Fear Issues of High Volume Photography


High Volume Photography


Lesson Info

Fear Issues of High Volume Photography

We're excited, I know we've been we've done our t a workshop created alive, but I'm gonna be honest this volume when excites me partially because it it's something that I know will make everybody more money and our whole goal is to take that fear away. I think almost every single one of you guys when we went through there had some type of fear and elbow said three hundred kids in one days is scary and everything else and we're going to really go in all that not only on today with the technical side of things and how to get the jobs and when you fail and you're going to fail and howto handle that failure, but we're also tomorrow we're going to do a complete work flow of of a job, and so you're literally going to be able to learn every single step of what volume will do with that, said there's. So much types of volume and I think that's the whole key that this also is a lot of people think that just schools are just sports, but there's so much little volume from commercial work too, you ...

know, dance schools, dance studios, schools, school dances, there's so much out there and we're going to really talk about each and every one of those and you're going to see a common occurrence that they all the same workflow but if you do five kids, you can do five hundred kids, you could do five thousand kids, you can do fifty thousand kids, it's all the same it's, just more repetition of your workflow, and once you get to that point, it'll give you the confidence and take that fear away where you can actually go in and get the job, or as we were going to find out for us, when that door opens, you're going to run through it, and you'll figure out you're going to be able to do it and trust that you'll be able to do it once you get past it. So for us, there's four of us in the business, so we do quite a few kids, quite a few volumes in try coast and the two that aren't here, obviously the prettier ones, but it's, suzie, my wife, and then amy, we do a lot of oil. Well, that brings up a question that a lot of people I say, well, I can't do big boy, because I don't have a lot of people, I don't have a lot of employees, and we're going to cover that as well, because that's not really an issue, you're going to find out that volume is such almost a taboo, it's, almost a negative term in the photography industry, but secretly when you say I have a long job, can I get some help from a friend? Almost everybody wants to jump on it because they want to learn about lawyer but it's a lot of people just don't want to say they want to learn about volume, but it is the very best subject in the business of photography to make a living at it toe actually make a usable income to pay your bills to know that your studio is going to be open for the rest of the year really takes off a lot of stress off you and allows you to be that artist that you want to be so the way we went into when we got into volume we went in kicking and screaming we didn't want to do it because again it was that negative terminology there's no art in it there's no fun and I mean all the negatives that we have but them yet we looked and we said what we really want the studio studios of location right across the street from one our main high schools and we're going to get into that as well and it's forty five hundred square feet we knew what the rent would be we knew what electricity would be and you put all that together and you're looking at what you're bringing in on the portrait what inside? And we've done weddings all over the world we still want making enough money to get the studio that we wanted, and so how are you going to do that? So we put a business plan together and we looked at our community and said volumes, the answer volume is a solution because either we had the national companies that are in there, or we had companies that were in there so long that they were photographing me when I was playing little league. And so they literally it's just same repetition, same thing over and over, because there was going to find that no one can compete with you and voil for the most part, because there's so much to it. And if you understand that it really knocks off a lot of people. So that was a challenge. We wanted to get into volume our very first job we had, besides minor, a few daycares and that kind of stuff because always captured my daughter's daycare and that's kind of how boiling started for me when she was in daycare. But our very first big volume job was our main high school. We photograph today that we love right across the street from us, and it was right around twenty five to twenty, eight hundred kids, and we had nine months to figure out how the heck to do it. Originally we went after it just for our senior high school seniors we just want to photograph those five hundred five hundred fifty seniors because we wanted we were doing hyeon portrait for seniors and we wanted to build that his business sorry gotta like cough today and so we started marketing and we started doing things we really didn't know we're going to get into a lot more detail in a minute but we really do know what we're doing and then when we got this job we realized once we did research again if we could just do the seniors no no difference than doing the whole entire school once you get that writ of that fear and I don't know we probably still have the fear on the photo day it was like we were already under contract we've got to do it so we just gotta buckle up we're gonna figure it out and so we're going to talk about that entire gambit during these these two days and was so excited about this workshop is you guys are going to get to see how easy it is it is so so easy everything that you are fearful about that's the easiest part about volume ever so so far no one said that the hardest part about volume because most photographers don't even have a clue what it is because you're just not used to dealing with that type of of numbers and people s so we're going to go over that entire gamut and if you have any questions you ask internet if you have any questions you ask because we already have a lot of people from around the world and volume is handled a lot differently in different parts of not only the united states but definitely different parts of the world and so you're gonna have to take what we do with a little grain of salt with a little because what works in my area might not work in your area, so don't worry about the actual way we photograph the kids that's going to be the art part that's going to be part of the community that's going to be part of your society, whatever you have, I worry about black and white part how to get the jobs, the workflow that we're going to show you that works no matter what because come photo day that's the easiest part of volume you're talking about the three hundred kids and one day that's the easy part once you have a good work full and you know what you're doing that's the easy part figured out leading up to that is where most the work is done in one way and then afterwards at the very end the other but the photo day that's the easy fall yeah, you'll be tired but it's easy work and it's fun work we never really knew photographing all these kids would be so fun it was it was a job and when we started doing it it really was exciting it was fun while the kids were cute a lot of kids are stupid, we're stupid and so it just worked out well I mean, it was just it was one of those things where think about each and every one of you and air online think about when you were in high school