Episode 29 – The …a Man to Fish… Photography Business Podcast – Salesographer w/ Spencer Boerup

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If you’re a long-time, back-in-the-day listener of the podcast you remember Spencer from episode 8.  Spencer has a new sales product out that I think every photographer could benefit from, so he’s joining the podcast today to talk about how important the sales process is and how to implement his simple strategy for closing $2K+ portrait sales every time.

I respect my audience, and I appreciate everyone who logs it to read an article or check out a podcast.  So I’ve strictly avoided the hundreds of affiliate links to various products and requests for sponsorship and endorsements.  I’m not going to post about anything unless I completely believe that it is a benefit to you and not just a simple benefit, but something that will make a tangible difference in your business.

Spencer has been to my workshop.  That means I’ve seen Spencer’s actual numbers and I can completely attest to the fact that his portrait sales are consistent and impressive.  I love whenever someone can break down an esoteric, emotional process into a repeatable structure and Spencer has done that with the sales process.  You can’t be a professional and avoid sales and this product will help take the stress out of selling and actually make your clients happier with the end result of working with you.

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Who wants to shop at JC Penney?

Check out this coverage of the JC Penney financial situation by Planet Money – listen to the story HERE.

This isn’t a post about retail shopping, it is a post about discounts and identity.

Everyone knows that JC Penney is circling the drain.  Profits are down and they have a revolving door of CEO’s, none of whom are able to change the downward trend.  First they tried to get rid of discounts.  The problem with that was that their entire value proposition was built on discounts.  Their client base has been trained to look for advertised discounts. When they took the discounts away (even if the standard price was lower than the discount price) the loyal clients stayed away. They also couldn’t bring in a new clientele no matter how upscale they went with their rebranding and store design because they were known as a discount store.  Then they tried to redesign the stores to be more cosmopolitan and upscale, with nice seating areas and classier displays.  That just served to keep the core clients away without drawing in a new crop of customers.

So what can we learn from this with respect to discounts and identity?

I’m not saying that discounting doesn’t work.  With respect to photography something selling weddings you might see slight bumps by throwing a discount here and there because the clients are largely one-time purchasers.  But if you’re trying to attract loyal, repeat customers then a discount doesn’t tell people that you’re a great deal now, it just tells them that your full price is inflated.  It tells the market that the time to buy is when the discount is on.  Now if you’re a wedding photographer that works with chains of friends or gets a significant number of referrals from coordinators the discount method may be something you need to keep up – after all you conditioned them to buy only when the discount was available.  When your company’s value proposition is the discount you can’t get rid of it.

Bottom line is that discounts work in certain situations, but it is hard to develop a different value proposition once you lead with “now its cheaper!” – you just don’t have anywhere else to go.

The second thing to learn is that reinvention is hard, particularly on an identity basis.  Your business has an identity, and it caters to a specific identity.  It means something to work with your company (well, it should mean something if it doesn’t already).  You get to feel like a certain type of person by virtue of where you shop.  That is VERY difficult to change once established.  You can put a different filter on your images, you can try a different posing or shooting technique, but your business identity ought to stay relatively constant.  Changing that identity is incredibly difficult because it means throwing out the people who already believe in you and trying to convince a whole new set of people of your value.  If you don’t know what identity you’re perfect for now then the market is deciding it for you, which is a terrifying proposition.

– trr

 

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Let me do my thing

So often we get frustrated by the client.  We just want them to leave us alone and let us do our thing.

Why?  The client is hiring you because of their thing.  Why should they trust you to do your thing?  Why should your thing matter more than their thing?  Why shouldn’t they have some input?

If you want to do your thing the client will let you IF and ONLY if you satisfy this:

  1. We have to understand what your thing is
  2. We understand what the benefit is to us
  3. We have to understand how you do your thing
  4. We know why we should trust you to do your thing

If you take care of those things the client that will trust you to do that thing can find you and trust you.  You want to be left to do your thing in the moment?  Then you’ve got to do the work in communicating your thing on the upfront.

Are you communicating those 4 things now?

– trr

Listen to this week’s podcast – GET YOUR SH!T STRAIGHT

 

 

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Episode 28 – The …a Man to Fish… Photography Business Podcast – Get your sh!t straight

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Neal Carpenter took me at my word.  I’ve posted on this blog, on Twitter and Facebook that I’m always interested in topic and guest suggestions for the podcast.  So last week Neal asked me a question on Twitter and today he’s on the podcast talking about the apprenticeship model and how photographers ought to build their businesses.  Also joining this episode is Heather Cook – Heather is a part of the Middle Georgia Photographer’s Group along with Neal that is putting on the “GET YOUR SHIT STRAIGHT” photo conference that I’ll be speaking at this July24-25.  You probably ought to travel down to Macon, Georgia this July and meet us all.

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If you like the podcast and would like to see it continue please share it out everywhere that you can and join our subscription list for updates on future episodes as well as exclusive podcast content.

We helped Heather change her business to better meet her needs and dramatically raise her prices.  If you’d like the same change for your own business check out the SEXY BUSINESS Workshop – now available Live and in your home through Google+

 

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No one buys because of price

No one got up today with a certain amount of money burning a hole in their pocket.  No one has a sum of money that they need to get rid of.  So price is not the primary factor that motivates purchases.  We only buy things that we decide we want – things that will make us feel good.  Then we evaluate the prices of the things that will give us that feeling and weigh the cost against how well we believe that product or service will execute on the feeling we want.

Stop thinking about price, think about how to make it clear what your product executes on and how it is going to make them feel. What will be true about your clients by virtue of working with you or owning your product?  If clients aren’t buying it isn’t the price .

– trr

 

 Have you checked out this week’s podcast with [b]ecker yet – worth a listen…

 

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