Potential New Client Wants a Discount…. Should I?

Today’s scenario involves a client hoping for a last minute newborn session, which the photographer happens to be able to accommodate on less than a day’s notice. BUT…. the client then wants More »

The Model Call – A “Bait and Switch” Tactic?

A lot of questions about model calls have been coming my way, asking what they are, what you give the models, and how you handle the process… while these have been geared More »

How Do I Set My Prices?

“How do I price my prints?” and “How do I price digital files?” are two big questions from anyone new to the photography business. Let me tell you the wrong way: For More »

Client Keeps Forgetting to Pay

Here’s a situation involving payment plans: the client buys a ‘package’ of sessions but can break the payment out into two parts to make it more affordable. Package sessions are great for More »

Affordable Photography and Being Too Busy

Today’s post is a long one, but it’s an issue most photographers that are successful (or are becoming successful) struggle with at one time or another. As artists, we tend to under More »

 

Client Insists: No Payment till Images Seen

Dear Stefanie Shutters

How do you handle it when a potential customer doesn’t want to pay upfront for the portrait session?  It’s really three sessions and includes 2 adults, 5 kids and three babies.  I told him my price and he said “That’s not right!” He insisted that no one charges before the service is done.

My studio requires payment up front. We have a no refunds policy, but we do reshoot. I’ve been in business more than ten years. It’s always worked for my clients and my business.

But he wants me to do the job and if he doesn’t like it, he wants a full refund. He doesn’t care that I’ll be out the time for the session, the editing, the cost of printing my proofs – if he doesn’t like the end results he wants his money back.

I told him “that’s now how we work, I’m sorry.”  Am I wrong here?

~Second Guessing Myself

 

A Friend of a Friend = a Discount?

Dear Stefanie Shutters,

I gave a discounted maternity and newborn session package set to a good friend’s friend. They loved their maternity session, and I had 39 images to show in their gallery. The maternity session package comes with 15-20 images.  The client chose 23 images and when I told her it was $25 for each additional image above the 20 she freaked out at me and said that they would cancel the newborn session with me unless I send her the extra three for free too.  Her logic was that “it’s not too expensive to just send them the extras” and they shouldn’t have to pay because they’re not printed.

My husband says to just give them what they want. It’s a tiny thing on our end to make them happy and willing to come back for the newborn session. We need the money. What do I do?

~ Floored

Friends and Money

Dear Stefanie Shutters,

I did a newborn session for a good friend of mine and she didn’t have the money to pay me at the time. So I agreed to do the session and she’d pay me the week after one she got paid.  The session went well, I have great images, and started editing already too.

This morning she messaged me asking to pay a little bit each week and I’m so annoyed I don’t even know how to reply to her now.  I have been counting on having that money paid tomorrow and now it’s not happening. I don’t know what to do now, and I just feel like she is taking advantage of our friendship.

~I knew I shouldn’t have Done It

‘Cause “Everyone Else” is Doing It

Dear Stefanie Shutters,

I’m really struggling to get clients. Everyone in my area includes the digital downloads. EVERYONE. I don’t want to do it, but I feel like if I don’t I’ll lose business to those that do. I also feel like I have to decrease my prices so that I am competitive with those who give digital since I don’t. Help!

~Needs business but has standards

What Comes First? The Client’s Photos or your Family?

It’s tough being a small business owner. It’s really tough when you’re a business of one.  And sometimes life throws something big at you and there’s no one else on the staff of “me, myself, and I” to cover for you while you manage it.  Like this situation, sent in by a photographer who’s just learned that her beloved grandmother has died, sometimes the business side of our lives gets derailed by the personal. And then we have to decide what’s more important.  Read on…