Mastering Business Fundamentals

Lesson 25 of 35

Best Practices: Seniors & Families

 

Mastering Business Fundamentals

Lesson 25 of 35

Best Practices: Seniors & Families

 

Lesson Info

Best Practices: Seniors & Families

When it comes to best practices, these are the things that I consider I mean you can wrap a best practice around almost anything you're doing or talking about within your business right there's ways to do things ways to not do things and I'm not suggesting that my way's the only way or my way is the right way I'm just highlighting for you my way is the way that's working for us and what I would encourage you to do is take a look at the way we're doing it understand that we've taken our lam's we've learned the hard way in see if the way we're implementing some of these best practices might work for your business right? What of it can you take eighty per cent of it and recreated in your business? And so for me best practices are wrapped around shooting backup procedures right? I mean if you want to talk about something that takes forever go shoot a wedding, come home and then you have to download that wedding back up that wedding loaded up edited one of the best practices there just to s...

ave time because if you can say five minutes ten minutes start thinking about how much that time is worth to you over the course of a year right? If you're doing twenty weddings thirty wedding you want to spend more time with your kids your family s o all those minutes start adding up taylor is going to come out she's going to talk about best best practice around sails this is an area a lot of you struggling because you can take the best image in the world, okay? You can make that image, you can light it perfectly, you compose it perfectly but if you don't know how to sell it and you just hand over a cd or if you don't know how to sell it and you just posted online, you're leaving a lot of money on the table so we're gonna talk to you with how we run our sales process and best practices around that well, then talk about post production what are some best practices there? How many images are we delivering to the client showing to the client? What are we doing to the images before we hand them over to the client writer we just shooting and showing them how are we editing them? So we'll talk a little bit there about best practices and then of course I'll walk you through some of the scenarios for the slide shows. We talked about doing that same day side shoulder wedding and I'll show you the products we used to do that so there's a screen we use how we coordinate with the venue deejay, that kind of stuff all right? So shooting I tried to give you best practices wrapped around each scenario for us and I think you can look at it you'll see a lot of similarities on then you'll have to figure out how you incorporate that into your own business so let's start off we're going to seniors, families, babies, glamour engagements, weddings again these air guidelines this is what we do to run our business see look for valid points that you can incorporate into your business so we talk about seniors session fee is two, three hundred dollars for an hour and a half, two, two and a half hour session and I want to make sure you guys here especially and even online are after we hit each one of these start hitting me with questions I don't want to get through this whole thing and then get hit with questions all over the board right let's talk seniors if you've got questions about seniors so the session for you two to three hundred dollars for an hour and a half, two two and a half hour session on location or studio I think the most dated way to photograph ah senior today, in my opinion is in studio it's just not what they're looking for they don't want fake backgrounds now I'm not I'm not talking about if you're gonna do a fashion or glamour session if you going to a fashion or glamour session that's totally fine right for the kids be in the studio ah white background back charcoal gray whatever it is it really doesn't matter it's all about the portrait at that point but today, signor my senior wants to be on location representative of who they are so if you look behind me right this picture over here that's one of my seniors I love the contrast of taking write a beautiful girl handsome boy and putting them in an urban grungy environment that is my style, okay? It doesn't have to be your style, but look at the contrast there the juxtaposed that's what I'm looking for eyes an artist that's my style and I'm connected to my clients how when you're doing this, if you're in studio on a white background great background, black background, everything starts looking the same. I understand your subject changes, but from a kid's perspective, if you understand teens, they want to look different yeah, but they're looking for do you say, do you play any sports what's your hobbies? Do you like your ballerina? Do you want to incorporate that exactly? So you're you're asking great questions. What we do is we we're having that conversation on the phone so when that phone call rings were asking all those questions, what sports is your son or daughter into? Just recently we one of the kids who came in we had photographed his sister well now he was coming in so there's already an established relationship but guess what I don't want to do I don't want his senior session to go to the same spots locations or look like his sisters at all because think about being a teen boy as a team boy I don't want I wouldn't want to look like my sister's pictures right even the same backdrop it starts it starts having that similarity so I wouldn't bring him in door on a white background or a black background so we start asking these questions what sportsman into well he's in a football right he's a wide receiver and so there was a post picture I posted recently on facebook it's a silhouette of him running you see the goal post silhouetted and him reaching out for that football on way I had him and his dad throwing the ball to get that silhouetted shot I want to do something a little bit more artistic and so those are the kind of pictures that come to