how cool you thought you were how you knew you were in you knew everything about it and now us looking back at them you see thatyou're going man in twenty years we'll look back at this school photo and you're going to hate life and that's kind of cool I mean that's just mean you're getting the capture, you know, the little snot running down that mom's gonna love that's going to be on the wall that as you grow up, you're going to hate that foe, but mom loves it I mean, all that comes from volume and it's exciting when you really think about what you're providing to your community and how you're supporting your community to me that's that's the greatest part you're going to see in our marketing we're very community oriented yes it's business but it's us it's mean we care about the community that we live in, we care about the people when we mess up and you're going to mess up, as I said earlier, it hurts us it bothers this, it causes us to loosely you're dealing with a thousand people and you mess up on twenty, five hundred fifty maybe all you feel is that negative aspect of those twenty five or fifty you won't ever get the cheers and praise from the ones that you did, and if you look at the that's a pretty good ratio of positive to negative, but when you care about your people that you're dealing with your client, it really can take a toll on you too. We're going to talk about that as well, because you're just getting negative phone call after naked phone call after you get a phone call and in your mind you're thinking my goodness, we did horrible, but the reality is you look at the statistics, you did really, really well for the vast majority of and then you just take that percentage and you try to lower it each time you feel what you learn, what you did wrong and you move on from there and so that was very difficult for us, especially when we had a home studio because we couldn't get away from any work and so if you have a home studio, we want to talk about that as well, because a lot of people in volume I really don't need a studio if you do it right, you don't need a facility can do it from home office, because most of the work is going to be done out of the office and the way our workflow is designed, we do the very most in our studio and the very least on photo day, because that's, where you're going to make the mistakes that make you look bad, because that's, when people are looking at you, so we've designed a workflow toe where when we mess up, it's pretty much gonna be shown in our studio back home, so you can actually look like an idiot in your underwear, drinking a beer, whatever, in front of computer, whatever you want to do, but not from your clients, and so that was very important to us as well, because we were learning we didn't know what we were doing, we had an idea, but until you go through it, you really don't know what you're getting into with loyal. So we're going to talk a lot about that. In these two days, we're going to talk about a lot of the problems that we had and how we've solved them, how we haven't solved them, how we're still working on him, on going just talk a lot about, hopefully the questions and answer any. I want to make sure that you guys here in the studio audience, you guys get what you need. So when you go home, you'll feel comfortable about getting jobs. They already have jobs coming up. You need let me know. So we can help you determining exactly the best way to go after that. That job real quick, some of the issues that we have with boyle when we first, as I said, when we first our first ball in job, I was twenty, five hundred kids, and it really took us back. When you start looking at the logistics of how much equipment, how many photographers, how many photos were going to take? I mean, all that logistics. And like I said, the good thing about try because we had a team. So during that nine months that we had to figure it out, I took a step back from our wedding's. Cody started running the wedding side of the business since he started running the senior portrait out of the business, and I really just started concentrating on boyle. So with that said, I kind of before we really get going, I had a long story short, we were cody and I were in a, um, private gathering of a bunch of national speakers, and our goal was to our payments so to say, was to say one hour why we are where we are, why are we popular is a speaker and cody and I are known a lot for our tee tee off camera line like we taught him creative live as well, and so we were up there and there's just huge speakers in the small room, probably in you there, getting up, talking about their six thousand dollars averages and their eight thousand dollars average with clients and coding our wedding photographers at the time when we go seven thousand dollars, our wedding's or ten thousand dollars and we're kind of high and how these people getting seven thousand out of a one portrait session, you know, so we're kind of paying attention at the very end, the gentleman stands out really tall gentleman with a cajun accent from new orleans, and he pointed out some of the people that have the large averages says in that eight thousand dollars average, how long did it take you work to get that? How many hours did you have involved to get that eight hours already started calculating from the consultation the phone calls, the hair make up, the pre set up the shoot, the process in the sales, everything, and they said probably about eight hours and he pulling any said in eight hours, I'll make seventy thousand dollars cody did he just say seventy thousand dollars? Because I'm kind of half asleep, you know you're in class, you fall asleep during our classes, so I kind of set up in my chair and said, okay, I'm in school I don't know what this guy is, but I want to hear about and his name is ralph roma gear and he's he's the president of bp a this year actually and he had a studio right outside of new orleans he invited us over and I still had the egotistical concept the volume was again the low end of the totem pole when it comes to art, when it comes to photography, it wasn't something I want to do but again I told you we almost had to do it because we need to make money get studio we wanted, so we drove over there and I really the whole of a seven hour drive and I really just had the negative concept and I'm on the entire way over there and finally we pull into a studio and I see these beautiful portrait ce edgy, creative cutting edge of high school seniors hanging in the windows we go in this beautiful studio and you see the most beautiful classical portraiture sze portrait's hanging on the wall, large wall porches, everything you'd want in a studio and ralph just showed us around showed us everything and it's very any says you've seen it all you've seen, you know eighteen employees, whatever the whole big operation and he goes. But this right here is what paid for everything and points and he's holding eleven by fourteen of a kid in a cap and gown hold the diploma the most simple, very nicely the most simple photograph of everything in there and that's what pays for everything so really show me really quick one that I was very shallow minded had blinders on the eagle had gotten to me mohr being an artist than being a business person and this is all about being business. Then you can be the artist and to show me that you can do both you khun do very high in portrait work and you could do very high volume portrait work all in the same household. Sure, you might need to make a new business maybe new business name however there's a lot of other ways of going about it. But you can do