There is a rhythm to business, isn't there? Each person has to find their own way of doing things to see what works for them and their business. Since there are so many decisions to make, I decided to share a few of my answers to frequently asked questions on meetings, photo lists, and payments today! I hope this helps as you grow your business!
Where do you meet potential clients?
Most of the time, everything happens through email or on the phone! It's rare that I meet a potential client in person anymore. This is in large part because my potential clients are busy, I'm busy, and everything can be handled through email/phone.
Where do you meet your clients?
Skype, phone calls, emails. That's where I host our meetings! If I'm meeting them in person, we get together in local coffee shops/bakeries! Most of my clients follow me on instagram, Facebook, and read the blog so they already feel connected to me. We only meet in person if it's really important to them to do so!
Should I meet with my clients before the wedding?
I don't think it's necessary unless you think that it will somehow make you better at your job! If what you need is to meet a person in order to photograph them, then you should absolutely make that part of your workflow.
What does my process look like for booking clients?
I ask for a signed contract, wedding details, and the retainer (1/2 the package cost) to book!
How you you get to know your clients?
I pay attention to them, listen to them, and ask them about their lives! I actually really love this part of my job!!
When do you request payment?
I ask for 1/2 the package when they book and the remaining 1/2 thirty days before the wedding!
Do you ever offer payment plans?
Yes! If they want to break up the payments into 3 payments, I will make changes to their contract so that can happen.
How do you take payments?
Do you take photo lists from brides?
I take the leadership on this one now to avoid photo lists! I send the bride a "wedding information" questionnaire and it includes all of the combinations for family formals. I ask them to make any changes necessary so that we can be sure to photograph all important family members.
If a bride sends me a list from the Knot (why in the world did the Knot do this to us, eh?), I will explain that I want to give them the photos that are really important to them. I ask them to only select the photos that are musts and then explain that if they give me creative freedom, I can do great things for them! Once they read that I don't need the list, they explain that NONE of those photos are important to them and that they really just want what they see me do.
How do you get a feel for what they want?
I ask them! You can read about the questions that I ask HERE!
How do you make sure that they are going to LOVE their photos?
Whew. This is a great question and one that I could probably write a book on. In short, I get to know them so that I can really photograph who they are. I keep things authentic and genuine with posing and direction. I always produce the same type of work and that helps them know what to expect!