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Old March 6th, 2014, 02:26 AM   #1
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Payments

Anyone in UK having trouble getting their money in? In 7 years this new season has got to be the worst for deposits and final balance's....Tomorrows and Saturdays wedding not a problem, but i have three next couple weeks and two final letters for final balances due 30 days before and they are late...... Is UK having a torrid time. With 2015 confirmed weddings booked, some deposits are in but i am waiting on four deposits really late and final letters to pay and a bag full of emails requesting discount....
Anyone else in UK experiencing this? Should i just take it and wait till they pay or pressure them...
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Old March 6th, 2014, 05:00 AM   #2
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Re: Payments

I found that to be a growing trend over the last few years in the UK, especially the requests for discounts. There are two ways that small businesses are being effected. One is that there is still financial uncertainty and the jitteriness that that brings so people are holding back as long as possible before they part with their money, except of course in the booming London area - I worked in the midlands. The other is the increasing growth of money-saving gurus who lead everyone to believe that everything can be haggled over. Video is perceived by some to be an earnings-only service, that is there is little material cost for such things as costly prints and fancy album covers, or chocolate to put in the fountain (does anybody still have those at weddings?). As such they think that there is always room to discount because all you would be doing is reducing the cost of your time. If couples could only grasp what goes into producing a good video they might realise that in some case they are getting it for a personal payment of less than the minimum wage, once capital investment costs and overheads are taken out. That however is a continuing and almost impossible goal to reach as they only really realise that after they receive the work and by then you have to start all over again with new couples.
Bit the bullet, stand firm and carry on, worrying about it will drive you out of the business, or out of your mind.
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Old March 6th, 2014, 05:14 AM   #3
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Re: Payments

We used to get people saying "we haven't got the money, we've just paid the photographer". So we changed from a 2 week prior payment to 4 weeks. Also Tave sends out the invoice reminders 2 weeks before due so 6 weeks. Thus reminding them to pay us first :)

I have no idea if the photographers have had trouble getting their money :)
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Old March 6th, 2014, 07:08 AM   #4
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Re: Payments

Thanks Danny & George.
Past few years seems to have been OK but this season jeez. Ye Danny i do remind them via a email saying two weeks overdue and 30 days before the event full balance due but it seems to be last minute these days to get paid. I cancelled one this morning, she has been promising to pay the deposit for a April 2015 wedding but has not paid a penny but then tried to discount me anyway in the beginning so i have booked someone else and sent her a courtesy email to say i have chosen someone else.
Onto the photographers Danny, with respect to them my mate has only three bookings this year and he is usually in the range of 15 a year and he also knows a few down.
I did a wedding end of Jan, passed the DVD over last week and feedback was excellent. She then told me the photog she had, did not do as good job as her sisters wedding and they have put the photos in the draw gathering dust. She then said they watch the DVD all the time with friends family and feel they have had their monies worth with me and the DVD. I polity asked how much did the photographer charge her, my god she said he was triple me at 1295. Never again and i paid him up front 6 months ago.....
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Old March 6th, 2014, 08:15 AM   #5
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Re: Payments

Quote:
Originally Posted by George Kilroy View Post
Video is perceived by some to be an earnings-only service, that is there is little material cost for such things as costly prints and fancy album covers, or chocolate to put in the fountain (does anybody still have those at weddings?).
Yes - I'm not sure if it's just a northern thing or not but a third of my weddings seem to have them! Seriously this year I'm having no problem with payments but do get people asking for discounts - I do not budge but if they press it I politely explain that it takes me the same amount of time (mainly people asking for a discount are getting married mid-week or just out of season) to film a wedding on a Wednesday in January as it does a Saturday in August so no - I don't do discounts. I get a few who, once quoted say 'you're waaaay too expensive' even though my prices are extremely competitive - I don't know what they expect really.

My only worry is that in my area I have a few weekend warrior types who have reasonable websites (only a few samples though) who offer full day weddings for 400 - I simply cannot and would not compete at that price - That makes it a tough sell though at times when they say 'that guy charges more than half what you do!'
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Old March 6th, 2014, 08:30 AM   #6
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Re: Payments

I have noticed a very slight trend over the last two years here in US of couples being slower to pay.

When I began in the business it never seemed an issue, but over the last couple of years there are occasional couples who just don't want to part with payments.

I agree with George on the causes, well said.

+1 Peter. I see an absolutle HUGE spike in people wanting deals and my photographer friends tell me that they are seeing this as well.

The business has changed and is continuning to change in many good ways as well in many not-so-good ways. What amazes me is the speed these changes are occurring.
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Old March 6th, 2014, 09:04 AM   #7
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Re: Payments

I should add. I haven't had any problems for years now. Possibly due to the asking for payment 6 weeks vs 2 and also because of the type of people we now get. I think our problems when we were 995.

There is also no doubt a regional divide happening.

