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Old February 2nd, 2014, 11:01 AM   #1
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Changing what we offer - wedding Packages

We're only entering year 3 of our video business and so we're still figuring out what we want to offer. We were offering an all-day sort of package (10 hours) but now I think I"m going to offer an a la carte sort of selection on Fridays and off-season. For instance, 8 months out, someone can NOT choose 'ceremony only' coverage on a July Saturday (our busiest time), but Fridays or February, we'll gladly take the business.

Our photo booth is the backdrop style with some props. We do NOT do print outs, but I do make a stop-motion video, and then post about 100 pictures to a Facebook gallery. Guests can sign up with their email to get the link.

Pricing is still pretty low because of our relative inexperience and poor market demand. I'm hoping that by 2015 both will be stronger.

What do you think?

Full Wedding Day Coverage - $1495 - start to finish, we'll be there the entire day, capturing it all, and includes 90 minutes of the photo booth, and generally includes filming some of the dance. The wedding film examples on this page show off the results. Up to 12 hours total and what we film and how late we stay depends on your schedule and when you have us start.

Not Looking for All Day coverage? Take a look at the choices below and see if they suit you better. You can always change your mind and add more time later.

Ceremony Only Coverage - $600 (limits on availability) - we'll film beginning with guests arriving, through the ceremony, and include the receiving line and/or church send-off, if applicable. Maximum of 3 hours.

Pre-Ceremony/Getting Ready - Add $395 - we'll begin filming when you start getting ready, one each with the bride and groom's groups. May include the first look, family/friend interviews, glamour shots. Up to 3 hours.

Reception/Speeches/dance start - Add $395 - adds filming of the reception, especially the speeches, first dance, and any parent dances. Up to 3 hours.

Dance+Photo Booth - add $300. 90 minutes of our photo booth (which is typical) and at the same time, we'll be filming some of the dancing.

Add an Hour the Day of - $150.
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Old February 2nd, 2014, 12:10 PM   #2
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Re: Changing what we offer - wedding Packages

Robert,

These are thoughts we've been through time and time again. We like to fill the calendar as much as the next person.

So, here's some of the questions / answers you're going to have to deal with.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Benda View Post
Ceremony Only Coverage - $600 (limits on availability) - we'll film beginning with guests arriving, through the ceremony, and include the receiving line and/or church send-off, if applicable. Maximum of 3 hours.
• When does the 3 hours start? Is is when you arrive or when you first press the record button or when the ceremony starts? Our speeches will be over within 3 hours of the ceremony starting so can you also include the speeches for free in your three hours? Oh, and while you're there, it should be no effort to cover the photoshoot too, oh and the cake cut as well :)

• Our ceremony is only 45 mins so can we have that for $150? ($600 / 3 hours * 45 mins)

• You want $200 an hour? Wow you guys are expensive.

• We only need you for an hour and all you have to do is press record. How much?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Benda View Post
Pre-Ceremony/Getting Ready - Add $395 - we'll begin filming when you start getting ready, one each with the bride and groom's groups. May include the first look, family/friend interviews, glamour shots. Up to 3 hours.
We only want about half an hour of this on the DVD so can we have it for $65? You really won't be there long.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Benda View Post
Reception/Speeches/dance start - Add $395 - adds filming of the reception, especially the speeches, first dance, and any parent dances. Up to 3 hours.
Again... we don't need all 3 hours can we have a discount?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Benda View Post
Dance+Photo Booth - add $300. 90 minutes of our photo booth (which is typical) and at the same time, we'll be filming some of the dancing.
Our ceremony is at 12noon and it's only 45 mins, and we don't need the photo booth until 9pm and only need an hour so can we have the ceremony for $150 and then the booth for $150, but since we're booking two things can we get a discount?

When you say no, because you'll have to hang around all day because it's too far to go home in between they simply say, oh, in that case since you'll need to hang around between the ceremony and the dance, could you just film some of the speeches since you'll have nothing else to do? It won't take long and shouldn't really cost any more since you'll be there already. Is there any movement on this, can we get a cheaper deal than $300? I'll recommend you to all my friends and you'll get lots of extra work out of it.

