Pricing & Packaging
Welcome back, everybody to the afternoon. We're going to cover pricing in packaging. I know that's always a hot topic for everyone out there, and I'm sure we will not disappoint. So that being said, uh, pricing here's, how we're gonna attack this from an outline perspective you've been trying to implement, you need some help, and this was another reason for me to come back to pricing and packaging. So we've obviously talked about this before, whether it's a wedding bootcamp for seniors, but a lot of you out there, even you guys right here in the audience, you've taken what I've taught you, right? But maybe you've tripped. Maybe you have been able implement it fully that's why I want to talk about this again, and when you guys out there get your questions ready, if you've tried to implement our strategy or philosophy, tell me where you're falling. Tell me, what's working to okay, so I want to know what's working for you and then tell me what's not working, but the whole reason we're goi...
ng to cover this again, and I'm gonna share with you kind of are old pricing and and some new things we're doing used to understand. Where you're trying to implement need help? Okay, so kind of like a mini review so part of this you may have heard before but like I said when we started off this morning there's nothing wrong with hearing it again sometimes we got to be pounded over the head before it finally sinks in we'll have a general discussion on pricing and understanding the psychology make no mistake, there is a massive piece of psychological warfare going on whether you intend to do it or not between you and your customer before they make the purchase and just use yourself as an example when you go to the store, how are you making decisions, man? We could be talking toilet paper, right? You could go into the store how do you make toilet paper decisions? How do you make a lettuce decisions? We look a random things everybody's different right? We all have our quirks on how we make those decisions and so you'll go, you'll go in and if you go to like target or something like that, you can over analyse it right that we give its toilet paper, you could look at the cost per sheet, okay, so I'm neurotic I look at the cost per sheet why I have no idea why that's so important because that extra tenth of a cent I'm going to save but to me toilet paper's air come out! Any product right? We don't I'm gonna flush it down the toilet. It's gone, it's done, but I don't want my client's looking at it that way when we talk about our artwork I don't see artwork, it's commodity product. You know what I see is a commodity product. Digital negatives. Ah, cd of images I think that's a commodity product literally anyone can do that. Anyone can produce a cd of images and so I see that is a commodity product. So I want to see you guys start thinking differently when it comes to pricing, we're going to have that general discussion, understanding the psychology of it how much you can charge. Okay, if you want to be an artist, you have to charge differently. You have to offer different products. If you want to be a weekend warrior, you could get away with doing things a little bit differently. Um, are you shooting for dvd or product sales? This is a very, very important concept and we'll cover this in depth. But if you're just shooting for the dvd, you're shooting completely different. Your mindset is completely different when you're shooting for product sales because you want to sell big prints to clients, you have to think differently, you have to see differently. As an artist, okay, so when I walk into a scene of matches, welcome by snapping pictures, I'm thinking whether you like my work or not doesn't matter, but for me, I am thinking about this shot I'm trying to get them centered. I'm trying to get them lit. Well, I'm trying to think about what I can do in post production, right? I am thinking about post brush in postproduction, just another tool it's a tool we have at our disposal sort of be a photographer and not be thinking about your hammer is just irresponsible, right? So don't think if you use photoshopped that somehow makes you not a good photographer right there, I will see that there's purists out there like I don't like touching my images. I wanted to look like they look at a camera that's awesome that's your brand that's your style go with it! I don't want my images to look like they do right out of camera just not what I want to do. I want I wanted to have something to a certain extent, a little surreal look and feel that's my brand that's, my style and guess what that's the client I'm going to track, the client was looking for that black and white image or that purest photo journalistic image isn't coming to me they're not gonna come to me that's not my client and so there's plenty of work out there for all of us how do we have the price discussion with clients right if we're lacking confidence we have trouble having that pricing discussion just justifying how much we want to charge for an event and so those newbies out there starting out you have to understand how tow have that conversation value of shooting to sell oh and how it impacts your cell shooting to sal is something you've heard me say over and over and over again images you're seeing behind me were shot with one purpose in mind sales large portrait sales could I sell us I don't even know what size is maybe a twenty thirty or twenty four thirty six could I sell this twenty thirty if it were giant head shot not really the average client is not going to buy a headshot of themselves larger than life okay no one wants to see that but instead my style is to bring in a little bit more architectural right? You see that in a lot of my imagery it's really architecturally based right I love architecture and I love making the client small so that you see these architectural elements and then the clients in there but when you're shooting no matter what your style is you have to be thinking about the sale that's behind it and we'll talk about that um albums what products you're gonna offer how you're going to price it your ala carte pricing verse packages so we're going to drill into ala carte pricing we're going to talk about packages we're gonna look at my packages from today and look at my package where they were when we started out two thousand seven and you will see consistency among my pricing and that's important for all you out there have been trying to implement our model and not understanding how