Since the bridal show...haven't had any calls at DVinfo.net

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Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...


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Old February 22nd, 2005, 08:19 AM   #1
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Since the bridal show...haven't had any calls

During the second weekend of January we participated in a bridal show. Many brides stopped at our booth to chat about video. We handed out around 35 demos. We haven't had one call requesting further information.

In December of last year we made the decision to increase our pricing. Am wondering if this why we haven't received any calls? Our prices increased about 25%. We feel that our videos are worth the prices that we are asking.

Any ideas as to why we haven't received any inquiries?
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Old February 22nd, 2005, 10:49 AM   #2
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Internet, and bridal show clients are "shopping around". Most high end clients come from other high end clients(referrals). It takes time.


John
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Old February 22nd, 2005, 12:24 PM   #3
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I feel your pain...

I'm in the exact same situation. Same time frame. Everything. Don't you work for me? :)

I gave out about 70 CD-ROM demos and 100 brochures. I received many compliments from show patrons, photographers, and other videographers. I have to learn not to take people's comments to heart. Most small talk is just that. It annoys me, kind of like when you bump into an acquaintence and he or she says, "Let's get together sometime," but they never call; if you call, they don't respond. That sort of thing.

Many brides I spoke to have dates September and later, so I image I'll hear from them over the summer. I'll probably follow up with them again in May. It's not like I'm busy with weddings or anything...

Check out what your competition is doing. What can you do BETTER than them and still stay competitively priced? For example, I think I'm going to start including more DVD copies in my packages. People know they can copy your DVDs with free software anyway, so why not throw in three or five copies with your official packaging and charge another $50 or $100?

Look on the bright side: Soon all the in-demand videographers will be booked up. Hopefully you'll enjoy some of the spillover clients.

If you're producing wedding videos part time, don't worry too much about this lull. Half the battle -- in my opinion -- is staying power, networking, and keeping your name out there. Businesses come and go. I've known people to buy a GL2 and cheap wireless mic and think they're good to go. They charge $300-500 per wedding and when the pool of budget brides dries up for a while, they get discouraged and fade into obscurity. You can do better than that.

I hope your business improves!

T.J.
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Old February 22nd, 2005, 12:43 PM   #4
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Thanks for your input!

I'm a full time wedding videographer and my living depends on this business. Guess it is always risky to increase pricing, but on the other hand, if there are no increases, I just end up working for peanuts. I put my heart and soul into every video and feel that my time and talent is worth the price.

Last year our pricing was lower but we had many bookings. I knew there would be a risk of lowering the number of bookings if we increased the prices. But I feel that we needed to take the risk. Over the past year we have updated our equipment and the quality of our videos has increased significantly. We hoped that bridal couples would see this.

We believe that the higher end bookings do come from higher end referrals. But gosh....it's so hard sitting around waiting for those phone calls!!
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Old February 22nd, 2005, 12:44 PM   #5
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terrific points above

And to echo the comments about technology, we sometimes have to take a step back and forget about how much your first dvd burner cost you. Since the gear depreciates so quickly and computer savvy clients are doing the looking and booking, your tiniest oversight might stop them from calling in the first place. Here is one example. If your wedding web site is more than 1 year old, you need to re-tool it. This includes menu items like dvd extra copies. I actually stumbled upon one the other day that indicated that additional dvd copies were charged out at 50 bucks per!!! Those who understand the tech will not call!!!

Just before I ask for the order I love their last pre-qualifying question : "How many dvd copies will we receive?" My reply: How many do you want?
Then I follow up with the close: "Shall I book the day in my day-timer?"

The most I have ever had to burn was 7. NO CHARGE.
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Old February 22nd, 2005, 03:03 PM   #6
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Keep your prices the same and maybe look into other types of videography to make up for the loss in brides. Industrial, commercial, sports, ect.



John
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Old February 22nd, 2005, 03:24 PM   #7
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<<<-- Originally posted by John DeLuca : Keep your prices the same and maybe look into other types of videography to make up for the loss in brides. Industrial, commercial, sports, ect.


Thanks for your suggestion John. I've been thinking along these same lines.
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Old February 22nd, 2005, 03:47 PM   #8
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As John pointed out, trade shows and yellow pages ads are for "lookie-loos".
The return on this type of marketing is very small. Word of mouth is your best advertising. Make your clients happy and don't be afraid to keep in touch every now and then. Send a little thank you card, send anniversary cards, be creative. There are tons of methods to retain new and repeat business. This is where you're going to make a difference because everybody knows, couples hang out with other couples and eventually, someone you shot will tell a friend about you, IF you made certain that 1. they are happy with your services and 2. they remember who you are and how to contact you!
--(assuming your product quality is up to standards)--
Don't worry about raising your prices, the business you want isn't price shopping "that" closely. People would gladly pay a little more for a recommended and quality product. If they ARE price shopping, you don't want that kind of business anyway. It never works out to anyone's benefit because they always want more, and you will have to do it for less.
Take your time, build your clients, ask for referrals, keep in touch with them, provide excellent customer service no matter the price (you set it after all) and last but not least, network with bridal shops and wedding planners. This is the winter and not many people are getting married right now so don't sweat the lack of attention.
-oh, and never give out a demo without asking for some contact information. How many demo's do you think they already have? You need to contact them and initiate the contract to stay competitive.
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Old February 22nd, 2005, 04:24 PM   #9
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<<<-- Originally posted by Linda Walker : Thanks for your input!

