I swear photography consultation call seems to be like the photography industry’s biggest secret.
I say that because there are so many surprised photographer’s when I talk about needing to do consultation calls for their business.
It’s a huge part of what allows me to yes book more clients, with less work, but also allows me to charge more. Yet when I coach my clients to start doing them, I typically get this:
“Why can’t I send over my pricing in an email?”
“Absolutely not! You have no idea how introverted I am and I will literally hyperventilate and keel over and die if I have to do a live Zoom call!”
Ok…the second was a little dramatic but that was also my way back when.
So trust me. I get it.
This came from a woman who called every human who was willing to listen, to practice sales with them. But little old me who thought I would never be able to do calls properly? I’ve used the tips I’m giving you to book $7,000-$9,000 photography jobs.
When I say my voice trembled, I would have to practice deep breathing ON the actual call and I had a booking rate from a sales call of…ZERO – I’ve learned in the most difficult way what I’m about to share with you today.
3 Stages of a Photography Consultation Call
Let’s unpack the 3 stages of a grand slam photography consultation call.
STAGE 1: BEFORE THE CALL
The success of your consultation call actually starts before you ever get on a consultation call, right after they’ve inquired with you.
When your photography inquiry fills out the form on your website, we are going to assume they haven’t seen anything about pricing. So you want to use your first response to them after they inquire to make them aware of what the cost is for your services.
Using Pricing Awareness with my inquiry response template, the couple isn’t getting on a call with you only to realize they can’t afford you. That’s a waste of your time and their time and I’m a HUGE proponent of not wasting time.
This does NOT mean sending over your pricing by the way – just giving them an idea of the ballpark so they can decide right then and there if they can afford working together and if they want to book a consultation call with you. In order to book a call – I simply have a button to book an appointment with me through Dubsado’s scheduler.
I love Dubsado for sending out all of my email templates as well, because it’s literally set them up once, and Dubsado will automatically send the emails over at the times you want. It saves SO much time.
Truly, a well-strategized template with Pricing Awareness and a clear call to action is THE BEST way to lead to a smooth consultation call.
STAGE 2: PREPARE FOR THE CALL
Once that qualified and price-aware potential client automatically schedules an appointment with me in Dubsado, I like to do some prep work.
I like to put together a complete proposal beforehand and will also look up the couple’s socials, their venue, and the detailed notes they left on the inquiry form.
I want to be totally prepared on the call and know exactly what vibe they are going for, and what energy are they going for on their wedding day.
So I will pull up a tab of their venue, their form response, typical sunset time in that area, and their proposal I’ve already filled out and have it all ready for the call.
ON THE CALL
I have an 80%+ close rate. I really think that’s through pre-qualifying in my inquiry response template and the specific script I use for the call itself. You NEED a call script or format! You have one chance to show them why you are the perfect fit for the job and you don’t want to leave the call up to “I’ll say what I feel”. No bueno.
First – Quick introductions and then let them know how the call will go. It’s important to lead the call because you are the professional photographer and they are looking to you to lead.
Ask questions… lots of questions. This is likely the first time they are getting married, so they have no clue what they need in terms of wedding photography. Coverage, lighting, prints, albums, more days, etc. Your questions will help identify which collection is best for them, but the right questions will REALLY shine a blazing neon light on how valuable photography is and why going cheap is NOT what they want.
Repeat everything back. The entire time you’re on the call you should be taking notes & now is the time to show them you’ve paid attention and that you’ve understood their wants correctly. You’ll want to say something like “Ok, so just so I know I have this right xyz”.
Now that you’ve identified exactly what they need, it’s time to let them know which collection you as the expert would recommend. Confidence here is EVERYTHING. Literally, practice your entire photography consultation call in the mirror, practice with your husband, practice with your parents…best friends…everyone. Do it until you are bored to tears because confidence makes all the difference. Don’t forget to also use this time to let them know how to move forward and book you. Don’t rush off the call!
STAGE 3 – AFTER THE CALL
The service isn’t over! Send over the proposal right away. This is why you want it prepared beforehand so that you aren’t wasting time messing with it after the call. The couple has just gotten off of the consultation call with you, they are excited about you potentially photographing their wedding and they are at peak curiosity.
Again, I use and love Dubsado to do all of this, and it makes the process the simplest thing ever. It automatically sends a beautiful proposal, a contract to easily e-sign, and an invoice in one fell swoop.
Now, you know my exact rinse-and-repeat wedding photography consultation call strategy that allows me to close 80% of our jobs. Use this to absolutely kill it on your next consultation call. If you want to snag my inquiry response template for free just click the button below.