this all works works together session fees right understanding that we can't just shoot for free or four cd we have to have something session fee which includes nothing but your time and talent and then various stages of implementation and that's where we'll cover both of both are pricing from two thousand nine and two thousand going into two thousand fourteen you're going to be a five year window of how our pricing has changed so how does it all work remember their psychology involved price equals value tour falls okay do we think I'm talking to you guys that we think price equals value don't tell me what I want to hear tell me what you think do you really think price equals value anybody disagree with that statement physical value no not physical value expand um I mean same thing it's like if you go back to mercedes benz yeah his quality but if you're spending sixty thousand dollars on car you know quality or you least think it's quality but if you just played into what I'm saying right perception's reality exactly but if you go on buy a brand new three thousand dollar car you're not you know the quality is not gonna be there so how about way rephrase right t get to your point which I know where you're going right a car he's a car right now if you look at a car and say it's just a mode of transportation then a three thousand dollar car pride does the same job is a hundred thousand dollar car can we agree to that that's my point, right? So but if it's one hundred thousand dollar car there's gotta be something better about it you may not even know what it is but something must be better about right there's an assumption there perception's reality so I would make the argument that mercedes benz is not right because that's the example you were working with mercedes benz is not looking for people who are looking for cars. You were great. So when you hear me talk about who my client is, my client is not somebody who's just looking for a photographer that's not my client because that person is willing to pay five hundred dollars for a photographer I'm looking for someone my client is somebody who's looking for an artist somebody who's looking to create a family heirloom somebody who wants a fine art piece on their wall large prince an album if somebody's just looking for somebody with a camera a mom with a camera dude with the camera I'm not the guy, right? So you have to start understanding how how you price yourself is gonna impact your ability to connect with the right client. So this is a conversation. It seems like this nebulous thing we're always talking about you like how do I find my client? I can tell you how you're not gonna find it. You're not going to find your client by pricing yourself at five hundred dollars a thousand dollars. Those are typically going to be the wrong client who don't appreciate your work. We with me, what about my competitors? What about? Who cares? Who cares what your competitors aire doing? If you're looking at what your competitors aire doing, you're too busy looking in your rearview mirror and not spending enough time looking forward, I could care less what my competitors aire doing, I could care less what the naysayers air doing, what I'm trying to do, his boys a trail I'm trying to be the leader in my market, so why is it you everybody out there? Why can't you be the leader in your market? I'm not your competition I'm nowhere near your competition I'm not in your market if you're in my market I am your competition and so you've got a task ahead of you you've got my competition is constantly looking at me and playing copy cat okay that's where you want to be when your competition is copying everything you're doing locations poses products pricing you must be doing something right when your competition is talking mad shit about you you must be doing something right right? Because if they're not talking about you what what that means you're not existent to them you see what I'm saying and so you want to constantly be pushing the envelope here you should not be worrying about your competitors that means you're not doing what I'm teaching him I want you less worried about what they're doing and more worried about where you're trying to be you've got to be the visionary you've got to be looking to the future where you want to take your business and if you start doing that you don't have time to look in the rear view mirror we have to understand the value of what we're selling so we're back we're back to the psychology right? I hope everybody but he understands where we are right now we're talking about the psychology of the sale we have to understand the value of what we're selling and so if you are just a photographer then the value of what you're selling is probably not that valuable, because I don't think it's a photographer, we offer very valuable, right? Listen, my whole message don't take one sentence I'm saying we're commodity product, everybody is a photographer. We all agree with that, right? Every there's competitors out there weekend warriors out there. Anybody who's got a camera is potentially a competitor to us. However, if you elevate it, elevate your offering and understand the value of what you're offering, which can't be a cd of images has to be an album has to be an experience. Suddenly you just created separation between you and everybody else. And what you want to do is keep creating that separation and pricing is one of those things that will help you create separation. You understand that these big companies, whether it's, bottled water, monster, energy, drink, you understand they have, like a division of people dedicated to figuring out what the right price point is for the product ceremony realized how corporate america works. So within corporate america, that is a marketing effort. How you price your product. Okay, there's a science to it. How all of you out there the course that they're pricing at ninety nine dollars. There's science behind it right? Somebody didn't just wake up one day and be like, oh, shit let's go with ninety nine right there's a reason there's a logic behind what? How pricing works right there's a psychology to it go too high you're not gonna have enough sales go too low, you'll sell too many or worse, you'll devalue what you're selling. I mean, it could easily sell the creative life course for ninety nine, right? But what would that say about the value of the course? If it were ninety nine, you would immediately assume he can't be that good. I just go to youtube watching