More Marketing Ideas


Tots to Teens


Lesson Info

More Marketing Ideas

okay so we've already taken a lot of information in today so I want to keep going and I'm sorry I know this is very overwhelming but I love to get all the heavy stuff out the first day because tomorrow we're gonna lighten it up and do some shooting and meet some children actually show you that we can work with kids but we've covered all the foundational pieces and now we're going to go into port folio and look att lots of different marketing campaigns that we potentially could could offer our clients now the model searches in the top three things that we do in our studio to generate new business with the baby program we showed you one version of model searches we actually have over fifteen different model searches that we do for various reasons so I like to showcase different ones each time I come back because I think some people what works for some people wouldn't work for somebody else this with these ones happened teo deal with children and marketing to children you wanna play campa...

ign is one of my first this is actually where I invented the model search this was the first time now the reason I did it is I actually wanted to I had a new photographer named helen who by the way is now my ten year friend and photographer but at that time we had just started the company and I hear I was this uh sole photographer and everything on the walls was mine and everything I was doing and now I was starting to hire photographers and when you grow and you do hire you first photographer you go through this transition of you have to let things go and you have to find a way how do you have um clients who love you and they only come to you and now all the sudden you're saying you know what about this person can you work with this person and so you know that was my transition is how am I going to get my very loyal clients to go to another photographer find marty booked I don't want them to walk away and go somewhere else I want them to stay at my studio so I started hiring photographers and I had to find that transitional piece so I was trying to find a way to instigate clients getting to know my photographers so this campaign is the first one that ever did and we've really modified it since then so this is why way way also this is early digital you can see this is like ten years ago eleven years ago this was huge just this little girl hanging on the clothes where now I look at it and I just think it's just horrible but remember ten years ago eleven years ago this was huge I mean people were calling us saying how did you know I want to do that I'm going to book my child for the clothes line so way obviously put our strongest images out and this was an actual car that we think was a five by five or an eight by eight card that went out the door and you can see that offer what I did is I came up with this concept of instigating clients coming in so it says we know you've got ideas you've been hand selected to participate in a special invitation on ly promotion do you have a fun idea something creative different unique what kind of porter would you like to see if your child sandy always loves to push the limits of her creativity so in an effort to cross the boundary she's inviting you to share your creative vision bring us your clothes your props or your ideas and together we'll come up with a photo session that's unique is your child you could tell this is ten years old because I'm a preacher of don't use the word photo we do portrait's now so you can see this is part of my evolution at this time I gave away a lot we're gonna talk about what you should give away and how this was kind of I'll tell you why this was kind of damaging but remember this is first shot at this participants will receive a complimentary session of free eight by ten and fifteen percent often additional portrait to me and marketing this actually looks to me like the mark of desperation when you're giving the session and a product and a discount that means you're desperately trying to get people in but in this case it's kind of true we were in a recession and I was hiring new photographers and kind of wanted to get him in the door so the idea behind this and this is the key with the hiring of a new photographer it said if you like to participate in this promotion please make a consultation appointment with helen um since this is by invitation only appointments are limited to the first fifty response now this is what was my thought process thes clients would come in and they would do a consultation with helen which helen was the person that I was actually trying to create relationships with so right out of the gate they're sitting with helen and helen is very vision a visionary and you're gonna see her tomorrow she's wonderful to work with but the client's sat down with her and came up with concepts so she became the lead in the concept she was the idea person with them and had all the ideas so then when they showed up even though it was under the pretense that you'll be working with sandy what happened is they would show up and I would kind of start the session but helen would really take the lead and she was executing the shots and she was that we're going to do this and we're going to take care of this and and it worked what happened is helen worked with a bunch of our best clients and then you know six months a year later those clients were calling to book family sessions and people and our staff would say oh sandy's book but we do have availability with helen and the clients would say oh I worked with helen she was awesome on go ahead book with her so I broke a barrier by doing this with some of my best clients without forcing helen on them does that make sense it was a total backdoor approach and for us it worked really really well so I know a lot of you are not looking at