I'm willing to bet, that if you are a photographer that sells their work for a living, you wouldn't mind if your clients suddenly started buying more from you, right? Afterall, sales is where we get paid. And yet, sales is probably one of the hardest areas for photographers to really master.
Most of us hate to be "sold to." We hate the feeling that someone's trying to sell us something. Guess what, your clients do too. The only thing worse is when they feel like they're being sold to, by someone who isn't even confident in what they're selling.
Here's 5 simple, non "sales-y" things you can do immediately to start increasing your sales.
1. Show Your Client Less Photos
Half of you are going to stop reading right here. That's okay. The half of you that are left, are thinking like business people, and know that you don't have to sacrifice your artistic dignity to be a good businessperson. You just have to be willing to think like a business person.
Often, the biggest barrier to solid photography sales is that your client is overwhelmed. If you are shooting a portrait session, and you show the client 400 images, you are going to overwhelm them. You're making it hard for them to find the images that stand out - the images that they emotionally connect with.
Instead, do them the favor of using your professional expertise as a curator - and share with them an edited selection that focuses on the story. The same thing is true if you are a wedding photographer. If you share 2,000 images with your client, don't be surprised if they take 9 months to pick out the images for their album - if they ever order an album at all.
2. Show Your Client Less Products
Just as too many photos can be overwhelming, too many product options has the same effect. When people are faced with an overwhelming decision, they choose the only "safe" option, and that's to choose nothing at all. If you want your clients to buy an album - show them the album you want them to buy. Make it easy for them to make a decision about what will best fit their needs.
3. Listen To Your Client
Most of the time, your client will tell you exactly what they want. If you ask the right questions, and listen to their answers, 80% of your sales job is done. Then all you have to do is provide them with a solution to what they're asking for. A wedding client has different needs than a portrait client.
By having a conversation and listening to your client, all you have to do is...
4. Give Them What They Want
You are the expert. Your job is to provide them with what they want. The reason you're paid the big bucks to be the expert is that often times your client doesn't know what he or she really wants. This means you get to be the hero for understanding their "wants" and providing them with something that answers that desire.
For example, your wedding clients want to "remember the way they feel at their wedding." With that in mind, you get to provide them with something timeless - something that will forever bring back the feeling and emotion they experienced on that day. You get to provide them with a beautiful way to re-live, and share, the story for the rest of their lives. When you think about it from the perspective of what they really want, it makes it about them - and adding value to their lives.
5. Make It Easy
Finally, if you really want to increase your sales, the process starts long before they are viewing the images online, or sitting in your studio. It really starts with every experience and conversation they have with you. It starts with how easy it is for them to get information. It starts with how easy it is for them to contact you. It starts with how easy you make it for them to give you money - seriously!
If you've gone through the trouble to focus on the products you want to sell, and positioned them to meet your clients' needs, then your job is to make it super easy for them to order and purchase (and give you money). For example, if you're client has sat through a sales session with you, your job is to have a professional way to prepare their order, and collect payment. Do you have an invoicing process? Do you accept checks or credit cards? Are you able to process them on the spot?
When you make it easy for clients to work with you, they are far more likely to spend more money - and become clients for life.
Tell me what you think. What tips do you have to increase your sales? Leave a comment below!