videos, right? It'll be better, right? So there's that there's that psychology to it you have to understand that that's happening and just cause we understand it's happening I laugh all the time when I go toe aah store a clothing store some like that and I see the sales they're running and everything I dissected I understand what they're doing and why they're doing it. I still buy, okay, I know what I know what they're doing. It worked but it's working on me right? So just be just be educated on it cost the goods what does this mean, right? We talked earlier I gotta ask him questions hard cost of goods cannot exceed fifteen percent not on your allah card don't worry about your allah car we're talking about in your packages when you that's where you want your clients and packages, not allah card I am anti ala carte pricing I am pro package based bundling I'm a huge bundler that's what works? We've seen success and we see it all throughout corporate america, so I didn't just make up bundling every day in our lives no matter where we go from mcdonald's to clothing stores there's all these concepts of bundling things by two t shirts get one t shirt half price it's a bundle okay, so we see this everywhere we go so I have incorporated that into my business, so cost the goods in those bundles cannot exceed fifth eighteen percent. The rest is your margin, which is profit margin reinvesting into the business, paying for electricity, paying your staff your salary you're outsourcing cause and so that hard number of fifteen percent is what we used to drive and manage our business. Everyone has money for what they want to have again back to reality. This is back to the psychology something you've heard me say over and over again I'm sure you're tired hearing me say it, but at the end of the day we all have money for what we want, how many homes, how many family members do you have that are always claiming they're broke, but then they got a brand new car, and they got a flat screen tv. They're buying their kids, the brand new xbox. They're going on vacation to disney like where's. All this money coming from people have priorities. My client is the one who has money for me. That's, my client, you could be driving a pickup truck with the tailgate falling off, or you could be driving a one hundred fifty thousand dollars mercedes benz. I don't discriminate the people I want, the people I go after, the people who see the value in what we're offering. So we got to stop blaming the economy. We got to stop blaming each other, is photographers, we've got to stop blaming digital it's, because we're digital era is giving away digital negatives, maybe it's you, maybe you're the reason your business is not successful, just maybe is an entrepreneur. We've got to start showing ownership, right? Stop with the entitlements stopping we're owed being successful. Stop thinking that because you've been in business five years, or because you've been in business ten years, you are entitled to continue to be in business, it doesn't work that way, right lays a fair, this is the way the market works the best will survive that's how it is so you okay, the people with their dollars will vote on your business, and if they're voting your business out of business, you've got to step back. Take a deep breath, look inward, get people around you who can give you good advice and revamp there's. Something wrong with that? Your business will go through this life cycle. It's like your clients go through life cycle. Your business will go through life cycle will go through life. Think about laundry detergent. So if you don't know my background, not only did I used to work for microsoft used to work for proctor and game. All right? How many different variants of laundry detergent can you come up with? I mean, laundry detergent is laundry detergent? Is it not cleaned your clothes? And so how many different variants can you have? So what happens is these product cos he's consumer goods companies produce a product? Tide is a perfect example. Tide starts growing, grabs massive market share and in levels off, right? And so if this levels off, your business is going to die because your competitors are going to erode your market share. And so you can't have that happen. Same thing happens to us in photography we ram to really quick, now we're leveling off. I don't get that blip I don't get my business to kick back up again, right? How do you get your business to kick back up again as you're ramping because it is going to plateau don't think the plateau means you're going out of business it just means suddenly there's no reason to bring in new life new blood to your business new dollars to your business gotta innovate got off for something you got to go after head shots you got to go after glamour you got to go after pets blitt your business kicks up again starts growing you got off for new products you got to continue to innovate, innovate, innovate and so as we do that okay you'll start realizing it's not the economy it's not other photographers it's, not the newbies it's you? We got lazy, we became the house can't we stop being that street cat? And so you've got to get that back into your business. So where do you want to be? No more excuses, stop listening to people who don't know what the hell they're talking about men who is in your core circle who do you trust for advice? Those those of you out there who were just starting your business and your and you're working another job or you're in your first or second year business don't go to these photography meet ups right? We have these in st louis by the way I do not participate in them at all because it's a giant bitch session that's all it is is just people complained you have these in your market or is it just me in st louis? A few of them in seattle on dh so we have these in st louis to get together for coffee and they just trash talk every other photographer out there why do you have time to sit in that damn coffee shop? Go and work, man go work on your marketing go work on your advertising I do not have time to sit in a coffee shop complaining about what every other photographer in my area is doing right take that time invested wisely grow your business, control your destiny and stop resisting control your own destiny if you want all of you here, all of you out there if you're vision for next year is to do ten weddings, twenty weddings, fifty weddings I think you can do it I firmly believe you can do it. The on ly one holding you back is you and I feel like I'm