Pricing and Sales for Photographers

Lesson 15 of 32

The Art of Pricing

 

Pricing and Sales for Photographers

Lesson 15 of 32

The Art of Pricing

 

Lesson Info

The Art of Pricing

Of course pricing too does speak to your brand a little bit, right? So I was like, well, yeah, I guess it does. I mean, think about it, how your price says a lot about you, doesn't it? So if you're cheap, people aren't gonna value right? Let's look at the go back to the grocery store. Not all places in the country sell wine in the grocery store, but in oregon and washington, they do allow you to purchase wine in the grocery store and it's shelved. Okay, I love wine. You shouldn't say that I'm here, but I don't know much about it, okay? I know I, like had fine for heather's over there cracking up with me. I don't know much about wine, but I know what I like. Okay? When it's a special occasion and I know I really want a nice bottle of wine. What do I buy? Not knowing about one their prettiest label closest to you. Maybe no one. A really nice bottle of wine. The most expensive. The most expensive bottle is obviously got to be the best, right? Get my point. The chief bottle down at the bot...

tom that's for buck chuck I might buy it just on a tuesday night, right, I just wanna, you know, have a little fun okay if I'm on a special occasion and I'm really trying to impress my husband and I want to make him feel good I'm going to go for the bottle the fifty dollar bottle of silver oak we're like a hundred dollar bottle okay more expensive means better in the uneducated mind okay your clients are not educated some of them are but most of them don't know anything about ta ra fi they just see a picture and they say whether or not they like the picture and usually has to do whether or not their kids smiling in it or looking natural or happy joyful right oh I like that when he looks so sweet and so him and meanwhile you're sitting there going oh my gosh it's so technically incorrect why did I show that? Okay you're saying all in your head what your client is not okay perceived value is an incredibly powerful thing how your client perceives the value of something has to do with a lot of factors it has to do with how the product looks how it feels sometimes the most simple things look the most expensive apple the iphone white box simple apple on top open it the cardboard really thick right when you open the box inside the phone is perfectly placed the charger cord is underneath and the little tiny manual was underneath as well okay it looks expensive it is expensive it must be right the samsung galaxy isjust is nice of a phone do you see my point? Same with, like the ipad in the kindle, you know, ipad and kindle have this little war going on with each other, same with the microsoft tablet with something called I don't even know surface. Yeah, because I'm not a piece ego, but I mean, think about it that those two products are priced way less than than the apple ipad. But yet the apple high pad is the top seller because it's deemed the most valuable, like the best product. Do you see my point so perceived value has a very powerful motivator in the consumer's mind, and when the consumer doesn't know anything about a product, they think the most expensive is the best. But how the product looks what's involved with it all have to support that notion, like if you open an iphone, it was a cheap, flimsy box there's a bunch of stuff in there, and it just didn't, you know, you wouldn't think it was expensive. You wouldn't think it was a good of quality, would you? There would be something subconsciously back your mind that said, okay, it's nice I spent a lot of money on it. But once you back that up with a beautiful quality product and all of a sudden it becomes very valuable client that's why I'm telling you when you look at products you're deciding what you want to put a product into your studio doesn't look expensive does it feel lovely? You follow what I'm saying and not all products are going to be like that in your studio there's going to be some products that are less expensive, but I'm talking about the things you really want to sell, okay, so what you're gonna learn in this segment is all about pricing those things, and the pricing really is an art and a science and so many photographers hate this topic and I understand it's because pricing is a hard core science, but it has this beautiful, subtle art to it like there's so many ways you can influence the consumer's mind just by how you price and package thinks and that's an art, but you also have to make sure your profitable, which is the science of it, which I think is what it's so frustrating for a photographer because they have to look at things from both mindsets they have to look at it from a business owners mindset and then also from a consumer's mind set which is challenging to put together to create something in the middle that works on both sides so what you're going to learn is why properly structure pricing will make you profitable what kinds of sales averages you need to make money you need to make money not me you okay how to structure that pricing I'm not talking oh twenty dollars for this fifty dollars for that I'm saying putting things together in packages or whatever to convince people to buy more okay that's the art how to meet your cost of good I wouldn't be a good teacher if I didn't talk up a little bit about cost a good then I know that those people hate doing that kind of legal business oriented but we've got a touch on it a little bit okay otherwise I wouldn't be doing my job why a good pricing pakis structure will encourage higher spending and then digital files for dummies how to sell profitably if you choose to do so there are many successful students out there who are not and they focus on a fine art feel and they just flat out refused to do it and god bless them I have so much respect for that I wish I could do it I can't the research I've done in my market says that I can't okay so you have to determine that for yourself in your own location and in the own specialization that you choose etcetera etcetera so the art of pricing shoot me now everybody hates the topic it's so just uh it's constantly the number one thing that photographers come to me for is help with pricing it truly is the number one thing people hate it, they struggle with it, they want to change it every thirty seconds and they never give anything a chance because it's scary and so you get insecure so you think you have to change it and you're just hurting yourself by trying rush to fix things when really you're just hurting yourself more and the other biggest thing I have with photographers to come to me they say I'm just starting out I'm not good enough to charge that much yet and I can completely understand those feelings of self self worth I mean it's insecurity it's hard and yes, you may need to learn some things and you may need to get a little better and I can certainly, you know, kind of direct you in some ways to do that. I have some wonderful ways that have helped me to get better, but you're always going to get better and it's kind of like this