On a site that includes SEO in its domain name, you will excuse me for turning to a completely different topic, but equally important in your business strategy – the topic of marketing for photographers and specifically your photography pricing template.
Marketing for photographers is a huge subject and covers so many areas – we’ve covered many photography marketing topics on the PhotoProSEO.com blog, but today I want to focus on one specific area of marketing – your sales literature and specifically the photography pricing template you present to your potential clients.
As a wedding photographer in Scotland I was targeting the higher end of our local marketplace (for local I mean Scotland as a geographic area).
It was important, therefore, that my entire marketing message was focused on delivering a “high end” brand perception to our potential bride and groom. A perception that had to match the high end brands that were part of their overall wedding experience.
From the bridal gowns, to the jewellery, to the wedding venue, couples come in contact with brands with potentially much higher marketing budgets that even the most successful photographer might have access to. Therefore, as photographers, we need to punch above our weight so that as a brand we are seen as equal partners alongside the designer gown manufacturer and the five star hotel.
Our marketing materials have to match the high end wedding venues we aspire to work in.
Equally, if we are to price our product much higher that our local competitors, then the wedding couple must see value for that additional cost.
Price perception, branding and quality of sales literature are all at play here and vital for your success.
Think of every place that your potential client sees your brand – everything must portray the quality of your brand.
From the simplest of things like what your company is named and the quality of your logo, through to the entrance to your business premises and the quality of paper you print your contract on.
Everything must exude quality!
A few years ago I attended a portrait photography sales training course run by my good friend Kenneth Martin – Kenneth is one of Europe’s top photographers and a fantastic businessman.
Kenneth paid equal importance to what I describe above, referring to it as “The Value Chain” and saying how every single step in the chain from initial the point of contact with your customer through to the eventual sale, had to represent value to your customer.
“Allow one step in your value chain to falter and your sales would suffer”, he would tell me.
Our portrait photography studio in Stirling has a monthly target of 64 shoots per month – I can almost always attribute a drop in average sales figures to some area of our value chain where we may have weakened our brand and marketing position.
Of course the value chain and our whole marketing strategy is a huge topic which we can’t cover in a single blog post. However, I do want to focus on an area that many photographers tend to ignore or forget purely because we live in a digital world. They have forgotten the value of printed literature.
Specifically, I want to talk about “The Pricing Guide” or your pricing brochure.
For many of you, you will instantly tell me, “Yes that is on our website”.
And so it may be, but I want you to think about the last time you made a large purchase.
Think about the last time you bought a new car.
The last time you visited a new model showhome for a new housing area being built locally.
Or if you are married, the visits you had to local wedding venues.
In each case (and depending on the quality of the brand) you would have most likely left with a high quality brochure providing details of the benefits of making your purchase and (in most cases) clear details of the costs involved.
Now, many of you would simply get home and the brochure might be cast aside – but it left an impression with you.
An impression of quality.
An impression of strength.
An impression of longevity.
And an assurance that this was a company worth doing business with.
Now. Think of your Wedding Photography client.
Their spend with you is a “large” purchase. You need to back that up, not only with a quality product, but also with a quality brand and quality literature.
When a client comes to meet you to discuss their wedding photography requirements. How do you present your costs?
Do you simply print a sheet of paper with your prices?
Think about the impression that gives your customer?
Or do you present the prices electronically on screen – a very “green” approach, but the presentation will soon be forgotten when they sit in front of the next photographer.
You need something tangible.
You need something that portrays the quality of your brand.
Every wedding client (and portrait client for that matter) is presented with our Price Guide – this is a stunning, luxury bound brochure that would be equally at home as a brochure for the finest of hotels.
It exudes quality and demonstrates immediately to the client the care and thought that we put into our photography and our business.
It provides an immediate confidence boost to them knowing that they are dealing with a real business and if the quality of our photography matches the quality of our brochure, they know they are getting value for money.
Here is the pricing brochure we present to our Wedding Photography clients.
N.B. This is the full resolution version, so will take a bit of time to load – you can click on the image to view the brochure full screen:-
Here is the full layout in thumbnail form:-
Does presenting a wedding photography brochure like this really work?