You may think I'm joking or stretching it, but honestly it's really not that far from the truth if someone is really looking to cut corners on their budget.

I'm not saying your idea is wrong. It can work very well for off peek days, but it's not always as cut and dry and it may seem.

Also, it opens up the door for people on saturdays thinking they can negotiate discounts here and there because now they have a much better idea how you are pricing individual components.

And remember, all they see is the time you are there, not the time you put in afterwards, so I've had comments like $150 an hour? Are you crazy, I work for minimum wage at the local supermarket, I don't get anywhere near $150, you're a rip off.

It's all down to perception. Once you have to start explaining the time spent afterwards in post production it's already lost.

Sorry for rambling ;)

Do we offer ceremony only packages? Yes.

Do we offer Ceremony + Speeches? Yes

Has anyone ever booked a short package and upgraded to more coverage? Hmmm.... I can't recall one but I suppose it could have happened.

So, we don't always do all day, in fact, last year less than half of the weddings we covered were prep through to first dance. So having other packages can work quite well, just be ready for all the nickel&dimers to descend upon you ;)
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Old February 2nd, 2014, 01:03 PM   #3
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Re: Changing what we offer - wedding Packages

OK. Took out the max number of hours on the a la carte portion. That can be brought up later. We don't have much variety to our area's wedding days, the way they are scheduled, so it shouldn't be much of an issue.
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Old February 2nd, 2014, 03:01 PM   #4
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Re: Changing what we offer - wedding Packages

Robert, I understand where you are coming from with this, but it comes across as trying to be all things to all people! It could also be seen by serious clients as smacking of desperation to get work at any costs, which may well isolate clients for whom money is not the primary consideration, and attract those that want everything at minimum cost as Dave has pointed out.

I still stand by what I have said on other threads, that you need to have a clear price for an unambiguous product. By all means be open to reductions for much shorter times if you feel so inclined, but I am worried that your fragmented structure proposals will be a recipe for confusion and haggling.

Roger
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Old February 2nd, 2014, 03:16 PM   #5
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Re: Changing what we offer - wedding Packages

Keep it simple guys
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Old February 2nd, 2014, 06:11 PM   #6
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Re: Changing what we offer - wedding Packages

OK, I kept our initial, all-day coverage info up, and then it simply says:

Not Looking for All Day coverage? Let us know what you would like and we'll put together a quote.
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Old February 2nd, 2014, 07:05 PM   #7
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Re: Changing what we offer - wedding Packages

Hi Robert

Good idea keeping it simple! The boffins reckon that anything more than 3 options causes confusion ... it's nice to be able to offer a myriad of configurations but that just confuses the bride.

I find that the moment you refer to your package in hours, will then calculate your hourly rate and throw their hands up in horror as you are charging $200 an hour ... they never realise that your package also takes into account all the pre-wedding and post wedding time as well. For that reason I never do a "6 hour package" but do specify I will be onsite for a maximum of 6 hours. I think they like the fact that I work by event rather than by time so that also specifies what will be covered.

I also used to do weddings until the end but found there was very little to do or film in the last 2 or 3 hours so all my packages now go up to the first dance only! I know you are a DJ so you are used to staying up late but it makes a huge difference to me being able to finish at 9:30pm rather than midnight!!

Chris
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Old February 2nd, 2014, 07:31 PM   #8
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Re: Changing what we offer - wedding Packages

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Harding View Post
I also used to do weddings until the end but found there was very little to do or film in the last 2 or 3 hours so all my packages now go up to the first dance only! I know you are a DJ so you are used to staying up late but it makes a huge difference to me being able to finish at 9:30pm rather than midnight!!
I am (usually) a DJ, though I'm also a dad, which means I'm old and just want to go to bed since I know 3 & 4 year old will be getting me up by 7am no matter what.

I like shooting the first 10 minutes of the dance, or at least having the option. It's nice to get some shots of everyone.

When I'm the DJ, even after the boss (my wife) is done filming and leaves, I'll often grab a camera and pick up a few things here and there.
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Old February 2nd, 2014, 10:45 PM   #9
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Re: Changing what we offer - wedding Packages

EUREEEEKA!

I just did a discount this weekend to a bride who didn't want any fancy-pants montages, just the service, guests congrats, speeches and first couple of dances.

