Most photographers think this is true, and it certainly is if you only want to have mediocre photography business, and never aim on becoming highly successful, or having clients rave to their friends about you, or be capable of charging higher prices.
However, if your goal IS to accomplish these things, then there’s a whole lot more that you need to consider, and it’s got absolutely nothing to do with the quality of your photos, the speed of your service or the price of your camera and lenses!
What I’m talking about here, is the…
Yep, that’s right!
This involves EVERYTHING your clients experience from the moment they call you to ask for more information, until the moment you deliver their photos, and even then it doesn’t really stop!
Here’s an example from another industry, which comes directly from a friend of mine…
She had an appointment to get eyelash extensions and everything seemed quite normal. It was a home salon so she wasn’t expecting ‘day-spa’ quality, but was definitely shocked when she arrived…
As she walked in she was greeted by a girl wearing casual clothes who asked her to lay down on the couch in the lounge room (lashes are typically done on something more like a massage table). The TV was on and the girl was watching it while doing the lashes. Plus, the boyfriend would come and go, often talking to the girl… and to top it all off, there were a couple of cats in the house, which apparently sleep on the couch (she could tell because it was covered in cat hair… luckily she wasn’t allergic!).
Needless to say she never returned, and ended up telling me, and who knows how many other friends about the experience.
This type of thing results in clients never returning… certainly never referring friends… and often actually warning people to stay away!
The girl probably thought that she would save a little money on a massage table, proper lighting, and a dedicated room… and that nobody would care what she wears… but she’d be wrong! People do care – they care a lot!
What You Should Do
You need to shock the client your dedication to creating the best experience ever right from the start!
Here’s some ideas for all photographers with a studio or home studio:
- Ensure it smells nice! Scented candles or those essential oil burners that plug into the power outlet work great. Have you ever walked into the lobby of a hotel that smelled amazing? It helps to create a good memory almost instantly. It’s cheap and easy, so do it!
- Offer them a gift upon arrival. A glass of sweet lemongrass tea, a freshly baked muffin, or even a freshly picked rose.
- Use background music! Nobody likes awkward silence, so play some soothing background music. This will vary depending on the age of client you’re working with
- Keep your home or studio extremely clean! Nobody likes walking into a messy home.
- Always dress professionally. This helps to show that you’re the expert.
- Ask questions about them and try not to talk about yourself, unless specifically asked. People don’t often get attention like this, so it can really make them feel appreciated
- Got pets? Lock them away! Many people are allergic to cats and dogs, so don’t risk it. Unless the client asks to see them, then don’t let them out (this is for home studio photographers)
- Put your phone on silent when you’re with clients! It’s rude to answer calls, or even be distracted by your phone while working, so flip it to silent.
- Offer the client food or drink if you’re doing a long shoot.
These few tips can really make a huge difference to the client experience, and create raving fans. Even if your photos aren’t all incredible, the fact that you treated them like royalty is enough for most people to recommend your services to numerous friends.
These tips will work for most types of photographers if you modify them a little to fit your particular business. They’re cheap, easy, and best of all, EFFECTIVE…
So start using them today!
Let me know if this article helped you by leaving a comment below!