Yes, without a doubt. I believe in strong photography marketing. I started as a wedding photographer in 2009 with just 5 weddings. By 2010 we had 45 weddings and were already totally dominating the Scottish Wedding Photography search results. Each year we would raise our prices and by 2012 we were doing 6 figures averaging over £2000 per wedding. This past year our averages were over £2500 per wedding whereas some of our local competition struggle to achieve £750 for a wedding. Marketing is a necessity for photographers – ignore it at your peril.
And for the doubters amongst you here is an extract of our sales reports from Light Blue Software (which is THE number 1 studio management system out there!)
What does a wedding photography pricing template of this quality cost?
These prices are based on local UK pricing, so your own local market may differ. Depending on your volume of print run, the brochure printing costs are between around £1.50 and £3.00. We used to print these in small runs of 50, so that any tweaks or image changes could be incorporated fairly quickly. The company we used for these was Solopress and each brochure cost us just £2.33 plus VAT (Sales Tax). Less than 0.1% of our actual average sale. The design costs of such a marketing brochure however are much higher. We were fortunate to have an in-house graphic designer in our studio team, but even then this took a lot of man hours to design and layout. Outsourcing something like this to a local graphic designer would probably cost in the region of £1500-2000 – although you could use offshore designers on sites like Upwork.com, but that is of course not without its own challenges.
What if you could get a design like this for FREE
Well today, you can! I would like to give you this £1500 value design for FREE. Yep, ZERO COST. Nada. Nowt. Hee Haw. (That’s a bit of Scot’s slang for all you foreigners 😉 ) All we ask is that you replace our logo and colour scheme with your own branding, and use your own images of course. You can even use our own sales text, but I suspect you will want to put your own voice to this.
Why are we doing this?
Well those of you that know me personally will know that we are retiring from wedding photography and took our last booking earlier this year. Our portrait photography studio has grown so well that we have found that wedding photography is actually stifling our growth as a business. Plus the fact that I’m not getting any younger LOL – wedding photography is hard physical work. Of course, it’s not a decision we took lightly of course – wedding photography is a huge revenue line in our accounts, but we are confident that the growth in the portrait studio will take up the slack and more. So rather than throw away all this good design work, I thought I would put it out there to help other wedding photographers.
How do I use the Marketing Brochure Template?
The brochure was designed in Adobe InDesign and if you don’t already own it as part of the Adobe Creative Cloud (CC) program, you can download a trial version here – it’s a seven day trial, so more than enough time to learn enough of the basics to swap logos colour and images etc to create your own brochure. Once you’ve done the layout changes you simply export the brochure as a PDF and send it to your local printer. For reference here are the specs we used when printing:- Size: A4 Landscape Cover: 350gsm Gloss Internal Pages: 200gsm Gloss Binding: Perfect Bound, 1.5mm spine Pages: 20 double sided printing We ordered ours from Solopress here https://www.solopress.com/products/perfect-bound-brochures/silk-brochures/
How to download the Brochure / Photography Pricing Template Files
Click the button below, complete the form and the download link will be sent to you immediately via email.
( Full disclosure: by submitting your email address we will add you to our mailing list and if you haven’t already received it, we will send you our 7 step SEO training plan – this is free and you can unsubscribe from our mailing list at any time – there are no catches I promise!)
Your side of the bargain!
You must respect our copyright by replacing all of our images with yours, and of course swapping our logo, contact details and changing any relevant text details etc (i.e. please don’t be claiming you won the same awards as me LOL)
One More Thing – A FREE Masterclass on structuring Wedding Photography Pricing
I’ve spoken about Wedding Photography pricing before. I teach it at seminars that I am invited to speak at and the subtle mechanics of your pricing are incredibly important to ensure you achieve the prices you are aiming for.
By downloading our wedding photography pricing guide you get an insight to how a “real” wedding photographer achieves higher end prices in their area (i.e. a “real” wedding photographer, not someone living in California shooting celebrity weddings twice a year and claiming an average of $50,000 a wedding LOL)
Download the pricing brochure and read it alongside my McDonald’s principle article and hopefully it will make a lot of sense.
So go ahead – start raising your photography marketing game today.
Download this wedding photography pricing template and produce a brochure worthy of the wedding venue that you most aspire to photograph in. By doing so, I think you will soon find yourself working there as a high end wedding photographer.
P.S. If this article has been useful to you, please do us a favour by liking our page on Facebook and sharing one of our articles with your photography friends – that would really be appreciated!