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Thread: Pricing!? Digital files? Social media files? Prints?

  1. #1
    speedneeder's Avatar
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    Pricing!? Digital files? Social media files? Prints?

    Hello all,
    I just started offering some photography services via a website, Facebook page, and myself talking to people.
    I would like to get some opinions on what products I should offer and what I should charge. Yes, I talk to each of my customers about this too, and I will sell them whatever they want to pay for, but I have to have some sort of list of regular stuff to sell just so they know what I'm selling, right?
    As far as products go, I am a little conflicted on this. I mean, I could offer a list of 1000 different ways to buy a photo - different sizes, ready to hang, on a mug, etc. But is that what people really want? I don't know if people want 1000 options. Right now I am offering prints and ready to hang stuff. I was offering digital files too, but my first customer said, why would you sell those??? So, I don't know. Obviously these days if someone buys photos (prints or not) they want to also publish them on a social media. So, do you offer full res digital files, and if you do, what do you charge for them compared to prints? I was basically thinking to charge 20% more than I would for an 8x10 print. Is this enough? Too much? I really don't know. If someone buys an 8x10, do you just give them the 'social media' file with it? What is a social media file, 1024 pixels? You could probably make a decent 5x7 from that many pixels, so if you gave that away, you probably wouldn't sell any more of that photo!

    Possibly relevant to your opinions: I have a good job now that pays pretty good and has pretty good health insurance. This is a side business for me. I'm not trying to pay my mortgage with it, but I do want to make a some money doing it, or it's not worth my time. I'm not interesting in doing some senior photos for someone and making $20! $200 would be cool though. Wouldn't take too many of those to buy another flash or upgrade a lens

    Sorry to ramble, I'm new to this and looking for advice (here and elsewhere).
    Thanks

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    Re: Pricing!? Digital files? Social media files? Prints?

    Bloody good question Brian, i look forward to seeing what the pros put up here, i recently was asked to exhibit some of my stuff and sold a couple of prints 1 A1 size, 1 A3 and a small canvas all of which i sold at cost +120% the customers seemed happy but it seemed a lot to me! Wouldn't have a clue to price anything else at the moment.

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    Re: Pricing!? Digital files? Social media files? Prints?

    Hi Mark,
    Right now my pricing strategy is to make it worth my time, nothing more. I do need a few more photos in my portfolio though!
    For example, a 4x6 print, which I think you would call an ?a6?, I either charge $2 or $5 for. Either way that's a lot more than 120%. My wife told me one day, $5 is a lot isn't it, when a print costs $0.25 at Walmart? And I told her not if you consider that I have at least two hours of my time tied up in anything I have posted online (granted this would be a group of photos, not a single photo) - travel, process, posting - plus the cost of my web site, oh and the 1000's of dollars in equipment I used doing it! So to me a $5 print seems cheap. $7 for a 5x7 and $9 for an 8x10 by the way. I did have an $11 price on digitals before I took those off, though I might put that back up depending on the feedback I get from people. I'm also toying with a different price structure for specific types of photos (composite images, etc).

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    Mark von Kanel's Avatar
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    Re: Pricing!? Digital files? Social media files? Prints?

    /yes Brian you are quite correct for smaller one off prints the margin needs to be higher but if you consider that the A1 print cost £30 to print and £45 to mount that made the selling price for me to be £165 and then the gallery put a further 30% on making the total cost £210!!! now thats a lot of money and i would not have paid it.

    i was told by a "pro" that this was a rule of thumb but in my opinion theres no such thing!! i think the price list with a 1000 options may be the way we go!!! I'm going on a studio operation course when i get off this tour ill let you know what they advise regarding pricing, but instead of selling the digital file for the mug, why not sell them the mug?

    this could end up being a good thread for us impoverished photographers to learn how to earn a crust out of our hobby. its a good job i don't have to earn a living doing this... id starve

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    speedneeder's Avatar
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    Re: Pricing!? Digital files? Social media files? Prints?

    Is that crickets I hear?

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    Re: Pricing!? Digital files? Social media files? Prints?

    Hi Brian!

