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Commercial Photography: Thriving in a Competitive Industry

Lesson 6 of 12

Getting your Foot in the Door

Joel Grimes

Commercial Photography: Thriving in a Competitive Industry

Joel Grimes

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Lesson Info

6. Getting your Foot in the Door

Lesson Info

Getting your Foot in the Door

I have about a bazillion questions about how you get in. How do you start knocking on doors? How did it start? You're gonna talk about that? Well, a little bit. We're gonna talk a little bit about that. Here it goes. Ready? Next. Next slide. Hold on your foot, That's what. OK, so we'll talk about that. It questions related to what we just talked about. Now I think we can keep you went out there, Got a question. The moment of winning somebody over. Think about it, right? It doesn't take a genius to figure out that a grandpa and grandson walking with a couple of fishing poles is a great moment, right? And so just think about it. What? What? What stirs you inside and then go and then create that image now? Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful women, beautiful subjects. That's another thing I used to talk about A lot is that if you get a good looking subject are the right subject in your photograph, it could make all the difference in the world. So that's why recruiting good subjects is importa...

nt. All right, so here we go. Bam. See, this is what I'm talking about in terms of of drama. Okay, now, this was at a workshop, but the background was shot in Detroit. He shot in my feeding studio. Okay, so, you know, um, he's just a great character. Vincent. Here's Here's Cliff. We shot this last summer here. This was done in creative live here, right? There's Cliff Clip. It has nothing to do with the fact that you your best side that is your backside. But hey, looks you. If you love motorcycles, you love him. You get sucked in, right? If you love motorcycles and there's this culture out there that's phenomenal in the motorcycle industry. And so you know you love your bike. A Harley rider knows that's like artwork, right? That's like your You worship your bike, right? And so that's kind of what I was trying to do there. The birds, Of course. I trained to come around on a circle for me, but, you know, I just love drama, love, drum lighting. You know things like that, and it's a place. It here's something simple, just simple, not complex, just simple. It's not rocket science. Did I have? But I know that I was gonna do that before it got her and know she's sitting there and she's kind of playing with her hair and go, Could you just cross your hair called your eyes? I'm not smart enough to know ahead of time. Studies have shown that only 5% of creatives market effectively, and I have a whole thing on marketing. So this is kind of a short a short version of that. Your lousy at marketing. I know. All right, Because you're a creative right. So? So the problem is you gotta learn to market to survive, get learned market. And, um so let's talk about this. You learn your skills and photography, you get really good. As a photographer, I know so many really amazing photographers that can not pay their bills. So if you want to survive, thrive, succeed in the marketplace, you got to get ah, handle on the marketing side of things Now. I was fortunate because I had a studio May, who is a marketing genius. I would call him a marketing genius. He understood the marketplace and he taught me a lot. And I tell him all the time, Every time I see him, Steve Steve, that was for you. I would be, you know, still doing photography. Now I would do my part, which is created images, but he taught me the basics about market. One. Was it make a cold call. One was that I was really lousy at marketing, but I had to overcome it. So here's a thing. There's a big barrier standing in front of you or big wall brick wall. You gotta get over that brick wall. It's 40 feet tall. How do you do it when you just the way? A little bit of time and you figure it out and you could do it. Here's the thing. You don't have to be a slick sales person to win over your audience. Fact sometimes a slick salespersons, the worst person to be. You just say, Guess what? I absolutely love what I do, and I'm gonna make your life a lot easier. I mean, when you over and I make your life a lot easier, you hire me. Things go well. I'm honest. I'm on time. I'm fair. I don't make promises. They don't keep. Does that make sense? Boys don't let that goes a long ways. All right, So but But studies have shown that you're not very good market. Okay, that's okay. So here I have to call the power of eight. I'm explaining to you and this is the key. I go through a lot longer explanation of this, but I'm gonna give it to you and blood. People have already heard this from me. Power of it is very simple. And that is this. As a human being, you're weak, fragile, secure, You know that. And when you go to pitch someone, if you get a rejection, you usually stop continuing the pitch. So here's what they've done that the average person that has to sell. So you really are trying to sell? I went over in our director at photo editor. Some you. I see. I think it's 95% of people that sell never give more than two attempts to win over that person. So you make a phone call you since a packet. You know, whatever you make two attempts and then they get the cold shoulder and you quit. You give you up. The odds of securing that person to give you work is less than 10% return. Okay? The power of aid is the most amazing tool on the plant. And that is this. If you can get your name in front of a person that's gonna buy at least eight times, the odds go up to 80% you're gonna return on your investment and pitching that person. Do you understand what I'm saying here? So if you give two attempts, not a good chance you get hired, you get eight attempts. It spikes through the roof that all of a sudden they're gonna remember who you are, because here's what happens. They're human. Remember this whole thing? Their human, right? So what's what's that? What happens to human beings? You have a list of photographers is used on a regular basis, right? And so you're good to go. Your team is in place and all of a sudden you go and the job comes your desk. Oh, I need a dining photographer. Call up your number one photographer. Oh, they're on another job. Is that possible? Yeah, OK, Number two photographer. Well, they're on vacation. Turn it number three for Darfur. Well, that for Darfur's wife's having a baby. He's out for two weeks. You go down your list and you get to the very bottom. And guess what? You're in a big trouble. You need a photographer. Who you gonna call? The guy legal that's hit you eight times. Do you remember off Joel Grimes? Let's give it a shot. And I have one over so many art directors by the Power of Aid. It's crazy because eventually they're going to need a photographer. They're going to be in a bind just like you. And I guarantee bind. I found. I used to hire assistance. I go through my I had 10 assistance and I get down to the 10th and they're all booked and I need 11th. Who is it? That little person that keeps emailing. I'd love to assist you. I'd love to assist you, not desist, you know, Where is that person? Not there. I always say if they have a pulse, show up. So that's what happens in the real world. So you can win people over by the power of aid. And so that's not easy. But I have a whole thing on market talk about, you know, a phone call. Voice mail I count is one. So I sent a packet out I make a phone call centre, back it out to make a phone call, sent a packet out, make a phone call, and I Pretty soon the Joel Grimes name becomes a household name. I mean, they remember it. And you know what? My photography maybe Okay, they don't need someone that can build a rocket to the moon to create an image. Do you see him saying? And here's one really amazing tip. If here in Seattle every day was just say on average, there's 100 jobs being awarded from the small little Mom pop ad agency to the big adages. He down the road, Let's say, out of all the millions of people here with corporations that, let's say, there's, ah, 100 jobs Beano awarded every day workday. How many of those 100 are you qualified to shoot your skill level right now? How many of those 100 you are? You say I could do that. I don't know you, but probably 50% Let's say right. Maybe 80%. So let's say 50%. Half them you could do right now. No problem. Yeah, do that. That means that every day you have a potential of getting 50 different jobs. Why aren't you getting them? Cause I don't know who you are. So I'm driving on the road. I have an assistant new assistant. Hey, would you go to school? I went toe, you know, Big fancy art school paid $200,000 0 great. Um, and I start talking to him and they're, like, really sharp. I say, What's the difference between me and you today? Tell me, what's the difference? Why am I driving the car? Well, you know, why am I the photographer? You're the assistant. What's the difference between you and I today? You're really good photographer. Fact you probably better than me. What's the difference? I don't know. I got the job. That's it. I get paid 10 times What you get paid because I got the job. I want somebody over. It took a lot of work for me to get the job. I get paid 10 times. Did you get paid? So that's why you have to learn the power of eight and ability to go out and knock on the door and get that person to hire you. You have to do it. Otherwise you'll always be the person that's on the bottom of the rung working for somebody else. So the power of eight is extremely important. All right. So you have to learn, though, who is that person that hires photography? You gotta find that name so you can buy list. Guess what? You got to still follow up and make sure that persons the right person. Because if you start making cold calls sending out packets, you gotta make sure it's not the janitor that you're calling. It's the art buyer or the art director or whatever it is in that position that says we hire photographers so you can make a home cold call and find out who that is. I've made hundreds of that 100,000 thousands and thousands of these calls. Who is the person hires and looks at the Tigris portfolios. They go. Okay, that's Betty Smith. Okay, put that in my name. That name is golden to me. I keep pitching. Keep pitching. Competition. I have landed huge campaigns by just not giving up and the power of eight. So find out the right person. Okay, so here's it. Here's this little tip. Persistence. One went over more people than a great performer. Now you're an artist and you worked really hard at your skill and you should, and you should have a good portfolio. But guess what? Because you're an artist in your human, you're always second guessing your portfolio. Do I have the right images? I'm already guess what? You're ready right now. Who know I'm not. Yes, you are. If you become persistent, you'll start. Did he work? It's crazy. It's crazy. That's all the marketplace work, Because guess what? It's not rocket science. There are buyers or their small mom Pop to three people in agency. 10 people in agency. They're starting up or they're small and they need photographers. The big dogs in town don't go to those small agencies. So there's a door open for you, and I got a whole bunch of stories on that. But here we go shoot market shoot, market shoot market. So every day I like up, I go. OK, what amount of shoot today to create new image that I can put my portfolio, and how am I gonna get that in front of people? That's my life. I don't golf. I have a golf club bag. I showed up with that. My modifiers. So I take my golf bag all over the country. But I don't have golf clubs in a You know, you gotta have a life, right? You gotta balance it. I just had my 28th wedding anniversary. My bride, 28 years now she put up a lot. But the thing is, is no photograph or client is worth your marriage. Right? So and your kids are important too. Four boys. So you got to figure out the balance, right? But to survive, you got to put a lot into it. So you gotta just think about it, shoot in the market, you shoot your market and my wife helps me out. And she's great social media. Um, she does the books, so I couldn't do without her. So when she decides to leave me for some guy with hair, she's taking half, and she deserves it. Oh, did I get that on tape?