mind when we start talking to our clients about that because there is a level of customization that should be there now we will have kids coming to me like I'm a dancer then taylor starts asking better questions will do you have access to a dance studio well no but I could get access right now that's helps me in my portfolio and what does that do with the client get him excited and I'm the trusted advisor again right? I'm guiding them through the process so I'm not just a photographer to them I start becoming an artist and a creative director if you will tina you um how do you do your consoles with seniors like wedding console so I'm assuming you meet in person before you do the signing and all that but with seniors do you actually haven't in person consultation or do you do that all over the phone when's the first time you actually see them and how often do you see them before the actual shoot? Yeah perfect great question so for a high school senior that is typical the request is going to come in either through email or on the phone right? So those air the one one or two touch point I do not respond an email to the client at all I think that takes away from my advantage I think the advantage we have is that level of personalization but we don't bring him in for a console we don't have time or it was just too time intensive to meet with every potential senior and so instead what taylor's going to dio she's gonna maximize phone time so she's going to call if I get an email can you send me pricing patching my daughter's a senior we want to use your studio I will right back to that client hey, suzie, thanks so much for reaching out to us I mean, if you can shoot if she gave me your phone number I'll just say I'll have taylor call you if she didn't I'm gonna say can we will walk you through all the prices and packages and how the process works okay, please call taylor your comedians and then I give him taylor's phone number because I want tail or getting on the phone and asking these questions because you'll be surprised they're shopping around when they when they e mail you or they call you they're shopping around they're looking at multiple studios so I want to be able to start painting a picture in their head so what's your daughter into because I guarantee you nine of ten studios that they're going to call aren't asking those questions those studios they're calling there's a local studio you don't even get the photographer on the phone you're actually talking to an administrative assistant that admin assistant isn't asking the right questions so instead taylor's that artist she's on the phone tell me a little bit about your daughter what she's into she's into dan she's in the horse and the horse back riding she's into we had one recently where she was a pilot I told you guys about this well, as soon as that happens taylor's like that's great can we get access to a plane mom's no longer thinking about price mom's thinking about the art of it all. And because there's no other photographer she's gonna call there was actually a photographer one one. Mom told me this story. She said I was looking between you and another studio. She was and I had the weirdest conversation with this other studio. I said, what happened? She's like, well, I told him my daughter was, you know, questioning and she was in horseback riding things like that. And I wanted pictures with the horse, but they wouldn't come out to our farm. They actually told us to bring the horse to the studio. You imagine? It's just comical, right? Tina's eyes like, what kind of studio you got? You could fit a horse in there. Uh, but so that was the advice they gave in. They wanted him to bring the horse. You know, how much of a pain that would be for a client to get the horse trailer bring the horse? Their horses all freaked out because it's, in a new environment that doesn't even make sense. That's not good service. We will. Because of the price point we're charging for our session fees with seniors, we will go on location and guess what if you're paying me three hundred dollars? For two and a half hours and I'm gonna come out to your barn and I'm going to photograph your high school senior with the horse you're not gonna buy those pictures you are absolutely gonna buy those pictures and you're going to buy a ton of them because you've never had another photographer out there doing something like that. So, you know, it's understanding that if you do what everybody else is doing once again, I mean, isn't this a recurring theme? We keep hearing if you keep doing what everybody else is doing, you're not gonna make any money because there's no difference between you and everyone else, but if you do it just a little bit like this, where you're going, yeah, I gotta go out of my way it's a pain in the ass I gotta drive forty five minutes to this barn to this farm to this football field, but think about the sale. If you start thinking about the end result, you realize you'll drive anywhere to get that that picture that's going to be the date now if my clients just like, well, we just want pictures in a park and there's just this awesome park that's an hour away we love I'm not going there, we're gonna push back on that klein and go, guys, unless there's something magical about this park a tree is a tree is a tree we're not we're not going out there and we will push back on clients when they come to us with unique ideas like dance football or sports in general. And when and when they're cheerleaders. What are you doing with them when their cheerleaders? We're just taking the obligatory cheer picture where they're they're holding their pom poms and and that's the picture you think anyone's gonna buy that gets where? That year? Where else that chair picture's being taken school, they're taking this at school, so you've got to do something different if they come to you with their cheer outfit, so typically I'm going to make them tio dan a move that is right, whether it's a scorpion or whatever the hell they do, they're jumping, I'm taking something that's, a little more action oriented so that it stands out from the picture they got at school and that's how you