Client Management Systems


Balancing Work, Family, and Photography


Lesson Info

Client Management Systems

All right, so I have been referencing for the last two days that we were going to get to the client management aspect kind of give you but a little tools I just been floating around in the brain. This is where it all really comes together in order to be able to create and manage a client from maximum marketing efficiency and everything. So if you have any questions, just stop me at any time same for the at home audience as well. I mean, there are college courses on client management alone. We were talking about this on break though even a lot of this I've learned it's out in the real world so it's going to sound like a lot just talking a little bit and then we will get it for you guys it's all very heavy and set up in the beginning kind like what you just saw. That was a little preview with the filtering and the information before in the in the different newsletter stuff I'm scheduling of e mails. It was a lot of set up in the beginning, but like the quotable that I had last section it...

's going to pay dividends in the ends and before just tease a little load off of this once you hear all of this, there are people that you can hire get ahead of myself because outsourcing is after this segment but there are people that you can hire to do this for you, and I'll have recommendations when we get the outsourcing of those that can help you with little tidbits of this just a little bit here and there. You don't happen, so they stress yourself out of hiring one person in order to dio to set up for you guys, at least in the end. The whole point of this we've been talking about for the last two days is quality of life really important for me that I am able to maximize the punch and everything that I dio and be able to go to my kidssoccer games into ballet practice or whatever it is? So everything is that three one bet your betterment detrick benefit to detriment ratio I want to get as many benefits out of one action is possible, and this is where everything culminates into one, and many of you may even already have a system. There is a whole bunch of working parts we don't really realize this kind of consolidates everything for you toe work on don't freak out with the big term of client management system, our database it's just really the term that I'm using to define because it manages the clients and business interactions between the two of you. So that you have the best consistent relationship is possible. We talked about yesterday that we have all the standardization so that's the baseline, everybody received the exact same information and the consistency across the board, which is really important when he started getting referrals and some feel like they have a better so they get more benefits than the other or they don't get certain information, least inefficiencies if you're able to just have a standard across the board, consistent workflow and what you provided more time for those one on one and those possible little customer service and upsell opportunities that we've been talking about with the different tools. All right, so why client mantra systems like pretty much just quit over this ahead of myself? Consistency? The baseline is the same it's, not just the experience that you can provide frees you up to do this individualized thanks for your clients, which really sets us apart from one photographer to next. Many photographer, especially those listening you don't to raise your hand, they feel already overwhelmed and they're just trying to do some do the minimum that they could do to make a client happy and get to the sale on and that's not enough on we were talking kind of on break, and I believe that. Business is really what makes a break businesses in general, and any industry in photography is no different for that. I mean, you know, there's, there are levels of proficiency in the actual products and pictures that you put out, but really what you do with your clients is what's really important? I mean, you just look a different brands that are out there that can demand higher amounts because they get great customer service is, well, apple is one that I think it's a fantastic business model. Obviously I'm looking to mac books here they're doing something right and it's, because when I walk into a store, I'm ok panel higher price a little bit more confident it because they have the same baseline customer service experience across the board because they have this kind of information outlined for them. On top of that, we also client lister gold, we talked in the last segment a little bit about the compilation of client list we're going to have the leads that come in, um, and we're going to be able, but we're going efficiently consistently get those leads that we're going to be able to build those. People aren't ready to pull the trigger in order to book you yet, but you're able to keep and tap into them anyways, you have the inquiry is that reach out and touch you, but may not be ready to book, and then you have those that have booked, so those are three might mean levels, client list or so super important. If you are not keeping a client list, you're missing so much money in so much marketing and so much potential for your business, I can't even I can't even express to you what it is. I mean, there's companies that make their money selling client list, you know, you always get those marketers that call you your list that you are on a list that was sold at one point, I'm not telling you to sell your client list that's all I'm saying, my emphasis is that client list are gold, they're worth money information. If you how this information, why are you not using it to your benefit? So now we're going to see how to use it allows you to have targeted marketing and laundry to hone in on somebody that you're able to do certain things with, for example, and I said a little bit ago about the client that inquired, as she said, that she couldn't afford me, and normally I would have written her off for a business owner would have written him off that they weren't our time and investment. I just didn't get to follow up by keeping around that