Portrait Startup

Lesson 29 of 35

Digital Sales

 

Portrait Startup

Lesson 29 of 35

Digital Sales

 

Lesson Info

Digital Sales

For all the years we worked in the studio we work with Pro Select. Pro Select, I would think Pro Select would be one of the best viewing softwares. The software that you can buy because it allows you to, you know, multiple images and group multiple images in size and draw in tandem, and et cetera, et cetera, which now of course, Lightroom does. It's not quite the same, Pro Select has an ordering software built into it and it's definitely worth looking at. Any Pro Studio, you really wanna have good software that you're selling your work on. Although, most of the mentors are using Lightroom cause I asked them how they're selling their work and they all said Lightroom. Now, don't get too hung up on this. Remember, you've got to come back to the whole thing. Sue Bryce is a hack. I'm a hack. I had to hack a business because I didn't know how. So, when I started, I couldn't afford Pro Select. You know, I couldn't afford Lightroom, or Lightroom wasn't invented then, but, you know, I couldn't ...

afford anything extra. So how did I sell my images? On preview, on my computer. Because it was all I had. And I would take a pad of paper and draw out images. I would draw out sizes, I would draw out frames. I would give people a visual guide by simply drawing it out. You do what you have to do to sell it. You just do what you have to do, but stop telling me you can't do it. Because, if you tell me you can't do it, I'm going to find a way to hack it. Because anything I could not achieve when I first started out, I was like, what's the hack for this? All right? There is a way to hack it. If you can afford Pro Select, or if you're going to sell on Lightroom, fantastic, but I'm telling you right now, hack it. There is a way to do this. And you need to find a way. Probably the hardest thing for me, and this will resonate for a lot of people starting out, was getting the money to pay for the prints before the sale. Cause I was dollar for dollar for years. So, I would go to print the work to do, well, sorry, I would go to print the work to get paid for the shoot and I've spent the deposit on my rent that I took, and I don't have the 35 dollars to print the work to get the balance of the shoot. All right, do you know what that feels like? I know if you're out there listening to me and you're in this position. I know what it feels like to not have the money to buy a make up artist, but you've got a client that you don't know if they're going to buy anything. You're so wrapped up on are you gonna get paid, you've forgotten to give service because you stink of desperation. I've been there for years and years and years. And very slowly, you're going to learn that when you get the income, to just squirrel a little bit, 10%, 20%, and then you're going to have a little bit of base, just enough to pay that makeup artist and to pay that printing in order to get the balance that you deserve. And you're going to learn that the more you accumulate and squirrel away, but I'm telling you right now, I did what I had to do to become a professional photographer. I worked in a jewelry store on a Wednesday night and Thursday night, all Saturday and all Sunday, because photography frankly didn't pay debt. And I had to go and do what I had to go and sell, and the best thing is I actually learned how to sell at the jewelry store, so I learned how to ultimately sell my photography. So when you tell me you're giving up your studio to go back to your eight dollar an hour job, you don't want, this because I would have done practically anything to stay there in that position. I would have done what it took to realize my dream. Because I would've, yeah, in fact, Tiffany Angela said you get out there and you deliver that pizza! And I was like well, okay, I'm drawing the line at delivering pizza. There's a million other things you can do. There's retail work, there's so much things to do and you know what? People would say to me when I was at the jewelry store, you're really good at this. And I was like really? Cause I'm a photographer. And I would end up booking shoots from selling people engagement rings. So, you know, you just, you gotta do what you've gotta do, but I'm just so sick of hearing I can't, I can't I can't. And I know the can't is real. Probably the most hurtful thing you could say to me as a student, was, it's easy for you, you're Sue Bryce. I was hungry for years. Years and years, I was hungrier than most. I don't even know what it would be like to think back and think this was such an enjoyable journey. It was not enjoyable for me. I did the hard yards, and I struggled through it, and I learned and now I can teach you. But, when you guys sit there and wrote in the chat, when I'd lost my voice last Thursday, and I'm bringing in aircraft, you know, like I'm sitting there like, trying to direct everybody to say what I wanted to say and get it all out there, and I was all like raspy, and I'm bringing in planes, you know, and I'm sitting there. I looked down at the chat and somebody in the chat, and you're lucky I didn't write down your name, because I would find you. I tell you what they wrote. They're all rich, and they've all got money. And they've all got businesses. And I saw, they're like what about us with nothing? I'm like ah, the poor squad. I remember, I think I was your queen. I think to the people struggling with money, stop for one minute and ask yourself this. The reason I am struggling with money is me. And if I shift that, I can learn to squirrel that 10% and have enough money to pay for that next one, and create that next one, and then create that next one, and then get a studio. You're evolving, you're not poor, you're evolving, you're becoming, you're learning. And if you can switch your energy out of scarcity and out of victim and out of pain just enough to learn more about money and stop blaming everybody else, I'm telling you right now, you can shift it. I shifted it. I now accept money. I'll tell you a beautiful, a beautiful story that hurts me. After my first year in business, we had $84,000 in the bank, as in profit. I don't even know how that happened, it was in my little, country, studio garage, and I said to my mother, who, my mum and I were having lunch, and I said, you know, you're good parents. You're blue collar, you're hard workers. I have so much pride for my family, so much pride. You know, cause they don't have anything, but they're just good people, and good people, and they just laugh and sing and enjoy life. So proud of my roots. But you never told me that I could go into business. You said work hard, go to work. Dad would say go to work, work hard, go home, watch the sunset, live your life, get paid. Don't bother owning your own business. Too much hard work, don't give yourself a heart attack. You just go, you work hard. He told us kids that, and we all, we worked hard, we worked hard, we worked hard, and then I was and I was earning $400 dollars a week and I was working real hard. And I watched all my girlfriends buying houses, with their husbands, and I was like, oh, that's not gonna happen for me. Am I not working hard enough? So I work harder, still not getting paid, so I go into business, and for the first time in my life, I get paid. I learned to receive money, I got to my mother and I say, you didn't tell me that I could start my own business. And my mother looks down at the table, and she says, there's something you don't know. When you dad was 21, and you kids were just little, wee babies, we had a business, and it failed. Because your dad could never ask for money. Something just clicked inside me, like, I just stood there and I was like, that is never gonna happen to me. Why didn't you teach me that, why didn't you tell me that? Like, that will never happen to me, and there I was, 32, an amazing photographer, and unable to ask anybody for money. I was like, no, no, this stops now, in my family. This stops right now. My dad was 21. His dad had died five years before, and he had left school to run their business. He was a baby, what would he know about business? And there he was, yeah mate, working hard, for everybody else, yeah mate, I'll just keep working harder, not getting paid, yeah mate, it's okay, next time, next time. And what happens? They lost their business. 