getting photographers so let's take that out of the equation and talk about the model search concept getting people in the door because they want they want you want to create a relationship with them so from there we had an evolution to refine the model search and we've been doing model searches for the last probably twelve years model search has got us through the last recession they've gotten us through this recession uh this is something that no matter where you are in business the concept of getting people in the door is key keeping your business active a few things about a model search we only run these during our slow time which for us is usually january through april we are very careful about how we do this the first time I did it I sent it out to my clients second year I sent it out to my clients and by the third year my clients were calling in january saying when you're doing that model session because we want to do that well we created a monster all of a sudden it was there just gonna wait for the free session so we realised that marketing to our own clients was a bad idea and we stopped doing that and we started finding other avenues such as mailings and different ways to send this out to new potential clients we knew that our clients would I absolutely do it because they were looking for the free part so we stopped really promoting it to them and that was really an important piece to this because yes way had a better turnout with using our own clients but we were actually hurting the whole of our business because when you do something consistently every year people start to expect it and that's why we're very careful with these types of campaigns so this one we refine and we're looking for children ages two to twelve and now it says I'm looking for new faces and in this case we're looking for a test session what happened is instead of just having them book a session we actually sent this out and had people come in for a fifteen minute quick head shot and from those head shots we actually created a model portfolio book so now we had like the first time we did this with three hundred fifty kids show up somewhere in that range now we've got this this a book with a head shot what we did is we took the file and we rename the file that child's name in their phone number on the mother's name so now I have this giant book of children and now when I'm slow I can flip through and say a little suzie smith are let's give suzie smith a call uh mom's a call and we call her we'd say hey we've got this great ballerina set were you know doing something new is it possible to get little susie in here so now I had the control to call clients when I wanted I had a book so instead of me throwing something out in the universe and hoping somebody came up I had a phone book of clients who already committed say hey whenever you need my child we're here for you so that was the second version was me controlling the model search instead of sending it out getting three hundred kids that wanted to do a model search and booking those sessions back to back we did a test session they came in literally sat him on a chair took a head shot of them and gave them a nice little gift certificate for stopping by and it was you know fifty bucks towards a future session creating new energy and now I controlled that book so when I needed models when I needed money to come in I called him up now the cool thing about a model session is we control the concept or that the design of the actual session ah lot of people get confused and they think that this is something where it's like quick take where I'm just going to get him to get him out quite the opposite when I do these way want this to be the best work we do because we control all the variables in this case I'm asking them to come in so I can try a new creative things I don't have a standard I don't have to get those sellable images because they paid for it I could do whatever I want this is where we use creative ideas we use fabrics and and all kinds of you know crazy backgrounds and try things you know turn kids upside down and you know half of what we're going to do is not gonna work but the other half is going to be stuff we've never done before it's the stuff that ends up on our wall as our samples because it's stuff that we put time into on we you know we had the resources to do that at the time you know you could get amazing picture of an eighteen month old but it's pretty rare so when we can control that environment and get these kids in under our schedule it works out a lot better for us so so that model book became our bread and butter because I at that time I probably had three or four photographers and they were required they were told look there you have to have this many sessions per week so if you don't have sessions book you need to get in the model book and you need to get somebody in here and you need to get some business in the door there's no guarantees that those clients would spend um some of the rules we never use the same client more than once so once we you know we don't want to abuse people and just because they came and spent a thousand dollars we're not gonna call him the next time we have a new special it was a one time only thing but we had hundreds of kids to work from so we would just keep calling different kids we tried to make sure that we took all children and that we didn't you know pick all the cute little curly blondes with the big hair every time that we try to get every type of child so that we had a good range of work as well so this was also very successful we don't have to do this anymore we have a very consistent business I don't have that many photographers for the most part it's just helen and myself we do the majority of the work and we like it that way if you ever want to do a seminar on building a business and what you really go through I told you