in a position to be able to say that to you because we went from zero towe where we are today and nobody I didn't let anyone hold me back no one ever told me it couldn't be done that I listen to, I wouldn't let those people into my course circle no negative people in your circle. All right? So some tips about pricing and packaging, first of all, do not sell or give away the edited images, it will cannibalize your sale, and we're going to talk a cz much as I hate doing it, I am going to talk about digital negatives, and I fully expect spent a significant amount of time on that, but for the moment, do not sell or give away the edited images, right, not your digital negative, the fully edited image we have to use pull through techniques what do clients want? This will change over time. What a client wanted five years ago is completely different than what a client wants today that has to evolve. So once again, if you're that studio, as you're going through your life cycle, you cannot offer the same products necessarily that you were offering five years ago and offer them today. Some things will go come and go and that's, okay, but you have to listen to their dollars if they're buying it, keep selling it if they're not buying it, stop selling it for us, our pull through our things like albums, negatives online, posting facebook, large prints and very any product so that picture box I showed you earlier that's gonna be one of those new products? That's gonna be one of those pull ther items we use to get people into our bigger package is absolutely because that is an extremely unique product. We've gotta punish bad behavior, right? That's one of my mottoes I do not want you buying off my ala carte menu. Ala carte is piecemeal ing everything. I'll take one of these one of those one of these that's not where I want you because rarely are you going to behave the right way with your with your spending, you're actually going typically behave the wrong way. So if you want to do that, we have no minimum orders in our studio. There's really nothing stopping you from doing that you can, but I'm not willing to let you do it. And the way I control that he's, raise my prices on those items. Right? So if you want an eight by ten print it's fifty bucks allah card now, if I were in new york offering an eight by ten print would be a hundred bucks, right? Because if I'm in chicago would be one hundred bucks l a b one hundred bucks, but in st louis, fifty bucks is high enough price point to get them off that ala carte menu. Right, drive him back into a package every markets different how do you find that number? Don't just go out there and raise your prices to fifty bucks or twenty five bucks is he responsible? Slowly get there, ok see how the market reacts and keep raising it if you have a session, come in and they're on your ala carte menu raise it, raise it, raise it until they stopped going there and that's the right number packages have to be the most compelling item on the table. So the big thing to understand with packages and bundles that has to be where you're trying to drive everyone is there. So in order to do that, it has to be the most compelling item on the table. We've got to get away away from antiquated sales tactics oppose limitations, right? Limiting the number of poses that aaron a package this is big in high school seniors and portrait markets has an antiquated sales he sales tactic get away from it it doesn't work anymore. It actually irritates people also album pre design that is also an antiquated sales tactic that doesn't work. Let me tell you what I mean by that let's say your client buys and won your packages a twenty page album now they come in after their wedding to see their pictures and you show them a sixty page designed album you say, hey, you know, I took a liberty and I designed your album tell me whatever you don't like will pull out. So now you're forcing your client to start pulling pages away, and I know why you're doing it, but so today they know the reason you're doing it is to make it too painful so that they'll they'll buy the whole thing. It is a bad sales tactic. I've seen it blow up in many photographers phase, and so we add extra pages to our clients albums, but we do it by adding bundles after the wedding, we'll talk more about that. This is a question from see where to go, chris shakes, who says, what do you do if you can't find a price point that you believe you're worth and what people will pay? So trying to find that middle between what you're worth and what they'll pay, I raised my prices after viewing the original workshop and getting numbers figured out and couldn't get anyone to book after I my price increase. So I've been trying out different pricing to see where I should be, and I can't get very many booking and just for the marauder, this is the kind of feedback I'm looking for people who've been trying to take what we've taught. And are hitting that roadblock right so here's the problem who is this person chris shakes so chris here's what's happening to you right now and I know this because we went through it you went off you start you raised your prices awesome problem number the big problem is you're selling to the same client that's the problem so you don't have to adjust your prices anymore you have to find new clients better clients clients who can afford you and the way you do that is by altering your marketing strategy you have to start going to different bridal shows maybe right we were talking over lunch was that bridal so you told me was I called budget budget bribe dude if you're going to the bridal show that's called the budget bridal show not for you right and if you stay at that bridal show and raise your prices maybe you're going through that transition clearly you are not going to get booked at that show because the bride who's there is a wrong bride so by raising your prices kudos you did the right thing but now you've got it it's not just do one thing that I'm teaching you you have to embrace the philosophy that we're teaching here and that means you have to start marketing too different different avenues so good job but alter your marketing you know we had a couple questions on that so I think that that covers that for those some clarification on the idea of cost of goods kobe went through for five what is your definition? The gas you used to drive to the shoot visa charges a box you by to deliver the albums of food you treated your client is strictly the album's prince etcetera a couple other people