WHAT A REVELATION!

I had an absolute blast... no rushing about trying to setup gear in 10mins, no racing around in cars with the photographer doing cheesy group poses and lovey-dovey nonsense. No prep shots. Just the basics.

End of the night I was full of energy - edited the thing today in 6hrs flat - even uploaded the service to Vimeo so folks in UK could view it. They were wrapped.

THIS IS THE FUTURE LADIES AND GENTLEMEN! (PATENT PENDING - DON'T COPY!)
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Old February 3rd, 2014, 01:57 AM   #10
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Re: Changing what we offer - wedding Packages

Hi John

I found it a huge advantage to trim all my packages to the end of the first dance. You actually get home at a sane hour!! I never follow the photog around (unless it's me doing the stills) ..Just a 10 minute shoot at the venue on stedicam and I'm off to chill out at the reception!

Out of decency I still offer an add on to go thru to midnight but make it un-realistic cost wise so brides just don't want it!!

Chris
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Old February 3rd, 2014, 04:57 AM   #11
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Re: Changing what we offer - wedding Packages

Quote:
Originally Posted by John Knight View Post
THIS IS THE FUTURE LADIES AND GENTLEMEN! (PATENT PENDING - DON'T COPY!)
Haha! Too late John I already patented it ;)

Seriously, we've been offering cut down packages where we capture guests arriving, the ceremony (usually with hymns removed), confetti, a little (60 - 90 seconds in final DVD) of the reception, bride & groom entering the wedding breakfast, speeches, cake cut, first dance. No highlights video, straight through - OR - only highlights (20 mins) video.

While some couples still want the flashy all day job, it seem lots of couples don't have the budget, so this is a nice alternative, especially for late bookings.

Yes, it's easier, no running around during the reception looking for highlights shots. No following the photographer around, no trying to get time with the couple where you get to direct them instead of the photographer. Yup, it's the future. Just send your patent royalty cheques my way :)
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Old March 22nd, 2014, 05:55 PM   #12
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Re: Changing what we offer - wedding Packages

I would do a min of 6 hours. 3 hours seems like a waste of time. Don't over think this process (easier said than done) and make sure what you charging compared to the hours is worth your time. Weddings is a lot of work to edit. :)


Quote:
Originally Posted by Colin Rowe View Post
Keep it simple guys
Exactly! I finally figured that out after a wedding that I filmed last year.
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Old March 22nd, 2014, 06:18 PM   #13
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Re: Changing what we offer - wedding Packages

Quote:
Originally Posted by Colin Rowe View Post
Keep it simple guys
+1.

My pricing is extremely simple. 1 price. (which I post.) Simple as that. I don't monkey around with ceremony-only or anything like that. When I devote a day to a wedding (and the editing that this ensues), I now know enough the kind of work it entails -- and I've just decided that I'm only going to take on the full jobs. The kind of style I've developed really does depend on the full day, the whole narrative, and I just prefer to keep it to that.

I'm not saying this is the only way to go, but it works very well for me, avoids the nickel&dime folks, and weeds out the people who think I'm going to do their wedding for $295.00 :)

My advice, Robert and others (for what it's worth), is if you *are* going to go in the direction of multiple prices, add-ons, etc., that you do it mainly with your workflow and style in mind(make sure it really is the way you want to work) and not with the packages-for-packages sake as a goal.
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Old March 22nd, 2014, 08:16 PM   #14
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Re: Changing what we offer - wedding Packages

Quote:
Originally Posted by Colin Rowe View Post
Keep it simple guys
Yep yep yep
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Old March 24th, 2014, 12:41 PM   #15
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Re: Changing what we offer - wedding Packages

In my opinion, I think you should do a minimum of 6 hours and add extra hours starting from there.

I don't think it's a good idea to add different price based options because your clients will feel like they're getting "nickle and dimed." Couples don't want to have to look at a bunch of different numbers and figure out how much their package will cost. Charge what you think you should be getting and what you think you are worth... I personally think $1500 for 12 hours of coverage is ridiculously cheap, especially if you factor in having multiple people in your crew and editing, you'd be working for less than minimum wage.
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