quarterly email on her getting to see the events and then finding out that I was moving she had been saving for an entire year in order to book me on dso when I sent one of those final e mails out of hand about to leave, this is the last state that I'm gonna be here she went ahead and move forward with booking me she's been one of my highest referring clients him that we don't even live in the same geographical location anymore and I firmly believe it's because I didn't give up on her and it didn't take any more time and money yeah, time and money in order to keep up with her, I don't want to remove somebody from a list, the apartment they remove any leads from re listed a temporary circumstances because at the time they had a lot going on whether they were expending for personal reasons and they couldn't book me, but they didn't mean that in a year that wasn't going to change just because someone can't afford he doesn't necessarily mean they don't value I mean that's a big myth is the people say they will find the money if they value I value a lot of things I brought you some very nice cars out there, but I don't have the money if I wanted to say about forward, I could do it, and I would do it it it's so I do value that, and I will work towards it, but just because I can't this year doesn't mean I can't in ten years, and so I don't want people to give me simply because of life circumstances, just like I didn't give up on that one girl woman I'm sorry. Um, okay, and then you're gonna pop your client's overall because they're going to feel like it's actually individualize that you're remembering these things, but you're actually automating it and it's remembering at all for you, your brain is only so big. We have so many working parts, which is why we're here in the first place, but they're going to be a lot happier. The example that actually have for this is that I mean, this crosses over to the targeted marketing that we have is that I had a client that came to me, her husband's deployed, and we did a boot or a session on doubt of that, I was able to provide a little customer service opportunity because we did her session, and then she was really like, I don't want to send this nice album overseas whatever blah, blah, blah and this was after the sessions all done, they had already paid for everything because I listened to her and I had noted in a system that when I went to go water, I was able to throw in one, those little extra, many accordion trifle things, and I gave it to her in there with a note and said, thank you for your service, thank you for hiss, and then I let her because he was in afghanistan. I let her choose whether to mail it obviously cause I don't have his address anyways, but I wouldn't let her have the opportunity decided she was going to send that book to him and mail it so as we're going to see here in a minute, she was tied with the client. I had all that information compiled together, but then I also thought how she has a kid and her husband's coming home. What other two other targeted marketing can I do to her? I don't want to just move on from his being a bird or a client. She could do a couple session or family session, maybe even the kids session if I thought it got kids, war can reach out to her and refer her out if I have a network. Like we're going talk about excitements, that's three or four themes just by examining who she is, I did a customer service opportunity, and then three, four more things have targeted marketing that aiken, d'oh and she had it coming back thing we did like two sessions and referred her out and had good will with another photographer got referrals of other people out of it, so one session had all that steam, so the basic client information that you need as you're going to have to find out who are they anyway saying, what do you call them when you're going to booking the session? Who what name is going to need to be on the contract? You need their names, the type of sessions they're interested in, the products that they're interested in, which can kind of also be done in hey, which collection are you interested in purchasing? Targets them in on the type of collection and maybe the price range that they're looking at buying but also can ask them or show you the type of products that they're looking at? And I mentioned it before if they say, hey, I'm interested in album, I have a great starting place when it comes time, when we get to that cell session, we pull up a presentation tool, we get through the favorites. The very first thing I'm probably start with if they talked about an album of the beginning of the session is going to an album and it's gonna be in my notes and it's all going to be identified for me through all my management systems and then the potential crossover elected has talked about a second ago what am I going to tag them as I will show you how to do the tagging their boudoir decision? But what are the potential things and aiken market to them for? Okay, an extra info that I may need to know are there special circumstances in their life? Do they have foster children that can't be published that I'm gonna offer the model release and make sure I remember that it can't be published in certain areas all do their children have special needs? Or is everybody in the family session? Are they actually the parents? My example for this is I assumes when I must say sally booked me with her two kids, I assumed when she put the names of who the models were that that was the dad when we were shooting, they acted like he was there dad, family session, why would I think any otherwise? Because I didn't ask if there's any specifics, we're shooting and I said to the little boy, hey, can you go stand next to your dad turn to me he's not my daddy the whole session I just went like totally deflated it was his step dad that he didn't call him daddy he called him by his first name and so had I known the specifics then I could have said, how can you go stand over here and I wouldn't have I felt maybe they didn't really have an issue with it because we didn't have any other issues later the client seem happy but for me the whole session of one god watch this one like a totally and all it would have