    The folks I know that sell photos (well portraits anyway) offer different “packages”. So many of so many sizes. Also they will charge for the sitting, payable up front, or at least a nice deposit, so if they are a no-show at the scheduled time of shooting the photographer gets something for their time.

    They offer “a la carte” pricing as well as the packages. So if the Client comes back and wants a couple more 8x10’s for Grandma, they are available. As the packages get larger, they are typically further discounted.

    I have known of different strategies of presenting the finished product. The shots go on your website in a password protected gallery (you give the client the password) so that they are only visible to the Client. Some only leave them up for a limited time (say 30 days), which gives the Client time to purchase but they can’t take forever to do so. After that the photographer may keep them up further for an additional charge.

    One photographer I know charges 4x’s her cost for prints plus the sitting fee.

    A couple I know will offer the digital files only if packages are purchased. This may include resized low-res files for web use as well. Most I know will not offer digital files only unless they are paid exorbitant prices for them. This knocks them out of the print potential and makes sense.

    Another I know will offer packages only. After about 4-6 months or so when the Client has ordered all the prints they are going to, he will place a follow-up call to them and offer those digital files at a discounted rate. This makes sense to me. It is a strategy to get the last little bit of possible sales down the line when you are sure the print potential has played out.

    As far as products, greeting cards seem popular. Especially around the Holidays folks want to send their holiday cards with their families on them. Some photographers I know have designed their own line and will put custom text on them if desired.

    All I have time for now, Brian, but at least it ain’t crickets!

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    Re: Pricing!? Digital files? Social media files? Prints?

    sorry brian your humour is lost on me, What do you mean by "is that crickets i hear"?

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    Re: Pricing!? Digital files? Social media files? Prints?

    Way to go, Brian!
    Mark, that would be a reference to silence...The sounds of crickets chirping is often used in North American advertising, TV shows, etc to indicate no one is responding.

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    Re: Pricing!? Digital files? Social media files? Prints?

    Terry, thank you for your input. I think the package idea is a good one. I know smugmug supports that and I need to figure it out.
    Myra, thank you for your encouragement.
    Right now I think I would like to include digital files, but I'm not sure about the originals? Does it really matter? It's not like I'm a famous photog or anything??? I like the idea of web ready files, just for people to post and when their friends ask, hey, where did you get that awesome photo of your kid? I might get a reference or two that way. That said, I was talking to my wife about this and saying 1 MP photos and what not, and the blank look on her face told me all I needed to know. I think most people don't really understand what all that means!? So, does it really matter if I offer the little files or the big files? I mean I could market them as 'web ready' or whatever, and that might appeal to some? Or are most people really interested in getting the full res files? Smugmug won't let me combine the two, so each one would have to be a separate charge. I could sell the little files and if someone wants a big print, they could still order it from my website, but is that double dipping? Gouging?
    I've started to shift gears on my sports photo pricing. For now I'm going to require a $50 down payment, which I think I will make 100% applicable toward any subsequent orders, so at least once I get them interested, I can at least count on selling $50 worth of stuff. I also think I will start selling gallery downloads too, but I still haven't figure out how much digital files should be worth! I am also working on 'premier' photo pricing, for specialty things like composite photos, haven't figured that one out yet.

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    Re: Pricing!? Digital files? Social media files? Prints?

    Quote Originally Posted by speedneeder View Post
    Hello all,
    I just started offering some photography services via a website, Facebook page, and myself talking to people.
    I would like to get some opinions on what products I should offer and what I should charge. Yes, I talk to each of my customers about this too, and I will sell them whatever they want to pay for, but I have to have some sort of list of regular stuff to sell just so they know what I'm selling, right?
    As far as products go, I am a little conflicted on this. I mean, I could offer a list of 1000 different ways to buy a photo - different sizes, ready to hang, on a mug, etc. But is that what people really want? I don't know if people want 1000 options. Right now I am offering prints and ready to hang stuff. I was offering digital files too, but my first customer said, why would you sell those??? So, I don't know. Obviously these days if someone buys photos (prints or not) they want to also publish them on a social media. So, do you offer full res digital files, and if you do, what do you charge for them compared to prints? I was basically thinking to charge 20% more than I would for an 8x10 print. Is this enough? Too much? I really don't know. If someone buys an 8x10, do you just give them the 'social media' file with it? What is a social media file, 1024 pixels? You could probably make a decent 5x7 from that many pixels, so if you gave that away, you probably wouldn't sell any more of that photo!

