Thursday, February 11, 2010

Business Day Thursday: My Wedding Book Shipping!; New Webinar Announced; Once, Twice, Third Time’s The Charm

Good Morning Everybody,

Snow in CincyWe arrived back home safe and sound yesterday, albeit with 12 inches of snow on the ground – just perfect  for a few quick snow angels :~)  Looks like things might be a bit slow around here till we hit the spring thaw – just kidding.

Pre-Ordered Copies of “Captured By The Light” Shipping Next Week

Shipping BookHey gang, guess what?  I just got word that we will receive our shipment of my wedding book, “Captured By The Light, The Essential Guide To Extraordinary Wedding Photography” in just a few days.  I know several of you are anxious to receive your pre-ordered copies.  Looks like we will be shipping by Tuesday and Wednesday.

Remember, if you order your copy through the Digital Resource Center [link] by February 28, 2010, I’ll autography your copy for you.

Free “Captured By The Light” Webinar March 3, 2010”

And speaking of the book, why not plan to attend my FREE 90 Minute Webinar entitled, “Captured By The Light” on Wednesday, March 3, 2010 at 3:00 P.M. Here is the link to REGISTER

Captured By The Light Webinar Logo In this 90 minute FREE webinar, I’ll give a peek inside the book, “Live and In Person.”

Here are a few of the topics I plan to include:

  • Professional posing and composition tips
  • Simple on-location lighting setups that are specially designed for the wedding photographer
  • How to get gorgeous images using a minimal amount of time and equipment
  • Creative lighting techniques that anyone can use to create dramatic wedding portraits that will set you apart
  • My own camera settings and lens selections (which lenses to use when, and why), and how to get the best results with your existing gear
  • How I use on- and off-camera flash, and a host of tricks of the trade that will make you more profitable and have you delivering the type of wedding shots you’ve always dreamed of!

It should be fun. Hope you can make it. Here is the link to REGISTER one more time.

Look for more fun book events happening too – I’ll keep you posted.

Hey everybody, time to get on with today’s post.

First, Second, Third Time’s The Charm – For Booking The Job

Small girl busy with shopping. You know, we can learn a lot from kids and dogs when it comes to sales.  How many times have you been in a grocery store and watched kids constantly pester their parents for the nearby candy bar or snack.  We’ve all seen it a million times but never from our kids, right?

Anyway, here is my point.  Sure it drives you crazy, but many times doesn’t the tired parent succumb to those multiple requests? How often do we ask our perspective client for the sale?  Not often enough, if you ask me.

When we get a phone call, email inquiry, or Facebook comment asking about our products and services.  How do we respond? 

Hit the “Read More…” link below for the rest of the story.

For my studio, it’s IMPERATIVE that we shoot for the “real live person” contact.  It is only then that we can reflect our enthusiasm for our product in that personal phone call.

We can ask questions and listen to the prospective client’s answers that we can intelligently discuss the client’s options.  OK, but it’s still more than that.  I want to get my studio information packet into their hands – the information packet is one of the things that separates us from the masses of wedding shooters.

DAZNOTE: I discussed our studio information packet several months ago here at DPT.  Here is the link to that post right here.

OK, here is the deal.  We send out our information packet – some photogs may just respond with a quick email , tweet or comment – but the point is what do you do next?

Do you just hope, pray, and wait for the potential client to respond or do you pro-actively follow up with the client?  Folks, it’s been our policy at David A. Ziser Photography for years to follow up with the client AT LEAST 3 TIMES about their interest in our services.  It’s kind of like being the pestering kid in the grocery story – we keep trying till our potential client prospect tells us NO.

Here is how it works:

Woman in home office with computer using telephone smiling 1. As we are finishing our phone conversation with our prospect gathering address info, etc., We ask the prospect permission to check back with them in case they have any questions.  They always answer in the affirmative.

2. Three days later we call the prospect and ask if they did indeed have any questions.  If they do, we gladly answer them.  This phone contact gives us another chance to book an appointment with our prospect.

3. Still no appointment or booking after three more days, then it’s time to call our prospect the second time. Our call to them is, many times a reminder to them to re-connect with us to move the booking process forward.

Booking The Job - Fotolia_10042517_Subscription_XXL 4. Still no kind of commitment from the potential client – then it’s time for that 3rd call.  I want to hear my prospect say, “We’ve hired another photographer.”  Hey, if they don’t want to hire us, I want to know which photographer succeeded in booking before I call the lead a cold lead.