it and he was a perfect example of it. So in many ways is mauling. You said your disciples of us were disciples in the volume business, the roma garris and many ways, so a lot of what we're going to regurgitate to you in a sense has a lot of the foundation from them and that's, what I suggest you find a photographer that you love, you find a photographer that you respect, you find him in tour being tossed me, whoever is in the business, whatever you're doing and you learn from you, just shut your mouth and you'll learn from him because it really can help because for me, when I had a problem went to him or someone else that's in the volume business, now that I've met, and they're the ones who've come before me, they understand all this problems, and they've really helped us out a lot. They're the ones between them are lab and a few other people that really kind of took the fear that all you guys have right now. That's what took the fear away for us because we were really, really scared to death. I mean, because the reality is if you mess up mohr on a violin job in your community, it will hurt your business more than anything else. So it's a high risk going into those first jobs, and you don't want to take it lightly. You want to be prepared, you wanna have your paperwork in order? You want to have your gear and you want to have every t crossed every I dotted, because if you don't it's going to come back here, you're going to see those people in the grocery store you're going to see those people in the movie theaters you're going to see him in their local restaurants and I promise you from experience they're going to let you know what they think of you both good or bad but a lot worse used the bad comes way before the good you only hear few of the good stuff a lot of the bad stuff, so every getting everything in order really really was important to us talking to ralph and his son in law, which is is a business manager rock they took away so much given their on another level in many ways they're still in another level than us but that's the beauty of all you can do it so many different ways you don't have to go after just schools and get, you know, one hundred thousand kids like so many of the big kids are because up to this point really until the last four or five years volume was almost out of reach for so many small businesses the big boy's had it all but now it's opened up it's home to the ball game we can easily jump in and get day care for well easy jumping to get private schools, weaken easy jump in and get public schools especially if the national chains have them as I said in our promo video for this class so many people are scared of the national change my name anyways you should because they have a beautiful business plan it is unbelievable however they can't do the one thing that you can do and that's customer service you could make it personal because it's y'all's community you guys live there you know what goes on better than the national chains it's not parcel them it might be personal with one or two people but it's not really personal to the entire organization and you can help them out more than be by making it personal there's just no way that the national change can compete with that but you have to think the national change as well because without the national chains the american public and as you heard the other people calling over there's the ones that in steeled the tradition that little mama has to have a baby of little baby every single year they're the ones that created the volume industry in many ways that the ones that have been steeled the passion that we have to have day care funds we have to have that school photo we have to have a fall school photo not just a spring or vice versa we gotta have a little league photo they're the ones that haven't steeled that we have to have that's not it's not a war it's a must because I've seen so many people and you're going you're going to find and you probably already know this when you take other classes and mark and whatever else when you're scared to raise your prices people gonna buy whatever they feel is important it doesn't matter the price tag on it and with volume a lot of people save up they might have anything but they will save up and spend twenty five dollars or forty dollar package on their child because that's their child and you're going to find out also when they're puppies your sales go up higher because everyone loves puppies, but when they get older they usually back talk mom and dad and they stopped by photos so once they go out when when they're in the adolescent stays they really don't like him they just love it when the pump s so did today care photographers it's even easier if you mess up because it's a little baby I can't tell you when I was learning day care how many people came up to me not knowing that I was photography years and go and say yeah, I really liked the photo because they knew I was a father there they thought what they were talking to me as a father of a child with day care and then like I really don't like the photos but it's her first photos I gotta buy it I mean so it made me feel good but it made me feel bad it's like yeah get money but waiting that they didn't like my work what's going on here and so that's gonna happen to you as well but daycares air wonderful place to start learning because one it's usually a smaller group of kids some daycares or two, three hundred kids I mean they could be big but you could find smaller ones you get to know the ladies that worked there so they help you out a lot and the workflow is not so overwhelming because there's the numbers or smaller we'll do a few small jobs and we're going to do a work flow with our creative life friends we're going to have a fun with creative live we're going to photograph in all the employees so it's going to be it's going to be a fun thing? They're gonna look stupid hopefully on dh we're going to call them out if they don't. So um but it's a great volume size for you guys to learn from, which is another reason why I'm excited about it because I wanted you to see a decent average I didn't want to just photographed like you six because then you're like, well that's not quite enough so I wanted to show you some bigger numbers but not so much it was going to take away from all of the education so we're really going to go into that so some issues on why you feel you shouldn't get why have you got into it? Before I talked to a lot of walling photographers, people trying to get involved and they always come out with probably five to ten statements on why they're scared to get into boy. So besides the fear part, what are some of the ones that you guys are scared off? What are some of the limitations you have in your business right now that are keeping you from getting into volume? One of the things we're dealing with in the community rat is is the big corporations are doing a school pictures and wanting to know how khun oui is a small company come in and convinced them that we can do a better job, just that confidence for the sales pitch itself. We feel once we get the job, they're going to be pleased with the product. But how do we convince the school let's take a chance and go local again? That's the key and that's part of the business plan of that large company is because of all the people are prepared and this is a this is a subject in photography that you can't be an artist in preparation. You have to be a business person and sometimes that's difficult. Now, if you get a good work flowing, you have a checklist, whatever anyone could do it, and we're gonna talk about that, we even have them