Good Morning Everybody,
We are off and running again today. My newsletter goes out later today - you can register over in the right hand column. And, I leave shortly to spend the day shooting some Technique Tuesdays posts and a few other materials for some other "irons in the fire" going on. It should be fun, I'm looking forward to a wonderful day. I hope to have an image or two to share with you later this week and next week as well.
Lot's going on today - check out the August Webinar announcement - I've already started pulling the images for the program. It should be pretty exciting - here is the quick link for the program description and to register.
Over the last several months I tried put together a complete series literally walking you through how we book a portrait, shoot a portrait, and sell portrait. The 16 episode series is consolidated at the end of this post with all the links to the past articles for your convenience. That should make it easy for you to go back and review all the others.
I hope this resource in itself will be beneficial for your own business building strategies in your own studios. Anyway, let's get on with today's post.
It's a lengthy post, so hit the "Read More ..." link below for the rest of the story.
Here we go...
It’s Show Time - Delivering The Finished Product
After finalizing a client's order as we discussed a few weeks ago, the next step is for me to meet with my staff and go over all aspects of the order including any mounting and framing necessary to complete the order.
Once everything is printed, it needs to be packaged for delivery. If a client has ordered what we call studio prints – a print that is not mounted – they are placed in their own protective plastic sleeve, wrapped in decorative tissue, then placed into a presentation box. Marathon Press has some great delivery options in their BellaGrafica line [link]. Their presentation boxes and bags really add some pizazz when delivering your finished product.
Images ordered in our “Masters” and “Signature” line are mounted on our acid free mount board. I choose a two ply for 8 x 10 and smaller prints and at least a three ply on 11” x 14” up to 20” x 24” prints. Pacific Mount [link] has my preferred selections in mount board availability. It also comes in a “self-stick” version which we prefer for ease of use. All of our 20” x 24” and larger signature prints are mounted and stretched on canvas.
The large majority of our prints are delivered to our clients carefully, impeccably, and beautifully framed. Our clients receive a 20% allowance off the cost of their frames if we do the framing for them. We handle the same high-quality frames as any other quality framer in our area so the client can shop with us and enjoy a 20% savings. By the way, who better to "ice the cake than the baker" anyway.
When the order is complete we give a call to the client and make an appointment for them to pick up their finished portraits. This is where we do things a bit differently than most studios. The client's order is not simply wrapped, boxed, and ready to go. When our clients arrive to pick up their portraits we present their finished portraits beautifully displayed in our studio.
Our clients are used to entering our studio and seeing our regular sample displays. This time though they enter our studio and see are all their beautiful images on display. They are pleasantly surprised because they are seeing them how they will be displayed in their own home. It's a wonderful surprise for the client and I think they thoroughly enjoy it.
Depending on the size of the prints ordered, I many times personally offer to hang the portraits in their home. It's just a little added service that we provide and many of our clients take us up on this opportunity. In any event, I think the offer adds a little sizzle to the delivery and just enhances the entire delivery process that much more. I think that clients enjoy the added personal touch and I think it's reflected in their expressions of gratitude on delivery day.
Remember, be sure to give them a stack of 100 business cards with your favorite image and your contact information. We've discussed the entire business card promotion back in my post right here. Once more the client is surprised and elated because we have exceeded their expectations.
We help our clients to the car with the portraits and say our goodbyes. I love it when a plan comes together. From our first telephone conversation to our first meeting in person through the portrait session itself then through the selection process and on the final delivery – it's all in how you respect your client that sets you apart from so many other studios. It's great to have the best steak in town but you must sizzle it better than anybody else to keep your clients coming back year after year.
Here is a listing of the previous 15 posts on the subject. I think by reading and rereading these posts you have a wonderful resource in building your own family portrait business. Thanks for hanging in here the last several months and reading these posts. It's been fun putting them together for you and I hope you found them useful, helpful, and beneficial to your bottom line.
14. It's Showtime
On that note folks, I'm out of here. We've got a big day shooting on location several videos for my Technique Tuesday posts and a lot of other projects I've got up my sleeve. I'll plan to see everybody here tomorrow for business day Thursday. Make it a great day, – David.