Marketing Your Boudoir Business


Boudoir on the Edge


Lesson Info

Marketing Your Boudoir Business

I'm going to change the tone completely, and we're going to talk about sales now and the power of word plan sales, so I had mentioned before that my degrees in english and obviously we have a passion for food to our and photography, someone we're combining everything together, it's something that I really, really love um, we don't advertise for boudoir, and I know that we've hinted on this a couple of times, but everything for us is about word of mouth, and we talked about how with the bride, you potentially have one or two or three other people that she's seeing, but with a boudoir session, you have an infinite amount of people that she's talking to women couples, we do a lot of couples sessions so that you're having two people go out and spread your name and spread the word for you. So that's also an amazing thing boudoir is a lot easier to sell, then weddings and that's what I'm going to talk about a little bit next? Um, so I know that I've had when I was off to the side there I was...

getting a bunch of text from people saying that they were asking how to get to the forum because it's not something you could type into google, so if people are looking for that it's due more forum dot com just before I get for before we forget that so the first thing when it comes to sales, stop being afraid we had an attendee, caitlin at one of our workshops, who she's canadians so again like you and said maybe she just felt like she had to say sorry for asking for money because that's what we do, we say sorry a lot, but you need to stop being afraid the money is there. Your clients are there to spend the money with you and x to invest in this experience, so you need to make sure that you stop being afraid asked him to invest in the experience you don't want somebody to come and do the session and leave you want them to come in, I have an amazing experience and then walk away with an amazing product. So that's, what? We're going to talk about a little bit next. I don't want to call boudoir a frivolous purchase because we obviously believe very much what we're doing, so I would call it a boutique purchase or a high end purchase like it's different than a wedding and that was a wedding. People are saving up for an entire year and there's things that they're expected to buy, they're expected to buy a cake, they're expected to have a dress or rings and those different things that they have to have with boudoir there is a investment that the person is making. They're saving up for it. They know that it's a special purchase and the money is there, you need to show them the proper proper items for them to purchase and boudoir can be very lucrative as well. That's what we want to talk about here, too, makes a connection. This is something really important before we get to the meat and bones of the sales stuff your work that you present, you need to be able to make your connection with your clients before they even come through the door with your work and then make the connection with you when you're with, um, during the actual experience, and make the connection with thumb through the photos at the end and the the process of purchasing with, um, if your client's fully understand your why you and said that often he'll talk about our wide during the actual session, they're not going to feel bad about putting money into the investment. I'm a mom, I have a hard time buying things for myself. I can't even tell you the last time you and bought something for himself. He has a really hard time doing that and so often. Mother's more specifically will come in and have a hard time making the investment cause they feel bad because they know that their kids need soccer cleats or school photos air coming up and they need you to address those type of things if you can get your clients to understand the connection to your why and bring that through in the work and the session and then in the purchase you were giving them thie ok you're giving them the permission that it is okay to do something special for themselves and for them to invest in themselves because of the connection that you're making with the clients this's a wet not the wedding photo here sorry but david and krystal we're a wedding clients of ours and you and shut the wedding alone there were only twelve guests and he sat at the head table with them and they bought him a boot near I think he was sitting beside the father of the groom maybe it was like he was family never met them before they were strictly clients who had found us through word of mouth but our clients come to treat us like family and connect with us on that level because we're putting so much of ourselves out there and so when it comes to sales I'm encouraging you to put yourself out there you can't just walk in and say hey buy my book you need to be connecting with them talking about the experience and talking about why they should be investing in that as well. So this is the last point to this part here in two thousand fourteen, we had just under fifteen hundred increase through email for boudoir and weddings, we track all of our enquiries that come in, obviously there's no way we humanly possible that we could shoot that many sessions, but the reason we do that is so that we can track if our pricing is working, and at what point we need to change it. The other reason that we don't put our pricing online is so that people have to connect with us and contact us to find out a little bit more about the pricing it's so they get to know more about us, but also so that we get to know more about them are friends heather and jamie actually ask their clients in their little intro questionnaire what their favorite music is or what the favorite song is and that's a way for them to know right away if they're going to connect those clients or not. Same with us, we don't put our pricing online and it's a way for us to kind of feel out why they're doing a session and get to know a little bit more about them beforehand, so this is where I'm going to talk about wordplay in sales I've mentioned it multiple times that I love sales I funded challenge, I find that it's for me, it's a little bit of a game of, um, I want to find the perfect product for you. I'm going to find that what is the best fit for you during our sales session here during our time together? So I'm going to go through some ways that you can use the power of words to help with sales so enticing adjective this is specific to your print advertising, so when I say this, I'm talking about your price list on your advertisements, things that you're putting out to entice people to come in so use enticing adjectives. This means things like couture premier, top of the line, best in the world if you think about it when you go to google, we didn't. When we came to seattle, we typed in best burger best burger restaurant in seattle. Those are the key words that people are going to want when they're trying to find you and when you're trying to sell to them, if you say by my boudoir photography that's, not very exciting, but if you say come in for