taken was some information it in take of the client is there any extra information I need to know? Because she did mention later that they were having issues with the transition to them by him being there step dad so it really was obviously a very sensitive thing that I could have avoided simply by getting information and that also turner's into if there if that dad and I can't I mean this could be like a three day class. If that dad wanted to purchase images of the kids out of that session, then I need to find out if there's any issues how that goes, who needs to sign what who has legal rights and that sort of things that opens up whole door for me as well just from getting information from the client of extras such is that on other things that would include in there, like it's, and this is a good time to find out if they are military or public service, because that I could remind them of the poor motion or the discounts that I pursue, incentives that I provide because they may have missed in the client guy. But this is another opportunity to tell me, because if someone reminds me that I get a discount on something, I would feel a lot better than if I see it after the transaction I've already paid for it. You know, even though you're not entitled to a discount, necessarily, but it's a good customer service tool, they can put that in there. All right? So what if some other information you guys have specifically wish you at astra clients, I'm looking up in studio audience that you needed up front that you didn't necessarily have, and maybe it won't south for the vast and it's gone really well and you being able to use it for marketing? I did a wedding and I asked the groom good, I said, we need a shot with the groom and his mother and father, and I did know the father was dead and it was awkward. Yeah, well, that's another thing for weddings I think is really key wedding photographers is two major you sit down and find out all the different I always say is there's somebody specifics that's not on the standardless it's because I may not know that your father's passed away or that you are really close to aunt sally in seattle. I may not know that, and then later there, man, we'll just by simply asking, it doesn't take any more time, and it really is a customer service. So anybody else? Yeah, for like, boudoir, even just standard portrait ce I found with, like women specifically that finding out if there's any certain like part of their body that they're very sensitive about that, like asking for that up front hopes me kind of cater tio um, you know, coaching them on where the right things toe wear or the angles that I compose them in there a little more flattering because you you khun posed them in the same way, but just from a different angle could make all the difference in the world in the final product when I think you're also instilling confidence from them, they're getting confidence in you because you're really guiding them to the process that's a really sensitive thing, especially from women and body image and all that, and so by asking them direct because they may not think about that, they may be thinking it internally, but they mean, I think it about it from a shooting perspective, but by you asking it really shows that familiarity it's almost like that women's bond or, you know, a little bit more that you're really vigilant in making this really important for me as well, yeah, um, we have sometimes grandparent's come along to the extended shoots and so just asking, like, how is their mobility? You know, I'm not going to go to a park that has lots of hills or anything like that, so we have one coming up that I know one of them is, you know, not able to walk us far, so we chose a nice flat spot, and but mobility is always something like, oh, I should have told you that they're in a wheelchair, like, yeah, I'm glad you brought that up because I had a client when I was in tech, isis, that I was going there every year we did a family picture on di noted that in the accounts that when the name came in, if I didn't remember it off the bat, I did, but say, I handed over my email. You know and I was having someone help them decide the locations that that wasn't noted down that person that I outsourced to our associate shooter may not have any clue then you show up at a location where they want to be on the beach but he needed a pad role on well then whose name is on that I'm glad you brought that up was that's actually real life example of that why I make sure that I keep all of that in case I ever because what if I got hurt and I needed a substitute a photographer I have the right to do that in my contract that if for whatever reason I can't be there and that's really really important to have anyone oh yes family drama oh god that's why I kind of like russia that really quickly yes. What about it? Oh yeah I mean I just got asked about like you know, z I was having a tough time asking about it but I always feel I have to ask about it but it's it's a tough thing to sort of for me for me to be your mama drama I mean like what do you what do you say to a client? Yeah, but I just say is there anything specific I need to know especially when there's minors involved and it's split homes and you can kind of see it in the way that they it's respond I have had a client before that they were very upfront we can't be published and it was really weird and you didn't really understand she wouldn't pinpoint why but apparently I need to be a really secretive thing I couldn't publish it had only give it to her it's because the biological follow they've been married they split he was really abusive and they were eating so to speak and so she finally told me but had I really impressed that front I really need to know that I can manage your privacy for you then when I started feeling that a little bit I could have coast it once I told her well there's no problem at all she's like why she felt so much better and friends after that I think because it really and still more of the confidence and who she chose as well I don't know you can't directly ask about family drama but just I think one does have to go with your gut because there's all sorts of things legal