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Just the Right Words: Fishing for Discounts

writing for photographersIf you’re a people pleaser like me, you may have to hold yourself back from giving your photography away. Hopefully, though, you’re working hard at valuing your talent and time and beginning to protect your boundaries. Sometimes, however, requests can catch you off-guard and you may be left wishing you had been better prepared.

Preparation is important, and we are here to help!

Has it ever felt like someone was fishing for special pricing?

Perhaps it’s a good client, an acquaintance, or a friend who doesn’t come right out and ask for a discount, but you get the sense that they may be fishing for special pricing. Perhaps they inquire about a photography session but don’t mention pricing. Immediately, you’re a little uncomfortable, and you really don’t want to offer a discount for this particular inquiry. You also know if you don’t establish professional boundaries right from the beginning, the relationship could end with confusion or hurt feelings.

Establishing understanding

This warm response is concise and sets the stage for a discussion of expectations.

“I’m so glad you love my work. Thank you for thinking of me! My pricing is found here (link or attached). Take a few moments to review my portfolio, look over my rates, and ask any questions. 

While I would be honored to create photographs for you, I understand that many things factor into choosing the right photographer. I completely understand if my style or rates aren’t the best fit for what you have in mind.”

This can be adapted when someone catches you off-guard in the carpool line. It’s okay to defer the conversation. In fact, it’s usually better to communicate about details when you’re in front of your computer and calendar with fewer distractions.

“Thanks so much for thinking of me. The best way to schedule a photography session is to take a peek at my website and then send an email. I look forward to working out the details with you.”

Value yourself and your time.

Have you ever considered that maybe your friends and family want to pay you fairly for your photography? Perhaps by being too quick to offer a discount, you have not only undermined your professionalism but also your income potential. Whether you offer a discount or not, it’s best to offer it on your terms–not because you’re feeling intimidated, unprepared, or distracted.

If you missed our recent edition of Just the Right Words, be sure to  check it out for more tips and words you can put into practice. Stay tuned for future editions and be sure to browse our essential templates that help you with professional and consistent communications.


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