for you. But again, it doesn't happen overnight because several reasons one you're photographing miners, you're photographing children and the people you're going in asking you to photograph their sole job in the whole you take away all the bureaucrat, all the politics, their sole job is to protect these children. Why would they ever give you a contract to photograph a child? They know nothing about you now, if your national company, they already has the logo, the presentation they already know about, so they don't really have to check up on those type of people. So when you come in out of the blue, they don't know you doesn't really mean much because they don't know you, they don't want to take that chance, because if they give it to you in your creeper there's a lot of issues, so they have to research and then too, anyone proud. Everyone here probably knows a teacher everyone probably knows maybe even administrator, you know that they're usually almost all overworked, they're underpaid, and they don't wanna have to deal with stuff they don't need to deal with. And so the road is already smooth, it might not be the highest road it might be to not be the best quality that they're getting might not be the best anything else, but if they don't have any headaches, they just get to turn it over. They don't have parents calling them or if they do, they know where to go, so fewer headaches you give them, the better off you are that's probably the biggest obstacles that that I it was just the fact that that the teacher uses not the principle that's in charge of the photographs he delegates shop to the teacher he's going to give it to me with your big teacher or some of the teachers, they have other responsibilities, and so they're not going to go out and look from work, so if somebody comes to them with, hey, I got this great deal for you. Well, they already have a deal that they use last year, and it was no headaches that may not have been the best pictures in the world, they're mediocre, but you know what? They don't don't worry about a thing they have scheduling thing that if he talked anybody, they just one phone call and it was done and so convincing that teacher to take a chance on you is it's more work, it's it's a big obligations morsel. And then if you mess up their bodies, really teaching him what happened, why did you go with this doofus over here when you want to sell the company last year? So, yeah, that's the biggest thing is convincing them that hey, I'm just getting to know the company. You're gonna keep your tax dollars in the same area, but you're not gonna have any headaches either. And that takes time unless you absolutely know that person on a personal level bacon balance for you and they feel comfortable in their job vouching for you, it's just that takes time. She need to be aware lots of times it didn't happen overnight and in fact, the vast majority of all that's not gonna happen overnight. You're gonna have to earn their trust. You're going to be more than their photographer. You're gonna have to help me, their problems offer, and that takes time for the trust to build just like any relationship. But we're gonna talk about that. But that's, as I said that the easy thing is, cody says, keeping it local, making it personal. Those are things you could do with the national national companies simply candidate and refused to do and don't need to do because it's really not effective. For their business business, it's not effective it's not it's, not beneficial to bring in money because they make so much money so they'll allow you to come in, take a contract, they'll allow you to come in because when you mess up, they're going to sweep in like superman and save the day, and now that school will never leave them again. The new generation hadn't been getting into volume, so if you did have some mom and pop shops that were photographed, a lot of small schools, they've gotten older, they retired and they sold their contracts to the national companies, so the national companies just moved in, and a lot of these mom and pops, they did a very solid job, but they didn't offer all the products and all the stuff that the national company can do, so the schools are like, oh my gosh, that no one could be better. We were had this for twenty years, and now this and so it's very difficult for them to have someone come in, and so you have to have it, I said, you have to be a business person up front, you have to have everything in playing and have a great layout, and we're gonna talk a lot about that later on the day about how the layout and how to go in and talking and not necessarily give the billion, but most of time unless you know someone you can't even get a billion I mean it's just like it's like dropping off a resume and you have no connections just gonna look at it probably throw around the trash can and so we're going to talk a lot about those roadblocks and and how to get past them and just know it's ah this isn't a marriage I mean it's not a speed race this is a marathon you want to slow you just slowly, slowly keep contacting him slowly keep contacting on every chance you get and you slowly we'll get in the door it wanted me to come in and do the pictures but they wanted me to much everything that you know national chain does can you do this free? And can you do that for free? And I have no idea if I can do all that so that's a great that's a great brings up a great point and the answer that is probably not because they make the national companies make so much money across the board if they really want to school, they'll shoot it for negative, they'll lose money on that and they'll just compete with you and so if you get in a battle with these national companies on items for items, freebies for freebies, you're gonna lose that battle every step of the way complaining about how bad the pictures exactly and that's where you have that's where you have to tackle that's their weak point because these national change don't have photographers in those partly have employees they don't have someone that has that passion for photography as a photographer does and cares about making good quality and has the extra pressure being local that if I mess this up it's gonna hurt me more, but you use that to your vantage you turn that around and use it to your advantage and that's how you that's a huge way to get those jobs from the from the national companies and so we're gonna talk about that, but you can't go after it dollar for dollar, you'll lose every time they have to see the bigger photograph, bigger picture in school or whoever they have to know yeah, maybe maybe we can get all these freebies in, but we're gonna have less headaches. We're going to have better quality photos we're gonna have way have on every one of our forms don't call the school call us we deal with it, not the school. If the school gets a phone call you say call us they know who to contact after it's all said and done, we usually give a nice homemade brownies your cookies to the lady that's upfront that answers the phone you know, because I mean she's got the worst job in the school the honest she gets she filters everyone's crime everybody gripes that her everyone and I mean everything goes through her and the last thing you want is your business you're coming in causing more headaches for her and so you really if you called headaches you need the other thing is you stand up and just say yes it's my fault my business even personal hired messed up whatever I want in the off whatever it's your business you take you take the sand for it and if you have a good relationship when you mess up and I think