implications they can occur when even when you're on this session have you ever had a session where you had to say what are you guys figure this out and I'll go over there like just posed jimmy okay but we watch football like yeah I'm like I'm going to change lenses now I'll be back in like twenty minutes now yeah couples every kind of like and it's, like, hey, I'm gonna take the kids for meant you can go ahead and do like kid individual shots or if it's a couples session, I'm like, I'm going to change lenses, get john running water, I got water at the car, I mean, like, you know, it's awkward whenever people start bickering and I don't want to push through it because if they are, then they're going to sting like this. Oh, what am I going to do with that? I can't sell an image to try to get them to loosen up. So much is possible who's yours. So speaking of family drama, I had a client. I shot their little girl, and the mother signed the model release in the contract, all the papers and everything. And then later she came back to me and said I needed to pull the photos off online because parents had split. He doesn't want it he's going toe sue her if I have the images online, even though she was fine with it. And so I mean, legally there, I mean she's. A parent she signed. But, you know, even what if he came back later and wanted to buy images for me and they're split, but she signed the contract. So she my only client or how does that work? It depends what it was their custody agreement. I mean, that's, why I'm saying I said this could be, like, a three day illegal thing because it's, what is their custody agreement? What of the law say? What is? You know, what is everything I really unlike from that situation out of pulled in, send yanni and delay jerry springer figure this out like, you know what I mean? Because I don't have time a to deal with it, and I don't really want to legally get caught up in it, so as long as I still completed the transaction with her, I'd pull him no problems that here you go, and I probably would not target market her anymore for future just because it is going to end up being I'm still gonna be cordial and finish the relationship, but holly not going to try to push her and like the crossover promotion stuff from there, I see a family drama is like, especially at weddings, I mean, that's, that's a big one. Okay, so this is the type of information that is so crucially to know not just to avoid the drama but to ensure the different types of things of how you're going to sell them higher again interact with them because a lot of stuff tells you and your fee initial communications how someone is really going to be I mean, we women have pretty good intuition shin on this not saying men don't but you can kind of feel but keeping in mind if you're in a text on ly conversation with somebody there may be messages there's maysam kind of added two coming across it's not meant to be there they may be sitting or stern spaghetti list on the phone and trying to like send you an email and just a short sweet they don't mean anything bias it just kind of be vigilant though see if that kurt tone is actually a toner for two straight to the point on dh when they start asking the information I want these questions to be appointed as possible I mean the extra one is kind of open because I don't want to say do you have family drama? You know? But I will say are there any other issues that I may need to be know about and it kind of leaves it open for the mobility aspect or special needs or those types of things and it just leaves it open and that's still something carry through the whole session that, like, what? The situation? We're with a little kid, I said, the daddy think I kind of solid in the beginning, and I probably should have said, hey, you know, and reintroduce myself for something to find out and see how they interacted with one another, and I could have clarified that at another level, but I didn't, and luckily it didn't destroy the relationship. But if I had asked it fully affront and followed my gut when I initially solid and e mails that have been ok, okay, so that what are we going to do with all this information? We can weigh, haven't information put out, you could send it out through the email, which we talk about here you can do it through the questionnaire form automated, like we talked about yesterday with the different plug in and stuff that are available. But what do we actually do? Receive it? Most people take it, we move forward, he booked the session, move forward, have cell session. We go about our way until the end of your client. Give boom, that's it on and that is bare minimum way people are doing on. I think, the majority of photographers in your area since that every areas, assad traded area this's good ways want to utilize the information to set yourself apart? The first one is to the use of temple it'd emails on dh. This is so that we could take the information we gain, we can quickly respond. This is how I'm able to actually physically sit in the car pool line and respond like that. Not just the quiet guy because I don't want to just respond to some of the client guide. Lincoln that's it and the checklist me has got the message. It kind of guides them, but it's so much just sent me an email back with that lincoln go. We want to do with this. Do you? I mean, like, I need some context. I need some guidance for needs six. You'd instill some confidence in me to pay you money database systems. Please don't let your eyes rolling back your head and just using this simply because that's what it is a scree. Eight ibs. I think we baucus this, but there are systems set up that I'm going to show you that can do all of this and manage the information efficiently and automated for you. And then we will talk a little bit if we have time left on client. Workflow on and we're not going to go through a thursday on all of it we're gonna hit the high level stuff that we talked about here of how to really create one I do share mine it's on the resource list of how I walk through all this these air just little key parts of it. I mean, we've still got all the other stuff, the actual cell session and actual shooting and all