start selling those types of pictures as well, if not right, you can see here we're going to five outfits don't burn one outfit on the cheer outfit that would be a waste, a waste of time and money because they're not gonna buy that outfit, but let's, get to this, we like doing five outfits for seniors. Okay, so five different outfits taylor is is playing fashion easter with the kids we encourage them to bring up to ten outfits to the studio, so they're bringing ten outfits duffel bag of shoes, a suitcase of clothes, a tailor gets in there and she's just laying everything out for them to get to five outfits that make sense and what we end up doing is we take the worst outfit and make it first that will be the first outfit we shoot. Why? Because that first outfit the kid's gonna be nervous I'm not going to getting the right expression from them. S so why waste ah good outfit upfront and I build all five outfits to the best one and usually the best one might be their prom dress. It might be a really fancy, you know, dress that they purchased it has nothing to do with prom right case like this. This was her fourth outfit of the day, so I built up to this to get her to be able to do that and look comfortable in that pose right? My kids are not comfortable when I first get them in front of the camera. They are awkward, they're nervous, they just met me they have no idea they've seen their friends pictures where their friends looked like this and the kids come in and guess what, even though they're teenagers, they're still insecure about the way they look in the way they feel so my job your job is to build that security that confidence so that by the time you get an hour and a half into the shoot you could have them standing on the edge you know of a building and they're going to trust you so trust is very very important to get where you need to be different location for each outfit now when I say location that doesn't mean I'm driving a different parts of the city different location could be right over here is a brick wall and then as I turn around there's a chain link fence two different locations through the eyes of the counter okay, so I need you to keep that in mind that builds diversity and we've got to give them that diversity I don't take a red brick wall and then shoot two outfits on that wall because what's gonna happen is is when they come in to see the pictures they're going to say well we've already seen that that that wall and one of its a graffiti wall or something like that which we do use if mom doesn't like the graffiti wall and I do multiple office on that wall I've just burned to outfit she's not gonna buy anything from there because she doesn't like it so keep that in mind shot count is approximately a hundred to one hundred fifty images per outfit that's where I like to be that might seem high to some of you but if you know my shooting style tight, middle wide vertical and horizontal you start realizing that one hundred to one hundred fifty images with different expressions happens in an instant right? So if you think about it I used my seventy two hundred ninety percent of the time I'm going to shoot it. Seventy millimeters one hundred twenty millimeters two hundred millimeters. Okay, I'm gonna shoot that horizontal. I'm gonna shoot it vertical! I'm then going to go for multiple expressions from the kid's big smile, sassy, small smile looking away. So now I've got four expressions vertical, horizontal, tight, middle wide and the numbers are simple. I mean, you're you're like twenty five to thirty frames if I'm just taking one frame per twenty five to thirty frames that all look and feel different because the wider shots going to show this but a tighter shot is going to be tight on their face and that's going to give them as much diversity as you can imagine we're going to take uh those images that shot count and that's going to end up anywhere from like five hundred to seven hundred shots, narrow it down to about two hundred those two hundred are going to be fully edited, right color corrected vignette id etcetera, etcetera, we'll talk a little bit more about our postproduction workflow, but those images are going to get it and we're not showing them raw, untouched files when they come in, they just kids and parents cannot wrap their minds around the differences between, you know, off this will look black and white, you know? This will look great in black and white. I really if I think it'll look great in black and white, I show it to them in black if I think it'll look good with tax on it, I show it to them with texture on it. Yeah, question, I know is going to come in because we get it every time. How many? So you're doing a full edit on every image that you're showing them before you sell them that's, right? Okay, yes, and clarification, because a lot of people are asking questions like, you know, that you show it normally and then do the full edit on the ones they want to buy. No, I don't I don't believe it, and I'm glad we're pausing for that question. I don't believe for a minute that my client can envision what ah cool tone image if I just sit there and verbally say to them, okay, you see this image over here even if I show them a sample and I say, hey, you see, this year we'll make it look like that. I don't think they have that kind of vision they want to see it, so I'm willing to make that investment, but keep in mind are average senior spending anywhere from seven hundred two thousand dollars in studio, and the reason for that is is because I'm showing them a polished product and that polish product has been skin soften vignette, id, color corrected, toned black and wide texture not I don't text your eyes two hundred images I pick and choose my top five and that's what I'm doing those two because those are the ones I believe. As you can see, the main print I'm trying to sell out of a senior session is a sixteen by twenty four that's the size I'm shooting for rights when we talk about shooting to sell that's where I'm shooting for it's got to be something that'll be it sixteen twenty four and a print like this this is twenty thirty behind me you can see she smaller in the