I said this is the third time I've said it in his workshop already and you will mess up when you have a personal relationship it's usually a lot more forgiving just like anything else with someone you know you're a lot easier to forgive than someone you don't know we're gonna talk about all that that is a very common thing andi if a school's adamant on dollar for dollar we do exactly what you do we walk away because we're going to lose that battle it's not worth our time it's not worth our energy we could use that time that energy on something else that's more productive because again we have to make a bitch this is a business we have to make a living at it we have to pay our bills and they understand you know it's a battle they don't care about that they care about their own. You care about your own needs, and so if they don't see the value in the better quality photographs, the better customer service, the local, the tax base and everything else it's probably better off just like in a wedding contract when you get some red flags from brian groom and when your when your first your first consultation, it's better sometimes, just to say no, because the paychecks not worth it because we've we've dealt with it, and it's messed us up any other industry for some people that are watching or some people they notice that I don't wear a lot of schools, they expect I see a kickback just to let you in to photograph the students and any other industry. I think that would just be illegal. I mean, it's almost like accepting a bribe and like mike was hitting on the points you can't, we can't compete with some of the national change as far as the amount of money you could get back to the school, but you can't compete in other products and other services. Hey, I mean it, bill to give you back, I'm gonna be able to give you two thousand dollars to come in and shoot the school. But I can provide you a portrait for student council of the week or something like that I can you can provide a mother services that don't cost you the same kind of money is just giving them give them money, so and hopefully you can find some sort of product or something that they will value as muchas cash because we do that all the time for schools and it's not because we want to keep their business that's part of it, but the foundation of our marketing in the sense is because we care about our community, we care about those kids we care about that teachers. My mom is a retired teacher, my sister's, a current teacher, my whole family or teachers, I swore never get into teaching look what the heck I'm doing today, but I still have that that same passion they have that you want to better your community because it gives you a feeling that you just can't get from anything else when this is your area, your community and you'll start, we do like commercial work for for the local bank and you know, you go in the teams and you see your photos on it, and then you go into a mexican food restaurant and you see our high school state champs photo on the wall that you took, you didn't have your luck or anything else but it's on there and you're like that's cool I'm making my community better because when people come in they look at the team they're like all proud and to me that's that's payoffs that that other people can't get that's why we do these little things that's why we we want to give them extra photos because the nice photos of the student council will not only good for your business which we'll talk about cause most these kids they're sophomores and juniors so if you shoot seniors they don't know who you are but also it makes the school better and makes the school a better place to teach makes the school better place to learn and therefore make sure community stronger and so that's kind of the foundation of what we do cody and I grew up in our community we enjoy that we have someone that we know from just about every walk of life and that that's benefits us competing against those big change can you jump in really quickly but I kind of threw it out there to the internet to see what their fears were when it tio diving into a high volume business and a lot of people are concerned about finance is they don't even know how to price it s o I'm hearing that a lot and I'm hearing people don't even really know where to start and also equipment is another big ones afraid they don't have enough every single one of those we were goingto answer absolutely in detail and it's not as complicated as you think and I think that's that's again the fears the big one we're fixing to get into but this is a wedding photographer now what did you I kind of really wet volume the wedding's back in the field many people did not photograph weddings and film days because there was not that guarantee you literally had to know how to use your camera you had to know that this exposure when I click the shutter was going to be there so a lot of people did not like that pressure and you get into it when digital came around that fear the unknown was taken away because now I know I might have to take two thousand shots to get a hundred but I can get it so even if I mess up I can go in there and get that and weddings are beautiful and made it more fun because it took the fear away and allowed to be the artist and that's exactly what we're gonna do today and tomorrow is take the fear way allow you to be the artist in the volume and it's gonna be fun did you have a question? How do you convince a school or a day care whatever what not to go with you when you know they've tried local before and got burned that's the other part that is so hard and we kind of hit along with you so many people they just oh just kid put photos of kids I do this all the time with my kids I can easily do this or they get burned some other way it's two steps forward one step back or even one step forward two steps back before the local photographer and you have to come in with a better business plan better business attack and make yourself look professional and gain the trust that's why I said it might not happen overnight, but if you come back one time and they say no, we're happy with whoever we have and we're going to go over that later on the day and you keep coming back two, three years they're lightweight these people been around for two, three years I gotta be doing something right so just by doing that polite keep coming back the bricks come down on the wall that's between you two and they start opening up well, you can start up a smaller jobs getting good report with him, then give those references to the bigger jobs and just build yourself up and don't bite off more than you can chew initially because sometimes that that's my I just went on and it's scary but once you get down like said start off with a small job please them but don't over please I mean you don't give away the form and trying to please because that's going to come back to backfire on you too, especially in small towns daycares they all have connections it's it's like the photography industry we think it's a big industry but it's not it's small someone does something in austria we're gonna know about it in america and vice versa I mean it's a small it's one world something with day care didn't matter if there's twenty miles between the two of them I guarantee they know each other they have forms, they have communities and if some photographer messes up the word's gonna spread but some talk for does well the word is gonna spread too, because I can't tell you how many daycares were going to and afterwards they say haven't been we'll find a good photographer I can't find one, but we're stuff we have to