ask the same thing I love it what do you consider in custody? Yes and I knew I allowed extra time in this because I knew we were going get slammed with questions these are all great questions everybody my definition of cost of goods not business school definition not if you go to wikipedia this is my definition cost of goods is just your hard cost of goods to produce the product I gotta re phrase not just produce the product order the product let's say okay there's gonna be some variable cost in their gas your time on the phone you're everything true cost of goods the true definition business school definition is literally everything that went into the production of that product okay and here's the challenge with that we would now become bookkeepers because you have to get down to why I spent thirty four minutes on the phone I spent this much time doing this then I have to order the product and I had to edit the product so I didn't want to be a bookkeeper so I came up with a number that made sense. That's what? That fifteen percent is. So if I sell a thousand dollars worth of product, it's a sell package, that's a thousand dollars, one hundred fifty dollars, of that can go to product toe ordering the product, that's it, everything else has to be a prophet in that scenario, so that gives me eight hundred fifty dollars off the thousand or sail to attribute to gas buying a cup of coffee for my client, things like that. So that's, the number I use and that's been very profitable number were profitable every year, and so use that number, and I promise you, you will. You will be able to grow your business successfully. If you want to start getting down into the minutia, you'll you'll never be for photography. For tarver, you'll be spending all your time being a bookkeeper and that's why I don't I don't want to do that, my philosophy, so I kind of want to get into this concept with you so sb photo girl says, what about if you haven't been in business a year yet, but you feel you could be successful and an industry leader as an industry leader in your area, as much as people who have been in business a long time, phil there titled I feel I'm not entitled because I haven't been in long enough, though I know I could be on a competitive level with people and I love how you talk about, not worry about what anyone else is doing, even with pricing so there's kind of that that feeling of, you know, there's an abundance for you, you can do whatever you want instead of the kind of scarcity mentality that you can never get there. Yeah, well, and I love the conversation because it's funny I find for tar first in general, to be egomaniacs and not about their work. Oddly enough, it becomes about their got sneakers out here, but it becomes more about their the price of their eight by ten. Have you noticed that photographer's defined their like, how bad as they are by how much they charge for nate by time, we charge one hundred fifty dollars for an eight by ten really good for you, but who do you sell it to? Because I don't care how much you charge for an eight by ten if no one's buying it really doesn't matter. Eso I try not to wear my pricing as a badge of honor, okay, what I look at is big picture, how much money? Is my studio making per year, right? And if that were shooting one hundred weddings at two two thousand dollars a wedding, I would be just as prideful is if I shot right twenty weddings at five thousand dollars a wedding so it to me, it's just about figuring out what makes sense for your business now too that tow her point her specific question it is tough when you're in a market and you're looking at what your competitors aire charging and you might see a photographer in your market who's been established who's been there and you see they're charging let's just call it five grand for a wedding you might easily look at that guy I'm better than him for her fair enough, but does the community does your consumer base? No, you're better that becomes the challenge, so you could in theory go out there your first year in business and say, screwed, I'm charging five thousand dollars a wedding, but you're unproven. You don't have the chops he's you know what he's cashing on that studio that's there ten years charging five grand or ten you grant the name now he's got a responsibility to maintain his reputation you don't have the reputation yet, so if you just start now, give yourself a year or two to get your feet under you work out all the king because it is not forgiving. Once you get to the top and people are paying five, ten, fifteen grand for a wedding, they expect five, ten, fifteen grand with a service response time product, etcetera. So once you get there, if you screw that up and you'll never recover from that, so give yourself a chance. Tto gett there? Uh, cindy mac seems to me the pricing packages at thirty two, ninety nine, forty two, ninety nine instead of thirty, three hundred and forty three hundred also seems sales e what do you think about that? There is a little sales way operate with that. Right? So my packages air, I forget what they are we'll get to him, but it's probably gonna be you'll see the nine, ninety nine, nineteen, ninety nine things like that, but it's also psychological, and you see it everywhere you go, no matter where you go pick a store, rarely are they flat feet price, right? So if it's three thousand dollars, you'll always see it at twenty nine ninety nine. And the reason for that is simple psychologically saying the two somehow gets our brains t think it's not three thousand dollars, even though it is three thousand dollars, right, and so I know this and I should come to it every time I go someplace every time I go some place and I see the price and it's not too bad, it's, only, you know, ninety nine or whatever the hell it is, and I fought and I fall for it every time, even though I know what's being done to me. So even though your clients will know what's being done with the pricing it still psychological and there's no way around it when they're saying that twenty nine, ninety nine or nine ninety nine there not saying a thousand saying a thousand dollars sounds worse in saying nine, ninety nine it's that simple. So, yeah, you've got to balance what seems chelsea, I mean, put a thousand dollars on and see what happens, and you'll start seeing your results go the wrong way, I guess there's a reason why everyone does that, yeah, way, that's, why you're doing it one night and not one fifty, one hundred. Exactly so it's just it's one of