frame. It's not this giant head shot uh, of her now something to consider with seniors. I don't think it's specific to my market, I think it's just seniors in general. Parents don't want a shot where the kids are too far away they just won't buy it. They want to see their face. So the number one shot from ah senior portrait session that we're selling is a headshot and parents are buying headshots out of sixteen twenty four it's kind of incredible, but that's what they're buying, no matter what else I do, if I pull any further away than this of the senior, I won't be able to sell it. They won't buy mom's don't like it looks beautiful. I love it, okay, but moms won't buy it. They want to see their face. So this is about as far as I can pull away for a wide shot and no, I still have a chance of selling it. And that's best practices lesson learned. You know, taylor giving that me that feedback in the sale session questions on senior best practices from you guys and then we'll go to the internet. Everybody feel good except question how difference how, how different is thie experience of your ambassadors to the experience of that's abuse? Beautiful question is the the ambassador gets taken through the same process. It's very important that our senior ambassador has the same experience that everyone else does, why because they're going to go off and talk about that experience, so if you don't give your ambassador the exact same treatment, the gold treatment, now they're going to go off and they're not going to be excited about it. But our ambassadors get this or better, I would say the average ambassador session is two and a half to probably four hours of time because I'm experimenting with my ambassadors every year. I take my ambassadors and I want to kind of I know my competitors aire copying me. So I want to make sure that I can do at least one thing differently this year, and that might be with lighting that might be with posing and might be with locations. So I spend a lot more time with my ambassadors than I would with the average client. Yeah, you, uh, do you go up, use enough the card and stuff? You have them come into your studio to discuss the I guess what it means to be an ambassador, ambassador? Or do you just go back and forth from e mails or phone calls or do you specifically how don't come in? Yeah, so they come in specifically to interview to be an ambassador, so in order to be an ambassador in our studio, you have to go through an interview process. So not everyone can be an ambassador. Good question. So not everyone could be an ambassador there's no way that's gonna happen. There has to be that level of exclusivity. We will typically interview anywhere from twenty five, and I think that our our peak, we were interviewing thirty five to forty kids for ten spots, right? So you're telling a lot of telling seventy five percent of the people no, you didn't make the cut. Well, then they go off and they start complaining about it. And guess what? I love that they're complaining about it, right? Because that sends the message. Not everyone can be an ambassador and that's a good thing, but that's happening in the because we were talking about timeline yesterday that happens in the november december time frame they're interviewing, but then I'm going to photograph my ambassadors in the march april timeframe, so they're still in school as junior's when they're photographing with us and I understand it's, winter time and it's cold out, especially in the midwest, it doesn't matter I have to photograph them then because I have to give them marketing material to hand out in school. So if I wait till mayor are june, then and I photograph him school's out, then they can't hand out all the marketing material, so by the time they come in to shoot they've already been explained it's all been explained what it means to be an ambassador, how it works, what we expect of you internet wi do we'll start with choke cherry? Uh, who's been asking questions, sal, do you include the time for makeup in that one and a half hours? That's actually a really good question, no. So in this particular scenario, when I say two and a half up to two and a half hours, that is pure shoot time that they're getting from there, so make up wood and this actually this comes to work full from a scheduling perspective. First shooting our studio starts at nine a, m and nine a m is when they get in the makeup chair, so we allow about an hour for hair and makeup so they would get in the chair nine a, m and then in the notes on the calendar, it'll say salbi it's studio at ten a m so that I know, because I don't wanna look at the calendar see suzie's here at nine, and then I'm there twiddling my thumbs for an hour I need that time to run my business is all about efficiency workflow I need that extra hour of time to check email, work on production issues, just run the business. Now I show up at ten am taylor's already been doing all our thing getting the wardrobe out, I walk in, say hi to suzie sejahtera mom, and we're out of there and we go next appointment. Okay? He's gonna be on the books for twelve thirty. I get to the chute at twelve twelve thirty there might be a fifteen twenty minute lag, right? So maybe it's at one o'clock. So I now I wrap up this chute at twelve thirty and I've got thirty minutes maybe grab launch something like that. I'm there at the studio to meet the next senior, but the senior showing up at the studio at eleven thirty, right? Or at twelve o'clock for hair and makeup. So we've got this down to an assembly line process where I'm showing up. I'm not now waiting for them to go through the makeup chair that would be an hour waste of time instead get them in there and so that as soon as I wrap up my first shoot, I'm ready to start my second chute and my entire day goes that way. So this time of year, monday through wednesday, you'll see that we're we're shooting anywhere from nine a m two seven eight pm during that three day window and that's engagement seniors whatever's on my calendar but it's very important that you're efficient with your time and that driving all over town we talked a little bit about that yesterday on