Friday, January 29, 2010

Projecting your photography sales...


When we reviewed our "product of the year" we committed to writing about how/what we incorporated into our practice to improved our studio for us and our clients.

The first thing we added/changed was projection viewing, bringing each of our clients back into the studio to see their images.

Before I get too into it let me say a couple things:

First, if you don't have a studio, or your client is not local, projection viewing obviously would not work. For our long distant clients we use the sales guidelines from "How to Sell" by Joyce Smith.

Second, projection sales is not high pressure, it is not hard sell. It is showing your work in the best, "real world" setting. You are walking your clients through the images you took at their session, answering questions, offering suggestions, helping them to make an informed decision.

This blog has provided me the opportunity to talk with some very successful photographers and they will freely admit that one of the keys to their success is in studio projection viewing and the software they use is ProSelect from Time Exposure.

If you were buying some new flooring would you make a purchase from picture on the internet or would you go to their sales room and see what the different options were, look at it life size right in front of you, ask some questions, and make the most informed decision possible.

Too many photographers throw their clients images into an online gallery and then forward them the link. Chances are you uploaded a boat load of images to give your client a good selection, and you sat back and waited for the sales to roll in, and you waited... and you kept waiting. Then wondered why no sales are made. I know because that is exactly what I used to do.

The client has so many image options but they don't have anyone to guide them through the decision making process, no one is there when they view them to answer questions. So the client is confused, frustrated, and often will order an 8 x 10 and call it good.

But if you are sitting with them as the images go by, you talk (and laugh) about the images, about the session, about them. You start to get a feel for what images they like (and why), and how they want to use them (cards, wall hanging, etc.).

The first time I used ProSelect (the 30 day free trial) we were showing an image as a 16 x 20 framed print hanging on a wall behind a couch and I asked what size they had originally thought of purchasing and they responded "8x10" so I reduced the image to an 8x10 and they looked at each other with furrowed brows and the wife said "well, that's too small!".

They bought the 16x20 and it also ended up being the single largest print order I have ever made.

One of the (many cool) features is the ability to import a picture of the clients room so they can see their image hanging on their wall.

When I shot the session it was at their home so I grabbed some room/wall images without letting them know what I was up to, it was pretty darn impressive when they saw their family portrait hanging over their own fireplace.

You can read what other photographers have to say about ProSelect here and please check out the feature list here because it is so much more than just presentation software and has so many more features (like how seamlessly it integrates with Photoshop and Lightroom).

Better yet, download a fully functional copy of ProSelect and use it for 30 days.

To make it even easier they have posted about 40 instructional/tutorial videos that will not only show you how to use the software, but also show you how do others are using it in their presentations.

I promise you, using ProSelect is going to make your clients happier and your studio more profitable.

A true win/win.

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