Good Afternoon Everybody,
I can't wait for our conversation with Lynn Michelle today. She really sounds fired about about her Super Bowl shoot on Sunday - she should have some great stories to tell. The other thing that struck me when we talked was how busy she was with her photography.
With most photogs complaining about where all the business had gone, how is it that Lynn can be booked solid for the rest of the year - inquiring photog minds want to know ;~). We'll find out at 2:00 p.m. EST today. You can still register right here. Hope to see you there.
OK, time to get on with today's post.
Running Your Business after The Wedding Shoot - Part 1
This is one of the most asked questions I get in my emails and through the Skribit widget to the right. I've covered much of what we do around here in several posts over the years here at DPT. That doesn't mean we are still doing the same old thing. You've got to be quick on your feet these days to stay ahead of the competition.
Another reason I'm doing this series is the fact that it will put all of what we do in one place where you will be able to reference them easily in the future. So, that said, let's get started.
Who In The World are You?
One of the most important things a business person needs to do is let the client know who they are and create what I call a sense of “stickiness” with the current and prospective client. Before we get to the actual work of post production and selling our wedding photography to our clients, I want to touch on this subject first - I just think it's important to mention.
As you all know, I was recently heavily involved in our PhotoPro Expo, a great convention if there ever was one. Anyway, I collected business cards from several of the photographers attending and I was shocked by what I saw! What was so surprising to me - clearly 50% of the business cards I received DID NOT include the owner's name! Over 50%!!!!!!!!
What is this about? Sure, they had the studio's name on their business cards, but not their own name. This is about the worst kind of self promotion one could engage in. It's called SELF promotion - that means PROMOTE YOURSELF, not just your business. Folks these days want a much more personal connect with whom they're doing business with and you can't do that if they don't know your name. Get your own name on your business cards if you don't already.
Creating Client "Stickiness"
Now having said that, I never thought business cards were a great idea anyway. Why, because they never call you back anyway. That business card is long lost before they need to call you. The bottom line - your potential client is now disconnected from you. Business success demands a "stickiness" with all your potential clients. What do I mean by "stickiness"? I mean a way to stay connected with that potential client.
Here is a little known thing about David A. Ziser Photography - I have never bought, used, or owned a business card. Madness you say - not really. I learned early in my career that the potential client would lose the card before they ever got around to calling me. When ever a person asked me for a card at a wedding, I always let them know that I didn't have one on me, could they give me one of theirs. They always obliged. If they didn't have one on them, I simply wrote their contact info down on a paper napkin.
Now I have "stickiness" to that lint. Now's it's up to me to make the contact with the potential clients. I don't have to cross my fingers and wait for them to call me. Now I have a 100% guarantee that I will be following up with them because I WANT their business. If I give them a card, I have to WAIT FOR their business - never happened for me over all the years I've been in business.
Super Glue "Stickiness"
OK, I've got their contact information, but how can I improve even more on this "stickiness" situation. Simple, I press the heck out of them when they first ask for a card. Like I said, don't give them a card - ever!!! Now you can whip out your iPad and show them your portfolio - wow, that is impressive. Those images look superb in the slightly darkened room of a reception hall.
Let them select one of their favorites and email it to them. Now you have their contact information and they have one of the best calling cards in the world - a sample of your best work in their inbox which now they can easily forward to their son, daughter, mom, or dad also mentioning the fact about how they met this super nice photographer at last weekend's wedding.
I hope you get the idea here - business cards are a passive way to interact with a potential client. The technology today, iPads and all the tablets hitting the market, make it so easy to pro-actively connect to your potential client that your chances of reconnecting and doing business with them are supremely enhanced.
And isn't that what we want when we interact with a potential client - absolutely!
Hey gang, that's it for me today. Next week I'll share with you what we do after the wedding starting with the minute we return for the job. Hope to see you then.
Time for me to get scooting around here. Our webcast with Lynn Michelle begins shortly and we got a few things to prep for the show. Yep, you can still register right here. Hope to see you in a few.