That's like going to purchase a new car and telling the (new car) dealer that you do not want wheels. You may not want the wheels that come with the car because you are either 1) cheap, 2) just don't like the styles available, 3) plan to purchase custom wheels. No matter what tho, the new car dealership will not sell you the car without the wheels that come with the car, but you can purchase additional custom wheels. Either way, you're getting wheels.

My business model is to provide an album. There is no other option. Is it because I am pushy as you believe! No, that has NOTHING to do with it. I simply want my business to be viewed from an album and the photos the clients place on Facebook. I don't feel *my* business is complete without albums....this is no different than a shoot and burn photographer; just the opposite.



Jan 20, 2013 at 01:40 AM
tobicus
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Client needs vs personal beliefs


I prefer storytelling through albums, but I don't stress about it if they don't want to pay for it.


Jan 20, 2013 at 01:55 AM
RSpears
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Client needs vs personal beliefs


I used to try and sell the couple on the album. The way that I explained it is "How do you want to show your grandchildren your wedding? Will it be a shoebox of prints, or a beautiful wedding album that will still look great in 30 years?

Lately though, I've changed my pricing. I don't sell albums. They get one. I increased my pricing, and the album comes with the base price. I don't ask if they want an album, I ask them what kind of cover they want on their album. Much better now.



Jan 20, 2013 at 03:28 AM
 

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Inku Yo
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Client needs vs personal beliefs


I think everyone needs a wedding album. I don't know of a better way to showcase kick-ass wedding images. My base rate doesn't include an album, but that will probably change in the future. Everyone that books me will get a Queensberry album.


Jan 20, 2013 at 04:57 AM
RichardLavigne
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Client needs vs personal beliefs


I agree with Todd.... while I think they're important and I'm going to do my best to convey why I think they're important to a couple in a meeting... they are not make or break for me. I too have a pretty core set of things that I think our clients all have in common and what they're looking for when it comes to their day, an album is not one of them.

I think that if an album is a deal-breaking option for you, then you should at minimum be including them in every package.



Jan 20, 2013 at 02:43 PM
dariussutherla
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Client needs vs personal beliefs


cordellwillis wrote:
Some photographer's personal and/or business beliefs are that albums are an important part of the story telling. That's like going to purchase a new car and telling the (new car) dealer that you do not want wheels. You may not want the wheels that come with the car because you are either 1) cheap, 2) just don't like the styles available, 3) plan to purchase custom wheels. No matter what tho, the new car dealership will not sell you the car without the wheels that come with the car, but you can purchase additional custom wheels. Either way, you're getting
...Show more

Sorry the whole car thing is a very poor analogy. You can tell a story through the process of an online gallery or numbering the images :-)

I personally don't feel the need to restrict a couple to having an album. It is and always will be the couples choice. Each to their own tho, but I view it as forcing an album down a couples throat when they do not want one. You are then also limiting your business to those that want one, fair enough that's what you want to do. I just don't like it.

Stick to your guns all you like, but I came to you for a meeting, my 1st thought would be, I like his images, but I am not going to be pushed into having an album, so we'll go elsewhere.



Jan 20, 2013 at 04:00 PM
RDKirk
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · Client needs vs personal beliefs


Some photographer's personal and/or business beliefs are that albums are an important part of the story telling. That's like going to purchase a new car and telling the (new car) dealer that you do not want wheels. You may not want the wheels that come with the car because you are either 1) cheap, 2) just don't like the styles available, 3) plan to purchase custom wheels. No matter what tho, the new car dealership will not sell you the car without the wheels that come with the car, but you can purchase additional custom wheels. Either way, you're getting wheels.

Actually, it's more like going to the Waffle House in Montgomery Alabama and telling the waitress you want jelly on your grits. You will deeply offend her and the entire staff of the restaurant, including the cook, and you may be asked to leave...if you are lucky, that will be a polite request.

Don't ask me how I know.



Jan 20, 2013 at 10:32 PM
D. Diggler
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · Client needs vs personal beliefs


RDKirk wrote:
like going to the Waffle House in Montgomery Alabama and telling the waitress you want jelly on your grits


"Grits"? What's that.



