It was perfect timing. Tuesday after our Marketing class on portfolio presentations, I had an appointment to show my portfolio to a chiropractor in Newport Beach. He needed some shots of his office facilities and his machines, or 'toys' as he likes to call them. I didn't plan it that way, serendipity I guess.
Well it didn't help in getting me the job, but it did help me see what I did wrong. So let me give you a quick rundown:
My presentation was flat.
Little emotion, or passion. I had to say the interior design of the office did not inspire me in the least. Clutter everywhere.
I didn't share with him how valuable my services could be for his business.
I had a general portfolio with me, not an architectural one.
It was not a show portfolio by any means. It resembled a drop-off portfolio.
My estimate was given orally, rather than in a printed fashion.
The positive: I was dressed well and on time. I actually had to wait 30min to see him, typical doctor appointment.
So in the end, the chiropractor was not impressed and my estimate was more than he expected. I did not justify to him the value of such an expense. A good lesson for me.
If I am to make money, I have to learn how to sell my services. So not one to waste any time, I picked up the 'Pricing Photography' book. There are two whole chapters (Ch.3&4) devoted to that. A great read, check it out.
In there, the authors talk about 'controlling the negotiation, establishing rapport, gathering information, dealing with the client's expectations, educating the client, quoting the price, closing the deal and finally, the follow-up.'
Well to master that whole process will take some practice. One thing they suggest is to role play a presentation with a client. One person plays the client and has an idea of what price he is willing to pay and the person playing the photographer has his own fees he wishes to charge.
It makes perfect sense. Why practice with real clients and risk losing deals, when you can do it with fellow photographers. Practice makes perfect. Bloody brilliant I tell ya !! So if you're interested, let me know. I'll be your nightmare client, haha!
By the way, tomorrow Friday Nov. 9th, we have our Strobist meetup. It's at my apartment studio in Huntington Beach at 6pm. So if you're interested in coming, email me at email@example.com and I will send you the address.
Thursday, November 8, 2007
Posted by Greg Clarke at 9:53 PM