It seems selling photography is getting tougher and tougher all the time. I know, I see it, experience it and witness some strange behaviors.
Questions from clients are revealing. For example, two recent scenarios from our studio and one from another studio who shall remain nameless.
“Can I come over take a cell phone picture of so and so’s family photo so I can run to Walmart and get some prints?”
Serious. This happened last week. My wife was stunned.
Another client contacts a studio and asks…..“The $150.00 credit we have towards the family session, does everyone in the family get the same $150.00 credit.”
Imagine if you will a crappy cell phone photo. Now, imagine a finely crafted portrait of the same subject. Fine, as in, ….“whoa..wish I shot that! I love that style! It’s stunning…” fine.
It seems many people don’t know the difference anymore between quality and crap.
To be fair, I am not gripping and running down grievance road. It’s important to know what’s going on in society so we can best “fix the problem”, assuming it is fixable.
So, on that note, here’s my best advice in three parts. Do this and sales will flow in your favor like water down a hill.
- get in front of the right clients. Yes, they’re out there. Sell to them. It’s called a hungry crowd. It’s your job to find them, not assume because you’re all that and more they will find you. And manage their expectations.
- make marketing your mission. Become a marketing maven. It’s your responsibility as a business owner. Many photographers don’t get this. It’s scares them, truth be told.
- deliver products that they want, not work that satisfies your ego.
This is one reason I never was crazy about print competitions. Yes, yes, they help you grow and become a better photographer. But will it help you create products they want?
Know the difference. Is it ego based or strategy?
I was at one of our 3 day events a few years ago, during the night owl mastermind (everyone loved these!) and one lady was complaining about her lack of clients.
I asked her the obvious, how big is your town? About 2,000 she replied.
My advice? Move.
Get in front of the right clients. If they’re not there, you need to move to where they are, or, adjust your offerings to get the limited amount in your area to respond.
Know your market. This is the FIRST step in marketing. If you have a great product, and no one wants it, you don’t have a product. It’s that simple.
Kristi Elias is a great example. I interviewed her last year. She’s flowing in work and has an endless amount of clients because she delivers and is in the right area for her work.
I interview a lot of photographers every year because I am a student of marketing. Always will be.
And tomorrow night I am bringing in Stacey Fox. And you’re welcome to join us.
CHECK OUT her resume and the list of things she does to remain relevant in her industry.
Of course all members have access to the replay and download.
Robert N. Provencher – Your Master Coach Marketer
“If you want to be a profitable and successful photographer, then study profitable and successful photographers.”