Dan Frievalt is a senior portrait photographer operating just outside of Green Bay, Wisconsin. He’s been creating great-looking, powerful photos as a professional for over 10 years. As part of the theme of senior portrait photography this month, Dan completes the string of awesome content with a talk about how to make a profit. He’s an Exposure advocate, so we aliens like him already, but aside from making awesome-looking images, he has a lot more to share in this photographer pricing guide. Take a look in the article below.
One of the main struggles for many photographers in our industry is pricing. Many new to the industry–and many of those who have been around for a bit–get frustrated about how to develop their own photographer pricing guide. The goal for any pricing is to encourage the client to invest more with them. The traditional method of offering three to four packages works for most; however, it creates several issues. I outline one solution for the photographer pricing guide in a method of my own design.
Frustrated with my sales averages, I took several different sales methods and refined them to develop a simple, effective way to sell work and boost averages. I called it the Create a Collection method. It’s a way to make sales came to life because, honestly, I really hate selling to people. As a photographer, we make great connections with our clients and feel the need to give everything away for free. If you feel that way, you’re not alone–I was there with you! I needed to make a change, and it needed to happen fast. I didn’t want to be a starving artist. I needed a photographer pricing guide that took the stress out of having to sell to my clients with whom I have a personal relationship with.
Giving the client what they want is my number one priority. Over the years, I found myself constantly customizing packages to fit the specific needs of my client. The solution was obvious. Rather than have pre-set package options, I give my client the ability to create their own.
Clients who come to my studio have two options, they can either pick items from a menu, or they can put together their own collection. It’s handled by four easy steps; (1) Select an album, (2) Select Wallets, (3) Select Gift Prints, and finally (4) Select Wall Portraits. Clients also become eligible for discounts at specific price points. For example, once they purchase $1,500 they will receive five free social media files, or discounts on additional prints or wall art.
Human nature is to purchase based on what will save them the most money. So 98% of my clients do the Create a Collection method. This has increased my averages and allowed me to be a profitable studio.
Why is it a good idea? Well, clients get exactly what they want, there is no need to swap out items in packages to meet a specific price point, and you don’t put a ceiling on how much they buy. The added bonuses of freebies and discounts encourage the client to spend even more. I have had packages sell at over $6,500 since implementing the new model. Before, my largest package was $2,000.
Several photographers who I have mentored using the create-a-collection method as their photographer pricing guide have reported boosting their averages by at least $500. Some much more. In closing, I’ll leave you with a quote from a fellow photographer, Jeni.
“Just wanted to let you know how much I love sales now that we have your Create a Collection system. I made the biggest senior sale of my life with your product guide and pricing suggestions!!!! $5,600! Soo stoked. It’s genius. Major thanks to you. I no longer hate sales.”