When it comes to delivering images to clients after their wedding, the faster you do it, the happier your clients will be. Although you know that there are thousands of images to sift through and edit, your clients are only concerned about one thing: when do they get to see their beautiful images?!
That’s why fast turnaround times matter. And although it may mean making some changes to your post-production workflow, like using a wedding photography editing service to work on your images, it pays off because it’s an area that your clients care about – and they’ll directly benefit from! And happy clients make great client evangelists (which means you’ll be in business for the long haul).
Here are 3 reasons why fast turnaround times matter when it comes to creating client evangelists.
1. Sharing images with clients soon after the wedding capitalizes on their emotions.
In the weeks following their wedding, couples are still buzzing about their day and replaying the great moments in their minds. When you’re able to turnaround their images shortly after the wedding, they’re still on a wedding high. That means that they – and their family and friends – are more likely to share on social media, as well as face-to-face over coffee or cocktails. Your images will have more momentum with your clients, and with your prospective clients, when they’re shared soon after the event.
2. Fast turnaround times often surprise clients. And surprises make people talk!
Many clients expect you to take time to process their images after the wedding, and they’re prepared to wait. But by throwing that turnaround time of “6-10 weeks” out the window, and replacing it with a quick turnaround time of a few days or weeks, you’re exceeding expectations.
Nobody talks about when their expectations were met – it’s expected after all! But they DO talk about surprises that exceed their expectations. So when you surprise clients with faster turnaround times, you become remarkable. And THAT is what people talk about.
3. Fast turnaround times empower you to work with more happy clients.
By streamlining your processes, and improving your turnaround times, you actually create the capacity to take on more work. Photography businesses that are bogged down with editing aren’t set up to perform the tasks necessary to:
Proactively bring on new business.
Most businesses aren’t lucky enough to have a steady stream of new business showing up at their door without having to work for it! Instead, bringing in new leads and clients requires time spent blogging, on social media, on the phone with potential clients, or corresponding via email. When your workflow is optimized for fast turnaround times, you’ll reap the reward of more time to focus on proactively bringing in new business.
Manage those new clients when they come.
When editing for one client is sucking up all of your time, how can you possibly bring more clients into the mix and still meet their expectations, let alone exceed them? When you prioritize fast turnaround times and eliminate excess editing time, your streamlined systems create the capacity you need to bring on the workload associated with new clients.
But WHY are happy clients so important to your photography business? Sustainability. Businesses with happy clients receive more referrals and more sales, keeping them in business longer. Happy clients are invaluable to your business – and a sure-fire way to make your clients happy is through fast turnaround times.
What changes can you make to your workflow to improve turnaround times and make clients happy?
These days, running a wedding photography business that values speed and efficiency is the rule, not the exception. And, running a successful business is a central theme of successful photographers who are passionate about their artistry. Running an efficient, streamlined business doesn’t mean sacrificing your art or producing a poor product. In fact, it’s quite the opposite.
Creating an efficient business ensures that you’ll be financially stable and have time to create high-quality, artistic work. And it’s your art that inspired you to go into business in the first place, right?
As a professional wedding photo editing company, we believe that “Fast is Best” and that it can help grow your business. Here are 5 ways that being efficient empowers your photography.
1. It allows you to stay focused on your passion and your strengths.
What is it about your photography that you love? How you answer will likely identify your passion. But as we all know, running a photography business requires much more than simply focusing on your passions. The truth is, roughly 15% of your time is used taking awesome pictures! That leaves 85% of your remaining time devoted and dedicated to making sure the business will allow you to focus on the 15% you LOVE doing 🙂
Setting up efficient business practices will create time for you to focus your passions, on personal projects, on serving and loving your clients. And, this will allow you to stay happy.
2. It gives you the freedom to be creative.
Photographers all know what “busy season” feels like. There are shoots on the calendar seemingly every day, a steady stream of emails to catch up on, phone calls to return, bookkeeping to deal with, social media, album design, new client meet-ups, current client management, vendor networking, blogging, editing all of those shoots, and the list goes on!
With so much to do in so little time, it’s easy to lose your creative spark. Yet that creativity is exactly what your clients love about you! To keep them happy and to give you the creative space to do your best work, it’s critical to set up efficient business systems. Efficiency actually allows you to have (gasp!) freedom to keep that creative headspace.
3. Efficient business practices make you money.
Although it may sound counterintuitive, investing in services that streamline your business will save you money in the long term. For instance, outsourced services save you money because of the opportunity cost that goes along with the hours they free up. Instead of spending all that time editing (or doing your own taxes), you could take on more shoots, work on your marketing materials, or start doing more in-person sales meetings–all of which are activities that actually make money! Aside from opportunity cost, when you factor in the time that you spend editing, your hourly rate suddenly drops drastically–and you’re actually not making as much money as you could.
Related: Fast Turnaround Makes You Money
4. Faster delivery to your clients = happy clients.
As busy season is in full swing, you’ll start finding yourself getting farther and farther behind with weddings that need to be edited, uploaded for proofing, and blogged and shared. You know that dreaded email could come at any moment – that email from your client asking, “When can we see our photos?” It’s true, your clients (and their happiness with you) are directly impacted by lag time.
