What is the ONE thing you dread MOST when it comes to being a photographer? It certainly isn’t taking beautiful pictures. It definitely is not looking through those pictures and tweaking your favorites in post. It probably is not SHARING those pictures and having your clients LOVE them. But what about the ONE thing that makes this a business and not a hobby – selling.
Many photographers that we have spoken to over the years absolutely HATE selling. They don’t want to be the Used Car Salesman trying to convince a client to get something they really don’t want. Do you ever feel that way about sales?
We have a secret. There is a solution to this problem and it is actually very simple!
Have a simple SYSTEM for sales!
By using a sales tool that makes sure that you are only offering your client products and services they WANT to buy, and using a SYSTEM that you follow so you always know EXACTLY what you are doing, clients will always be happy and you will sell and make MORE.
“Effective business systems are the ONLY way to organize & structure a new business that runs smoothly & impresses customers right from
-Ron Carroll, Box Theory Gold
How to do it: Learn from the Best!
The number ONE industry in the world today is the ENTERTAINMENT industry. The reason for that is simple – clients EXPECT great quality (awesome pictures) and great service (you handling the details well), so if our focus is only on that, we will always struggle to sell what we really want to sell at a higher level.
It is very easy to deduce what the value is on a tangible product or service. You can find out the price of a photo album (wedding or portrait), the average price for designing fees, the price of a Pass (online) gallery, the average photographer’s day rate for their “service“ and so on. But value is hard to place on an emotional experience. You can’t ask around what the value is for the way you FEEL. Creating an emotional experience is what the entertainment world is ALL about, and that is why people pay big money for movies, concerts and the like.
If we FOCUS on selling the emotional currency of our products and services, then the value of what we do can’t be measured in dollars. (CLICK to Tweet this out)
To achieve measured results each and every time you “sell” your products and services, you need to have a systematic way of doing so that is proven to get results that is based around the emotional currency of what you produce for your client. Here is Entrepreneur, financial guru, syndicated radio talk show host and deca-millionaire Dave Ramsey’s system (that we used for the last 2 years of our wedding business to the tune of a 95% close rate) from his book Entre-Leadership:
THE SALES SYSTEM:
1. QUALIFY – You must FIRST find out if a client is Qualified to use your product or service, otherwise you will be in the business of trying to convince people that your worth it. Here are a few qualifiers:
-Money (can they afford you, or can you demonstrate value so they will pay for you)?
-Do they have a need for YOUR product/service
-Do they FIT within your brand & are they the TYPE of clients YOU want to have? If yes to these questions (and more depending on your business style), then they are qualified to move to step two of the system.
2. RAPPORT – Meaning: “when two people are in sync & relate well to each other with a focus on the other party.”
-You have to build rapport with prospective clients in order to gain trust. Once you have trust, the sale becomes a simple exchange of what you offer for their applause (money).
-You build rapport by becoming more interested in them and what is best for them, then you are in what is best for you. Great businesses only give their clients what they are asking for, or they create something and demonstrate the need for it.
–Language to use when building Rapport: “What are YOU looking for in YOUR wedding photography?” “What are YOU most looking forward to on your wedding day?” “How can I SERVE you the best?”
Once you build up enough Rapport, then a client will most likely give you a small amount of their time and attention to talk about yourself. Use that time wisely!
3. EDUCATE – This involves you talking about the product (your service you offer or something tangible like an album or wall art).
-Be brief since they are more interested in what they want versus what YOU offer, and always be careful not to overwhelm them with too many options or offerings.
-Focus on the BENEFITS and how your product or service can enhance their lives vs talking about the QUALITY of your products and services.
4. CLOSE – Definitive point of sale (called the “assumption close”)
Once you are at this point, you can simply ask, “Which wedding package would you like?”
If the client hesitates to book, it is because one or more of the first 3 steps was not done properly. Ask them what their hesitation is, and you will ALWAYS find that their hesitation has to do with steps 1-3.
This system is a simple way to get a client what they want (great pics at their wedding) and get you what you want (great clients that are happy to pay for your products and services)!
Do you have any sales systems that have worked well for you in the past? If so, please share below in the comments and tell us what has worked in your business!
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