    Possibly relevant to your opinions: I have a good job now that pays pretty good and has pretty good health insurance. This is a side business for me. I'm not trying to pay my mortgage with it, but I do want to make a some money doing it, or it's not worth my time. I'm not interesting in doing some senior photos for someone and making $20! $200 would be cool though. Wouldn't take too many of those to buy another flash or upgrade a lens

    Sorry to ramble, I'm new to this and looking for advice (here and elsewhere).
    Thanks
    It occurs to me that you have put the cart before the horse: You have already started the business, without first Defining the Business.

    What I am getting at is: Your business is already up and running and you are selling yourself as a Photographer of Children specializing in Sports and Portraits. But whilst you have already started the journey you are plotting the course as you go. In other words you don’t have a plan for the journey, yet you’ve already left home.

    What is most likely to happen is: a new adaptation will be made as each new situation presents itself; which is OK all business do that.

    BUT the judgements (i.e. the business decisions) on each of those adaptations will be based upon what will be the best outcome for that specific matter – with little or NO relevance to the overall business: because you never stopped to define the business in the first place.
    And the Original Post on this thread is precisely asking for advice on business decisions to make an undefined adaption with no relevance to the Definition of the Business.

    And so you run the risk of the business becoming an unwieldy modification upon each adaptation.
    Or - if you like to continue the “journey” metaphor – you will likely just wander around and see various sights but never have a planned route to follow with defined destinations and a time line.


    So, as to advice - the first step is that you need to choose between a planned journey with defined goals and a timeline – or a casual tour and a “let’s see what happens” approach, and therefore the first question to answer is -

    Which is it?


    WW

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    Re: Pricing!? Digital files? Social media files? Prints?

    Hi Brian,

    Not a lot of time right now, so more later, but ...

    At a MINIMUM, I'd suggest a reasonably tight correlation between what you charge and the time it takes for you to produce the product. If someone commissions you to take photos of Joan and Fred - and it takes you 3 hours of shooting - 1/2 hour of driving - 2 hours of post production - then you really want to have something that reflects 5 1/2 hours work. Getting paid $50 for 5 1/2 hours work (as an example) feels good to start with ("hey, I'm a professional photographer - I'm getting paid for what I love - how cool is that!") is great to start with, but at some point you'll realise that time is the most precious commodity - and within 6 to 12 months you'll start to feel "the pressure" - the pressure of "doing all that work for a measly $50" - the pressure of "other things I really should be doing with that time" (family, home maintenance etc). And the net result can well be (bit how I'm feeling at the moment to be honest) "burned out and somewhat apathetic towards shooting". So my advice is to remember that there are ALWAYS costs that YOU have to pay - some are monetary (car, gear etc) some are intangible (time etc) - but the bottom line is that if the customer doesn't compensate you enough for these then it's YOU that "picks up the difference" ... and the net result is that you "run at a loss" (not just financially).

    On a (not too distant side note) be aware also that when you only charge a few dollars then there is very much a perception that quality wise, "that's what the job is worth". I've probably produced 20 or so canvas prints for the parents of kids friends parents -- mostly as a surprise - stuff that would cost them several hundreds of dollars if they'd been paying for it. Some are genuinely very appreciative - most are "politely appreciative" - and one was even confrontational. Personally I think it's "photographer paranoia" gone mad, but regardless, that's how they're feeling (and I might add that I've just about had enough of it). Bottom line is that they will value a $500 canvas print a lot more than a $50 canvas print: Correction - They'll value a canvas print that they've paid $500 for more than they will a canvas print they've paid $50 for. By charging too little you end up selling a portion of your soul to produce it -- and in turn -- they get something that they don't really appreciate or value (despite the "polite formalities") We initially see ourselves as the "heros", but end up feeling like the "zeros". We see it as "a $500 print for $50". They see it as "a $50 print" (because that's what it cost). Keep in mind that they know nothing of cameras - equipment - lighting - post-processing - skill etc that it took to produce it).