those things that even though consumers air, actually, consumers are smarter than we think, okay? And so businesses I think if you rewind back to the fifty, sixty, seventy, maybe consumers weren't quite a savvy as they are today, but today's consumer, I think he is very very savvy when it comes to pricing and so you don't want to insult them because if you if you do something that seems insulting to them which to me pre designing albums the postgame those air insulting things but if you're doing something that's mainstream and being done everywhere else you're typically gonna be safe when it comes to that pricing model so uh jen asking I want to get into this pull through techniques a little bit more that's okay jen asking ask is everything everything in the package hasn't ala carte price how do you figure from pull through items I thought it was important to have a couple things available in packages on lee is that a misconception that is a misconception you can do it with certain things so there are some thing I have a feeling she's followed me before because there are there are situations where digital negatives are only available in a package right but so that is a true statement but it's like every rule we have it's okay to break the rules right once in a while but for the most part that is not the case on the most for the most part everything on your ala carte menu there has to be associated price with it so that you add value to the package so for example the whole reason you want a bundle is to say if you buy all these things on the card it's gonna be a thousand dollars, but if you buy it in the package or the bundle it's five, ninety nine that five, ninety nine you have to have fifteen percent cost of goods, right? So that would have to be ninety dollars, right? If your sound some for six hundred bucks ninety bucks would be your hard costs if it goes above the ninety bucks, you're going to start losing money on that package, but we'll cover the the ala carte here in a second. Does that make sense? Yeah, okay, so how do we have that pricing discussion with clients first, we've got to be confident even when you're not even when you don't feel confident, right that's what I mean by that we have to exude confidence, we have to believe where worth the price we're asking for if you don't believe it, your client will smell it like like a shark smelling blood in the water. Okay, we've all been on those sales calls, and we start walking through our packages and we get to that top package, right? And it's our highest price point in deep inside, we're praying they book it like my guidebook, this one because and that desperation comes through it's just coming through our pores, okay, you have to go into those sales meetings and just not care even though you do even though every fiber in your body wants that event wants that wedding needs that wedding okay or session don't succumb to that you've got to just take a step back and realize it doesn't matter you're gonna win some you lose some but you've got to believe in your pricing um we go talk about pricing you have to add value why are you worth what you're charging what's the difference between you and every other person in this town with a camera if you don't know the answer to that not just because you're good not because you think he got funny jokes, right? What is it that makes you better? There better be a reason a tangible reason if you were to ask me why do I think we're better if I was sitting down with a client right now and they would say to me while you're more than twice the price of anyone else in this area make no mistake in the st louis area we are one of the most expensive photographers there you're more expensive than anyone else here why? Why should I hire you to photograph my wedding? What would I say? Okay, I can I can easily come up with three bullets with why I think we're better well, suzy, the reason we're more expensive first of all, I'd acknowledge we are more expensive I wouldn't get us insulted. How many of us again, for divers had to be a little prideful. Dude, get over it. Right? Welcome to the world of sales. You seem to be a little more expected, more expensive than he was. Absolutely you're right, suzy. We are more expensive than anyone else, and we definitely realize that. But here's, the value we can bring to the table that I don't think other photographers can first and foremost, our product product line is second to none. So take a look at these albums, there's nothing like it on the market. Okay? And I'm gonna show you some more of our albums. We have new album's coming out. We'll show you some of those. Tomorrow, our product line is second to none. Secondly, which you're probably not even thinking about now is turnaround time you're going to see your image is in two weeks how many of your friends have got married and maybe never seen their pictures or still haven't seen a months after? As soon as I say that you can see her starting to think in her mind about bridesmaids, about friends or family who have not seen their images, so now I've just justified my price and finally, susie. The other thing to consider among many other things that we offer it's not an apples to apples comparison but I'd like to think that we're going to give you a better overall experience then you're gonna have anywhere else our imagery is completely unique and I think ultimately when it comes to creating a family heirloom for you and your family in the future we're going to be able to hit that mark for you I will deliver that without skipping a beat I am confident I believe in my product and if she doesn't like my answer she's going to get up and leave she's not going to book me guess what not my client got to be willing to let him go what am I gonna strong armour no you should book us what do you need do you need me I'll lower my price I'll give you ten percent off we'll give you the present but why why would you do that? You're signaling what you're putting blood in the water and you're going I don't believe I'm worth what I'm charging you don't bother paying me and got news for you this is the beginning of your nightmare the minute you start doing that the minute you start lowering your price and retreating right you're stepping back you're saying I'm not going to stand by this price the minute you start doing that the messages out now when they come in for engagement pictures they've already bullied you wants their going to bully you again now when they come in post wedding they're going to