21, he was a kid. A kid with three babies. And then he went and did a night shift job at the steel mill, and my mother brought us up during the day, my father would sleep during the day and work through the night. And I got this great work ethic, but my dad didn't know how to ask for money, and I didn't know how to ask for money. Inevitably, I learned his lesson. Now, some people grow up with a silver spoon in their mouth, whatever, and still can't make money, cause they never learned how to be hungry for it, they never learned how to appreciate it, they never learned how to value it, they never learned how to save it. But you can change it. Everybody can change it. And you're in business. And this is really, really important. My next slide is interesting, I'll tell you why. This makes me kinda angry. Somebody said on Facebook the other day, I don't like shooting women over 50 or curvy girls cause there's not many as posing options, and they only buy two or three prints. Yes, they buy two or three prints, have a look at that. Why would you stop somebody from buying two or three prints? Everybody that woman shows her images to is gonna book with you. Okay, so she might only spend $300, but you take that $300, you chalk it up to an average, because it's a numbers game, and then you book a generation suite with her. If she's over 50, she probably has a mum and a daughter, or a mum and a son. So you go Carol, you've had a great experience, here are your two beautiful portraits, thank you for your money, here's a voucher for you to come back with your mum and do a beautiful generation shoot. Oh, your daughter's just had a baby? Let's do a gorgeous, glamor, three generation shoot with your gorgeous grandchild. Oh what, you have a sister who has daughters and children? Let's bring you back for a family portrait. They're now a client, but we're all acting like we didn't get paid. I don't understand that you wouldn't be happy with selling somebody two portraits. If they frame them, they're on the wall for the rest of their life, with your name on it. That's good marketing. Okay, you've gotta get away from this idea that it's always about you. Am I getting enough, am I getting paid, am I good enough, ap bah bah bah bah, service your client, and then make them a client and a friend, and then keep serving them. And then look at all the ways you can serve them more. All right? This is really, really important. This is, that's your butt kick this morning. Wake up! You're in business, that means every person that comes in contact with you is going to come back again, again, again, and pay you. And this is really important that you accept that money with gratitude, and then keep thinking of ways to serve them more. Is there anybody else? So if that's your client, Nicki, is there anybody else I can give you a voucher for? Would you like to come back and do a three generation shoot? You mentioned you had children, you know, you mentioned you could come in and do a family portrait shoot. Blah, blah, blah, I mean, so many ways, and you know, the one thing I think I hear over and over again that annoys me the most is qualify your clients. Qualify, no! There is no qualify, qualify schmalify! That's right, I wrote that. Qualify schmalify! There is no qualify! Okay, here's the thing. If you need, your very first energy around money, you could read rich dad, poor dad. It's a great book, it's a great book to understand one dad talked negatively about money, one dad talked positively about money, positive dad made more money, flowed better, you know, flowed into their life better, son learned from both dads cause he had a step-dad and he had a, he had basically a dad and a step-dad. He spent equal amount of time with both, he chose to follow rich dad instead of poor dad, and the interesting thing was poor dad was the educated one, and rich dad wasn't. But what it's gonna teach you is how you're seeing and acting around money and getting paid, and that's gonna significantly shift your business. You see, to me, qualify was nothing. I've seen poor people spend more on portraits than wealthy people in my studio. And, here's what they say. His rich dad said one thing. Not, I can't afford that, but how can I afford that. When people love what you do, they find a way to pay for it. Okay, they find a way to pay for it. People can pay it off, they can put it on credit, be a business. Your guilt around receiving their money is not your problem. Let it go. Just receive it for what you have created, because they want to give it to you to get what you've made. Until you confront this, you will not change it. Before I move on, is there anything else around that? Whew, well I will Sue, read a comment, because there's a lot of them coming in, this sums it up, Campbell V. Sue is speaking to me right now. I'm 32, I'll be 33 in October. I've been looking for a full time job because my business has not been going anywhere. I don't know how to ask for money. This stops today. I'll tell you how to ask for money. You say, first, you value the product and prices that you're showing people, in yourself. That you value it within yourself, I am with this. Then, you learn to say it over and over again, so you practice in the mirror, you practice, Nikki, my packages start at $300, and they go up from there. Nikki, my packages start at $3,000, they go up from there. Nikki, my packages are this, this and this. You get used to saying it confidently. We're gonna talk more about that. And then, when you come in for your viewing, these are your beautiful portraits, these are my packages, as you well know, cause you've seen them. What would you like to order is your key line. What would you like to order, stop talking, what would you like to order, stop talking. Let them decide. Do not mistake their silence for objection, just shut up, get out of your own way. Then, I want you to come back, I want you to write down the order, and then the next key word is, how would you like to pay for that. How would you like to pay for that, Nikki? Oh my gosh, if I go back to my first year in business, I was like this. Cotton mouth. (whimpers) I was like I had a swabs of cotton in my mouth. (stutters) How would you like to pay for that, how would you like to pay for that! So I'd just say it, and I would say how would you like to pay for that, you know, in my upper register, sounded like Bee Gees. How would you like to pay for that. Now I'm just like, how do you wanna pay for that, how would you like to pay for that? So I used to walk on the beach. My name is Sue Bryce and I'm a glamor photographer. My name is Sue Bryce and I'm a glamor photographer. My images start at $190 and go up from there. What package would you like to see? What would you like to order? How would you like to pay for that? I practiced, and I practiced, and I practiced, and I practiced, and I practiced until I could say it.

