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


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Old January 30th, 2014, 12:48 PM   #16
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Re: Enquiries

Matt, I prefer to have my prices on line as I hate the idea of spending a long time convincing someone that they want a video only to be told that they can't afford it when they get the price. At least I know that those contacting me are fully aware of what to expect and that I am not trying to hide anything or browbeat them into paying more than they want to..

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Old January 30th, 2014, 02:26 PM   #17
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Re: Enquiries

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Rush View Post
Truly Amazing - I''ve just had a guy on the phone who got me to outline my packages/prices and then came out with - 'well really I did want the full day but my budget is not more than £400 - what can you do?'

I would love to say 'good luck with that mate!' but I'm too polite

Pete
Jesus Pete the cheeky b....r. Is it just England or what? Blame him off gmtv ! get a bargain here there and every where haggle with everyone he was saying the other day.
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Old January 30th, 2014, 02:30 PM   #18
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Re: Enquiries

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roger Gunkel View Post
Matt, I prefer to have my prices on line as I hate the idea of spending a long time convincing someone that they want a video only to be told that they can't afford it when they get the price. At least I know that those contacting me are fully aware of what to expect and that I am not trying to hide anything or browbeat them into paying more than they want to..

Roger
I have tried both Pete/Matt, one year I was booking and thinking wow no-one asking for a bargain, then one year I did not put my prices on the web and got nothing but idiots but I did that because I did not have many enquiries, so I think the best way is prices on...Going back to that as I am sick to death of complete idiots to a degree. I really now study their e-mail, if it mentions how much are you I don't even reply, if they say are you available then I go for it.
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Old January 30th, 2014, 06:05 PM   #19
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Re: Enquiries

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Originally Posted by Matt Thomas View Post
Would people say it's a good idea to state your prices online or not?

I would lean not to, just because if someone sees your prices online and they think it's too high they might just forget about contacting you all together but if you don't have your prices listed they may get in touch which you may be able to convince them to up they budget a bit.
IMHO if you don't have your prices on your website, don't complain if they contact you yet can't pay your rates. Personally, I like to see it. I've checked out photographers pages after shooting with them, and their rates are all over the map, entry level to $4,000. I'd be a bit upset if I referred the $4,000 guy to someone I knew couldn't pay that.
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Old January 30th, 2014, 07:21 PM   #20
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Re: Enquiries

Hi Matt

I have all my prices on the website so brides can see the total range and whether it fits your budget. If I was a bride I would really hate to have to email/ring you for prices and find out you are way too expensive for me. To me if you don't list at least your price range eg: "Wedding Ceremony only from $800 and full weddings from as little as $1500" you are hiding something .... if you at least show your range then brides can see that they could afford you and it still leaves you room to convince them to go for a higher package.

Chris
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Old January 30th, 2014, 07:55 PM   #21
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Re: Enquiries

i have my prices up and i dont have packages really, if someone wanted say, just the ceremony we'd do a deal but mostly here they want you for the whole day (some even well into the night) so the price is the price and if i get someone asking whats my best price or how much for 'cash' I just ignore.

The best one i got was this girl had mailed and called a few times, asking was there any move downwards on the price, after saying no i thought that was the last I'd hear from her, but a few weeks on she contacted me again and said "i've got a quote here for the full day for €200!!!" I emailed back saying 'give me his name and i'll employ him myself!' needless to say I never heard from her again... LOL
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Old January 30th, 2014, 08:22 PM   #22
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Re: Enquiries

I am another believer in having prices posted online. Many people automatically assume no posted price equals too expensive. Oddly enough, sometimes a higher price can actually help with booking events because so many online "tutorials" on hiring videographers list the quality according to price ranges. They see a higher price and assume higher quality.
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Old January 31st, 2014, 06:11 AM   #23
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Re: Enquiries

"Dan, we love your work and want to hire you but we've already spent nearly all our wedding budget on the photog, flowers, DJ, catering etc, can you do us a favour and discount your price by 50% and we'll book you right now?"

I found that just offensive for more than one reason.
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Old January 31st, 2014, 06:50 AM   #24
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Re: Enquiries

This has been a major topic of discusson for years.

Post or Don't post. Hmmmm.
Thought process...If I post my prices then they have all the information and there's no reason for them to call. I want them to call because some people really don't think that they can afford you but sometimes you can get creative for the client and adjust the work you do to fit the budget. IOW, maybe you don't do prep (and the B&G don't care about it if you do or not. Or you leave right after the Specialty Dances. Now keep in mind there are differences in the time line from country to country. In my area TYPICALLY the special dances (1st dance, father-daughter and mother-son) are one right after the other AND generally right after dinner so it can cut sometime off your day. These are just examples off the top of my head at an early hour. Use your imagination.

I DON'T post my prices. OK, more calls and you get a lot of people that have $500 or $600 or $700 for video and your fees start at say $1500. Your chances of convincing someone to sign up and spend 2 times the amount they budgeted (if they have it) are very small and come on guys...Do you really to work that hard to convince someone to hire you. Chances are they're going to be a complete PITA before, during and especially AFTER the shoot.