bully you again now when they come in for their cycle life and their babies and all that stuff they're going to bully you again don't tell me if you're in that situation you haven't had that happen to you but it's your fault it's not their fault but me I stand firm this is about this is what we provide I can't do it for any less I never have another pricing come if they book me I don't have another pricing conversation after the engagement session I don't have another pricing conversation after the wedding I don't have to I've already stood my ground they already know they're not gonna bully me on my price just very very important that you build that confidence how do we handle it on the phone? First of all, the ultimate goal when it comes to pricing is going to be to get to either a phone call or the meeting the meeting is the ultimate goal I want to be face to face with that kind because when they wonder why I'm so expensive I need to be able to articulate my words my voice to them why I think I'm more expensive not reading some blurb on a website right not seeing a video on a website I want them to have that conversation with me this should be old hat for anyone should my pricing beyond my website no, I've convinced thousands of you to stop doing it stop putting your pricing on your website doesn't belong there prices starting at a okay but you should not have your eight by ten prices your package price is your october family special prices why are those out there there's no reason for them to be out there when you call me for your wedding I want you thinking about one thing one thing only booking me for your wedding and I need to get you to that meeting so that I can show you why I'm different I cannot show you why I'm different on my website should I send pricing the clients for you e mail? No once again I got to get you to a meeting, right? Well let's say we're all in the same market and you're all copying my pricing. Okay now the bride calls and she says I'd like my pricing and all of us send our pricing tour right she's interviewing all of us for her wedding and none of us meet with her would you send her prising and she's looked to your package and it says who green label and it's uh it's got this it's got an album and it looks sounds got black label and his has got an album in it too what's the difference. Oh, sounds twice the price. I'll never book a wedding. I've got to get to that meeting so that they can see the difference in what I'm putting in front of them. That is paramount for your business to be successful. Get to the meeting, you know, and we face I want to discuss some real world challenges out with the audience to what are some challenges you're seeing with pricing getting to the meeting what's happening at the meeting. And I want you guys talking to me in here. You don't, robbie. I'm gonna pick on you. What? Since you've left. Yes, I've been good on you today. You know, when we did this last time was like every time I came very much you're my go to guy. You walked away and since you've walked away, you've opened ah, studio location. You've got a building. Now, hopefully you've raised your prices. What what are you seeing when it comes to pushing this out? What pushed back and getting from people? Many a men thing? Email brides will email me and say, hey, can you send me your packets list and everything includes so it's really hard to articulate. The reason why I want them to come into the studios and hey, I want to corner you and show you all these awesome products like that's the one I guess the hard thing for us right now explain are you not using our car our script that we created for that no we are but I mean in a more personal sense then you're tweaking it yeah yeah so that but so once you send out that e mails it working are you getting more pushback? Yeah, I know it works but it's either it works or they go dark yeah it they don't even know you back that's right? Fine that's exactly write it is fine. So I would I would tell you that we probably get five to ten request per week via email let's just call it ten just for the sake of this conversation ninety percent go dark never hear from him again I just saved you know how I look at that? I just saved myself nine hours a time exactly I don't have to sit down with people who have just can't even afford me right out of the gate but one I get to sit down with that one I get to sit down with his pre qualified she knows how expensive we are she seen our work she's seen are testimonials on our website so by the time she comes to sit down with me I can only screw this meeting up right so it not once I get to the meeting nine out of ten times I'm booking it and that was the ultimate goal that's why we run this process this way jules where you at you made these changes great fantastic so but where you went in the tent issues here isn't working is it not working that's working you are averages are way up so just that simple yeah so but you resisted for a long time not really. We had common way started tweaking everything and then um you know last time I was here you help me tweak it a little more right let's rewind right we can go back and I remember history from us where it was just there was resistance on whether it would work or not you were scared right? That's a fair statement yeah, I wasn't you know you want it to happen but it doesn't matter I was dealing with the right team jewels right? And you guys weren't in lockstep and so but then you finally went off and did it and now you're seeing success with it absolutely okay and the reason I only bring that up is because everyone out there right feels the same way they're scared to make this change ah fear the phone won't ring and so you can I feel confident because I've been involved in your business that it does work absolutely and you know them from where we were and the enquiries we were getting you know, most of them wouldn't even right back the ones that are writing back are excited to meet with us. We're booking eight out of ten um um it's fantastic your client yet exactly awesome. So judy bee photography says omg sal is talking to me and a black ribbon photography says me too girl that's good you're speaking to him there's a good conversation I knew I knew this was gonna be it had to happen again. You know, even though we've done it in the past, I knew we had to come back and hear, you know, from robbie and jewels and people out there on where they're running into obstacles because that's what to me mentoring and coaching is