Over the past year we have updated our equipment and the quality of our videos has increased significantly. We hoped that bridal couples would see this.

-->>>

I'm not sure they would see that, Linda. After all, I hope your last year's wedding video clients aren't needing another video this year! So, those that are shopping now won't really know what your stuff looked like before unless you prepare a specific before and after upgrade demo to hand out.

Good luck and hang in there...

-gb-
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Old February 22nd, 2005, 06:45 PM   #10
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those that are shopping now won't really know what your stuff looked like before unless you prepare a specific before and after upgrade demo to hand out.

Good luck and hang in there...

-gb- -->>>


Good point. New bridal couples, hopefully, will see the quality in our videos. After all...."they get what they pay for"....right?
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Old February 25th, 2005, 02:53 PM   #11
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Linda,

Yes i feel for you,

Just did a wedding fair 2 weeks ago, i was the only video man there, people showed alot of interest and had about 5 dates to pencil in and they said they would let me know as soon as possible (NOTHING) yes i know its not long since but just one would have been a step in the right direction.

Doing one this sunday hope to get something from it, its cost me £320 to do them both so some progress would be nice.
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Old February 25th, 2005, 03:42 PM   #12
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As a counter to the bad luck expressed here, I did two bridal shows the last two weekends, (my first two shows ever) and both have already paid for themselves many times over within days, and I still have a lot of people looking and checking out my website.

Though my recent success might have something to do with my lower prices, but I think itís a decent price point for my area; the single camera packages I offer, and for my limited experience. (Canít get word of mouth referrals if you donít have anyone to refer you)

Anyone looking for a good source of business, wedding shows are great for the price (300 dollar range) I went from little business to having months booked solid and bookings into late 2006; (Iím still rather new at this, but my experience with bridal shows have been great, even with some hiccups (pretty bad snowstorm on the second date really hurt attendance)

Two things I used to ďpressureĒ brides into booking quick, ones is having an ďearly booking bonusĒ of 50 dollars off if you book before April 1st, if they book when Iím fresh in their memory I donít risk not booking them at all, and I will sacrifice 50 dollars for the added security of an early deposit.

The other thing I did was that everyone I talked to at the wedding I asked about their date and ďchecked the availabilityĒ and regardless of how empty I knew their month might have been, itís close to filling up ;) A little dishonest, but if people think you are in high demand, you will be.
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Old February 25th, 2005, 05:34 PM   #13
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Nice web site Josh. I think there is a break point for both videographers and brides. That is the premium to be had for 2 camera work. I didn't see the option on your site and you might be leaving a little on the table. My basic single man (2 camera xl1's) packages begin at 950.00 for Saturday work only. Add the second camera man and that is my median or most chosen option at about 1500. Add Friday and ... you get the point.
Perhaps you can explore the idea of using a second set of hands to maximize your r.o.i. and grow your stable of gear quicker.
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Old February 26th, 2005, 12:34 AM   #14
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Thanks Jimmy, A second camera and high end packages to match are definitely in the future for me, and I will be saving money up for it, hopefully in a year or two it will be a reality (and with the dropping price of the xl1s perhaps sooner than later)

Right now Iím still trying to break in to the business and keep my head afloat (Audio/Visual catalogues will be the death of me) and Iím trying to do that by hitting the lower budget people who might not want or be able to pay a few grand for a no stops wedding video (and I currently donít have the equipment to offer it) But eventually with experience and reputation I will be able to offer more for that demographic; at present if someone starts asking for multi-cameras and stuff that I donít offer, I refer them to the competition I know to be competent; Instead of having an unhappy and disappointed bride on my hands.

Different solutions for different people, Hopefully I can fit in somewhere. :)

Linda: I noticed your from Green bay, What bridal shows did you attend?

I went to the show at the Radisson in Green Bay; put on by this group; Visuelle' Productions' http://wisconsinbridalshows.com/

And they seemed very professional, Had a lot of face time with potential clients and quite a few leads; Despite lacking attendance due to the snow storm.

I also went to a local show in Manitowoc put on by a radio station, same price but terribly unprofessional, we were in a hallway and missed quite a few people due to poor location, but everyone who walked by we stopped, We didnít hit the demographic we needed (one that can afford or puts a premium on videos) but some serious leads and bookings nonetheless, I would go to the visuelle productions over that any day though.

Also what business do you represent (I'm curious) :)
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Old February 26th, 2005, 12:43 AM   #15
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Sounds like things are going well Josh. I was recently in your position and I think that it is always best to be sure that your still going to be happy doing a full package at the prices your offering in 2006 after you have more experience and more demand. It is great to get booked well in advance, the down side of that is that you can be stuck working for rates that may be less than what you would like to ideally make considering the amount of time that can go into one production. If it works for you then great.

Just one other small thing. I noticed a couple spelling mistakes on your website. Nothing too huge, but it is probably worth going over. I am always paranoid when we do a revision of our site that something will get overlooked.
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