Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
11-20-2009, 09:18 PM   #1
Forum Member




Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Saint Louis
Posts: 88
What do I say????

When the client asks who I use for prints??? I use mpix so of course if they go online and see their prices they are going to flip at my mark up. What do I say??? I'm just now getting into print sales. I've just been selling the cd up until now.

Also, they want to know what to wear. It's a group of two families and their parents. So six adults and two kids. They want some all together, some of families separate, and just kids.

Any advice is GREATLY appreciated!

Thanks!

11-20-2009, 10:49 PM   #2
Veteran Member




Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Perth Australia
Photos: Albums
Posts: 1,514
You could say "In house prints" or make up some company they wont find online.

If your really getting into printing id recommend a nice a2 printer. Epson 4880 or some such.

Even if you don't tell them they are going to see your prices are expensive. When they get an average print for the high price it wont go down well. If your doing prints in house you can make sure they are perfect and use some classy papers. The real cost of this would maybe double (but probably not if your printer is cheap enough with ink / you buy bulk roll paper etc) but at least the product wont be something anyone can get easily and it will show.
11-20-2009, 11:01 PM   #3
graphicgr8s
Guest




You tell them you use a wholesaler that you've used for X number of years that you trust with your own personal pictures. You never tell a client who you use.

You may be more "expensive" but you re also providing more "personal" service. And that's worth $$$$

I've had many ask where my printing is outsourced (offset) and I've never given a name. Not in over 30 years.
11-20-2009, 11:32 PM   #4
Veteran Member




Join Date: Sep 2006
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 5,711
Before I started working in a lab I just told them I used a Professional Lab.
That's really all any client needs to know.

11-21-2009, 08:23 AM   #5
Senior Member
THAN THE SWORD's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: TEXASS
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 150
Even if they do find out they should understand that the price of a picture is much more than the printing cost.

If a client is paying you for your services they should understand that they are also paying for your experience. As long as you give them a quality product they should be OK with it.

It used to be that you could explain the cost of film and developing as part of the charges. But with digital those days are gone. I find that when they see my equipment (lights, stands, umbrellas and back drops) they don't say much.

As to the question about clothing. That is part of the service. You should have a discussion well before the shoot about clothing, style and overall tone of the shoot. It should be something that you bring up first. Do they want formal, informal, causal a theme of some sort? Talk about colors, patterns, degree of wear, showing skin, dressing from head to toe (to give you flexibility). part of this discussion should also be about groupings, especially with kids involved. This is where you pre-sell. Talk to them and find out about what they want and what they should want. Do the whole family together of course, but then follow up with the mom and dad, dad and the kids, mom and the kids, mom and the girls, mom and the boys, dad and the boys, dad and the girls, the boys, the girls, everyone individually, dad and his favorite. The possibilities are endless and the more you shoot the more you have to sell.

Back when I was a studio photographer I shot the sitting with the wall arrangement in mind. If the parents are on the left in the group shot then have them facing to the left in the couple shot. It can get tricky but it helps to sell the individual shots.

Last edited by THAN THE SWORD; 11-21-2009 at 08:34 AM.
11-21-2009, 12:00 PM   #6
Site Supporter
Site Supporter




Join Date: Oct 2009
Photos: Albums
Posts: 251
QuoteOriginally posted by Sarahbell Quote
When the client asks who I use for prints??? I use mpix so of course if they go online and see their prices they are going to flip at my mark up. What do I say??? I'm just now getting into print sales. I've just been selling the cd up until now.

Also, they want to know what to wear. It's a group of two families and their parents. So six adults and two kids. They want some all together, some of families separate, and just kids.

Any advice is GREATLY appreciated!

Thanks!
I find it funny though - everyone marks up when things pass through the supply chain. You don't go to a restaurant and say "but this wine is $8 at Costco, why is this $30 here?" There is an implied service charge for everything. Consider this, your print charges include:
1. Color correction
2. Sending and receiving the prints

I am not sure what the mark-up is, but a reasonable mark-up is ... reasonable. If the markup is really high, and if people are price-sensitive (it seems these people are), they will eventually catch up and only get the images from you.

Of course, you can simply state you get it done through a friend. You could also tell them, if they want them cheaply, they could also try Ritz/Wolf (I am sure they charge an arm and a leg for prints).
11-21-2009, 03:31 PM   #7
Veteran Member
alohadave's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Quincy, MA
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 2,024
QuoteOriginally posted by pentaman Quote
Of course, you can simply state you get it done through a friend. You could also tell them, if they want them cheaply, they could also try Ritz/Wolf (I am sure they charge an arm and a leg for prints).
Far less than many professionals charge for prints. 8x10s are $4.99 ($3.99 if you are a club member).
11-21-2009, 03:34 PM   #8
graphicgr8s
Guest




QuoteOriginally posted by alohadave Quote
Far less than many professionals charge for prints. 8x10s are $4.99 ($3.99 if you are a club member).
Back when I shot pro I used a professional lab in Tampa. They did what I asked them to and I got the results I expected. You get what you pay for. I would never have used Ritz.
A problem I have with letting the client have prints made is it is still a reflection on me and my work. They get a $1.99 print and it looks like crap then I look like crap.

11-21-2009, 04:06 PM   #9
Veteran Member
creampuff's Avatar

Join Date: May 2007
Location: Singapore
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 3,955
Hmm, I am intrigued by the two types of answers to the OP's question. One set of responses is to make up a white "lie" while the other is basically not to disclose who your suppliers are.

