It's the time of year when everyone is seeing business pick up a little as we go into fourth quarter seasonality. You're looking for some good holiday orders, booking a few more weddings for the year and you've hopefully launched some end of year marketing plans.
There's a great one liner that I'd love to take credit for, but have to give it to Ed Foreman, a terrific motivational speaker. I heard him speak at least three lives ago in my Polaroid days. I've quoted him easily a dozen times in the past in both live programs and posts.
"If I can see the world through my client's eyes, then I can sell my client what my client buys!"
This goes a lot deeper than just putting yourself in their shoes. You've got to literally work to see things the way your clients do and that includes their perception of you. It's all about building trust. It's about listening more than talking. It's about putting your mind's eye into high gear and visualizing how they want their images to look. You've got to sense their concerns over cost, while at the same time their aspirations to have something that's unique to them and expresses their personality, life style and passion.
When I interviewed Kirk Voclain a couple of years ago for an article in PDN he talked about the key to success in photographing seniors. It was all in talking with them and watching for the most natural expression when they hit a topic they loved. I'm probably paraphrasing a little, but Kirk's comment really stuck with me:
"Skip, there are a lot of mediocre photographers out there who make a great living photographing seniors, because they make the sessions fun!"
Think about that for a second...now raise the bar and be more than just a mediocre photographer, listen to your clients, see the world through their eyes and don't forget about "fun". "Fun" is that all too often lost word in business today and we all need to work to put it back!
Illustration Credit: © pongsuwan - Fotolia.com