If they tell me that they’ve hired another photographer, I always ask whom they hired. Why? It’s simply a means of marketing research.  It helps me determine why we didn’t sync up for the job.  Was it money, style, personality – I want to know.

Regardless of the answer, I always affirm the prospect’s choice, particularly if I know the photographer they’ve selected, and wish them the best with the rest of their wedding plans.

Two positive things come from how we handle the prospect if they’ve booked another photographer. First, since I have NEVER “badmouthed” or talked negatively in any way about my competition, my competition is a good source of referrals over the years.  They know that we can be trusted. Hey, you always need to keep all your doors open for business, even if some of that business comes from your competition.

The second outcome, much like the first is more of a long term benefit.  If the prospect’s experience with their choice of photographer doesn't work out, we are once again in the running to book a future friend or family member’s wedding.  That has happened more than once over the years.

Just a few years ago, we didn’t book a wedding and I was quite surprised.  I thought I had hit it off quite well with both the bride and her mother.  Well, I was half right – the bride had another photographer in mind and I lost the job.

Eight months later, about 4 weeks after the wedding, I get a call from the bride’s mother explaining that after they had seen the photographs from the other photographer, they were not pleased with the result. Could I shoot some additional images of the bride and groom?

I was happy to oblige.  We spent about 2 hours with the couple on a weekday morning, took about 300 images and got some great shots.  The client loved them and ordered a 40 image album, several 5x7’s and 8x10’s, and a 24x30 portrait on canvass. Her bill came to just under $4,000. Not bad for making those three follow-up phone calls.


Hey gang that’s it for me today.  We’re still digging out of our winter storm around here.  Hope to see everybody tomorrow for another scintillating post here at DPT.

Oh, what’s the topic you ask?  How about Canon 5D Mark II vs Canon 7D – my favorite camera for weddings.  You’ll have to tune in tomorrow to find out.

See ya’ then,  -David


  1. Amazon notified me that my copy of CBL shipped and will arrive tomorrow, Friday.

  2. Great news on your book!
    I read your blog every day using Google Reader. When you use yellow type in your blog it is nearly impossible to read (on Google reader). Just a suggestion.

  3. Ok, thanks for answering my second skribit this year. Your cool:)

    My batting average is down this year for bookings. I'm debating wether I should be charging 100.00 for a consult and if they book me they can apply the 100.00 to there account, if they don't well I just made a hundred dollars.

    Nice call, I do the same thing. I had a 10 pounder on the-line the other day (10 pounder's are client's that want photography and video. I thought I sealed the deal but 2 weeks later I get an email saying they have chosen another photographer. Btw, when a potential client does not book me they always respond by email and never by phone. So I do they same things David does, I shoot them a quick email saying that I hope there wedding day is huge success and wish them the best and tell them good luck:) Then the last sentence I say in the email, btw I would be interested in who you did book? After I find out who the photographer is, I send over one of my spies for a FREE consult to get the beef on this photographer, since there is more wedding photographer's in my state than there are women in China! This spy happens to be a bride who's wedding I shot year's ago and who has sent me more business as result of shooting her wedding than any other one of my clients. Of course I pay her to go spy but let me tell you it's money well worth spent. Because this spy is discerning and knows the difference between a good photographer and a great photographer.
    Its a great trick and this way I can fly under the radar and get some dirt on my comp. They don't have a clue. It's hard not to take it personally when this happens but I guess that is human nature.

    SIDE NOTE: I have a certificate good for two for the WPPI in March, 400.00 value and would be happy to sponsor somebody else. I have had something pop up that is slightly more important:) I actually won this in David's Master Class last spring any taker's?

    Great post David keep up the nice work and thanks for the responding to my thread.

  4. David

    You must have missed the $950,000 Irving Penn 'Cuzco Children". Me, I'm saving my pennies to buy the Henri Cartier-Bresson 50 print collection for a paltry $ 5,000,000.

    Gary Haynes

  5. I've been looking forward to your CBTL and it arrived today back home in MI. Too bad I'm in SoCal right now. I'll see you Sunday CBTL. Thanks for your efforts David!
    Doug Peek

  6. Can't make the webinar. Will it be recorded and made available later?