By setting up systems that help in the areas you need it most, you’re able to keep your clients happy and exceed their expectations with fast turnaround times. You can share their photographs when they’re still most excited, soon after the shoot. Keeping your clients happy means they’ll turn into enthusiastic referrers and evangelists that will keep you in business for the long haul.
5. Because beating burnout means taking time off.
Entrepreneurs and artists are alike in many ways. They’re creatives, they’re innovators, and they’re thinkers. That means burnout looms like a threatening chasm unless there’s time to breathe, explore new ideas, and wander into quiet thought. That’s exactly why efficiency can cultivate creativity and empower your photography. It gives you control over the tedious tasks of being in business so you can beat burnout by letting your right brain maintain its freedom.
Steve Jobs’ biographer, Walter Isaacson, discussed the many qualities that set Jobs apart from other innovators, including his commitment to Zen Buddhism. Although each entrepreneur and artist practice different forms of “taking time off,” actually taking time to think and explore protect you from burnout.
The bottom line is that the best thing you can do for yourself as a creative is to take yourself seriously as a business owner. When your left-brain puts in the effort to create efficient, streamlined systems for your business, your right brain with see the return! You’ll once again enjoy your business for the reason you started it–your passion for photography.
Image: The International Society of Professional Wedding Photographers shared this smart graph on their blog. To read more, check out their post.
We are pleased to announce the “Pricing, Process, and Profits for the Wedding Photographer” Workshop in Nashville, Tennessee!!! Here are all the details – please come and join us!!!!
Date: Thursday, May 3
Location: The Village Chapel. 2021 21st Ave. RM #220, Nashville TN 37212
*This workshop is now over.
Topic: Dial in your Pricing and Packaging (Jared Bauman)
Jared will explore pricing and packaging for professional photographers and how important it is to the success of your business. Jared will reveal the secrets behind pricing and packaging, the basics to each pricing strategy, and the science behind effectively setting up your pricing, whether it be Packages or A La Carte.
Topic: Systems are Sexy (Leeann Marie)
Do you find yourself always saying “This is the year I’ll get organized an efficient!”? Let’s talk…
I’m not talking a pretty branded website, latest gear, or Photoshop actions – I’m talking about creating a business that not only meets your client’s needs, but exceeds them. A business that is as efficient as possible – even if you don’t consider yourself a “business person”
Leeann will speak about how a clear communication strategy, studio timeline, and kick butt techniques can move your business toward being one that finally gives you back your time, money, and energy. This is the year to make your systems amazing!
Topic: Top Profit Tips (Sean and Melanie McLellan)
record of success, they will share with you ways in which you can increase your bottom line starting right now with the clients you’ve already booked.Join Sean & Mel for as many tips and practical strategies as can be packed into a 30 minute time frame! If you want to make your business more profitable in 2012, you will not want to miss!
More on the speakers:
Jared Bauman – Southern California Wedding Photographer, a Co-Founder and President of ShootDotEdit
Jared Bauman has built a photography studio in Southern California that photographs over 200 events and sessions annually. In business for a decade, Jared’s clients fly him across the world to document their big events.
Jared is a Co-Founder and President of ShootDotEdit, the #1 post processing partner for the professional wedding photographer. The company has grown to service more than 4,000 photographers in over 40 countries.
Known for his business background, Jared has released several educational DVDs and tours the country speaking to photographers about their small business.
In his free time, Jared loves to travel and backpack, photographing God’s creating with his panoramic camera.
Leeann Marie – Pittsburgh Wedding Photographer, Consultant for Start Up Coaching
Leeann Marie is a Pittsburgh-based wedding, engagement, and boudoir photographer. An avid blogger, she loves connecting with her clients, friends, and other photographers around the world. She holds an engineering background from the University of Pittsburgh, which has led to a love of technology and teaching. Her Photography Business Survival Coaching focuses on the 7 areas of a new wedding photographer’s business that can lead to easy loss of money, effort, and time. She personally coaches her clients to ensure that they move forward in the industry prepared to be in the top 10% of their market. She loves Lady Gaga, champagne, and kettle-cooked chips. She has traveled the world to places such as Russia, South Korea, China, Vietnam, and Panama, and believes in living the life you have dreamed.
Sean and Melanie McLellan – International Wedding Photographers, Founders of Kudize
Sean and Melanie McLellan are the internationally acclaimed husband and wife photography team behind McLellan Style. As artists, they are highly sought after throughout the world for their vivid and emotionally impactful imagery. They pride themselves on their ability to capture the beauty of a person’s essence and the style within.
With multiple accolades to their credit, including the 2008 DWF/Finao Photographer of the Year, and multiple first place print awards from WPPI, they continue every day to strive toward greater heights.
Their work has been featured by In Style: Celebrity Weddings, MSNBC: The Today Show, and other national media. In 2010, McLellan Style was recognized by the Adorama Learning Center in NYC as one of 10 top inspirational wedding photographers in the industry. And in 2011 they were listed as one of 20 top wedding photographers by one of the top blogs in the world, Hongkiat.
*This workshop is now over.