Posts Tagged ‘business’

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My Last Wedding > Is the new standard

I view my most recent wedding as a standard for things to come.
Let me explain why and how.

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What I did to make this possible

A couple months back I was so busy that I opted to raise my prices in a deliberate attempt to have more time.
More time for my photo projects.
More time to have a real life.
More time to focus on each photo shoot.
More time to UP my standards.

And so far it’s worked.
It’s been weird to not book as many photo-shoots, I’ve learned to deal with it.
I’m learning how to fill in all that available time.

New Pricing – Thoughts About

I didn’t want to simply raise costs just because, but I wanted to raise them at the same time raise the quality of the product.

Over the years I’ve raised my prices many times… back in 2005 with the first few weddings I shot for as low as $250 for a wedding.

I didn’t just raise costs because I wanted more money, but because I felt the product was worth that, because I had worked hard at improving with talent, time and equipment.

Now I finally have pretty much every tool I’ve wanted for a long long time.

Weddings I’m searching for

This Hawaii wedding is also an example of the types of weddings I want to focus on working on.
Nicely organized weddings, with people who are very interested in a higher level of photography.
I want to be dealing with brides who don’t simply want A photographer but are in search of A great quality photographer.

I understand for some photography isn’t their #1 concern.
And I also understand there are many who really want great pictures but can’t usually afford them.

I want to still be in an affordable range… as a bargain for an educated shopper who can understand what I’m giving when they compare it to other options.

I want to deal with people that stretch to reach the cost (even if i have to help them with the cost) so that they’re appreciative of the product.
But I also want to deal with people that understand the bargain.
I am in Utah where the wedding photography costs are way down in comparison to many other parts of the country.
I suppose this is why I travel a lot.

Give more

If you compare straight up prices it can be deceptive.
But when someone sees I don’t charge by the hour and they could have me for 10hrs + on a wedding day.
And when they see how many pictures I typically give to a client.
When they recognize things like how I review and edit Every picture I give to them.
Many of the intangibles such as the experience which will help me deal with any possible situation that might come up for a wedding.
Or the demeanor and attitude that helps me deal with weddings perfectly. Not too formal, not too informal.
Not just the quality of the picture… but the feel of the picture.
The speed with which the sessions go… not rushed and not dragging along.

Consistency

I’ve always prided myself on the consistency of my weddings.
I felt confident telling clients that they were assured of great wedding pictures.
It wasn’t hit and miss. It was hit after hit.
And sometimes of course there were some big hits.

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New Standards

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I find myself often almost caught by the tide of the popular ideas.

I used to say certain things… that I want to be able to say again with 100% certainty.

With the new wave of business centric thought in photography…
I don’t want to get caught up and forget the things that helped me get to where I am.
That’s not to say I don’t appreciate philosophizing about the business of photography

I watched a presentation by a very successful photographer David Jay but he also stressed.

“If you truly make your business about helping other people you’ll always have alot of work”

I would like to be another witness to that statement.

Things I used to say and stances I used to keep…
Which I re-affirm to keep

I used to say with 100% assurance the following:

“I make my wedding photography and wedding packages the way I would want it, if I were getting married”

I’m gonna make sure this is still the case…

I will fight the fad to make packages it in such a way to make the most money possible and be tricky and suck the unknowledgeable in.

Yes i suppose this could be a blatant affront to those charging low amounts for their photography but walking away with a grip of cash in the end because they charge for everything.

I don’t want to be salesman and I’m lucky enough my business is going well enough I don’t have to be. I don’t want to have to sell and up-sell and squeeze every last drop out of their wallets.

Don’t charge by hour

I could go off about the trickery in marketing the whole by hour costs seems to be. But I do understand it’s benefits in some cases.
I’ve seen the scenario cause problems in too many cases… well I should say I’ve heard to many horror stories.
I wouldn’t want an hourly person at my wedding… so therefore I’m not gonna be that person.
Another good reason is since everyone else charges hourly in Utah (and many other states) it sets me apart

Don’t push people into buying more

I don’t like being sold something I wasn’t really after. I’m susceptible to doing it… I’m a spend thrift and am often a sucker…
but it feels so dirty afterwards I feel like they took advantage of me. I don’t want to be that person someone looks back at and says I love the product but in a way I kinda feel like I got tooken advantage of.

Don’t make it all about money.

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