Thursday, November 12, 2009

Business Day Thursday: Double Duty Portraits For Double Duty Profits

Good Morning Everybody,

Memphis What a morning we experienced yesterday.  We had an easy but long drive from Birmingham to Memphis but getting the blog posted and getting ourselves out the door was not a pleasant experience.  Somehow or another my trusty virus protected Toshiba laptop picked up a really, really nasty virus which totally locked up the computer.  I still don’t have the problem figured out – so maybe this is a job for the Geek Squad this weekend.

Fortunately we travel with three computers, the “DWUC show” computer, the “tour” computer which we use for blogging, emails, printing registration lists at each city , and the backup computer – a small Acer netbook which I’m working on right now.

I know what your thinking right about now - “Wow! How do those guys get through the airport security check points?” You’re right it can be quite a nightmare sometimes.

We had another excited crowd in Memphis last night.  One person drove all the way from Dallas to be at the program.  Another, all the way from St. Louis.  I have to say it’s quite an honor for me when I hear the travel distances people come to hear the DWUC message.  My sincere thanks to all who have attended the tour so far, the volunteers that have pitched in giving LaDawn a helping hand, and especially those that have come from such great distances to be there.

Hey, I’ve got the little Acer up and running so let’s get on with today’s post.

Double Duty Portraits For Double Duty Profits

How many of you out there photograph the engaged couple as part of your wedding coverage?  It’s always been something we’ve offered our clients.  These sessions always result in a nice selection of images for the couple and significant increase in additional sales to the order. 

Back in the film days, we would shoot about two rows of film – 48 images on my Hasselblad.  Now with digital, everybody’s shooting a lot more – and, that’s a good thing.  The downside is that many photographers are only selling a few of those images to their clients.

Here is my suggestion in how we might deliver many more images to our clients.  Why not offer a product with our wedding coverages that includes a different framed 5x7 image of the couple  that they can place on each table at the wedding reception.  For  a wedding with 200 guests that would translate into about 20-24 images. Heck, maybe call it a “Glad You Could Join Us” package.

Plastic FramesThe images would be designed as such. Each 4x6 image of the couple, a different image for each table, would be designed with a half inch border around the image making the final image a convenient  5x7 size. I didn’t have time to mock one up this morning, but I hope you get the idea.

Each of these different images would be placed in “loaner” frames – nothing very expensive, maybe even those very inexpensive acrylic frames you can pick up at a craft store.

Each one of those images would have your branding on them in the bottom part of the boarder saying something like:

Photograph courtesy of John Smith Photography

Because you are getting the promotional benefit from the displayed images, be sure your pricing reflects a significant savings to the couple.  After the event, collect all the framed prints.  Once back at your studio, remove the images and trim off the decorative boarder and your branding. Now you are left with just the original 4x6 image.

Neil Books Here is where the “double duty” part comes in.  Now mount those 4x6 prints into an inexpensive “peel and stick” album – there are several vendors that offer these books.  One of my favorites is Neil Enterprises. Be sure that the finished album has your branding showing, usually inside the front cover. 

The finished album is presented to the bride and groom as part of their wedding package they booked with you.  And there you have it –a nice studio promotion for you at the wedding reception with the guests enjoying your beautiful photography of the lovely couple and the couple receiving a nice album of casual portraits which they can enjoy with their wedding album.

There are probably several variations on this theme, but I especially like the repackaging aspect of placing those reception images into a final album presentation. I mean, what are your clients going to do with a bunch of framed prints? You’ve turn all those framed prints into a solid saleable product and at the same time found a good solution for several of those images your clients told you they liked from the original engagement session.

Hey gang, that’s it for me today.  We’ve got another pretty good drive from Memphis to Nashville so we are hitting the road shortly.  Have a great rest of the day – I hope to see of you this evening.  Be sure to come on up and say “HI”.  See ya’ then.  -David

1 comment:

  1. Hi David

    I use a simlar principle at Weddings but execute it differently.

    I bring along a laptop with my finished Engagement images of the couple set in a slideshow in Lightroom, and hook it up to my Dell 22 inch ultrasharp monitor, and set it up at the guestbook table, so the guests can see all of the engagement photos if they like.

    Below the monitor I have a special Set of MOO.COM business cards with my favourite 10 Engagement images of the couple, on the back of the card, it has my information, with a couple lines of text that say

    "John & Jane's Wedding photos will be available for viewing and print ordering in a few weeks at"

    The cards direct them to my website, which has a portfolio flash based component, as well as a set of Smugmug galleries, and the guests can view and order prints right from smugmug.

    The guests get both a great image of their friends whose wedding they attended that they can stick on the fridge, and I sneak my contact and website info in there too. Works great! I get 75% of my work from people who go to Weddings I photograph.