Good Afternoon Everybody,
Better late than never, like they say. I was out of the office early this morning and just returned a short while ago – hence the late post today. Nevertheless, I wanted to get the fourth part of my workflow series to you, so here we go.
After the Wedding: Workflow – Part 4
Last week’s 3rd part of this series [link], I covered how we go through the final image edit and prepare the image presentation for our clients. So far, everything has been fairly straight forward. The topic for this week’s post is of crucial importance if you want to be successful in selling your wedding images. Why? Because it is the beginning to the sales making process – so please pay attention.
We’ve taken several thousand images at the wedding, selected our very favorite images, tweaked color and density when necessary, arranged the images into a story telling order, stylized a select 50 or so, added promotional titles to the beginning and end of the show, and are ready for upload to the web.
Uploading To The Web
Once everything is prepared and to this stage, we export the final image presentation into a separate folder from which we will upload the to my hosting service – More Photos.com. What’s important is the size of the exported images. We export the images at a dimension of 1280px on the long side. That’s an easy export process in Lightroom.
Why 1280px? It’s because of the way More Photos posts the images to my on-line gallery. For most on-line galleries, you will see thumbnails, which when clicked on bring up a larger, but not too large an image.
More Photos gives my clients the option of clicking one more time to make selected parts of the image even larger – 1280px on the long side is the preferred size to see the larger image. The reason for the selected size enlargement is to be able to verify a good expression. Another reason for this selective enlargement is to avoid anyone from doing a right mouse click nab of the image.
Client Viewing – NOT Final Selection!
The process to upload the images to More Photos is fairly simple with their desktop up-loader. After a few hours, all the images are residing on More Photos site ready for client viewing. OK gang, this is where we separate the men from the boys when it comes to selling.
I DO NOT want the bride and groom to make a final selection of their images from the on-line galleries. I only want them to select their favorites. It’s vital that you get this. If a client is only given the opportunity to select their final images from the on-line series you worked so hard to create for them – YOU ARE CHEATING YOUR CLIENT out of what they could have in their album!!!
Do I have your attention? Here’s the real deal gang, unless we can sit with our clients and share with them what we saw with our mind’s eye and felt in our hearts as we photographed their wedding celebration, there is NO POSSIBLE WAY they will put together a satisfyingly complete series of images that truly captures their special day. The artist – that is, we the photographer – must be part of their decision making process. It is in serving our clients in this manner that truly helps us be the best photographer/artist/designer for our clients!
Spinning The Wheel Of MIS-Fortune
Placing images on-line and spinning the “wheel of MIS-fortune” will only guarantee you anemic sales. More importantly, “spinning the wheel” provides absolutely no opportunity to share your creativity and how YOU felt when you were photographing their wedding celebration. Doing business this way completely sidesteps the climax of the photographer/client experience.
You have worked so hard to produce for them – what?– a small collection of images they select from their on-line experience. Wouldn’t you rather have that climax be a thrilled client who shares your enthusiasm for not just their wedding, but also an exciting collection of images that they will enjoy for the rest of their lives! You can only make that happen if you are part of the image selection process.
Our Clients Select Their Favorites, Not Their Finals
Our clients are instructed to select only their “favorites” from the our on-line galleries. After they have noted their favorites, and we give them at least 14 days to do just that, we schedule an appointment for them to come into our studio to review their selections and help them with their final selections for their album.
It is during this meeting that the final magic happens – our clients are thrilled with their final choices and can’t wait to see their album! During that “in person” meeting we are also able to showcase all the our other fabulous products and ideas that will further enhance and help them enjoy their images even more!
Next week, I’ll walk you through that sales process – hope you’ll join me because that’s the fun part of the entire sales process.
DAZNOTE: As I was writing this article I decided to give my buddies a call at More Photos and see if they would offer any of our DPT readers a special incentive to give then a try if anyone was interested. Mike Connors, the president said no problem.
Here is the deal – give More Photos a call at (231) 932-0855 then hit ext #4. Tell them David Ziser sent you, and you’ll receive one month FREE and 1/2 price set up! WHAT A DEAL!! It was really nice for Mike to extend this offer. So if you’re interested, give a call.
Hey gang, that’s it for me today. Tomorrow we head to Sandusky, Ohio for the Professional Photographers of Ohio Convention. This has always been one of my favorite conventions to attend. I’ve been going for years and have many friends to visit and reconnect with. It will be good to catch up with them this weekend. And, as always, I’ll have a show report for you on Monday.
Tomorrow’s post will be late in the day so check back in the afternoon. I just may have a tidbit or two to share with you.
Hope to see you then, David