a premiere boudoir experience to tour top of the line album's best experience in the world, you want to use those words to try and connect with them. For them to see the power and the weight in the investment the next one even though we're talking about number plate our wordplay is number play so a couple of things when you do you're pricing we're going to say they're not the price point is fifty nine dollars even so you have dollar sign five nine nine decimal nine nine simple ways to make it easier for cells with customers client's story take away your dollar sign right there you've knocked that figure down to five digits then take away your zeros and then you've knocked it down two fifty nine ninety nine you can go one step further and just make it ninety nine you then have taken a significant amount of digits and shrunk thumb down to just two in their head psychologically what that does is make it a much smaller number it's much easier to swallow and much easier to put that investment out if you think about the amount of digits that you're putting up there bring it smaller and then it seems like they're not putting out quite so much money israel's sensory and tactile so I always ask people would you rather I describe a warm fresh baked cherry pie to you or would you rather eat it yourself to test out if it's an awesome piece of pie so with your advertising with your price list with your sales you need to appeal to more than just visual people don't want to just read something and think, ok, it's a nice album, they want to know more about it use tactile words if it's lace I think of something that is very fine and delicate. If I think about leather, I think about the smell of leather, ken john words that will connect with people in that way and make sure you used photos in your cells pieces as well. Appeal to nostalgia and sentimentality with sales the way you use words it's really easy to get people get inside their psyche and help connect with them. So when I say appeal to nostalgia, I mean things like think about when you go to a restaurant and it says, like mom's, homemade meatloaf makes you want to eat my month sucked as a cook sorry month, so I don't feel that, but think about that connection when you hear grandma's homemade baked cookies appeal to that sense of nostalgia with them and sentimentality. So I do this with clients where l say things like, imagine how you're going to view your album thirty years from now with your partner? Are you going to want to or imagine how you're gonna view your photos with your partner in thirty years? Do you want to sit down at a computer, your phone? Whatever it is in thirty years, your little sensors on the walls type thing, do you want to sit down to do that? Or do you want to sit down in front of a fireplace together with a bottle of wine and look through a beautiful album? Look back at the experience of uber dwyer session together? If you appeal to that nostalgia and sentimentality in your client's, it helps the weight of the purchase and helps them connect with it offices that is be modern. So instead of being nostalgic, instead of thinking back sentimentality be modern, make your clients feel that the product is something that is brand new, cutting edge ahead of the line that they have to have it. You want to think about, um, hit words so very popular, one that I see people use is boot camp or biggest loser when they're trying to connect with sales of people so they'll do something like a boudoir boot camp, where it's short sessions many sessions that they run on a weekend type thing, or I see a lot of people that will catch the the it word of biggest loser because of the show, and they will do things like have a promotion for people who have been on a weight loss journey, so you're jumping on something modern, something that's popular currently. Or the other thing here is making them feel like they're ahead of the game try and figure out what the next bottled water is but in terms of boudoir find the problem figure out how to fix it and then offer the best product for your clients make them feel like they are finding something new and that is exclusive to you so when we talked about enticing adjective that would be here is well that you were the only photographer who offers this this is exclusive to you you are the only the only photographer who has this brand new product make yourself the expert so we've talked about building up a portfolio and having a new website on list online specifically proof for boudoir you need to give yourself a title you need to make yourself appear to be an expert and boudoir photography show people that so you need to show people testimonials referrals again show them that you have the portfolio when you're putting some photos up from your portfolio ask clients if they'll let you actually use a testimonial as well it holds a lot of weight and it convinces people that there are other people out there doing it and that they can trust you have an anchor product so this is where you would take a ridiculously priced item and put it next to the products that you actually want to sell so what this does is it makes thinks the products that you want to sell seem so much more appealing and that it's not such a big investment so you have something here that costs a thousand dollars and something here that cost five hundred dollars when you put them side by side, your clients go holy crap no and that of the expensive product drops the anchor that seems like it's too much it's way out of the market it's way out of their price point and now your product that you wanted to sell seems much more easy and affordable and appealing to them highlights specials or premium items people like the word special it makes us feel special so if you were having an item of your pricing pilot the albums or products that you really want to sell that are most important to you whether that's underlining see it done a lot of the time with boxes around the word around the product use your premium adjectives when describing them and highlight them don't have flashing neon lights or anything, but you know what I mean? When I'm trying to say draw attention to those special words to set it apart give vague descriptions, so this is kind I try and use the movie theater when I think about this as he our human nature is to want the biggest and the best of everything, so when you're using words with sales and you have a large album and a small album instead of just giving a giant description about each of them. Call it your large album in your small album with whatever words you want to use, like in that to the movie theaters. If I go to the movie theaters and there is a large and a small popcorn, I am going to buy the large because I'm worried about not having enough clients are going to purchase the large album because the small might not be enough. That is our human nature to want to make sure that our bases are covered and that we're getting the best that we possibly can. So by giving big descriptions, you were opening the conversation that they are going to likely want the larger of the two without inundating them with too much information