    Bottom line? If you don't charge enough (assuming you produce a quality product) then it'll end up "dragging" your finances, confidence, and self-esteem down -- AND -- they won't appreciate the true value of your creation. So it's a lose/lose.

    Sorry to rant on -- just thought that there's a strong message in there. Bill - I'd be interested in your take on my views as well.

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    speedneeder's Avatar
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    Re: Pricing!? Digital files? Social media files? Prints?

    Hi Bill,
    I don't think I'm really wandering per se, still figuring things out sure. Per Colin's idea, what I'm trying to do is put myself in a position to make a certain hourly rate. So, you could say my business model right now is take photos of sports and families and make $X/hour. My thinking is that if I wait until I have EVERYTHING figured out, I'll never do it, so I took a plunge, and so far I'm having fun with it! Thank you for your input, you make some good points, but I don't really feel like I'm wandering too much, I do have specific ideas about what I want to do and what I want to make doing it. I also have specific ideas about how often I want to do it! This is a side business for me, that is all.

    Colin,
    I understand totally what you are saying about value. I have large canvas options for sale on my web site too for some pretty good money. I don't know if I'll ever sell one though! I agree totally with your thoughts on getting paid for my time and that is exactly what I'm trying to do. Right now it's fun to do and I'm not trying to make too much doing it. I expect that over time I will get more interest and I will raise my rates to avoid getting too busy with this, or maybe I will lose interest in doing it myself, who knows?
    Maybe I'm not charging enough? I really don't know. I made a print for a friend recently, and the local lab was having a special for 11x14" at only $3, so what the heck! I asked my friend, what would this be worth to you? $15 she said. I was like wow, if that's all people will pay for this, I won't be making any more! I then explained to her that first I had to capture two great images to put together, then on top of the time and effort to do that, I spend about another hour putting the two together, and that I thought my time was worth at least $25, so to me, that print, sold as a one of kind, would be worth $100 as far as I was concerned. Now if I could sell 4 of them that would be different, but there isn't that big of a market for photos of a particular kid! That's why I'm working on some package pricing too, that makes sense to me. Also, I don't expect that if people give me $50 down payment, that is all they will spend. For some it may be, but at least I won't be preparing 20 photos for proofing only to sell one for 4x6 for $5.
    So, are you telling me you don't think I'm charging enough? I know there are people out there that will pay for quality photos, but it's hard to find them and get them looking at my products and talents.

    I do want to be paid for my time, talent, vision, people skill, camera skill, and processing skill. That's why I started this thread. I'm trying to figure out to offer what people want at a price that makes it worthwhile to me.

    Thanks

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    Re: Pricing!? Digital files? Social media files? Prints?

    Brian, I don't know if this will help, but since you and I seem to have started down this path at the same time this is what I've done so far.

    1. Registered as a business

    2. Established a selling site: baymare.zoomphoto.ca (They print and ship. I am planning to go "self fullfillment" soon so I can have my printing done locally at an independently owned photo business that creates excellent prints. I will also have to take the time to pack and ship the photos, but I don't mind as this gives me the chance to include a note, an extra photo etc.)

    3. I want to focus on sports/event photography but will do, if asked, family portraiture. I have two sets of prices on that site. The sports photos are candids...not as much processing...I'd like buyers to purchase more than one at a time. So, a 5x7 is $4 On the other hand, if I have to spend my time fussing over a portrait, a 5x7 is $12. (The largest I have listed for portraits is a 16x20 for $50) My portrait prices take into account the simplicity of what I can do: on location, natural/available light.

    4. I made up a simple business card that I print in black and white on my home printer. It lists the zoomphoto site (for buying), my flickr site (for browsing - so potential customers can see what my photos are like) and my email for contact purposes.