doing one offshoots yeah you said you meet your seniors at the studio so they could do their hair and makeup and stuff do you drive them around then like do they actually get in your car does mom come with how does that work do they meet you places yeah I do great question eso no mom does not get come with us in our car nor does the senior for that matter I don't really like anybody that much so uh you know you need that kind of break you're there you're working it's hot out man I just need like five minutes even to kind of decompress in between each location and so they follow us in their car mostly because I could be driving to an entirely different part of town for my next session so I can't have them have to get them back to the studio where their car is also there's a liability issue right? So I don't want them in my car with me just in case on it's always better to just have them follow along so mom will follow I always want mom there though so mom's there a parents there I'm never comfortable when it's just me and usually elicit is with me so my assistants always with me. I'm never alone, but I don't like being me, eliza, just the senior following along. I think that can just be problematic. So that's, why? We like having a parent. Yeah. So let's say, if you're down in the city and he just got done with shooting, you have another on the half hour. Does a senior now leave your studio and meet you? Or do you go back to studio car, pull out? No if we're on the great question, if we're on the before working on the illinois side where we have two options for us, right? And you could add a third if you wanted to. If you want to carry in studio, you could have an in studio option. So when we started off, we did. We had in studio with three packages. Three sessions was one hundred dollars for in studio, and it was a one hour hour and a half session, I think three outfits. Then we had local illinois, and that was an hour and a half. That was a two hundred dollars session, but it was three outfits outdoors. Then we had a third session, which was st louis two and a half hours, and that was a three hundred dollars session. Now that being said, if my session is back at the studio, that I'm just meeting everybody at the studio, but if we're often st louis for the day and all our sessions air there, I'm not coming back from st louis all the way to illinois. Taylor, in her email messaging, has specific directions on where you will meet, sow what time you will meet him and how to get there so the kids will leave from our studio if they're getting hair and makeup and mom will take him to this restaurant. We just meet in this restaurant parking lot, it's, a great meeting place and that's where we meet our clients. So this way I'm staying out again, being very, very efficient. So you talked about destination locations and what us set yourself apart by not charging extra for that and there's a clarification question from rodrigo pineda, who said, um, do you charge more than three hundred dollars, if a st louis senior once a session in new york or dc see right, great question we are known for that, so we do. We will photograph our high school seniors engagements in different cities, but it's tied to our travel schedule, okay, so that's why I don't charge anything more. So if I'm gonna be up in new york, we will work sessions around us being in new york, so we'll say, hey, we're gonna be in new york in this window if you want a photograph in new york, I've got three sessions available there three hundred dollars each, which would be my two and a half hour session everything else is on the client, they have travel hotel meals, I have nothing to do with that, we just tell them where they meet us and then we're photographing all over the city, so the key with those destination setting sessions is first and foremost I'm being selfish when I could do a session in another city. I love it because I'm building my portfolio in that city. Secondly, if a client travels with me to new york, they're going to spend more money, you don't buy plane tickets, hotel new outfits and then go, we're going to buy one eight by ten it's just not gonna happen. So some of our biggest sessions are when we've been out on location in another city. So why would I want to make it difficult for clients to get there? I've seen photographers adopt a model where it's like uh coming to new york with us thousand dollar minimum order two thousand dollar minimum order and you're going to get this and you're gonna get that but now the client in their head is thinking about that's, a lot of money. I don't know if we're gonna want that many pictures, etcetera. What I'm doing is I'm taking all that off the table, we tell our parents, hey, going a weekend getaway just the girls weekend. So mom and her daughter, they'll use travel miles, they'll use free tickets, they have, but they'll buy tickets, obviously, but they look at it as a mother daughter bonding experience, and we're just part of that documenting it. So hopefully that makes sense. So this seniors are engagements or whatever, but say you're going to new york and you have a claim that lives there, they hire you while you're there to do their shoot. But then what about the sales process afterwards? Right? So to relate it back to real world, we just photograph somebody up in chicago. They live in chicago, but they're getting married in st louis. So we did their engagement session free in chicago, right? Tailor made short of workers schedule where she could be up there. It's her wedding, the sale session because they're getting married back in st louis. We're waiting for them to come back into town. Before the sale shut session will take place because they have to come to town if they're planning their wedding they're gonna be back at some point in that scenario way we're going to try and get him into the studio but let's talk about a scenario where they're not coming back into town for whatever reason you're going to now have to revert to skype call and posting the images online which is going to impact your sales there's no way around it when you post online they suck they're never the same is when you