Well as a print consultant, all I will say is making up lies will only get you so far in your business. You can fool your client a couple of times but they can and eventually will wisen up and basically your reputation and credibility from that point will always be in question. Your clients are not stupid, it is easy enough to flip through a photo or graphic design related magazine to get a ballpark idea of prices from print service providers who advertise. The better option is not to divulge that information because you will always be subject to price comparison and eventually your client will have less of a reason to use your services. Telling who your supplier is also precludes you from switching suppliers down the road.
11-22-2009, 10:07 AM   #10
Site Supporter
Site Supporter




Join Date: Oct 2009
Photos: Albums
Posts: 251
QuoteOriginally posted by creampuff Quote
Hmm, I am intrigued by the two types of answers to the OP's question. One set of responses is to make up a white "lie" while the other is basically not to disclose who your suppliers are.

Well as a print consultant, all I will say is making up lies will only get you so far in your business. You can fool your client a couple of times but they can and eventually will wisen up and basically your reputation and credibility from that point will always be in question. Your clients are not stupid, it is easy enough to flip through a photo or graphic design related magazine to get a ballpark idea of prices from print service providers who advertise. The better option is not to divulge that information because you will always be subject to price comparison and eventually your client will have less of a reason to use your services. Telling who your supplier is also precludes you from switching suppliers down the road.

Here's where your "brand identify" comes to picture (no pun). Having been in marketing, sales, etc functions, pricing is both difficult as well as easy. Why would you buy a Starbucks coffee at $3 when someone else sells same or better for $1? Same goes for the wine in a restaurant analogy. If I can get you a Honda with the exact same features as a Merc/BMW, which one would you choose? Why do people go to Best Buy when they know fully well that they can get something online for cheaper, and they even know where?

The answer generally is - experience. Would you want to spend countless hours price shopping, without knowing the end result. Even if I told my customers where I develop them, can they, with their knowledge of printing, etc. get the same result. If my customer was price-sensitive, sure. On the other hand, the experience and the value-add you provide to a customer is generally worth some premium.

I would not lie about the source, but I would give generic answers. Try getting the source of recipes/ingredients from successful restaurants. They will lie to you/feign ignorance whatever, but won't tell you where. That's their competitive advantage. Once you divulged where, you become a commodity - and depending on the barrier of entry into the business, you might as well count on someone else setting up shop close by.

Now, that brings to a big question - what's your added experience or value-add in printing? If there is none, why even mark up your prints knowing fully well that anyone with some internet knowledge can get the same results from knowing your source - in this case which is public. I would think there is some -- people, while internet savvy, are insecure about doing something until they feel comfortable.

Think about another way to handle this -- tell them you get the prints from MPix, and your rate is usually higher. Tell them that they should feel really comfortable in ordering from MPix, and that you can help them do it the first time. Are you shooting yourself in the foot by doing that? Perhaps not - the trust between you and your customer just increased! The customer will refer others to you, since he/she knows that you are an honest person. Also, this takes one thing off your "to do" list -- and now you can focus on generating more business for yourself than simply ordering prints. If I were (ever) a great photographer (dreaming...), I would focus on my work and charing a premium for the photos I take, and then totally outsource what is now becoming a commodity or my non-core competency.

Hope that long answer helps someone...


PS: I am not a professional photographer nor do I provide prints. But I am intrigued by subjects like this where people can make money in the short-term, and maybe... just maybe.. forget the bigger reward in the future.
11-22-2009, 09:06 PM   #11
Veteran Member
MJB DIGITAL's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: st. louis
Posts: 1,170
I think you have a bunch of good advice on the prints.

As for the clothing, I like to get a feel of how they like to express theirselves and go from there. I generally say to avoid patterned clothing and try to go for a 'not loud' tone/color of clothing. I tend to urge clients that earth tones are good.

If they show up in plaid or camo I quit.

8)
11-22-2009, 09:53 PM   #12
Pentaxian
Arpe's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: New Zealand
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 4,372
I remember reading some photographer on line saying to get clients to NOT wear shorts or short sleeves, as bare legs and arms are distracting in a photo. I tend to agree having looked at examples. Make sure they are more-or-less coordinated.
11-22-2009, 11:29 PM   #13
Veteran Member
alohadave's Avatar

Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Quincy, MA
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 2,024
QuoteOriginally posted by Arpe Quote
I remember reading some photographer on line saying to get clients to NOT wear shorts or short sleeves, as bare legs and arms are distracting in a photo. I tend to agree having looked at examples. Make sure they are more-or-less coordinated.
Is this it?

10. The Rules Of Good Portraiture
11-23-2009, 02:40 PM   #14
Pentaxian
Arpe's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: New Zealand
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 4,372
Could be, it was a while ago. I think he/she is right to a certain extent don't you? Obviously not a hard rule, but a guidance.
11-23-2009, 04:09 PM   #15
m8o
Veteran Member
m8o's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: 40-55'-44" N / 73-24'-07" W [on LI]
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 3,095
QuoteOriginally posted by WerTicus Quote
You could say "In house prints" or make up some company they wont find online.
That's risky IMO. Myself, if I found a service provider lied to my face I wouldn't use them again. I don't have a good answer of what to say/do (any better then other suggestions), but I don't think a lie is a great way to go.
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
families, kids, photo industry, photography
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 01:55 PM. | See also: NikonForums.com, CanonForums.com part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top