Class Description


When Sue Bryce taught her first CreativeLive class in 2012, she reinvented the category of glamour photography. That workshop inspired thousands of photographers to create a new kind of portrait photography business.

During this special event, you’ll hear from Sue again and meet nine photographers who changed the trajectory of their business and their lives thanks to inspiration they found in Sue’s CreativeLive classes.

In Portrait Startup, you’ll find out exactly what these photographers did to transform their fledgling photography operations into sophisticated, profitable businesses. You’ll learn about what it takes to build a profitable photography business and Sue will detail the Areas of Mastery required to run and sustain it. 

You’ll learn about:  

  • Cameras & Lighting
  • Studio or Location
  • Website & Portfolio
  • Marketing & Design
  • Social Media & Connection
  • Price & Product
  • Sales & Selling
  • Money Management
Sue will discuss the essential elements for building a successful glamour photography studio and you’ll get specific, tactical insights for doing it yourself.

Each of the guest photographers will share their own unique story of following Sue's business model and they’ll provide intimate details on what they've discovered and what worked (or didn't) for them. Sue will share the secrets behind her wildly effective Reveal Wall and share strategies that guarantee sales while keeping clients happy and eager to refer you to their friends.

If you want to build a photography business that celebrates the beauty inherent in all women, while running a business that provides for you and your family, join Sue Bryce and guests for Portrait Startup and learn how to build a business and life that you love.

Click here for the Complete Sue Bryce collection.

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