Okay, strap in, cause this is a long blog! But, if you can stick with me, I think you’ll find this blog to be one of the most informative and helpful resources in your arsenal. I have found that so many of the photographers I mentor struggle with finding verbiage that works when clients ask hard questions. It is hard to be kind, authentic, and maintain professional boundaries that protect your personal life, and your sanity! That’s why I’ve compiled this list of questions that clients ask often, and how I answer them.
(Here are a few ground rules for this list: You may not cut and paste these, but you may use them as a springboard to re-write them yourselves. These are to be ideas, not cut and pasted onto your website as a copyright violation. All writing is property of Photography by Galicia. I understand many of these will have similar phrasing, even when re-written, but please be courteous and do the right thing).
Here are the commonly asked questions, and my personal answers.
Can I just have the digitals? Absolutely! The prices for my digital files are included in the al-a-carte list. I really want you to enjoy your images and see them displayed throughout your home or office/dorm room! Oftentimes, I see clients purchase the digitals, and then never print them! This is why I offer heirloom quality products at the forefront, so your images will not be set aside in a drawer.
I don’t want to spend very much on senior pictures. Budgeting is so hard! I understand this can be quite a strain on your finances. Let’s work together to see if we are a good fit. What kind of budget are you working within?
Can I see all the pictures you took? I’m so excited that you want to see all your pictures. However, one thing that I’m really proud of is that I take the time to view all the images that were taken at your session and narrow it down to show you the very best. Was there a particular image that you were thinking of?
Why are the digitals so expensive? I realize that elite portraits are an investment. I pride myself in being a boutique photographer who offers a custom experience for my clients. The digitals are your masterpiece, and an heirloom to cherish for generations to come. I take time to tailor each session to you, and you’re paying for the best!
Can I order online? Option 1: Yes, you are more than welcome to order online. I will upload your gallery and you’ll have one week to place your order. If you need more time, there is a fee associated for accessing that gallery past the one-week period. In addition, the online gallery will be set to retail pricing, which is higher than the premiere pricing that is available today only. Option 2: Currently, I do not offer online galleries. I want my clients to get the ultimate in customer service, so I work with you at the outset to make sure your choices are perfect for your needs.
Can I order at a later date? I understand this is a very big, important (and often overwhelming) decision. I am here every step of the way to help guide your decision, and find what is best for you and your family. However, I only offer the initial, premiere pricing for one night. If finances are a large concern for you, we can discuss the payment plan options that may be available for you.
I can’t afford your packages. Custom portraiture is a large investment. Please make sure we are a good fit before booking with me, by asking about our payment plans and our pricing. You are getting what you pay for, with quality service and elite portraiture.
I’m paying for my own session (not parents) and I can’t afford it – Wow! What a responsible action you are taking. Good for you! Let’s chat to see if we are a good fit for each other. What is your budget?
I didn’t realize how expensive you were. Custom portraits are a true investment. I really want my clients to feel that they are receiving the very best from me. Each session is unique, and thus requires my time my vision and my creativity to make it a one-of-a-kind experience. A lot goes into creating a portrait experience, and I know I’m not for everyone. If our services are too high for you, I hope you can find a great photographer to meet your needs!
Uncle Bob (or my friend) has the nicest camera from Costco! That’s great! When you purchase a custom photo package, you are getting much more than a few snapshots. You are getting the time, experience, and education of a veteran photographer! Do you want to leave your once-in-a-lifetime photoshoot in the hands of an amateur?
Can’t you just tell me the locations you use? I have spent several years honing my craft, and I have several unique locations that bring out your personality! These locations are exclusively known to my clients who have already booked with me. I am more than happy to discuss these with you after your booking!
Am I going to have to wait a long time to get these back? My current turnaround rate is XYZ, but I’m so glad you’re excited to see your images! A lot goes into preparing the gallery for you to see. I take my time and hand-edit each image to make sure it’s the very best and shows your personality and beauty.
Can you do a “mini” session? I don’t need a full session, just a few snapshots- I currently don’t offer a mini session. I realize you only need a few snapshots, but my clients are here for the full experience. I think you’ll love having a variety of images instead of just a few! A full session is the best way for me to ensure a quality shoot that captures your personality.
Wait, your creative (session) fee doesn’t include any prints or digitals?! The session fee is used to reserve your date/your consultation, and session premier appointment. I understand it might be easier for you to see a flat fee, but that wouldn’t help me customize each offering to your individual needs. We have collections of products that will meet any need.
I just don’t know what I’d do with all those pictures. – It may seem like a lot of images, but please know there are lots of options for your gorgeous photos. Plus, your gallery tells a story, your story. You can turn your gallery into an album to showcase them all at once, you can display a collage of them on your walls, and you can create custom photo prints and products for your loved ones.
But why do I have to pay you for her (daughter) to model for you? My senior rep program is not a modeling program. It is an unique way for young women to meet each other, come together in our community, and form lasting, authentic friendships. It is not just about modeling, it is about providing the exclusive senior experience.
It’s hard to justify your prices when I know 2 photographers that only charge $250 for a digital session – Customized portraiture is a large investment, but you’re also receiving my time, expertise, and educational background. This is my livelihood. Remember, if someone is charging much less, the quality is likely not as good as well. Every photographer is different, but when you book with me, you’re truly paying for the best!
I want a huge picture for over the couch! How much for an 8×10?– I’m so excited that you want to hang a huge portrait over your couch, I bet it will look awesome. An 8×10 is what we call a gift print, which would be appropriate for friends and family, but would be quite small over a couch. If you want your portrait to make a statement, I can show you more options when we meet!
Can you hold a date for me, I can pay the session fee next week?– Yay! I’m so excited to work with you. However, the session fee is an important piece used to reserve the date when processed. I have many people asking for dates around that time, and it would be unfair to hold a a time without guaranteeing the spot. Can I process your session fee on a credit card instead?
What is required to book a session? A session fee is required to book your session with me. The session fee is XYZ amount. I can accept cash, check, and credit cards at this time.
Are you willing to travel and if so, how far? Option 1: Yes, I’m willing to travel. What did you have in mind? I typically charge a travel fee of XYZ, which covers XYZ. Option 2: I currently do not offer traveling right now, but am open to hearing your idea.
Do you offer payment plans? Option 1: Yes, I do offer payment plans. I require a 50% deposit and the remaining balance due within two weeks. However, if you need something different, please let me know. I do have a $50 handling fee to set up a payment plan. Option 2: We offer customized portraiture, and each session is tailored to the client. Because of our unique work and style, we do not offer a payment plan at this time.
Can I have a refund? I currently do not offer refunds because of the unique nature and custom artwork of my services.
I am scared my photos will look the same as So and So’s senior photos! This is a common concern, but I plan every senior shoot individually to ensure that each one is unique. Because every client is different, I try to incorporate their personality and desires, which means none of them look identical!
Share with me in the comments any ones you had and how you addressed them. The more we know, the more empowered as a business owner we will be.