Chromatek Newsletter No 109 11th January 1991
$400 Wedding coverage
These part time photographers are advertising that they will do a Wedding for $400.00, give you the negatives and so many prints. Your potential customers don't know any different and if somebody claims to be a photographer and the price is one tenth of what they think you charge, they may feel that whilst the work won't be quite as good, it will be good enough.
But the main basic point is that your competitors which these people are, are advertising, they are advertising the price and they are basically stating in they're advert that this is all that the people are going to pay.
A lot of people that haven't been through to a studio may have started off with the concept that they would be spending $1500 and have ended up $3000. They have told this to their friends and their friends now are under the impression that if you get a Professional to cover your wedding you are going to be spending $3000.
CAN YOU DO
are going to have to start advertising for more work, you are
going to have to start advertising a complete package, what
the total cost will be.
you can have still your $3000 coverage, but you first of all
have to get the girl into the studio before you can offer that particular coverage.
still recommend you having coverage's going through to five
to ten thousand dollars, but boy those five to ten thousand
dollar coverage's are going to have to be pretty damn good.
That's if anyone is game to do that particular type of coverage.
But the main point is that the coverage's are going to have
to be such, that at what ever level the people are that are
coming in to book you they are going to have to say about your
price "Oh, that is quite reasonable for what we are getting."
Now I am not suggesting anybody charge $400.00 and give away the negatives. If you can't compete with these people on quality and a reasonable price find their weakness, they will have one. Do some market re , find our WHY and WHAT your brides are wanting.
STYLES FOR 1991
then I had Thorpe Studio and at the beginning we used to do
many weddings, in the height of black and white days here in
Pukekohe, (with remember about 8000 population) we did 120 wedding
one year, now that was a pretty busy year and I do not know
if I could do it today but that was the sort of volumes that
many photographers used to do.
used to be able to do this by having part time photographers
and the Bride and Groom and the Wedding party would come to
the studio for their formals.
could be worthwhile thinking of moving back to this style of
coverage with yourself just doing the formals or if there are
two of you in the business one of you do the formals and the
other one do one of your high priced weddings.
people over the last few years have been talking of getting
two to three thousand dollars from the bride for their wedding
coverage's and a lot have found that this type of coverage has
whilst it has not disappeared has become slightly harder to
could be that a wedding coverage of four to five hundred dollars
with the bride and their friends finishing up spending between
$1000.00 to $1500.00 maybe more acceptable to many the people
out there that would possibly rather employ a studio than somebody
on a part time basis.
is really no reason why some of these coverage's can not be
very nice and there is nothing to stop you, organizing a series
of seminars to train up a group of part-timer's so that you
have a pool of photographers interested in earning some money
in the weekends.
name of the game is your break even point and if you have moved
from one hundred weddings down to ten weddings that you can
see yourself doing this coming year your rent and other overheads
are going to eat you completely away.
it means that you going to have to have more clients coming
through your studio, each paying a proportion of your overheads
so that you can stay in business, no customers mean you "no
can pay the rent" and if you no can pay the rent it means
you will be joining all of the other businesses in bankruptcy
have spoken several times to my friend in Chicago who does round
the two thousand weddings a year, has a staff of between seventy
to one hundred and twenty-five photographers and whilst he is
very active in his business you do not really see him photographing
wedding, he is too busy banking the money.
is really into volume, has extremely nice modern premises (which
he owns), he is very reasonable on his fees to cover a wedding
and his print prices are extremely reasonable and he manages
to do all this through volume.
you are having a problem booking your normal personalized wedding
coverage it could be worthwhile you considering going slightly
more volume oriented and start training your existing staff
to do weddings. Of course if you are more than a husband and
wife team this will means that anybody that is working for you
must be able to photograph weddings in the weekend otherwise
you are really not interested in keeping them employed during
will still need to market your services and you still need to
do an extremely good coverage of the wedding which really just
boils down to training.
must have a good range of wedding albums full of wedding photographs,
there is nothing worst than just having the one wedding album
for a bride to see and then she has to imagine all of the other
coverage's that you do. This is an interesting article I collected
You Don't Own It, How Can You Sell It?
common retort is, "My customers would never buy that many
reality is that, even at cost, most photographers don't have
two or three volumes from their own family functions.
can you sell what you don't believe in enough to invest in yourself?
can you suggest the benefits of how nice it is to hold on to
past memories if you can't give examples from your own life?
your salesperson doesn't own a two volume 8x10 set of albums,
you had better sell her one so she can explain the benefits
of owning one. Otherwise, your sales staff is subconsciously
conveying to the customer, "You don't need that much, I
only had 25 photos in my wedding album." Unless you have
something to show for it, you will
not be able to sell the believable benefits of hundreds of photographs
per occasion and give examples from your own life.
sample albums should have a minimum of 70 and up to 200 8x10's (or bigger) to show your clients what you believe
displays are your silent sales force and show how you really
feel about your product. If you show your clients' samples from
tiny 4x5 books, that is what they will probably want to buy.
If you show samples from two volumes 11x14 books, that is probably
what they will want to buy!
remember, if the best is too expensive for you to invest in,
it is more than your clients will want for themselves too.
goes for wall portraits also. If your walls are adorned with
wallets, 8x1 0's and a few 11xl 4's, how can you expect to sell
30x40's to your clients? If you display and show off your 40x50's,
it makes your 30x40's more believable.
to make selling wall portraits believable, you and your sales
staff should own and enjoy the product you are selling.
Would you buy a Mercedes from somebody who drives a Ford?
let's get out there and start buying and enjoying what we are
selling, and you will see your sales climbing.
is part and partial of the shareholder's agreement that they
will not do weddings for anybody else besides the limited liability
company and if they leave the limited liability company you
will purchase the shares back from them at least what they paid
in and they have pre-agreed to that they will not do weddings
within say a twenty-five mile radius of the headquarters of
the limited liability company for say three to five years.
limited liability company would book the weddings and all money
would go into the limited liability company from which you would
deduct the price of the film, processing, you're selling costs,
wages and all of the other overheads that go into the running
of the business and you might find that the limited liability
company makes a profit of say twenty cents in the dollar.
then could possibly be distributed to the shareholders at the
end of the year on a pro-rata basis depended onto the numbers
of weddings that they have photographed.
the bones of the idea which could help you tie up photographers
so that they can not go out in competition to you and my solicitor
however is on holiday so he has not yet seen it to tell me if
it is legal so you will need to talk to your legal person or
me before you think of doing this.
CELLULAR TELEPHONES & WEDDINGS
each one of your candid photographers had one of these cellular
with them and you were in one central location doing all the
formals you would be able to find out from them where they are,
how long are they going to be, tell them to hold things up for
a few minutes or speed things up, you would be in full control.
an organization like what I am talking at would only work in
the larger centers and I would not propose Richard try to set
something up like this in Otorohanga but the major cities of
50,000 plus somebody prepared to do something like this should
very easily scoop the pool.