get photos so I have to go with what I know. One of my questions is let's say we do get into the schools and we do the high volume and we're we're charging you know the minimum and then your portrait clients wonder how come you're charging so much more for portrait than high volume when they know you're charging last for eight by tens through the school's, how do you overcome that? There's multiple ways of hell and that's that's a great question we chose to create a secondary business so we have trifles for our high end work and there's a huge difference, I mean, you know, is an artist there's a huge difference because you're using different lighting your duties in different soft boxes using different posing methods you you're spending time processing, sailing the consultations they're so much more involved in the high end and that's what they're paying for is the experience in all practice purpose you're paying for more hours, but they're also paying for the experience of everything using more gear. The whole thing for volume we created a second, your business called coastline portrait it has a lot of the same flair has a lot of the same logos three little swoop because we're on the water. We're on the third coast, the gulf of mexico that's what kind of names come from? So it kind of separates us kind of separate self its coastline people expect the voil it's they understand that some people don't even know the difference don't even that we're the same company even though in the lowest says a vision to try coast blah, blah, blah, blah, that's what was best for us but then you have people like raff from aguilera, roma gary photography had a memory one name does everything but they've been around longer and I can see for us probably in the long run I can see coastline fading away and just being tracked because once you have that separation once people understand you're marking when they come to try coast on the walk of the right doors they're going they know they're going to expect quality we have a very you know higher and facility to get it's amore the wine and dine where the bottom is hey sit down, shut up, smile next sit down shut up smile that you know there's a huge difference and expectations and what you're experiencing I'm never afraid to engage in that conversation with my clients if they bring it up because even though we have the two different names it's not hard to figure out there's one building it's not hard to figure out who we are that we're doing both and you I mean you could tell him hey, quite frankly look I set up the station kids walk in, sit down, I click the shutter the next one comes in it's it's no brainer for me it's it's less work it's less time whereas if you come to me for my senior portrait has been four hours with this kid I'm changing lights around we're doing changes of his wardrobe and then it's a lot more time on post also and you've explained it it's it's not that hard for them to say oh yeah, I see which which is talking about your spending six hours on this session and you're spending thirty seconds on this one, so yeah, I can see the difference and one hundred eight by ten are sixteen dollars and you related you relate to something they understand if they don't get that, you can relate to cars, you know, there's all drives around, but they're low in there and that's kind of what those two divisions are we have a low in, we have a high and we have a highball and we have a high quality, you know, there's just different we're gonna light you different blah, blah, blah and usually don't have a problem now we have people that for coastline jobs, right? Try coast checks, you know, because we get checks toe kuroda's the grocery store and the wal marts and everything else is well too, but s so you'll have people that ride him for you some of the issues that we have, we have talked about it, yet it some of this some of the people online have but money that was a big one for us. We started off our first one job they wanted twelve four light stations, twelve four light stations for first long job and that's when I just kind of went to him and said, there's, no possible way we could be twelve, they're just not if that if you're stuck on twelve, you gotta find another photographer just now I really want you what can you do? I said it very most and I really didn't know I was talking about the backside here I said it very most six stations, she was okay, we'll do six classic I said he said for six weeks and I'm walking out, why did I say six? Well, myself stupid, and so I literally got out of the office where I picked up the phone called cody says we have nine months to get forced six stations for light seats and figure out what in the world we're gonna do. We're like, okay, let's, do it. You know, we set up a plan and we went after it, and I was so meticulous on the equipment, everything that just came in through the internet, all these questions I was so meticulous on it, doing research, trying to find because you got to think six stations for lights, each that's a lot of light stands light stands air eighty two hundred dollars, generally a nice one, you're looking at four to five thousand dollars just in light stands and you just don't comprehend those numbers as a general photographer and it was it was scared it was real scary so money was our first big fear once we get over the initial like running out the door like oh my god, we're gonna die we're like, okay, we're going to die we're going to go down fighting that was the next emotion then money was was the first big issue for us time. How are we going to do this? Time was another big one that really worried is because we do high end stuff we really, really spent a lot of time with our clients and we love it. We have fun, but how we gonna deal with him? How are we going? Where we going to get it? From whom? The people mean just everything. So time was a big part how we're gonna add this to our workflow, how we're gonna be successful, how we're going to get our weddings out all this other stuff. So that was another big one for us. The unknown is, cody said, was probably the biggest because we didn't know what we were getting into. I mean, yeah, we're gonna photograph five hundred kids or twenty five hundred kids, but we didn't know how everything you probably have any you all ever done any bowling jobs, by the way, I should ask that okay, so you'll have some vital experience we had besides daycares, where I would write down names, right down numbers or have a roster right now found found number the sort of decided that was all I've ever done up to this point, and we did, we knew that wouldn't work. We simply had too many kids, we had to get him in and out too fast. I don't like writing down numbers because it's a failure on my part, because I'm just less dyslexic, and so I would write those numbers backwards or mess up won't see him correctly, it would be horrible. For me, it would be a nightmare. I could do it at first, but as I get tired, it's a struggle, and I would get mentally tired and I'd start making a lot of mistakes, so I knew, given I'm probably a rare and that runs in our family, but if I had a problem, I knew someone else would have that problem, because even if you're the best, so much is going on in the photo day, you can write down the wrong number, and it can mess you up, so we had the unknown of how we were going to do our work flow, we're gonna get into that as well, quality work brought a quality where the national company sometimes has bad quality work because sometimes they have people that are not photographers, their employees fast that's the most of time, but