I've been everything from the only employee for eight or nine years to having a very big business with seven photographers to completely letting that go and getting it back to what we are I shoot very few days a week holland shoots two days a week and that's it and we love it and we make as much money if not more than we did when we had seven photographers because of overhead and salary and workflow and all those issues you know unfortunately it took me twelve years to figure out that I went to this really incredible cycle I'm not saying you shouldn't hire photographers I think it's great I think it's hard we could have like I said a whole seminar about egos and dealing with photographers and and the ups and downs of that but it took me ten years to figure out who I wanted to be and for a lot of you you know you've got people like me that you could just ask the questions and I could tell you the good and the bad and the ugly with this but this was great for us we don't have to do it anymore we're very busy and I mean were we haven't active business you can't get in right now helen and I booked out for several months and that's it you cannot get in with us and I could hire another photographer but I don't need tio I don't I don't want to start that process again so here's another model search that I just wanted to throw out there because on monday we will be teaching an entire day of now I lay me down to sleep and so I usually end my show with charity peace but this is one I want to throw out here because I don't know how much time and this is an incredible event this is something that I found it now I lay me down to sleep seven years ago two thousand five and uh most of you know the history and we will be doing a whole day on it I really do hope you participate in that because it's really honestly amazing that creative live is giving me the opportunity to teach on such a global level so this is a marketing function that I invented this was actually designed in the last kind of the tail end of the last bad economy because my students were struggling two thousand eight you know students were really struggling tio photographers there was a transition with digital and people were struggling to get business in the door so I feel like I had all these great model search campaigns and they were working well for my company and I was out touring and teaching it to us many photographers as I could but I thought how can I make this more global how can I make it more create a greater world presents so I invented the original on national charity model search was the sandy puts national charity model model search benefiting now I lay me down to sleep now the first year we did this was the bellies of babies tour and what I did is I created a marketing campaign um that was free to my students and so they could download it and it was the poster and the postcard on the press release and we told you howto contact a tv station and how to get your how to you know get the exposure out there and we created this model search and the concept behind it was you down with the marketing you market to your clients and outside your client base you get children in and you do a cute shot of these children you picked the best one you upload it to the model site we had professional judges that selected uh actually I'm sorry the first part is the judging was based on a vote system and it was a dollar per vote so when a child would go up friends and family could place a dollar vote all of that money went back so now I lay me down to sleep so the first thing we were doing is we were creating an incredible revenue for an incredible nonprofit the second thing we were doing is creating a global presence where our students could actually market in a way that had never been accessible before in fact the first year way gave away some pretty amazing prizes to both of us winning photographer and the winning child one of the year's we gave away a new car to the family we've given away massive full cameras I mean the photographers were winning cameras you know complete cannon sets and lighting equipment and so this gave us an opportunity for photographers too you know how many of us could buy a car and give it to our clients you know it's just not an option where when we worked as a community together we were actually able to bring it up to that level so as an example last year this was just the photographer's prizes I mean they won everything from props and lighting equipment and lab certificates and I mean we've got so over the years we've just had these incredible prizes to where photographers they're highly motivated and now you could be out there marketing that you could win savings bonds or you know you could give away these big prices and and the exposure was tremendous this is something that obviously we've done in the united states and canada we've tried we actually have tried to figure out how to do a world because everything is online we could technically do the voting and everything on do an international uh contest there just are a few laws in some countries that it takes a lot of homework to figure this out so we're not quite there yet but we have every intent intention of going global with this eventually but just to give you an idea some of the funny thing that came out of this with the first year that we did this I was blown away at the voting process and we were doing really well with voting but literally in the last three hours of the contest you had a time limit to where you could vote until this hour at midnight in the last three hours of the contest there were over forty four thousand dollars worth of votes in three hours three to four hours of the contest in fact they literally shut down the site and who knows what we could have done had the sight not blown up but it was really incredible so over the years in the last few years that