Trying to decide between selling a disc of images vs. print sales is like trying to decide between freshly baked chocolate chip cookies or raw cookie dough for me. I love both and I love them both at different times and for different reasons. With the introduction of digital cameras our industry is changing drastically and quickly and these decisions for me often have a lot to do with our industry moving forward.
Many of you guys who have attended my live online classes about various photography topics have heard ye olde spiel about how I do gallery reviews and have the best of both worlds with print sales and CDs. I know not everyone thinks the way I do about giving a disc to clients and that’s okay. It’s been a very personal choice for me and there’s no right or wrong way to do it. Although I like my clients to have the CD with the images (or in my case it’s actually a zip download file of all their images) I also want to take advantage of the opportunity to make print sales while I can. In order for my clients to receive their “CD” of images they are required to attend a gallery review with me where we look through their images. I feel this gallery review is not only a great time to make print sales, but also a great way to finish up your time with your clients instead of just an email with a link to their gallery or a CD in the mail. It’s a last time for them to ask questions about why some images may have been left out or anything like that. Because it’s their opportunity to ask these questions and finish up usually clients do not email afterward with more questions or concerns. Here’s a few tips that can help you make your in-person sales soar.
1. Make it a requirement from your clients to do an in-person sale time with you.
2. Don’t pressure it. I never tell my clients that this gallery review is the time I’m going to sell them things. I describe it as one last time to get together and relive their wedding day and if they want to purchase any products at their gallery review I’ll give them a discount of 20% off on that day only.
3. Offer them a way to order online afterward. I use Shootproof.com for all of my online gallery ordering.
4. Actually show your clients the photos. Use your iPad, Laptop, or desktop to run a slideshow and stand there and look at the photos with them. The best way for someone to get a good feeling about their photos is when you look at the photos with them and ooh and ahh and point out your favorites. You can say things like, “that would look great on canvas” or “I love the look on his face in this one.”
5. If they don’t order that day extend their discount for a very limited amount of time. Sometimes I’ll leave a discount that gradually decreases over time. If I leave their gallery up for 3 months than they might get 20% off the first month, 15% the second and 10% the last month before it goes offline.
6. Create a comfortable environment. If you don’t have a meeting space of your own, meet them at a coffee shop and offer to buy them a drink.
7. Listen to which image is their favorite and send them a gift of that image. I use cgproprints.com’s $22.99 16×20 canvas as a surprise gift of their favorite image after the gallery review to thank them for their time and for hiring me. If they do not order at their gallery review sometimes seeing something like this is a great incentive to get another one or want more images for their wall.
8. When you first meet with your clients give them your product price list and tell them they’ll get a discount after their session. Many clients will plan an order without even seeing the photos simply because of this prior knowledge of the discount. It also lets your clients know how much to set aside, save, etc. for their print order.
I’ll be teaching an entire live online class all about In-Person Sales this fall. You can >REGISTER HERE<. The class only has 25 spots so make sure you’ve got yours before it’s full. If you cannot attend the online class when it’s live, don’t worry. All our live classes are recorded so you can register and watch it later.