I’m sure you’ve been asked this question by many prospective clients. While this can be taken as disrespectful, and put you on the defensive, think of it as an opportunity for you to explain all that goes on ‘behind-the-scenes”, and the value you bring.
Many couples have no idea how much work is done outside of the shoot, so they’re trying to understand the high cost for what they perceive as 8 hours of work. So, here are some thoughts on how to respond (and help get a contract signed):
“For every wedding I’m hired for, I devote approximately 40 hours of my time. This includes a few meetings before the big day, preparing equipment, working 12-14 hours on the day of your event, and backing up all of the files until the wee hours to make sure your images are properly saved and stored.
I’ll then spend about 10 hours on “post event production” which includes: removing dupes, improving the 1000 images you’re going to see by cropping, adjusting the color, and adding some filters. I’ll back-up these edited files, upload them to a hosting site where you choose your favorites for your custom wedding album, and create a blog for your event. Then I’ll spend another 5 hours designing and revising your wedding album layout for you to review.
In addition to the hours I put in, I spend money on professional development to ensure I stay informed of the best equipment, which includes cameras, computers, software and apps. I attend lectures on everything from “how to photograph the extended family in less than 30 minutes when babies are crying”, to: “advanced photoshop techniques that are more effective than botox”. I network with other professionals (so I always have backups in case of an emergency), further my education, and stay current with what the industry’s best vendors are offering.
This helped me develop an easy wedding album ordering process which you’ll love. Ultimately, I’ll be delivering you a high quality, professional flush mount wedding album that will become your family’s first heirloom. I only use vendors that produce the best quality products, and that I’m proud to have my name on. This is what actually helped me develop an easy wedding album ordering process which my brides love. I take great pride in being able to deliver to you a high quality, professional flush mount wedding album that will become your family’s first heirloom.
I hire assistants for the day of, and to assist with other tasks, and I spend a lot of time recruiting, hiring and training the best talent. As you can see, this is a full time business that I take very seriously, and like any other self-employed entrepreneur I have expenses for: insurance, accounting, travel, equipment, office space, and technology that seems to change every 18 months!
The good news is…that as my client, you will benefit from all of the knowledge and experience I’ve gained in being a professional for ___ years. This is what you get when you hire a professional photographer, and why you want to invest in a reputable, professional who understands that I must deliver tremendous value that’s commiserate with your investment in me. In return for all of these deliverables, I ask for just 2 things in return: your trust in hiring me, and a decent meal at the wedding!
I’m sure they’ll be glad they asked