we've been doing this we have raised two hundred forty nine thousand dollars for now I lay me down to sleep which to me those ofyou and again monday will be teaching us don't go into it but to keep an organization like that alive is so important to me that the work we do is just it's just the photographers and the sacrifices they make to give this a family's it's just breathtaking but what this did for the photographers is it gave them a real marketing campaign and it gave them a presence that's very hard to come by when you mean almost all of the photographers that participate in this that you know we gave you press releases where we told you how to contact radio stations how to get tv stations to show up at your studio and to promote the work so not only were we giving you good buzz but we were giving buzz for the organization we're creating an incredible presents so I just want to throw that out then this particular campaign if you go to now I lay me down to sleep dot or gyu can click on it you could but you basically want to register so that when the marketing pieces air ready you will actually have get a notification that you could download this one now I think they charge a small fee it's like twenty or twenty five dollars but I'll explain why it's not I mean the money does go back to the organization so it never crosses certainly never crosses through my head but the reason they did that is the first year the first two years we did it for free and we were getting no offence I'm a mom with the camera but you know every mom thinks they have the cutest kids and we were getting people that we're just taking one picture picture of their child and posting it and we really did want to give this some level of professionalism so by having that small feet kind of separated a lot of the people who were just wanting to enter their own child and that was a good thing so there is a small fee but for twenty five dollars to get a full marketing campaign and be able to give away things like cameras and cars and you know things decline that's a that's a pretty great investment so please do jump on that and take a look at that all right now we're going to go ahead and cover a few more marketing techniques and way want to cover new ideas things that maybe some of you have thought of and things that you maybe have not thought of so let's talk a little bit about school fundraisers uh this is something that we've been doing for ever donating toe auctions this could be it doesn't necessarily have to be school it could be charitable auctions things like that but there are a couple things that I think you have to sort of have scheduled in first of all if you're going to donate to an auction you have to have a present so you need to have a large image on display and that needs to be part of your contract process when you work with him people call you and say can you make a donation you see I'm we don't need to everything everybody that asks us we will give a donation of some sort but we have to ask some questions about who was who are you you know who were the attendees going to be and what is their reach and we ask a lot of serious marketing questions but from there we have some things that just never changed like for instance we always want to have a large image on display and typically at most auctions there a couple of photographers so you wanna have a powerful display whether it's a metal mural or a loom of you something like a lip print or something that glows or something that's gonna really capture that attention the second rule is you have to get the winner's information keep in mind that many times when people are at auctions like I've seen certificates I've donated five two hundred to a thousand dollars certificates and I've watched them be sold for fifteen hundred to two thousand dollars and sometimes I sit not thinking why are these people paying so much for something that's but you know it's worth five hundred they paid a thousand well that has everything to do with them supporting the organization it's not really about the prize they're just trying to give a thousand dollars to their children's school or to a great cause so keep in mind that when people by auction certificates they may never use your certificate if you don't fall through it's never about that I love that photographer and want to go there it's about I gotta buy something this looks good maybe I'll get a family portrait that kind of thing's so it's important that part of your fall through is that you get the winner's information because you need to contact them somebody that spends a thousand dollars on a five hundred dollar package probably has there probably the right type of client and you'd want to get them in when they come in the first time in may not be that they spend a whole lot more than that but you're starting that relationship and that they will be the client that will come back and spend that thousand dollars or two thousand dollars with you next time so you want to get their information being in live auction is always best but in order to be in the live auction you do have tio provide a pretty substantial donation uh typically live auction is six to ten items and they're in the thousands of dollars category so it doesn't behoove you if you could get in a live auction to invest you know like when we do live auctions typically we offer a two thousand dollars certificate now that sounds like a lot but when you have an auctioneer that has people bidding and arguing and raising their paddles and you create that fury and the whole time they're like talking about you instead of a silent auction where people walk by and go ok I'll sign my name here I'll sign my name here all the sudden everybody in the room is hearing your name and typically you'll get a chance to display sometimes they let you talk like you know thirty seconds about who you are