use now nhs instead of herbs, so I have two sentences. First one is do you sorry, do you want to play softball on the team? Second one? Do you want to be a player on the softball team by using the inclusion of the word player using the noun you were inviting them in? Use this with sales as well used now nhs instead of verbs to try and get your clients to connect with you and feel like they're part of the experience, limited availability and call to action I recently discovered ebay it's the best thing and worst thing that's ever happened to my wallet so called action if I log onto ebay and I'm looking for something and there's an auction that has four minutes left and there's an auction that has five hours left and I'm kind of interested in the two things I'm going to bid on the one that has four minutes left because of a depletion of time gives gives me a call to action, I have to act, I have to purchase it, I have to act now before somebody else gets it with limited ability a way of doing this is that there are only x amount of this product left or the other tone of that is this used to be our most popular album, but it was so amazing that it's sold out, but we still have this beautiful album bax you're gonna want to get this before this has gone too the need to keep buying. So I used the analogy here of mcdonald's and the monopoly game the idea that you have to keep buying tto win something so rewarding your clients by coming back for another session by purchasing two products, whatever you're doing to encourage them to keep buying helps them feel like they're getting more and more from you but also it is helping you get more out of them in terms of investment the marked down so I love ebay I also love thrift shopping and I grew up going to garage sales I have no problems spending money on nice things I like expensive vodka to drink, but when it comes to finding a deal I'm all about it you and hates thrift stores he won't go in with me, but they're a secret love of mine, so I always want to find a deal your clients want to do the same so always have a markdown product a way to do this is if you price your album typically say at five, ninety nine consider pricing your album instead six, ninety nine and having an indefinite sail on it. So what you are doing is yours having one hundred dollar discount on the album, but you're still selling it for the price that you wanted to originally and you're just making it appear that it's a markdown it's not fishy it's not ski z it's that you're just adjusting the way that you're listing that scale pricing. So this again I'm going to go back to popcorn and pop the movie theater, so this is where you would take small, medium large so you're small popcorn is four dollars your medium popcorn is eight dollars and your large popcorn is ten dollars have your medium in your large very, very similar and price so that it makes sense logically for them to bump up to the bigger one it's silly to pay four dollars for a small, and if they're already spending eight on the medium popcorn, they may as well just bump up to the ten dollars, one. So when I talk about scale pricing, it's have a significant difference between small and medium and then a very small difference between the medium and large in person stop being a sales person stopped being a salesman. This is really important. If you can change the way that you think about sales and the mentality of sales, you will notice that they will increase an insane amount. I ask my clients, imagine what you could have if you could walk out of the session today with anything you wanted and money was no object. What I have done is I let them start daydreaming. I let them think about all the products that they want without having to worry about the cost of that point, so that when we get to the products thank you. When we get to the products, they've already gotten their head, what they're interested in, they've already thought about that what they wanted and it's a little bit more it's, a little bit easier to swallow when you get to the actual price point and talk about numbers. And we we really, really, really strongly believe in our albums ninety nine percent of our clients purchase an album I think that it is really important that you find a product you stand behind and love so that you're not just shoving something at a client it's something that you actually truly want them to take home reciprocity norm this's the idea that if you give something something story if you give someone something, they feel obligated to do something back for you so change the way you talk to your clients if you do something for them like give them a discount if you give them a promotion that's maybe special just to them don't say oh no problem say of course of course that gives value to what you're doing and it makes them feel obligated to do something nice back for you also not being said not necessarily that they feel like they have to purchase something from you, but it feels like it gives value to what you've done instead of just oh no problem don't worry about it give value to your favor smart clothes this is a simple as saying to your client oh yeah I just sold that album this morning too my favorite client who's a doctor or that's the album that I still the most often or great choice you chose the album that everybody else does it makes people feel justified and comfortable and that they've made the right decision if other people are doing it as well promote local we all have this need inside of us to support locally I think that's something that bread and everyone we try to promote local as much as we can so in your sales if you have a product that is local, make sure that you mentioned that it's appealing it's appealing to people sense of nostalgia settle the fear of the unknown in terms of helping your client by the very best product this is important here I want my clients to know that we have files on backup and that they can access them if something happened like their house burnt down so I've told them that they don't have to worry about that if you take away that fear of the unknown it comes them down a little bit more and helps them feel more confident and in their decision and in their purchase and that they have their bases covered um offer payment plans is often sticker shock with boudoir sessions some people won't even know what they cost they will have no clue there friend got it done for ninety nine dollars on groupon and it looks like it was done for ninety nine dollars home group on and they don't know what to expect we offer payment plans and this is a great way to get your clients to spend more if they feel like they don't have to put so much out all at once that they convey a kit up over multiple payments. A really easy way to get through to clients with this is to say, you're going to have these photos for the next sixty years. If we break down your investment over the next sixty years, it's actually only x per month, seeing again where we've taken and dropped the numbers down to something more manageable. It makes it a lot easier for them to see that it's, a new investment that they can make.