even employees because volume was such a regimented deal, you don't really need to be a photographer to take photographs. If you have someone who knows if they have good instructions on how set things up. But you is a consumer and you is the photographer want quality so many of us as the artists put quality above everything else in reality as we talked about little bit for quality is one of the lower important things for people who give you the job. And so we have kind of right now, as hard as it is, you have to backtrack and put quality, not on one of the top tiers of what you want to provide. At this point, when you first get started, you have to trust your instincts, so once you get the job you'll give quality. But going into it, it's not a huge huge attack point, so to say, to get the job now if they have a bad that continue to have bath and come to you because of that obviously that's a weak point that there have a sore spot about you can use it. And you can use your professional photographer it's skills to get to that job and I would push it them but as a general just going in cold call so to say the quality is not important part that you're gonna be dealing with and that was hard for us to understand to begin with two what are we going to do? We need six stations there's only four of us somebody's got to take paperwork so there's only three of us that leaves three holes that we gotta feel we don't know how we're going to do it that was actually pretty easy we made a phone call out to our friends and we had lots of friends coming as I live it too early in the workshop so many people want to learn how to do volume well they already did a little bit of autumn but they've never done this type of all twenty five hundred kids and they want to see how it works and so in this way they can learn that allow the pressure on them pressures on us like third shooting a wedding right and so we brought him in and they had their own cameras because at this time I couldn't afford extra cameras you know there's so many things were going to go into equipment wise so that took away three stations of gear that I need to worry about and is a professional when something goes wrong they're gonna be able to help me. They're going to be able to work with that camera. You gonna know if they change their shutter speed from one to twenty fifth of a second down a sixteenth of a second or change the f stop or something, they're gonna be able to keep it there. I don't have toe worry so much about just they don't have to worry about cameras having locking systems for the statins or allow stuff even though that helps but his professional they're gonna be ableto we're gonna meet her it they know what to get. Tell him what to get and they can do it for me. So that was a comfort also having those three people, we kind of need a pack. I'll be honest. We made a pact that and one lives in new york, one lived in canada and one lived in louisiana and they all came to help us. The first time we made a pact that if you get volume jobs we will come help you. If you just our gear we will ship it to you. And so we have made a pact and grow everybody's business because that's exactly what we were all doing them helping me out there, helping me grow my business by us going over to them to help them, we help grow their business we've done that, especially with our friend colin, out of lafayette, we've gone back and forth tons of times, and then we started thinking, well, even this is even better because now we do school dances and all the souls that just to school dance you buy a backdrop, you'll never use it again, so just seems logical. So a lot of us have gotten together and we do background swamps, so we have set swamps so that whole concept trading is really coming to big play for us, that's the other thing that I was just doing find some photographers and not necessarily in your in your local shooting area head just you guys here gets set it up, so when you buy that backdrop, you could swap that really started helping, and so the employees really became easy, because most of time we all come down and help each other out, and we do that swamp. If you're going to pay someone, I would do, you know you can do it. Talk to your accountant first, I highly suggest that because we're no accountants, but you don't need to hire full time employees. You really just need a button pusher for the day, much like hired a second shooter for a wedding, because once you understand everything you're the one that's going to be in control you're the general of your photo day and you're going to set everything up and we're going to show you we're gonna have a station set up tomorrow we're gonna go over all that and then you have someone come in and say, keep this speed, keeping this f that push the button, take two shot, three shots, whatever whatever you need to do, you go with that and they'll do it, so don't freak out about employees because that's not that big of a deal and that kind of brings us up to some other areas. Workflow is another big, big fear, but before going to it is most of these jobs done to the weekday. So if your wedding photographer you're expanding out of weddings, which I know for us, we started off justus weddings, I think that's probably common for most photographers. Well, you actually start shooting landscapes because they don't drive at you, they don't yell at you and then you move up into weddings because it's the least least expensive to get into because you just need the camera, the land's really to photograph a wedding giving you could get more there's already you'd get more yardage, iata and I remember ten years ago, twelve years ago when we really started getting into that we love our wedding we're getting older, I don't like to do fifty forty weddings a year I want to slow down I want to get a portrait, but how am I gonna get the portrait? Because the whole of the business side and I had a friend mary fist taylor she's out of virginia, he told me and I met just matter that first day she just met me, she said no disrespect, but you just being away for soccer right now you're not not that strong in the business you had been a business that well, I've like had come in she'd want me for ten years you have, but most people just in weddings if they get into it or you start getting older where they had the wedding hangover that sunday with their sore the whole day and I want to waste their whole weekend, they start thinking, you know, I think there's other ways to make money in photography and you hadn't gotten there yet, but when you do that's when I know you'll get the portrait and the other things and it kind of made me mad, she didn't know me she didn't know what I'm gonna do and then about five, six years later when I started waking up sore on a sunday from a wedding and we started looking into portrait, so we start getting portrait and I started thinking about it god, I can't stain her because she was right and I love her to death but I even told her that you know that you were right I was wrong and it took a lot to admit that to myself because you take pride in wanting to love him and there's another wrong with that you should take pride you should love him but it's definitely not it that's definitely not the only thing. And with photography getting more powerful and easy to do because the cameras were getting better and people love doing it they're always going to be take weddings from you because there's always gonna be a slew new went if tiger there's always going, people even take high school seniors or babies or families from you because again, those are your next logical steps. But