so when you're dealing with people all four are investing in a charity that's a great way for you to communicate so try to get in the live auction whenever pot whenever possible and a lot of times when I say why not give more when we do an auction and we could donate a two hundred dollars certificate what we are two thousand dollars certificate the auctioneer will do bid bid bid bid bid and get everybody you know you got all these people that want to get the certificate then they closed the bed somebody wins it well we've got a nice little technique that once that's over the auctioneer will say something like wow it seems like a lot of you guys I really wanted this prize right and of course everybody now that it's not about you it's about the energy they're all you know they're all that like fight win I want that so then we've done this where the auctioneer then says well tell you what for the first ten people that raised their paddles uh sandy's gonna also donate um on eleven by fourteen in a session valued at seven hundred ninety nine dollars for one hundred dollars one two three four and I'll send you a ten other certificates sold at a hundred dollars and that's ten people that are going to come in and my theory is if you're gonna get one really good client why not take home ten I mean honestly and its and the theory is there and the emotion is there and so of course they flip up those paddles and if you get twenty and I'll say you know I just all twenty of them we'll take it what happens then is the auction is now getting two thousand more dollars and I just got twenty client and so I'm going to get their names and their phone numbers they're getting a lesser products that was some of the best marketing money that I could spend so if you can give and give as much as you can because sometimes the return is great this is an example of what a certificate would look like this is quite a bit older one but uh it's an associate session and an eleven by fourteen so typically on auctions and certificates I will be the photographer for the big auction and if it's a smaller donation and we will do it on this level we've done everything from have a table at these events and sell eleven by fourteen certificates with all the money going back to the event I think there's greater exposure when you do the version of trying to get them tio buy it but anything to get your name out there school portrait's here's another one that these were just small things you can do to generate income and you know a lot of people immediately roll their eyes when they hear school porter you know I built my company doing events in school portrait's and weddings all the things that everybody hates that was my bread and butter for a long time that was really before even the baby program it was kind of those two things that I was out there back in the eye will photograph anything just let me photograph you know mode and school portrait's we've really refined them over the year this is not me going to a school and shooting six hundred children sounds terrible photographing six hundred children children this really has more to do with creating a service for my client's so when I looked at school portraiture and this again came out of a recession this was the last recession I was looking for ways to build my business and I thought okay what do clients don't have a lot of money what a spending money on right now and nobody skips school portrait's that's something that you know you're going to you're going I buy school porches I bet you guys do to I mean even though they're horrible and you know you end up spending fifty dollars on these horrible images that is my children and that's really the truest representation of them at that age and you just have to buy it so I'm always buying it might be the smallest package but they are always getting money out of me so I thought okay well everybody no matter how difficult their income is or how stressed they are they're goingto at least buy a small package so how'd oh I really benefit from that so we created school portrait's in the studio now this I mean way back when I had a home studio we were doing a version of this the idea behind it what we market it is you know school portrait's are important but why not have a great school portrait we care about your child we're gonna comb their hair we're gonna give you more choices and backgrounds we're gonna we're gonna you know create something beautiful we're gonna get you a nice school portrait and that's kind of how we marketed it now there's a fine line there because if they could get it for twenty dollars a nice background and a nice in their hair combed why would they pay one hundred fifty dollars for the same eight by ten so we had to create some separation we had tto have limited backgrounds we had to have limited poses these were headshots things like that like we had to go into it with the with the understanding that as much as we're creative and it kills us to put a kid on a stool on a blue background that's what we had to do because we were at the twenty dollars thirty dollar level on dh there had to be separation there um what we found right out of the gate is as I grew from my home studio and moved on to my commercial space and my prices increased slowly some of my very best clients sort of fell by the wayside and I just didn't see them anymore and when you're in a busy business it's not like you're tracking everybody and trying to see who came and who didn't but interestingly enough when I started school portrait there was a rash of people that I hadn't seen since their kids were babies and now they were you know five to eight years old and I realized when they came in through communications with them a lot of them would say things like you know what I don't mean you know they say I don't want to offend you are you know I'm kind of embarrassed but