Steve, I can't imagine who the photog was charging that much. I think we've only encountered ones who charge that much once or twice.
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Old March 6th, 2014, 09:17 AM   #8
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Re: Payments

Maybe change up how much you ask for and when?

A few years ago, I switched to asking for four payments total: 25% at booking, two payments of 25% spaced out, and then a final payment of 25%.

I also offer check by mail, credit card, or Paypal.

Anything to make it as easy as possible to pay.

It also does better protecting me in case of cancellations (I made the change when 4 weddings cancelled within 30 days of each other, when most years I get 0-2 all year).

Those two middle payments are usually in the October and January/February, so that if someone is cancelling (or I have to cancel because they won't pay), it's resolved by a reasonable time.

It also means that if they cancel 90 days out, I already have 75%, but have chance to rebook. If they cancel early, I probably only have 25%, but have a fair chance to rebook.
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Old March 6th, 2014, 09:24 AM   #9
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Re: Payments

I have never had an issue since I changed my methods to 25% Deposit, 50% 3 months before the event and final payment a month before the event.
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Old March 6th, 2014, 09:25 AM   #10
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Re: Payments

Danny i swear she said he was triple my 1295. some brides do exaggerate but she was not amused and paid well over the odds. 3500 for a photog and i ended up organizing everyone anyway...I have tried going high end market Danny and it will not work in the north i can assure you. I have done a feedback the past 70 clients and they all said they would not pay over 1495 for a wedding video, period.
Peter for a guy charging 400 he must be completely mad or completely skint.
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Old March 6th, 2014, 09:28 AM   #11
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Re: Payments

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tariq Peter View Post
I have never had an issue since I changed my methods to 25% Deposit, 50% 3 months before the event and final payment a month before the event.
Good shout Tariq
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Old March 6th, 2014, 10:00 AM   #12
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Re: Payments

Over the last year I've noticed a rise in 'low end' photographers who are obviously new to the game (boy and girl with 550D cameras and onboard flash - taking identical shots etc), or again weekend warriors - and quite often when I get feedback from my brides (have you noticed it's nearly always the brides and never the grooms) i get 'we love the video but are less than impressed with the photos'

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Old March 6th, 2014, 10:15 AM   #13
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Re: Payments

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Bleasdale View Post
Peter for a guy charging 400 he must be completely mad or completely skint.
Steve just Google 'west yorkshire wedding videographer' and on the first page are 2 companies offering full days at 450 and 550 - although I noticed on of them has a showreel that has been 'removed at the request of you tube'

Pete
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Old March 6th, 2014, 11:07 AM   #14
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Re: Payments

Quote:
Originally Posted by Danny O'Neill View Post
There is also no doubt a regional divide happening.
.
I'm certain that as in many other things there is a divide between the London area and the rest of the country in the amount of money people have and their willingness to spend it as well as their perceived value of things.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Bleasdale View Post

Peter for a guy charging 400 he must be completely mad or completely skint.
This being an open entry business there's always going to be the low price providers just as in any area where you don't need qualifications or affiliation. A reasonable looking website with a few snappy samples and some well crafted text (easily gleaned from other sites) will be enough to satisfy many couples that most providers will be offering much the same. Even on DVinfo many expound that a 1000 camcorder is capable of achieving acceptable results so those videographers who either don't rely on the income because they have another job or others who do weddings alongside other work may be happy to buy a cheap camcorder or DSLR and go out for that sort of price, do a quick edit and 'thank you very much'. After a year or so they'll either drop weddings, or be upping their price and complaining that others are far too cheap. It's been like that ever since I've been involved, The difference is that when I started the only way to book someone was face to face with genuine examples of work but now that anyone can use the internet to trawl for work anywhere these low-end producers (in terms of price) become direct competition for everyone. Discerning couples will always look past the price but many, as is often evidenced here, will happily book someone from a website based on price.
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Old March 6th, 2014, 11:10 AM   #15
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Re: Payments

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Rush View Post
Steve just Google 'west yorkshire wedding videographer' and on the first page are 2 companies offering full days at 450 and 550 - although I noticed on of them has a showreel that has been 'removed at the request of you tube'

Pete
You're not the only one suffering from these clowns ;)

I'm standing my ground when people ask for all day for < insert silly price here >, which there appears to be offerings from Newcastle to Derby and Scarborough to Manchester all trying to get in on the local area.

I know for a fact that one group comes down from Newcastle for all day shoots (3 people) for 500 while advertising that they are in based in York. It just so happens that they pick random addresses, one of which was Pizza Hut, another was McDonalds, another was a solicitors! Each time we report them to trading standards they just take it off the site for a week (that gets trading standards off their back) then move the address somewhere else and put it back on.

Back on topic, I can't say I've noticed any particular problem in getting paid Steve, either deposits or balances. It maybe a little blip you're seeing that could be gone as fast as it came.
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