there's the staircase of pricing versus talent. Okay, there are plenty of mediocre photographers out there who are killing it, making a boatload of money they're mediocre I mean a really talented photographer who knows howto see would look at their work and go home okay it's ok and they're raking it in then there's tons of people out there who have all this art sense they see it, they're so wickedly talented just right off the bat and the poorest church mice what gift what's happening there? The guy he was mediocre understands pricing and profitability in business and marketing and branding the guy on the bottom doesn't understand that stuff even though he has more talent in his little pinky finger than that I will ever have in this lifetime it has nothing to do with talent. It has everything to do with how you run your business and how you think about profitability and how you protect that in your business. I'm constantly saying myself I have to protect my income I have to protect my income that is my first and foremost priority I have to protect my income. That should be your mantra. Okay? And if you do that then you will always make money. So when somebody comes to you and says, oh, I can only afford this much can you do it for that? Like the analogy yesterday when I go into the mercedes dealership and say, oh, I only have ten grand can you get me a car? No it's not gonna happen, you know, it's it's not gonna happen, so you have to run your business like a business that has integrity that stands its ground. This is no, I'm sorry. This is what we charge and it's such a brutal circle because the industry has actually this industry within us has this notion that these shooting burners are affecting the market. Oh, they're bringing prices down, you know, they're just they're just running for the rest of us, just like the big, the big mantra. Ok, I don't believe that I see what they're saying and I empathize with it, but I don't quite believe because I don't think the consumer is quite intelligent, I think we kind of know nothing that we're making it up, and I mean, there are there are definitely consumers out there say, well, so and so is down the streets charging less for it, but I'm always able to have an argument as to why my prices are more expensive. No, I can tell that consumer well, you're more than welcome to go to that person. Keep in mind they're training and expertise and find out their credentials if you really want something high quality so that you make sure you're getting a consistent product, okay, that's, what I'm going to say to that? A customer who goes well so and so charges down one hundred bucks down the street first of all I don't even want him as a client that that's just get get away from me I don't want to deal with you I don't wanna waste my time but I will tell them be careful especially in the wedding industry I mean you guys all know this one the and I get it so much when she comes back with her baby my wedding pictures the hook we should have spent more money we should have researched it more it's all I have left of my wedding I mean those mistakes happened left and right you guys have heard it I'm sure thousand times those of you who shoot weddings okay so when you say when they try to wheel and deal with you and negotiate with you obviously photography is not their most important thing on their wedding list it is no it has to be shot so they're not your client it's okay to say no to those people it really is so yes pricing is complicated so art and science and most photographers are out there her special those air beginning don't think that they're worth it well increase your skills print competition that improved my photography more than anything I've ever done and in such a short period of time and be ready you are going to get your handed to you I mean, they're gonna tell you exactly what your images lack, but wouldn't you rather have that than to just stay in this world that you think is good and it's? Not necessarily as good as it could be? Do you want to grow or not? So do things that will help you do that. Look at places like creative life, get all those little classes and watch them you buy the class, you never watch it, I'm guilty, ok? So but do you know? Don't do what I do? I do what I think, but seriously, get the education you need and grow and practise and practise and practise it. Tiger woods on game day at five a m in the dark is on the driving range, firewood he's like the most talented golfer around, and he is on the driving range at five a m the day he's supposed to go out, hit the finals the final round. If you have passion like that and you are practicing every single day, you're going to get better and then this ladder that we're talking about the whole talent versus pricing letter down here at the bottom there's this huge jump because you have to charge what you're worth, but you don't feel like your talents good enough. So the two have to meet in the middle and right when you're starting out it's a little bit a bit of a jump or what I tell people is set your prices at profitability set your prices at a value that will make you money and then while you're learning and growing you know offer a portfolio building discount so that your prices are cheaper so people can understand that you're growing and learning and trying to become a pro you will do is service to the industry by not bringing it down or at least that perceived thought of bringing it down you will do yourself a service because you'll be practicing on clients and then once you actually get to this good pricing level that you khun you end that portfolio discount you don't have that painful process of having been too cheap gotten too many clients and now all of a sudden you have to completely revamp your business raise your pricing lose all those clients and start over again that's scary that's carrying so many doctors have done it and it is a scary thing to do and we'll talk about ways on how to kind of combat that in a minute but first I'm kind of kind of digressing here are there any questions before we kind of move into pricing and and how to do that artfully and strategically yes so question right pricing is a scary thing it is is there a percentage like are you goingto show us a percentage that we can take of you know what we need to survive and where we should be at the end of the day with our pricing? Is there a magic number? Oh, yes, we're gonna pull out a spreadsheet good, and I am going to depress you. I'm going to make you a little sad. I mean that's going to hurt but it's important to do because you need to open your eyes, okay? So I'm going to open your eyes a bit with a spreadsheet and it's going, we're going to talk about what you need to make to survive. You know what you want to make to survive and then what you have to produce, that each session and the number of sessions you have to do to produce that, okay, so we're going to talk about break, even breaking even in your business and what numbers you need to break even and it's a general statement. It's not, you know, in depth, but at least we'll give you an idea and it's a good start.