these other aspects that we need to plan and that's at the law talk dot com for slash creative live orb is dash revamp dot com four slash creative life to links just in case the site goes down again. So client management template and emails what are they? Well, not to insult your intelligence, but they are something that establishes their serves as a pattern. For example, you have a chef, they have all of this ingredients, and they know they want to create x. What is the thing that gets them from a to z a recipe, whether it's from their knowledge or recipe that they're actually cooking off of on. So that is a template that is going to take all of this mess and create a nice little meal to eat information is the huge port of the client workflow it's, not the shooting it's, not the interaction it's, not the branding it's, not the packaging with a cute little bows and your stamp on top that means that's great but that means nothing if you're not doing anything with the information that I'm giving you so these are the go to pre written language and information to use in the course of your client hello I'm gonna walk you guys through on how to create it so it's individual like you just asked me a second ago jim of do how do I talk we are going to start with some pretty sterile things to say but you're going to fill it in with how you are I mean when I talked to a client so you have to sign the contract I'm not you need to sign the contracts we have a legally binding agreement together and you are the client I am the photographer I don't talk like that it's you know you can sign the contract it's on client checklist and that will ensure and protect us both and we'll be able to move on away something that that very nice and informal but we're going to start with those key aspects in order to create a template in e mails so it is not your fraternity biography that determines your success that business at all it is your management provision of information the client and also what you do with the information the client gives you it is super important because the information I've been harping on this is like that client list, it is gold how? What if you're not using it? You're missing all sorts of information the client guy that we talked about yesterday is just the appetizer there giving your client this in the information what you do with it is the meal that you're feeding the client this is where the value comes in we were displaying the value going to provide and the people kind of drop off, they do the session, they do the cells, whatever, but everything that would carry through bills up the value over under promise overdeliver always this that right always get it backwards under promise over deliver so this is the meat that you were actually the meal you're feeding the client to get them held it feel the experience and leads to referrals and higher sells overall. So why did have it saves time every step of the way? Because when I sit and get out my local list in my little office block that I've already predetermined, you've already listened to this course for two days and I've got my local list out and I sit down to do them I know boom right there if any responding email I already have it pre drafted it's consistent everything's in there every clients get the exact same out information that consistent the consistent baseline experience and I don't have to reinvent the wheel because I may be in the process of doing this and the kids happen to start crying or something, and I forget half of it, I send the email, I may have left out the non refundable retainer part and then it's kind of awkward when I have to go back, even though it's on the checklist, if I have to go back and say, hey, you know, you didn't pay that if I didn't include that in my information in my email or the thing about the permit and license for shooting in a certain area that's going? If that's more money out of their pocket, they're not could be happy if I front load the information, makes a little bit smoother, greases the wheels allows me to work on the go my carpool pickup and drop off times waiting for soccer practice to end and those types of things while they're changing is when I am working on the go the template emails, we just talked about how to filter emails through gmail, the exact same way I stick these template e mails that were going to create, and I have them in my inn in my draft folder, copy paste boom include the information in response to what I just received that we just talked about the little extras may there's a mobility issue. I have my temple, it'd email of information. They need to know of the next step in the process. Plus, no problem. What kind of accommodations do we need for timmy, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah? I think there's some great locations. What do you think of these? If I had had a right hold, the other stuff that every other client gets and that extra, I'd be there for a rally, about ten minutes, whereas I can do it about two to three by simply copying and pasting and being able to work on the go.

Class Description

"Achieve work/life balance” doesn’t have to be an abstract goal -- it can be an immediate, concrete reality. Join Rachel Brenke, author of The Laundry List: A Mom’s Guide to Running a Successful Business and Home, to learn how to build a photography business while remaining present in your family life without feeling constantly pulled in different directions.

Rachel will share her expertise as an MBA, an attorney, and long-time business consultant. The checklists and tools Rachel provides will help you lay a sound legal and financial foundation for your business, so you’ll have more time to focus on both your photography and your professional life. You’ll learn how to efficiently plan and outsource work so your business runs more seamlessly. You’ll develop strategies for sales, networking, and business growth that you can accomplish in more efficiently in less time.

The blend of business fundamentals, legal skills, and real-life scenarios you’ll explore in this course will prepare you for anything you might face as a professional photographer, giving you more time to lead a stress-free, balanced life.