I can't afford you anymore so this is really great because at least I can come see you and what it really did for my clients is provided and we have the same clients who have come from the first time we did school portions are still coming because it's in their price point so well we found is it opened up a product line for clients at the thymus my prices were changing that they could afford it and it still continues to evolve into if people are looking they want to work with us but they can't really afford us this is a great place to put them uh and we have a lot of clients are very high end who spent a lot of money but this they would rather have a nice looking school portrait then pay for the schools and so it really created a years of loyalty and we find that the same people every year come back over and over again this is what a typical school portrait ad looks like you can go you can do it dot com we have multiple versions of this and they're all done for you so that's just something that you could go check it out and get an idea you can see totally different market look we're talking low end you know kitschy kind of stuff we know who our marketing tio we know that this is not we don't want this to look boutique we don't want we don't want it to look high end because the price point is much much lower so and you could see from the images as well it's that it's the next one so you can kind of see from the images in this case high key simple classic not a lot of options on backgrounds here's an idea of the price point um packages start at thirty two fifty and the way these book out and it's very simple this was just an easy way to do it is when a client calls to book a school portrait they pay thirty two fifty so what they're doing is in essence paying for the lowest package so if they've paid for that they're gonna walk out with two five by seventeen eight wallets so they've prepaid the thirty two fifty and then if they want to get a bigger package they just pay the difference when they come in there's no session fee it's just a pat a prepaid package now you can see these prices are very low but this is again eight nine years ago we were competing with the local schools this is about where their prices were and so we wanted teo we wanted teo really get our clients give them a reason tio you're gonna get better quality still not pay more money and that seemed to work really well for us so you can see it's very simple this little order form just follows along the client has prepaid for the thirty to fifty if they buy a different package you could see that each package is a single pose so most clients on average would buy three or four packages to get three or four poses so we were averaging at about one hundred fifty two at the when we started the sales average was actually hundred fifty two dollars and by the time we still do this but very we do it one day for clients have done it forever we don't market it anymore but the last year that we heavily marketed ourselves averages gotta right around two hundred twenty which again two hundred twenty doesn't sound like a lot of money and but these were ten minute sessions every ten minutes we're making two hundred twenty dollars on an average and so if you do the math this is actually maur lucrative then doing one single session for thousand dollars but it's a lot harder work yes so you show them the images right away or did they come back we sure do great and I wasn't going to remember that so thank you for that in this case we consider this a quick take and in my studio there are only two times a year that we actually show them the image is the time of the session we really teach a good sales presentation on howto work with your client relationships but school portrait ce and the santa charity that we do the clients go directly from the studio to a waiting area for ten minutes we j peg them out quickly then we print them out on pieces of paper the client takes the paper and basically there's a cell we have enough sales associate that they're riding the orders right on the paper and it goes right to the lap so they do not come back I mean again it's a low end price we don't want to sail session we don't want to spend that much time with him they pick on the spot pay the pay their bill and they're out the door and it's great because again at the end of the day you know we have uh days of school portrait's where we did three four five I think six thousand was our one of our better days but that's a lot of money in you know in a in a recession and these air always done in our slow season so this is a great this when we try to tie around the school portrait that the act that the school does so they're in sync so we've done them in august before but we also what we do currently is april because it's right towards the end of school so our clients are kind of gear toe get their poor jetson before they're done so very very simple but potentially could bring in some extra money and this is one that you could market to your own client base these are examples of the pictures you can see pretty standard backgrounds pretty standard poses you know we've tried to do a little bit of creativity but you know what's interesting is the number one sailor seller on the school portrait is a high key background pure white background will sell ten toe one honestly people even though we give them these colored backgrounds in these choices the number one seller is the high key background the number one pose is thie boy and girl pose we're gonna teach you tomorrow which this is the traditional male pose and the female version is like the little mermaid with her legs down which will cover that tomorrow but those are the number one seller so just to give you an idea I could do this with just a white background and do just as well as putting up we typically put four five backgrounds up and