Class Description

Join Ewan and Brianna Phelan for Boudoir on the Edge and learn about their unique approach to shooting boudoir photography.

Brianna and Ewan see creativity as a planned process rather than the result of spur of the moment inspiration. In this class, they’ll discuss how they apply this philosophy to their work and how it shapes the way Ewan shoots. The pair will also discuss how they’ve integrated their wedding business and boudoir shoots, while protecting the artistic integrity of their work. Ewan will examine a selection of images and explain how he came to that pose and what each element in the image does to promote what that photo is trying to say.

You will walk away from Boudoir on the Edge with a new appreciation for the art of boudoir and skills for integrating an artistic sensibility into your business.


Hassan Hussein

This is an amazing class. The best I have seen so far on the art and business of boudoir photography. Brianna and Ewan covered very difficult subjects in this class in a very effective, professional, informative, and entertaining way. I loved how they addressed the human sexuality in the most beautiful way in relation to art of boudoir photography. It was fascinating to see how Ewan was able to get the models to pose into very sexy and beautiful poses by providing clear instructions in a very respectful manner. Brianna was very informative on how to run a successful boudoir business. I sincerely believe that both Ewan and Brianna shared many of the secrets of the trade that they learned over many years which made their boudoir business a success story.

a Creativelive Student

I bought this as an online course, and I was very pleased with it and felt like it was worth the investment. From reading other reviews, you can see that other students have their own opinions based upon their own expectations and interests, and my review is the same. I was more interested in the art of the photography and the posing of the models, and I was very pleased with that part and would have liked to have seen a little more of that and less of the business side. However, I thought the information on the business, marketing, contracts, legal etc. to be very informative and helpful if I wanted to do this commercially. I would recommend that they shorten the first lesson by editing some of their own personal journey and opinions, the latter appearing unnecessarily defensive. I thought one reviewer was unfairly critical of Ewan's "control". I appreciated his directness and instructions, and I think this reviewer may have reflected some of her own issues about either males or control issues. Overall, it was highly informative, and I highly recommend the course. Just go in knowing you're going to be exposed to the business side, as well as the creative side.