have them in studio but like taylor alluded to, we've got a video that we show the client that walks him through all the products then taylor's jumping on a skype call in saying them here's what we believe you should do in your home here's some guidance but it's still no matter how hard you try it's not the same as having them in studio but it's definitely better than just posting them online and saying, hey, go figure out what you want that's when you get like an order for two eight by tens and you want to, you know, slit your wrist one more question, one last question before we move on ronaldo photography do you ever do group senior shoots with like best friends or anything like that? If so, how do you charge those differently early on, we tried the group's senior thing, and it it it just didn't work, it bombed for us and the reason it bombs, we listen to our clients on that our clients told us we want the one on one experience with you, that's, how we've built our reputation, it's all about the experience so the kids wanted and the pair I think, is more the parents and the kids. The parents wanted that one on one time where we were, you know, spoiling their child, giving them that experience, and so we tried it early on, and it just didn't work. We tried like the b f f thing we tried taking multiple kids on a road trip and nothing worked like being one on one with the kid, so I'd rather see you get away from that on just focus on the one kid at a time your sales averages will be a lot higher. Fantastic. All right, let's keep going so that seniors let's talk about how we run families. So families, you're going to see some consistency in this, right? Because it's all about efficiencies, it's all about making the business operates smoother, better and not complicating it for clients because senior clients are eventually going to be family clients, family clients are going to baby kleins. Wedding clients are going to be baby klein's so I want is much consistency across the board is that possibly can have so families the session fees we charge to three hundred dollars for an hour to an hour and a half session you do not need more than an hour an hour and half session for a family what the hell are you doing in and more than that? Nobody has the attention span this is the challenge don't think about what you want think about what your clients want your client does not want to be sitting there I know dads don't want to do it kids don't have the attention span to be sitting there half a day for a photo shoot what do you need? Half a day for this is not a commercial shoot figured out already your clients want quick, easy done right? They want good photography, but they don't want to take four hours, so our sessions are typically an hour to an hour and a half back to on still on location or studio my clients, my families don't want to have just a backdrop. I mean, I'm just being honest the days of watching, you know the family sit there in the perfect pyramid, sitting there with their khaki pants and white shirts they're over man that is not today's family that is not the modern family that is someone's misrepresentation off what family life is like that's not what the average client wants they want their life documented and so what we like to do is go on location with them maybe they own a barn maybe they own ah summer home maybe they want to go down to the beach that to me is more representative of real life thing bringing them into the studio and having them sit on the ground a white backdrop that's the picture people and you can go to the picture people for fourteen ninety nine and get a kazillion eight by tens and a gazillion wallets so once again here we are where is your studio? Do you want to be like every other studio? What do you want to separate yourself from the pack if you want to separate yourself stop doing things that everyone else is doing this is where I need you to be so we got to go on location and go on their location right what's representative of them my families are more likely to show up in jeans chocks black t shirt then they are to show up in collard white shirts tucked in you know, khaki pants that's just not my typical family uh one outfit okay? We're not doing multiple outfit changes for a high school senior what I will do though for a scene I'm sorry for a family for a family we're going to do break outs so what I love to be able to do is take that family what's the shot you gotta nail you gotta nail the family portrait okay what I love to do is start off the session chasing the kids around make it fun for the kids don't get to the session and then just immediately go okay guys here we go let's line up everybody look happy everybody look like they're in love with each other no because you know what was happening there two year old is probably having a temper tantrum in the car before they got there didn't want their hair brush eyes just crank you know being cranky pants there's a quote right there cranky pants so but so don't start off trying to nail the family portrait because that's the one you're trying to sell big in the home that's the one you're building too instead start off just getting the kids comfortable just being silly with the kids goofing around with them chasing them around talking to the kids don't talk to the parents when I get to a family session I'm having no congress I mean you know what I mean you're going to say hi to the parents has it going all right let's get going but what I'm gonna do is I'm going to talk to billy let's say it's a brother sister does it it happens almost the same way every time hey, billy billy billy doesn't want to talk to him no, right? He doesn't want to look at you. Hi, billy. Well, I'm gonna talk to suzie. Suzie suzie, you want to have your picture taken? And suzy right? It's just that sibling thing, right? Susie's like okay and that's suddenly billy's interested because his sister is doing it right. There's psychology here. So I'm gonna take susie around and I'm gonna have susie and I do the same thing all the time I even do it at my weddings. Michael right? Susie, do you have a silly face? I'm not trying to get silly susie