Class Description


In order to make money as a photographer, you have to know how to price, package, and sell your work. In this 3-day course, small business owner and award-winning photographer Julia Kelleher will teach you how to create a strategic sales system — without relying on over-the-top, hard-selling sales techniques.

Julia will help you identify new product and sales opportunities, including the importance of in-person and projection sales. You will learn powerful selling techniques by watching Julia conduct an actual sales session live, right before your eyes. Julia will also give you a comprehensive pricing overview — including how to create packages that encourage your customers to spend more purely by adding the right value.

By the end of this course, you will know how to predict your sales averages, forecast growth, and go from thinking about the next single sale to thinking about the next year of sales.

Reviews

a Creativelive Student
 

This was the first class I have ever purchased from CreativeLive in the 6 months I've had it and watched as I could. With a toddler and six yr old on top of a hubby serving overseas I was attempting to watch ten minutes of this when my toddler just wasn't allowing me to watch haha. After just a few minutes I had already told myself if that had happened it would be okay because I was won over already. I knew I not only needed to buy this because there was no other way I could watch it, but it was something I knew would be the BEST investment EVER! Pricing & Sales has been something even my amazing photography group has kept somewhat hush hush and I was dreading the $150-200 for a course in person not knowing if it'd have everything I needed and let's face it, I do this part-time and my husband is military so we didn't have much to throw in the way of me learning more since I'm obviously already upside down with my 'business' haha. This has been so incredibly worth it and if there were ever a course I would buy and recommend to anyone ever again it would be this one. You are so amazingly smart and talented Julia and if CreativeLive had not done this webinar I would have never learned about you this way and learned such valuable information that I cannot wait to implement in my business. Also for any moms wondering, it's worth the cost not just to pause and continue with munchkins throughout the day but it is the best thing you can buy that has so many different tips and ideas to help save your business from becoming a hobby again which mine was about to haha. Thank you so much again for this!!!

a Creativelive Student
 

Okay, I've finally watched this course all the way through and can review it. I wasn't able to watch the live broadcast but the topic was one that I really wanted to learn more about so I decided to purchase it without watching. I will be watching it again as there are great nuggets of information. Julia presents some wonderful insights about the art and psychology of pricing, how to deal with difficult clients and even a bit of in person sales. I liked Julia's take on how she packages her products so that she can reach and beat her sales goal. Those were all great tips! For the most part I liked this course but I wish a few things had been done differently. Because I am not a newborn photographer, and this wasn't a newborn class, it wasn't useful to me to see a newborn shoot - even though I know the point of that was to show how Julia plants the seed of the sale. But I feel that time could have been better spent demonstrating a pre-session consultation and what to discuss with clients, how to overcome objections, etc. The pre-session consultation is a big part of the pricing and sales process but I felt like it was glossed over. Julia talked a bit about how she has clients fill out a form on her website after the consultation to reinforce what she's explained to them. These are all things I would have liked more in-depth information on because they are crucial to the sales process. The in person sales session also went pretty fast - the couple was super quiet so I guess that made things much easier. The materials that came with the course have a lot more to do with marketing your studio through displays and gift certificates. They are beautiful templates - but again, I purchased this class to learn sales and pricing and would have really hoped to see materials related to the sales or pricing process - her client questionnaire, responses to common objections, her list of studio policies as it relates to sales, usage of images, etc. Also, one of the items in the bundle requires signing up for her email list. I don't mind - I just don't expect to do that if I bought a course that should have those materials included. That's my take on the good an the bad - just my opinion.

Jennifer Koskinen
 

Seriously? Where to start! I stumbled upon this, my first CreativeLIVE course, and ended up purchasing it I loved it so much and know it will provide not only great tips as I restructure some of my own business, but also endless inspiration for taking things to the next level. Gratitude ABOUNDS for Julia's candor, adorable personality, humility and willingness to share the "tough" lessons, as well as her unbridled passion and respect for the business of photography... On a more personal note, she introduced me to the concept of separating our inner critic from ourselves and calling him "George." Pure brilliance. Hands down THE best life skills tool I've ever heard in a photography workshop!! THANK YOU, Julia and CreativeLive!!