when you learn this, you'll love the workflow that's when it really opens up that really separates you and it's the foundation of all your marketing it's literally the foundation of our business now and eight, nine years ago you would've probably punch in the face and called your life. You told me I was gonna get the volume I mean it's just not what we would do so work for once we got past the unknown and we started listening things down what we needed to do how we needed to do it in order how in all the gear that we needed I mean all that research again people like ralph from our people in the business helped me out so like what do you do when you take a picture of one of your sets and so we went over there one of my things and I want to see is what is the set that you take on location you know, just a basic year and he was able to you know, laid out take photos that really help me if this is what they do I'm going to change it up a little bit but it's still gonna have in a sense the rome aguirre flair for us because it made me feel comfortable what they do it I don't want talking directly because we have our own style we have our own look maybe wouldn't do the light's different which what we do we have our own lighting pattern but if you don't want to stray too far from it because they're successful there really successful so why am I going to reinvent that entire wheel when they've done it for so many years and the other people that I talked to the dead for so many years and again you have to get out of the photo photographs they produce its that's not important because down south and united states if you don't know cap and gown you're not getting a job but up here probably won't do captain gannet all I don't care about cap and gown but that doesn't matter that's where you is the artist and use the business person you're arrogant to figure out what they have to offer and you're going with that and provide that that's not a problem but everything else works the same so once we came up with the workflow we're going to talk about that it's a computer program is our main workflow because again I want to take the human error out of this I want to take me is the weak link in the entire process out as much as possible. So photo day as I said earlier is the easiest and the shortest and the most simplistic part of the entire process because that's when people are involved and then we have a computer that we literally has a complete work full of the little steps this bus step and so we actually created that software because I needed to create a work flow from my business we had a huge fears and it was created over a few beers I'll be honest the concept years ago but it helps us keeping track much like this power point is keeping me on track for the presentation that software keeps me on track for my work flow it doesn't let me jump steps that makes me have to solve each thing before going to the next one and once we had that down, that opened up a huge door force open a huge weight off our shoulders because now we know pretty much what we need to do. We gotta work flow, plan of attack in a sense for this photo day for that first job degrading your artist side, but we talked about this this was really tough for susie, especially susie is a the artist, so I mean, just to a t your classic photographic artist great photographer has a hell of an eye love will this and actually went into fighting, kicking and screaming into volume just mean everything she possibly could do. Do you want to do it? And there's three of us at the time? And cody and I were, like, and it's a democracy and try coz we basically we're gonna talk about we're yelling at the screen, we're gonna fight and when the votes and it's over that's that's where we do and we just kind of laid it out and said to one studio, it's this much money, we're making this much this is the only option we're gonna have to do it if we're going to get into studio, so if you want to be the artist in a big studio, we've got to do this, and that was it does cody, I just want my money does to me I'm in the business of photography not the photography business and there's a difference I want to make money with this. Yes, I love being an artist but I am way too old to be the classic starving artist. I want to actually have some food on my table at least have a roof over my head at least one maybe pay the studio we have hard times we have hard times all the time but it's four people we have a huge studio, a dream studio twenty years of working to get it in the perfect location for us I mean it's everything that we want and because of oil and it's not because of our portrait work we love a portrait work, but the reality is it doesn't bring in the sheer numbers of the marketing the bawling does and so were you tie all his volume in every other aspect of our business. And so that was also part of the workflow integrating the artist side that we had to buck up and say, what is our ultimate goal? What is our our big business plan? And if it's to make a living or have a retirement plan you should need to realize that taking away the artist side is important for you to make money if that's the case in your in your neighborhood and it was for us equipment. The sas is on the line, equipment is roth equipment is tough to figure out what you can do. Anything in the world. If someone says they use a big life stand someone's going already to the day I met, you don't need a big life thing. You need a little light stand. So again, take it with a grain of salt, of what we use. It's, our style at the photograph that you need to capture. Not, but we're going to show the basic, and we're going to show you some tips and tricks on the equipment as well, that really come into play that really helpful. That saved you some money as well.

Class Description

Remember the childhood excitement of yearbook photo day? You can bring that same joy to your clients — by taking your photography talents to schools, events, and sport leagues. From yearbook portraits to little league photos, high volume photography is a great way to multiply your revenue while providing a highly sought-after service.

Join veteran photographers Mike Fulton and Cody Clinton for a two-day workshop that will show you how to break into the high volume photography market and streamline your workflow — from setup and processing to hosting and printing.

Mike and Cody will teach you how to pitch clients, build your business model, and walk you through setting up a high volume photo shoot. After this course, you will be equipped with the skills and knowledge to become the preferred photographer in your community.



This course is very comprehensive and full of valuable information for anyone wanting to get into High Volume Photography. We have been doing this type of photography for 5 decades and still found many great ideas to improve on what we do. However, this class was produced in 2013 and although I am not certain as to the current circumstances of TriCoast, it appears that Cody and Mike are no longer in business together and because of this, the FotoVelocity program (which in my opinion is the greatest program for what we do) is no longer being offered. Regardless, this program is worth every cent of the purchase price. My hope is that new versions of FotoVelocity will soon be available. In the meantime we are still using the current version and it still works great. It literally saved our three man high velocity studio thousands of hours of pre-/post- production work. We are a small town operation which provides photos for schools and sports in our local area to over 27,000 clients a year.