    5. I also have a facebook site. I am using that site to showcase a few photos with links to the buying site.

    6. To find photo opportunities, I have been networking wth local coaches and horse show organizers to request permission to shoot during their events and then post the photos for sale. In return, I give them some photos (with a signature) that they can use in their programs etc.

    7. When someone asks me to do some photos for them (family), if I know them they usually pay me more than I would ask <LOL> I have had payment in gas cards and food on a couple of occassions. That is fine with me

    8. At the end of the summer, I'll take a look at how things are going. If they are going well and I am satisfied that my product is on par with what is being offered by others, I will increase my prices before the fall/winter sports season starts. If I put the prices up too much, I will price myself out of all sales as about 3/4 of the parents/spectators seem to have their own digital cameras and are not too interested in buying photos from other sources.

    9. Brian, you are ahead of me here, as I don't have a portfolio. That is something I will consider in the future. Right now, most people see my photos online, and I am not competing for any jobs that might require me to present my work in print.

    Will this work for me? Time will tell. If things go as planned, I will retire within five years from teaching. My plan is to gain enough experience in the next few years to establish a small studio at that time and to continue doing on location shoots. I can see the sports element fading as I grow older (and slower) so the plan is to learn more about formal portrait work, lighting and post processing. I will also, at some point, look into having someone design a website for me so I will not have to go through another company for orders and sales.

    If it appears, within the next year, that I am wasting my time trying to turn a profit in this area with photography, well... nothing ventured; nothing gained.


    William and Colin, I'd love to know how you both got started and what advice you would offer those of us who are just starting out. Colin, you've obviously made sound business decisions as evidenced by your work and success. William, you seem to have a good knowledge of business practice in general. Both of you have offered insightful responses to Brian's questions. It would be wonderful to hear more on the subject from both of you.

  14. #14

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    Re: Pricing!? Digital files? Social media files? Prints?

    Brian, I don't know if this will help, but since you and I seem to have started down this path at the same time this is what I've done so far.

    1. Registered as a business

    2. Established a selling site: baymare.zoomphoto.ca (They print and ship. I am planning to go "self fullfillment" soon so I can have my printing done locally at an independently owned photo business that creates excellent prints. I will also have to take the time to pack and ship the photos, but I don't mind as this gives me the chance to include a note, an extra photo etc.)

    3. I want to focus on sports/event photography but will do, if asked, family portraiture. I have two sets of prices on that site. The sports photos are candids...not as much processing...I'd like buyers to purchase more than one at a time. So, a 5x7 is $4 On the other hand, if I have to spend my time fussing over a portrait, a 5x7 is $12. (The largest I have listed for portraits is a 16x20 for $50) My portrait prices take into account the simplicity of what I can do: on location, natural/available light.

    4. I made up a simple business card that I print in black and white on my home printer. It lists the zoomphoto site (for buying), my flickr site (for browsing - so potential customers can see what my photos are like) and my email for contact purposes.

    5. I also have a facebook site. I am using that site to showcase a few photos with links to the buying site.

    6. To find photo opportunities, I have been networking wth local coaches and horse show organizers to request permission to shoot during their events and then post the photos for sale. In return, I give them some photos (with a signature) that they can use in their programs etc.

    7. When someone asks me to do some photos for them (family), if I know them they usually pay me more than I would ask <LOL> I have had payment in gas cards and food on a couple of occassions. That is fine with me

    8. At the end of the summer, I'll take a look at how things are going. If they are going well and I am satisfied that my product is on par with what is being offered by others, I will increase my prices before the fall/winter sports season starts. If I put the prices up too much, I will price myself out of all sales as about 3/4 of the parents/spectators seem to have their own digital cameras and are not too interested in buying photos from other sources.

    9. Brian, you are ahead of me here, as I don't have a portfolio. That is something I will consider in the future. Right now, most people see my photos online, and I am not competing for any jobs that might require me to present my work in print.

    Will this work for me? Time will tell. If things go as planned, I will retire within five years from teaching. My plan is to gain enough experience in the next few years to establish a small studio at that time and to continue doing on location shoots. I can see the sports element fading as I grow older (and slower) so the plan is to learn more about formal portrait work, lighting and post processing. I will also, at some point, look into having someone design a website for me so I will not have to go through another company for orders and sales.