to smile right out of the gate. She's not going to if she does she's gonna give you one cheesy ass smile so I sit down, okay, right? And I get to their level. I'm not talking down to suzy. I get down on her level. I'm like susan, can you tell me a little bit about your, uh what do you what do you doing today? What do you got on? She'll have one of her toys there and she just starts talking about her toys and maybe I'm trying to get some candid pictures while she's looking at her toy looking away and like, susan, can you me favor? Do you make a silly face? And she just looks at me and I'm like, you know what I'm talking about and I just start doing stuff like that her and she'll start making a silly face boom boom boom I get all these pictures maybe bombs by it maybe they don't buy now I've got all these pictures of her just making a silly face like you got a mean face and I'm like, you know, like we're r and then she'll look at the camera should grow or you know she'll do something silly we'll get something like that I'm like all right can you give me a nice smile and that's when I get it that's when I get the smile from the kid now billy's been watching the whole time billy alright buddy you're in now can you do it? You got a silly face for me, billy loosens up billy gives me what I need he needs so now I've isolated each one of the kids obviously looking towards the gold shot, which is them looking at the camera smiling then what is mom want not just each kid them together, right? Because if you've got siblings we all know that the brother and sister probably already to kill each other ninety percent of the time so to get one picture where they actually look like they love each other is going to be gold for mom so now I get them together and maybe I have them doing silly faces together maybe it happened you're smiling together that's how I start those sessions then I'm building in the family unit, then I'm going for the family picture then I'm looking for candid portrait of the family just interacting together, talking with each other sitting down on the grass so you've got it you've gotta build this mo mentum with the family that's my work flow now I don't I can't sit here and profess to you that I photograph one hundred families a year because I don't it's not my core business this is my way of getting families toe work now I may be photographed fifteen to twenty families a year, but here's what I can tell you the families had to come in our spending twenty, five hundred to thirty five hundred dollars per session, so I would rather photograph twenty families, then one hundred families doing five hundred dollars sales averages that's not what I want to do, but every family we have come through absolutely loves the experience they have because they feel like I'm not talking at them, right? They feel like I'm part of getting to know their family units that's very important uh so then my shock count is typically one hundred fifty to two hundred fifty images for the entire session just depends final that I'm going to show the client when they come in is going to be about one hundred different images, and you could see just how I was isolating the kids, how quickly we can get to one hundred unique images for that family, and it becomes really, really fund to do that. I will typically on lee do one location with the family, but if it's cool family and we're having fun and things were flying, I'm going to go to multiple locations with him. They're not gonna change outfits, we're going to go to multiple locations, maybe I'll do a park, and then maybe I'll do urban with him, right? So now I'm giving them diversity in there look, but it all depends on the family if I've got a kid who's having a meltdown, there's no way I could spend five hours they're waiting for that if you see riel baby dedicated baby for tarver's or family photographer my god, they're spending half a day just waiting for that one moment. I do not have the patient's waiting for that morn moment. I need to get to that moment quick cause I got another photo shoot! I'm moving on too, the main print we're trying to sell out of all this twenty by thirty I don't want you coming, that's how I have the high sales averages. I don't want you coming to our studio for a family session and getting an eight by ten that doesn't make any sense to me. Why are you coming to me? You could get that eight by ten anywhere instead, my job's to get something that's a little bit more, uh, environmental in nature and representative off of the family let's say anything here in the studio? Yes, jules, your average for family shoots suspending sales sales averages for family shoots or twenty, five hundred thirty five hundred dollars. So on the low end no one's coming in lesson that price point on the high end that's where we're at about thirty, five hundred. So if I can run, I'd be happy running a two thousand dollar average, to be honest with you. So two thousand dollar average from my family's would be more than enough for me, the minimum in our studio that I want to run. If I go out for an hour and a half, I'm looking to run about a fifteen hundred dollar average across all photo shoots, okay? Yeah, some are gonna come in and spend two hundred dollars, so we're going to come in and spend none. Right, we've had the zero sales. We scratch our heads or they buy two, eight by tens on. We've had some come in and spend five, six thousand dollars. So when you're running your business, you have to look at averages, the big sales. They're exciting. You do? You happy dance the little sales. You scratch your head. But ultimately you define your business by averages. That's. What matters more than anything else. Time thirty. Yes. How's that structured in the packages? Is it like the lowest package? Maybe a print. And then the black label may have it as an acrylic or canvas. That's. Exactly. Right. So that's a good point. So the way our packages of structured for families there might only be the base packages gonna have all like little eight by tens. It might even be seven. Ninety nine price point on our base package. It's not even have a twenty by thirty. That middle package