I did both. Not posted, then posted. I found the smartest thing I did was to post my prices like this...
Starting at $XXX.xx
That meant I would still get calls and I could justify prices whether over the phone or face to face.
Everyone's business model is different, try it one way and see what happens. If it's not getting the results then switch to the other way but keep in mind, regardless of what you do, you've still got to produce top quality work and treat the clients right. Posting or not posting prices isn't going to make you king of the hill or not. It's just a tool.
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Old January 31st, 2014, 07:08 AM   #25
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Re: Enquiries

Yeah a great on-going debate here for sure.

I've done it both ways - prices online and prices not online.

Right now, I'm in the "Prices not online" mode, because after watching the Ray Roman series on Creative Live, I realized I really need to be doing a custom quote for each gig. One of the things I wasn't really including was travel time and what not to locations, and some people are wanting me to drive 2 hours one way or longer even... and that means just not me, but the rest of my team as well (No way I'm doing a drive to a wedding as solo shooter in a city far away and with just 1 vehicle)

So my rates actually vary depending on the drive time and crew size and of course coverage desired.

And as others have noted, I want people to call and inquire so I can talk to them and get a feel.

My starting base is: 1-man, 2-camera Ceremony only coverage for $750 (on site up to 1 hour). I actually do a fair amount of those these days.
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Old January 31st, 2014, 07:39 AM   #26
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Re: Enquiries

I have my 3 main package prices online with a ceremony only package (filming from one hour before and up to one hour after the ceremony at same location) so I can advertise 'Packages from £XXX' Regarding travel I state that my package prices are for venues less than a 2 hour round trip from my postcode - any further then a travel surcharge will be added.

Pete
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Old January 31st, 2014, 08:24 AM   #27
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Re: Enquiries

Hi Pete

Each to their own of course but I find I get more genuine enquiries with up front prices .. my local prices include travel for specific geographical limits and then I also give a flat rate for our down South weddings which covers me for a motel and travel costs. It really gets a bit too messy when you start trying to charge by kilometre/mile and then have to cost in your actual travel time. Locally I cost in travel for a fairly hefty travel wedding based on venues well spaced. Any closer and I win and seldom have ones that go over my costed distances but they are easily covered for the closer ones. Like tomorrow is a win one with maybe 20 minutes tops to the ceremony, photoshoot in the same venue and reception is 5 minutes down the road!

Chris
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Old January 31st, 2014, 09:03 AM   #28
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Re: Enquiries

How many of you have time limits built in to some packages, especially the bespoke ones created when they wanted something a little different?

Example:

Couple 1: Oh we just want the ceremony and speeches filming.... the ceremony is at 12 noon and the speeches at 8pm. So you're going to be there for at least 10 hours from setup to end of speeches.

Couple 2: Oh we just want the ceremony & speeches, and since we don't get married until 3pm and we're having really short speeches at 5pm so can we have a big discount please? You're thinking this is maybe only 4 hours on the day (read on).

So, lots of time difference on the day but identical editing and supply of DVDs etc afterwards.

Now suppose couple 2 change their mind and make the speeches after the meal on the day without telling you, you've got to hang around another 2-3 hours, oh and then the speeches turn out to be 2 hour marathons as well.

Couple 3: Ceremony at 12noon to first dance at 7:30pm (yeah, right) but it turns out on the night they don't have it until after the buffet at 10pm. So again you're hanging round another 3 hours.

It doesn't happen every week, but it does happen. People call, try to minimise what you're quoting for, expect a special deal then you get project creep, could you just add this, oh and this isn't much could you just add that, no one thing is a big deal but all of a sudden you're in to a bigger package and not charging for it.

We all know that weddings don't run to time. It's easy to say "take the rough with the smooth it all averages out", but I found it happening more and more last year and it wasn't averaging out ;) Remember, this is a business not a hobby so giving away 3 or 4 hours of time for free was never really in the plan, or at least not my plan.
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Last edited by Dave Partington; January 31st, 2014 at 09:37 AM.
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Old January 31st, 2014, 10:37 AM   #29
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Re: Enquiries

Well said Dave - I posted a few months back about over-running weddings and a lot of members seemed to be in agreement about taking it on the chin (rough with the smooth so to speak). I actually find shorter weddings harder to film as their is more running about and in the end I film pretty much about the same amount of footage as a longer wedding. The resultant DVD will have the same number of chapters of the same length and will require the same amount of editing time so I quote this when people try and haggle because their ceremony is at 4pm!

What I do get often is on the day being asked to do guest messages, even though (and they've probably seen this on my website) it's an extra I charge for. To date I haven't had the balls to say 'that'll be £XXX extra'

Pete
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Old January 31st, 2014, 02:14 PM   #30
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Re: Enquiries

I have two prices, one for a video only and the other for video and photos.

As Dave said 'This is a business not a hobby', so as far as I am concerned I can film one wedding on one day, so why should I risk losing a full booking to film an hour or two for a far lower price? My speciality is doc style weddings, if they want a ceremony only, then find someone else or pay the full price.

Roger
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