    If it appears, within the next year, that I am wasting my time trying to turn a profit in this area with photography, well... nothing ventured; nothing gained.


    William and Colin, I'd love to know how you both got started and what advice you would offer those of us who are just starting out. Colin, you've obviously made sound business decisions as evidenced by your work and success. William, you seem to have a good knowledge of business practice in general. Both of you have offered insightful responses to Brian's questions. It would be wonderful to hear more on the subject from both of you.

  15. #15
    William W's Avatar
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    Re: Pricing!? Digital files? Social media files? Prints?

    Quote Originally Posted by speedneeder View Post
    I don't think I'm really wandering per se, still figuring things out sure. Per Colin's idea, what I'm trying to do is put myself in a position to make a certain hourly rate. So, you could say my business model right now is take photos of sports and families and make $X/hour. My thinking is that if I wait until I have EVERYTHING figured out, I'll never do it, so I took a plunge, and so far I'm having fun with it! Thank you for your input, you make some good points, but I don't really feel like I'm wandering too much, I do have specific ideas about what I want to do and what I want to make doing it. I also have specific ideas about how often I want to do it! This is a side business for me, that is all.
    Nope.

    I fear I have NOT expressed myself in a manner which has conveyed the exact meaning to you.

    I made no mention of you wandering in your business - that was a metaphor to a journey or a vacation.
    Moreover I made no mention that wandering was bad or wrong.
    It occurs to me that you are slightly defensive. I understand that.
    But emotion elicits emotional responses - and not a business response.

    Correct words and their meanings are very important.

    I mentioned figuring things out.
    I mentioned that figuring things out is necessary.

    I gave two examples of the how things might be figured out:

    VERY SPECIFICALLY one method was predicted upon fixing each issue in relation to that issue and the other was fixing each issue in relation to the definition of the business, I did NOT mention a Business Model.

    I did not suggest that you need to figure everything out before you get started.

    I am glad that you have the specific ideas and I hope you will achieve all of them.

    You have thanked me for the input above and re-stated that you are not wandering . . . Do you wish me to continue any commentary with you? I don't mind either way, BUT the last thing I want is for you to get upset - because if you are upset, you will likely make poor business decisions.

    Also you could show me that I am in absolute error with both these posts and supply me with your Definition of the Business, which you wrote before building the Business Model, before figuring out the rate of pay you wanted; and before opening up the Website and Facebook Page.

    If I am in error and you did make a precise and concise Definition of the Business - I would be just as happy to know.

    Sincerely wishing you the best success.

    WW

  16. #16
    William W's Avatar
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    Re: Pricing!? Digital files? Social media files? Prints?

    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Southern View Post
    Bill - I'd be interested in your take on my views as well.
    Sure.
    Basically you made two points:

    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Southern View Post
    At a MINIMUM, I'd suggest a reasonably tight correlation between what you charge and the time it takes for you to produce the product. Etc . . .
    This is a comment on general pricing.
    I agree that this is a good base pricing model for most businesses.
    This model if used for a full time business, then there will be an 80/20
    80% of items and services will follow this pricing model and 20% will not.
    (Not even going to venture into the how, what and why – it would cost too much of my time so to do).


    I agree that it is NOT ONLY a $ value which needs to be attached to the time FOR EACH JOB, but also a value of “what else could /would I be doing.” This point is very important for a Part Time & SECOND BUSINESS.

    Brian has implied that in part of the Definition of the Business, there would be a sentence something like:

    “The Business will be a part time venture and will occupy on average no more than x hours per week of my time and will not be active on days which are specified: My Birthday, Our Wedding Anniversary; Christmas Day: and the allocation of my time and exception days will be reviewed if necessary and as a result of that review any appropriate systemic changes will be made in the Business Model

    So I think when it comes to PRICING, Brian should refer to his Definition of the Business – specifically the sentence defining the hours of work and then he would take into account the value of “x hours” and also the value of working more than “x hours” in the weeks he will need to do that, to make “x hours” an average.