might be at fourteen, ninety nine and have a twenty by thirty print. Of course, with a bunch of other stuff in it. Like slideshow facebook things like that for families. The animal to slide shows gold. They love it. Because imagine now you got the slideshow, you see little billy and he's like roar, and then the next picture comes in and he's making a silly face, and then the next picture comes in and you've got this, like, just calm kid that they haven't seen in a year s o that and then they see this on that slide show that's more practical than putting a mean face, you know, of billy on the wall. So the sideshow is a really big pull through into that middle package. And then that top package that's gonna have one of those like from virtuoso twenty by thirty framed acrylic that'll go in the home. Now we start getting into that that's in our black label. So in our top level package post wedding, I'm going to try and up sell him. It might have a twenty thirty framed acrylic, but then we're gonna ask him where you put in this if they tell us over a fireplace or something like that, twenty five thirty is actually too small that's when we start trying to get him up to thirty, forty or larger and so that's, what does that make sense with your slide shows? Teo maketh, um and then have a plain as he walked in the studio or do you exactly right when they walk into the studio in taylor's going talk to you about way just did like a sailor, I said, you know, south taylor it's, good it's, good stuff. So they when taylor brings him in she's going to start with one image on the screen, she's going to talk about the sales process and best practices, but we'll start with a single image on the screen and then when they sit down, we're going to play that an emoto slideshow so that an emoto slideshow has already been made for him and it's just you'd be surprised what happens to parents when they see this and the music's playing just really, really drives it home. So it's an important thing online? Yeah, question from manali photography has cell ever tried lifestyle photography? If so, would this be a specialty shoot, or would you charge the same as a regular family session way were doing lifestyle right? Which to me is a little bit more environmental things like that, I would be charging the same price I try and keep the session to the same time frame, but there's our scenarios where we want to do and maybe I'm just using different terminology I'd want to do like maybe more a style I shoot, but that would fall into that life style category. From his perspective and I would charge more for that so for family wanted to style I shoot or more like hey follow our family around for half a day add video to it because that's something I see happening in the future which is documenting family life like can you imagine what would it be worth if you put a video together you went there and you spend a whole day with the family and you were videoing little billy and billy's into playing the drums and he's in the singing or whatever billy's into his in the soccer and just kind of documented this a day in the life for them what would that be worth along with imagery that's a great business idea but I think there's a niche right now with the way life is going I think that's going to be something that more and more families actually demand and I would not charge three hundred dollars for that I'd be more in the three thousand dollars range for that with delivery of video and things on those lines so there's a business idea for you yeah uh but you're not allowed to not this year I'm allowed this year twenty fourteen um a photo from manitoba says does sell have a maximum number of people per family a family of seven children is a lot more work than a family that has two children yeah I think that's an old sales tactics? We don't do that. I know they were. You know, you rewind a few years back, you would see, like, family session upto x amount of people. Twenty five dollars for every person there after. Why? Why resist where you gonna make your money if somebody brings a family of seven to you and you do what I'm saying granted it's more work, but in you isolate each kid and then you put all the boys together. And then you put all the girls together. And then you do one giant group shot. You don't think they're going to spend money. I'm like the more the merrier. Bring grandma. Bring great grandma, turn it into a generational shoot. Let me get three generations of girls together. So I'll take grandma. Mom! Daughter! Oh, you got great grandma. Bring her there too. Well, she's in the home. Great. Get her out of the home. Let's. Do it right. You got four people there. She is in the old age home. But bring everybody there and now that helps me and helps my cells. So don't charge them extra to bring people in there, I think that's crazy.

Class Description

During this course, you’ll learn how to scale your staffing, provide unparalleled customer service, price your products effectively, and create a powerful brand from your personal style.

Whether you’re a beginner, intermediate, or advanced photographer, this course will provide a provide an accessible playbook for taking your business to the next level.

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How is this just $99? I would of definitely payed at least twice as much!!! Half way though the course and this information is more than what the price is worth. Thank You sal, We love your great energy and amazing information.

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My husband and I truly enjoyed this informative course. We love the way Sal is straight to the point about things and how to handle difficult situations. Taylor was awesome and helped me to embrace who I am and make it work for me. We can't wait for another class by Sal and Taylor. Josh and Lory

a Creativelive Student
 

My husband and I truly enjoyed this informative course. We love the way Sal is straight to the point about things and how to handle difficult situations. Taylor was awesome and helped me to embrace who I am and make it work for me. We can't wait for another class by Sal and Taylor. Josh and Lory