it's like a you know an assembly line it sit here sit here sit here get out here sit here sit here get out and that's kind of how we do it a couple of things just to make sure I cover all the details this is really for ages preschool and up we don't take toddlers are newborns thought you know that it's just it's school age only we do not do multiple children you can't say can I get a quick shot of the kids together that's the number one thing you're gonna get requesting this is school portrait you can't do sibling groups now if I were charging more money I would be fine to do that but remember if I throw a quickie and they're going to buy a christmas card of it or they're gonna buy a five by seven and go print their own copies of christmas cards I'm hurting my own company so we don't do sibling groups there's no clothing changes there are quite a few rules and stipulations but again it's a price point issue I could take the same campaign and modify it charge more and give them a little more flexibility so there are other ways you could do this if you if you don't like that concept another fun one this kind of goes back to story time this is sort of where the story time concept came out of um when I first started my studio the first year we had a grand opening which you know I didn't have I had a good client based on we had a good grand opening but I kind of loved the party atmosphere and I wanted another excuse to have a party so we started to have a studio birthday party now we did full invitations this was like a real children's party we had clowns magicians we had giant birthday cake I mean this was an event it was a saturday event and people knew that it was free and and parents are always looking for free things to do with their kids on the weekends and weekdays for sure so we had prize drawings we this was a great way to clearance all of our discount you know like damaged frames like it was just kind of a clearance so in addition to having prices and games and things for kids when parents showed up we had discounts on session we had a big fish full drying where you know we had a one of the little lottery things where you could spin it or you know dip your hand in and you'd pick out your future discount on your session we also had prizes that we gave away so in eleven by fourteen sixteen twenty portrait person's things like that so getting people to put their names in the fish bowl and if I ever teach fish bowl drawings you know that when I teach that it's not about the one winner it's not who wins the big prize it's about the names in the bull when people put their names in the bull they're giving you permission to contact them that's really important whenever you do any type of fish ball drawing you have a goldmine right there and you know a lot of people think about ok one two three here are top three winners when I'm looking at it going every single person in that bowl needs to win something or have a personal contact they are telling you you can contact them the problem is most photographers will take that bowl and even if they're going to give everybody a prize don't create a little form letter and they'll throw it in the mail and say congratulations you won sixteen by twenty you wanted eight by ten or a free session or whatever and then throw it in the mail and they'll just hope and pray that somebody calls and what you guys have to understand is the telephone is the most powerful marketing tool there is period the problem is it is the most feared marketing tool there is nobody likes to pick up the phone nobody likes toe you know cold call people but I think it's something that once you tried and you realize if you get fifty names in a fish bowl and you start calling them and you personally get them excited and you say you know we're doing this and we've got the special time reserved all of a sudden you create a connection with this tour that we're booking right now uh believe it or not I started calling students and booking tickets I wanted to try wanted to test something out and I would call students and the feedback when they realized it was me on the phone and that I was personally called them because first I'm concerned I don't want a hard core market I want to create personal connections so I have been diligently calling city by city and personally inviting people this show now I know it sounds crazy but the couple hours a day we spend doing this I have had a ball talking to this people and that really came out of these types things when I broke that fear barrier of I don't want to call you know I don't dare call people when I started to I put myself out there and become a real person that these people how can they say no to you if you sound if you're if you sound excited in and engaged and you know that you want to work with them there's not gonna be any reason that they're not going to sign up so that that phone is critical and if you want tohave true success with these types of campaigns fishable drawing things like that you're gonna have to learn to utilize that toe uh this is like an example of way long time ago in fact it's kind of funny my daughter when I open the studio she was born so we made her the poster child of every birthday card so it's kind of cool because every invitation I could see her growth it was right about the time that she had eight or nine that she was over at night you know we stopped doing the birthday parties because it's you know at thirteen I was pretty sure she didn't want to be the little clown kid that was in the picture so we've evolved into other types of parties and different things events like the storytelling and things that we're working on now but this was awesome because when my kids were little all of my clients kids were little and this is what my children remember about their childhood is clowns and magicians and stuff like that now I'm much more