all about I could sit here until you go do all this and then when you hit that wall where you turning to for help and you need to be able to turn to someone? So hopefully I'm not guy for you kind of funny comment from eighty photography says honestly, I think my ideal client is the kind that can make the decision via email in online discussion and doesn't want to meet in person, but I understand benefit to me in person so what do you think about that? For those for those individuals who are you know may describe themselves introverts are shy or whatever who aren't is comfortable in person, but when they get behind the camera they're fine. How do you how do you help them? What I love about what? What that person saying is that they know themselves, they know their strengths and weaknesses so to me, there's nothing wrong with that, but I think there's a part of that that is going to hinder their growth so my client right and I'm well aware of my client who is willing to spend seven, eight, nine, ten thousand dollars on a wedding wants that level of personalization, that level of service right? They want to come into my studio, they won't have a glass of champagne, a glass of wine now, if I were in a different price point of fifteen hundred dollar price point, a two thousand dollar price point or less, I would I might agree that those air weddings that I can book online never meet anyone and that's great, I think I know nothing about this person or their studio, but I'm making assumptions, of course, andi, I think that those are the kind of clients where maybe he's a weekend warrior or she's a weekend warrior not looking to run a full time studio and because that's what toppings takes time takes time to sit down at that meeting and so for right now that's probably good, but if they want to grow the business just got to come back and re evaluated but props to that person for knowing who their client is that's more important than thinking who I defined my client is is who in the world should define them as the great extinction may be a little bit later on but um last weekend I like a little reconnaissance mission and I went to the wedding show that I'm hoping tio be a part of in the future and literally every photographer that was there that I talk teo the first thing they did when I walked up was hand me their prices there ala carte in their packages like do you do you do that like you hand out prices at a wedding show? Are you gonna know I wasn't gonna talk about that, so I love that you're asking the question let's explore it so when we're doing ah wedding show pricing is held in my hand, I don't lay it out for them to grab and there's a reason for that, right? It's back to the psychology I don't want the drive by bride okay? If you've ever been to a trade show whether it's photography or anything else with one thing they're very happy to give you out is collateral okay, so now you've got this bag of crap in the that you're just what happens, you walk by, you grab thank you, and you put it in and you continue on and then maybe hopefully when you get back to your room when you get back home, you got an extra ten pounds of luggage with you now from all the paper and trees that have been killed, but now you get back home, maybe you look at it, maybe you don't write, so we don't do that. Instead, I hang on to everything taylor hangs on to everything, and when somebody walks by, if we don't get a chance to talk to them, they're not getting pricing, okay? Because they have to ask for it the minute they ask for it that opens the door for me to have a conversation with them, so no, don't do that, but let's, go back to this house that make you feel it was like they were all the same because literally and I don't know if they were just trained from everybody walking up and asking that, but I mean, after the first, like four booths, then I kind of felt like I should just walk up and ask, okay, what are your prices? It just made it so comparative, but you're spot on, but you see the way you you're saying you felt that's how bribes field I don't want my bride to feel that way my bride I wanted to feel like even in the midst of the chaos, I gave her a personalized experience as best I could in that five minute window I have because I don't have more than five minutes, right? There's chaos at a bridal show, especially when there's like fifteen hundred brides, so I want them to feel like I'm giving them that personal experience. That's why hang on to it? It forces the conversation, which is a good thing for us and guess what she think about if you would have that experience with one person, there doesn't forget it's a guitar for me was a caterer maybe was a deejay company, jenna five or ten minute conversation how impactful would that be in your decision? Moving forward would be very impactful and that's why we do what we do because those brides remember us, they remember the conversation and now instead of putting that packet, I see my brides do it all the time. They'll take the packet that I hand them when the conversation's over and they fold the corner of it that's them signaling the either like us remember us something to that effect that's what I want, okay, so that's I'm glad you had that experience is good stuff before I get a question, kobe went through for five. Sal, I just want to say thanks took your other sale classes and on my very first bridal show, I booked two black label packages made more money on those two weddings in the last two years combined. I'm just now starting to build my business this year. So that's awesome. Those of the success stories I love hearing, you know, from people in it's always fun in my studio because we get will always get like a thank you gift, you know? And somebody sent me. They know I love whiskey or scotch and somebody last week sent me a bottle of whiskey is a thank you gift and I always appreciate that because what the whiskey I love of course, but I love the thank you note that's typically tied to that because that's, why we do what we do, you know, we want to help you guys grow and I love hearing this success story like that where he's like following your principles boom grew my business and now sold two weddings. You know, for more than I had ever done before. What really work for us and then I can retire is if I start getting residuals, right, we run this like a thing about it, I ran it like modern system yeah, I just I get I get the points, right. I get two points on every sale on dh. Then I'll be your mentor, coach.