    (That was all an hint)

    ***

    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Southern View Post
    Bottom line? If you don't charge enough (assuming you produce a quality product) then it'll end up "dragging" your finances, confidence, and self-esteem down -- AND -- they won't appreciate the true value of your creation. So it's a lose/lose
    .

    Yes.

    Pro Bono work is the most definitive realization of what the “customer” sees and what they value it at.

    Give them an Invoice notating the FULL PRICE and get a rubber stamp made:

    “With Compliments – Account PAID in FULL”

    WW

  17. #17
    Administrator Manfred M's Avatar
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    Re: Pricing!? Digital files? Social media files? Prints?

    Three simple rules put to me by a senior vice-president of an internationally known consumer goods company:

    1. If the items are flying off the shelf so quickly that you can't keep them in stock, you are likely charging too little for them;

    2. If the items are sitting on the shelf and not selling, you are likely charging too much for them; and

    3. There is no link between your production costs and what a customer is willing to pay you.

    I'm not sure if this helps at all, but over the years I have found that all three statements are 100% correct...

  18. #18
    speedneeder's Avatar
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    Re: Pricing!? Digital files? Social media files? Prints?

    Hi Bill, perhaps there is a cultural gap here or my text is failing to express myself accurately. I am in no way defensive!

    “The Business will be a part time venture and will occupy on average no more than 10 hours per week of my time and will not be active on days which are specified: My Birthday, Our Wedding Anniversary; Christmas Day: my children's events; or any other day that that i would rather spend with my family than doing photography, and the allocation of my time and exception days will be reviewed if necessary and as a result of that review any appropriate systemic changes will be made in the Business Model

    "Give them an Invoice notating the FULL PRICE and get a rubber stamp made: With Compliments – Account PAID in FULL”

    Great idea!

  19. #19
    speedneeder's Avatar
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    Re: Pricing!? Digital files? Social media files? Prints?

    Quote Originally Posted by GrumpyDiver View Post
    Three simple rules put to me by a senior vice-president of an internationally known consumer goods company:

    1. If the items are flying off the shelf so quickly that you can't keep them in stock, you are likely charging too little for them;

    2. If the items are sitting on the shelf and not selling, you are likely charging too much for them; and

    3. There is no link between your production costs and what a customer is willing to pay you.

    I'm not sure if this helps at all, but over the years I have found that all three statements are 100% correct...
    Manfred, #3 is very important to my question, because as Myra points out, taking hockey photos may not be something I can sell for it's worth to me to make. And if that is the case, I'm totally OK with it! It will cost me some money though, because I'll probably spend more time golfing if I spend less time photographing! Thank you for your comments.

  20. #20
    William W's Avatar
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    Re: Pricing!? Digital files? Social media files? Prints?

    Quote Originally Posted by Maritimer1 View Post
    I'd love to know how you both got started . . . you seem to have a good knowledge of business practice in general.
    I started shooting professionally when I was at High School – i.e. I took photos and sold them. I continued that - a few record covers, some portraiture and bits and pieces in an ad hoc fashion – whatever came my way.
    I really consider that I could refer to myself as a professional photographer about four years later a when I left University and enrolled at Technical College to Study Photography, as by that time I had regular sporting and later some regular wedding gigs: I was being paid what the “employer” decided – I was NOT a professional businessman.

    I was never a professional businessman until about halfway through the life of the second studio we built.

    My Bio here at CiC gives a reasonable overview of my background: if I am allowed to link, then this will answer your question in more detail.



    Quote Originally Posted by Maritimer1 View Post
    and what advice you would offer those of us who are just starting out.
    My first advice for anyone starting a business: be it part time; fulltime; being employed; or just to make pin money to buy lenses to fulfil an amateur calling or hobby . . . is to make a precise and concise Definition of the Business.

    If I had taken the time to make precise and concise Definition of the Business, for my first four businesses (two being Photography) I would have saved so much time and effort and pain, not to mention money.

    My first response here was excessively sincere. When I was about 35 years old, I paid $7,500 for that insight.

    Consider this an invoice and over stamped:
    ‘With Compliments – Account Paid in Full’

    WW

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