likely to turn my studio into a dance club and let my teenagers have you know they're big group parties and things they're so you also evolve with your you know your family and your studio growth as well things this was such a priority to me when my kids were little and now I'm doing other things to market but those of you out there who understand this if you're opening a studio try to tie some of these things in because if you do it consistently every year people would call and say you know when's the when's the birthday party because it was a free day for their kids and they got great prices as well events now this is another one that I think a lot of people you know this is like it's like a wedding word nobody likes events nobody likes to take a big groups but you know what events there's they're highly profitable this is where there is a lot of money and a lot of relationships to build my whole company was built on dance studios and football groups and things like that I think I learned some some things the hard way I learned what I didn't like to do probably faster than I learned what worked well but I kept at it and I tried to build those relationships and I still have clients that were originally another little two year old you know that they paid a twenty dollar package for now they're eighteen year olds and they're coming in or seventeen year olds coming in for senior portrait's and spending two three thousand dollars we also have to keep in mind that your clients grow with you when you're clients have little ones you know they might not have all the money in the world and they might be financially set but as they start to grow and they get more secure the families get more secure financially you've created that relationship so dance studios gymnastics sports these air kind of old but this I mean this is what I did I was falling in white paper in the backgrounds and you know setting up the lights and dealing with you know massive amounts of kids and trying to bring in you know twenty kids and then do their individuals and it was a lot of work and it's something that I can honestly say the value for building my business was really there now as far as long term this is not something that I would I would I want to do forever but it was definitely a good a good use of my time um these it's kind of hard to see that one image but I mean this is the kind of place is that we have to set up this was actually a high school that we were doing something for the high school but you can see we end up in tiny little halls and horrible everything nothing works out very well there's always little disasters but these are the things that you kind of have to be prepared for whatever happens happens this is that hope game use hope that it's a small room and hope that your lights don't work and hope that they're no power chords or there no plugs and if you play the hope game you get everything you want out of life so definitely learned the hope came but just be prepared for frustration and situations that are tough to work with and then just you know smile your way through it uh sports teams this is something that I pursued when I was younger and you know what I never enjoyed it it was something that you know sitting out in the hot sun and putting kids on their knees with the soccer ball on them I just didn't I didn't enjoy it so I stopped pursuing that however uh my own son this is his football team and he's been playing since he was five or six and this is something that I did for their teams and their groups and every year it got bigger and better and these little sports posters these were like eleven by seventeen posters that we would priest for the kids and and this was really just done as a gift for my son but it was something that it brought a lot of business it was the first time we did it it was just really for him and then every year it became how can we make the poster better and the kids were all involved and you know it's sad to say he is and he finally is in high school now so the years that last year was our last year of posters and most of you I know a lot of you guys hopefully you're still blowing up his photography page nikolai push photography but last year it was kind of a big turning point for me because the kid at eleven had a full mustache by the time he was twelve he had a full beard and so the last poster we did I remember walking in the room saying please let some of these other kids have facial hair and of course their little peach fuzz faces of my child's got this whole beard going so this was the last the last poster and he's the only bearded thirteen year old in there but kind of hard to find but yes so each year and I mean this was the last post to read it and this one definitely was the by far the best one that we ever did um but it's really been fun to watch this happen and through this we've gotten clients you know they're uh kids the best part about this is these were all shot in the studio so the kids come into the studio that means their parents are in the studio that means they're running around the studio and every year about half the team stays the same kids through and true every year and then about half the team are brand new families that are coming in so just that one little effort can bring new business in and it also gives you something fun to do is well

Class Description

Sandy Puc' returns to creativeLIVE for her Tots to Teens workshop! Sandy covers all aspects of creating a successful photography plan that spans from the young toddler years to the early teens. She shares her creative marketing ideas and practical business sense to attract and keep happy clients, and you'll learn how to create repeat customers—and stable income—by continually bringing clients back to update their child's portraits as they grow.


JUdy CUrran

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