Thursday, March 12, 2009

Business Day Thursday: To Bundle Or Not To Bundle - Better Selling Through Science

Good Late Afternoon Everybody,
Boy, I have to admit I almost bailed on the post today. We are still pretty jammed up around here with tour, book, and regular studio clients to photograph, interview and sales consultations going on. Whew!!

One of the highlights of the day was a good friend of mine came by today. I promised to photograph her brand-new and first granddaughter and today was the day. After visiting, we spent about an hour getting some really beautiful photographs of her little eight-week-old granddaughter. I might even run the experience on Technique Tuesday next week. Anyway, it was nice to visit but once they left it was back to the "salt mines" for all of us.

Oh, one thing I forgot to mention on Tuesday was another milestone here at DigitalProTalk - Tuesday was the day for the 1600th blog post. As I said, I'll keep writing as long as you keep reading. On that note let's get on with our Business Day Thursday...

To Bundle Or Not To Bundle - Better Selling Through Science
Today I'm going to begin a new series on how we might improve our sales if we rethink how we sell our products. So many times, me included, us sell the way the supermarket sells things -- we see an item on the shelf and we put it the basket. We see another item on the shelf and we put it in our basket. We photographers do the same thing. Our products, whether it be wedding albums, frames of many different colors, parents albums, wall portraits, and any other number of things are just sitting there waiting for our clients to just pick them off our shelves. Many times I think we miss the point, me included again, that we can create additional products by combining them with others we already have -- by bundling them.

Hit the "Read More..." link below for the rest of the story.

This week I want to talk about bundling your wedding coverages. I was just visiting with a client yesterday who interviewed me to photograph her wedding. I went through my entire enthusiastic presentation, reviewed all the pricing of our various coverages with her, and waited for her response. After we more or less settled on the level of coverage for her event I asked her if she was planing a rehearsal dinner or maybe even Sunday brunch. She mentioned that she had several out-of-town guests coming into Cincinnati, about 50% of the guest list, and that they had several festivities planned for the extended weekend.

Well, once the wedding is booked, we shouldn't necessarily stop there. We have been offering rehearsal dinner coverages and Sunday brunch coverages for many years at David A. Ziser photography. Now granted, these extra coverages are reserved for the more elaborate events taking place in town. But, please, don't be shortsighted enough to think that you can't sell multiple coverages to the right client for their special weekend.

So you may be thinking, "What can I bundle with the wedding coverage?" Well, there are several things you can bundle with your wedding coverage. How about an Engagement session? Maybe you have an engagement coverage already priced in your product listing. At my studio, if my client books a Level 1 coverage -- our best -- we bundle the engagement session with the pricing of that level 1 coverage.

There are times too, when my client books a Level 2 coverage that I may bundle the engagement session in at a reduced price. The reason for the bundling at the reduced price may be because I need to fill the date or maybe the date falls on a slow time of the year and I can afford to bundle the engagement session in with my level to coverage. In any event, it's an incentive for the client to make their buying decision with you and not the competition.

When ever I hear that a client is planing festivities for the entire weekend and they have selected our Level 1 coverage, I'm quickly going to offer to photograph the Friday rehearsal dinner and the Sunday brunch. Instead of selling the client two additional coverages for the two additional events, I'll combine both the Friday rehearsal dinner and a Sunday brunch into one event and offer to bundle my Level 4 (lowest) coverage with their Level 1 coverage. Basically, the incentive is that there is only one charge for one additional level of coverage instead of two charges for the two separate events.

Again, these selling options are generally only available for the larger events happening in town, but never overlook the possible opportunities here.

Another thing you need remember when offering rehearsal dinner coverage and the Sunday brunch coverage is this. Generally the rehearsal dinner cost is covered by the groom's family. That means that the cost of the additional coverage many times may not come out of the brides budget. So by offering to bundle the additional coverage in with the wedding coverage means not only a substantial cost savings to the client but you may also be able to stretch the wedding budget just a bit because someone else usually the groom's family might be picking up that part of the additional cost.

I think it's important here to mention that were not trying to sell the bride and groom everything including the "kitchen sink". What we are really trying to do is make them aware of all the photographic options they have available through my studio. Don't be afraid to give this idea a try. Just remember, "selling" is not a dirty word. "Selling" is finding out what the client is looking for and then helping them to get it.

Hey folks that is it for me today, I've got to get scootin'. I'm scheduled to do a podcast with Gavin Seim over at Pro Photography Show. In just about 15 minutes. I'll keep you posted on the link as soon as it becomes available. I plan to see everybody here again tomorrow for an interesting post entitled "Are We Chasing F-Stops or Images?". See you then, -- David


  1. Hi David, so enjoyed the post, I understand its hard to hit the cash facts. But it sure would be interesting to know what your charging, to see the relationships to your market and mine. I have for several years wanting to know how your bundling and what your packaging. Last year you mentioned that you were selling your images in groups such as 25 or 50 or 100 more images. To a marketing junkie it was like passing the laterst widget in front of a techie. Just showing that wiget to an eng without letting you touch it. Oh I slipped. Oh Buy the way you need to bundel a package for the guys that have all your cd's ect as and up grade. That way we don't buy what we already have.
    Thanks see you in SJ.

  2. David, love your blog and all the information you are sharing with us.

    The only thing that makes me a little bit sad is that the DWC tour doesn't make a jump across the pond to Europe.