By Amy Phipps on | No Comments
When getting an inquiry from a client, I like to be as organized as I can be. Most of the time, an inquiry wants to know about pricing. I have my photography session fee listed on my website but that is the only pricing I have listed. I do this because I want clients to contact me.
This opens the door of communication. I do NOT want them looking at pricing and then talking themselves out of booking a session. I want them to email or call me so that I can start a conversation with them. By doing that, they get more excited at the thought of investing in a session.
It’s my job to use that first interaction to sell myself and my business. This is when I send them my pricing information. They get emailed a pdf file that has my photo packages and a la carte pricing for all of the products I sell.
Once they book a session, I email them my Welcome Guide. My welcome packet has everything in it that they need to know in order to have a successful experience with me.
By having a Welcome Guide, it cuts down on the amount of emails you get from clients asking questions because answers to most of their questions will already be in your Welcome Guide!
My Welcome Guide has several pages that include all of the information I want to give my clients. You can decide how to do your own welcome packet by creating the layout yourself or alternatively, purchasing a template from a vendor that provides them.
Think of your introduction as a way for your client to get to know just a little bit more about YOU before your session. I use this space to tell them a little bit about my family and things I love. And make sure to include a picture of yourself!
What clients should wear to a photo session is probably the one thing clients consistently struggle with! So do your homework and learn how to style people! I personally wear black shirts, jeans and flip flops year round. I don’t look like I can style someone, but I can! If you give me a senior’s closet, I can pull 3-4 outfits together in 10 minutes!
I have a list of what clients should do and should not do before a session. For example: Don’t have chipped nail polish - either have a fresh coat of polish on or take it all off. Don’t wear a bright pink bra, a nude color bra is best. If you need a haircut, do it a week before your session. These are all important things that a lot of people may not think about.
You probably emailed your pricing already, but as a reminder, it should also be included in your Welcome Guide. You don’t need to list your session fee, but do include your package pricing and a la carte pricing, with images as well.
Many times, clients just have no idea what happens after a photo or portrait session. They need to know if it will take one week, two weeks or a month before they get to see their images. Let them know what to expect and when to expect it.
Walk them through the steps of what to expect for ordering so that when the time comes, they are prepared. For example, I specify that at the time of our in person ordering session, all paying parties need to be present.
My time is valuable and I don’t want to do one evening of them looking at photos, another evening so Dad can see them and then a final ordering session so Grandma can pick out what she wants. This is all spelled out in my Guide so that parents know exactly what to expect. If you use an online gallery, make sure to include the details on that.
These are great to include because clients like feeling reassured by reading reviews from others that have used your services. It makes them feel comfortable with their choice of hiring you as their photographer!
A Welcome Guide is boring without pictures! Without pictures it becomes just a bunch of words with nothing beautiful to attach it to. So show your best images. I have two guides, one for seniors and one for families. These two types of sessions require different pictures, as well as different ideas on what to wear and how to get ready.
Many of my clients will let me know which photos of mine they have been drawn to, which helps me know the location and feel they want for their photos. Having pictures in your Welcome Guide with some of your most popular photoshoot locations will help clients that are not sure what kind of location they are searching for.
Colors, word choice, best photos, all of it should be branded with your company. Your logo should be in there. If you purchased a welcome packet template that already has the content written for you, go through it and change it to give it your voice. If you’re fun and lively, speak with that voice in your guide!
Do you have any questions or comments about Welcome Guides? Leave us a comment below - we would LOVE to hear from you! And PLEASE SHARE our tutorial using the social sharing buttons (we really appreciate it)!
Amy Phipps is the photographer behind On the Phippside Photography, located in Stockton, California. Amy has been married for 21 years and has 4 children. When she’s not trying to decide between which of her 43 black shirts to wear, you can probably find her sipping on a Dr. Pepper and walking around any day of the year in flip flops.