Jan 20, 2013 at 11:17 PM
hugodrax
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · Client needs vs personal beliefs


ricardovaste wrote:
"I do not need a wedding album"

I had an inquiry (no doubt fruitless) that contained this phrase exactly, with no real elaboration beyond wanting a disk with edited images.

Do you personally even question this, or just give a price for what they ask?

I guess this is a question about how far you go to push you personal beliefs, philosophies, values onto your client or potential client. This is something I feel quite strong about (within reason), but if someone specifically tells you that they don't care about what you care about, do you bother challenging this, or just roll
...Show more

Don't take them on as a client, do not compromise your business for troublesome cheapskates who will end up costing you in the end. Some times the best business decision is to know when to avoid dealing with potential trouble clients and let someone else deal with the hassle.




Jan 21, 2013 at 02:30 AM
hugodrax
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · Client needs vs personal beliefs


cordellwillis wrote:
Some photographer's personal and/or business beliefs are that albums are an important part of the story telling. That's like going to purchase a new car and telling the (new car) dealer that you do not want wheels. You may not want the wheels that come with the car because you are either 1) cheap, 2) just don't like the styles available, 3) plan to purchase custom wheels. No matter what tho, the new car dealership will not sell you the car without the wheels that come with the car, but you can purchase additional custom wheels. Either way, you're getting
...Show more


Exactly, and a great album means word of mouth referrals and sales. When someone sees a great album other potential customers will ask about "Who did your wedding I want something like that"

And you get to focus on better clients which in turn means clients who appreciate good work and are willing to pay for good work.



Jan 21, 2013 at 02:39 AM
jmraso
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · Client needs vs personal beliefs


I couldnt agree more.

I have to add that we or our clients contribute to keep things going, the labs get work, they employ people, the paper industry get work they employ people, leather and so on instead of entering in a stagnation not good for economy (but who gives a sh.t about this ) move it baby move it

Jaime



Jan 21, 2013 at 09:13 AM
jammin
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · Client needs vs personal beliefs


Exactly, and a great album means word of mouth referrals and sales. When someone sees a great album other potential customers will ask about "Who did your wedding I want something like that" And you get to focus on better clients which in turn means clients who appreciate good work and are willing to pay for good work.


Does it?? Doesn't great photography and service do this. How many friends and family are going to come around to your house and view the album. After the album has been viewed a couple of times it sits out of site in a cupboard somewhere. Do you think the couple will have a Album Viewing day. They will show a select number of people and the rest will be seen online. MOST will see the pictures online. Your referrals are going to trickle through very slowly based on an album IMO. How many times a year do you think a couple will get it out? If your pictures aint any good, do you think a person is going to say, the pictures are crap but my god I love the album, lets book him/her

Some people place importance on an album, others do not. It comes down to budget for one. If you want to target those who want an album, that is fair enough, but to call people cheapskates who do not want an album is ridiculous. I personally think it's ridiculous to purchase an overpriced album that will be viewed only a select number of times. I would rather just make something up myself and spend the extra $1000 dollars or 800 on the honeymoon or something else, coz to me, like many other people, they are just not worth it, but that's me.

And as for the whole keeping the economy going. Yeah. That's why wedding photographers sell albums, just for that reason alone....




Jan 21, 2013 at 09:31 AM
D. Diggler
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · Client needs vs personal beliefs


jammin wrote:
How many friends and family are going to come around to your house and view the album.


Not disagreeing with anything you said but I will throw this out there ...
When the friends view the album, they're viewing maybe the 50 to 100 best shots of the day. Compared to they look at an online gallery that has, say, the entire 1000 shots of the day. With the online gallery, you're not going to have the impact of a select group of the best shots, like what you'd get from the impact of viewing the album. Instead, the friends are going to be wading through mostly mediocre shots, with some above-average shots, and then with a scattering of "the best" shots that would normally go to the album.



Jan 21, 2013 at 10:05 AM
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