Class Description

Find out what it takes to get noticed in the commercial photography world!

In Commercial Photography: Thriving in a Competitive Industry, Joel Grimes will share real-world insights on making it as a commercial photographer.

Joel has worked in the commercial arena for more than 26 years and in this class he will share the most important lessons he has learned. 

Joel will teach you how to:

  • Build a successful promotional advertising campaign
  • Win over Art Directors
  • Develop a strong visual brand and create your own trends
  • Leverage a bound, printed portfolio to win clients

Joel will also demonstrate how he creates his own iconic look. You’ll see how he blends Rembrandt cross lighting and and background textures in Photoshop to produce his moody, intense images.

Commercial Photography: Thriving in a Competitive Industry with Joel Grimes will help you gain your foothold and get ahead in the high-intensity discipline of commercial photography.  

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James Munroe

Very good course. Joel tells it like it is. Very cool photography & Photoshop tips that I'll use in my business. Thanks Joel and Creative Live for an awesome course! James

a Creativelive Student

Commercial Photography: thriving in the competitive industry is a very straightforward class. Joel is clear and to the point, breaking down step-by-step how he did it. From developing a portfolio to getting your name in front of people; from setting up the light to the post-processing thinking. I am so happy I bought this course. Thank you Joel Grimes for your time and expertise.