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Old April 6th, 2014, 05:58 PM   #16
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Re: How long do you hold a date open?

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Originally Posted by Tim Bakland View Post
This seems very generous and a bookkeeping headache.
Tim, I don't find it either and really don't see why it should be. For example, a couple contact me and are very interested in talking further so I arrange to meet them and show my work. They are very keen, so I leave them withh the booking forms and put the date in the diary as reserved. Two weeks later, I haven't received the forms and a second couple ask about the same date, so I ring the reserved couple and ask them if they are still inttending to go ahead. and to confirm within 5 days. If they tell me they will send the forms back then the other couple will be given that information with the proviso that I will call them back if the first couple don't go ahead in 5 days.

Seems pretty straight forward to me and has never given me any problems over 30 years. I will add though that I can take two weddings on any one day, and that over the last 2 years, every single couple I have met for a viewing have booked, although I am still waiting for the forms from a couple I visited last Thursday, to keep the 100% record.

Roger
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Old April 6th, 2014, 07:06 PM   #17
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Re: How long do you hold a date open?

Like Roger, I will go and see them BUT I need them to sign up on the appointment. If they want to think about it then that usually means that they don't want you but occasionally they might want to discuss it more. I normally have a 100% success rate on appointments anyway. 5 days does sound a bit generous to me too. I feel if they are serious then they need to commit themselves at the appointment end and not have nearly a week to think about it.

Not sure about others but I go and see the couple at no charge so I do expect some results for my effort.

Chris
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Old April 6th, 2014, 08:10 PM   #18
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Re: How long do you hold a date open?

Signed agreement gets the date. And if someone gets nasty with me, I refer them to Don B.
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Old April 6th, 2014, 09:00 PM   #19
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Re: How long do you hold a date open?

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I normally have a 100% success rate on appointments anyway.
Hey Chris, I once gloated to a photographer this... he laughed and told me that was because I'm not charging enough. He was right damnit.
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Old April 6th, 2014, 09:30 PM   #20
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Re: How long do you hold a date open?

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Hey Chris, I once gloated to a photographer this... he laughed and told me that was because I'm not charging enough. He was right damnit.

Very true.
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Old April 6th, 2014, 11:02 PM   #21
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Re: How long do you hold a date open?

Hey John

Probably right there BUT I have an big issue regarding sales techniques! I'm not exactly the best salesman and if I had to sell icecream on a hot day I would struggle!!

To overcome this I have a VERY informative website that does the selling for me so 99% of the time my enquiries are "when can you come and finalise the booking" ...works for me and no real selling involved either. I seldom, if ever need to "convince" the couple as they have already decided to book me hence the high closure rate ... I'm just the order taker not the national sales manager

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Old April 7th, 2014, 05:03 AM   #22
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Re: How long do you hold a date open?

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Originally Posted by Chris Harding View Post
5 days does sound a bit generous to me too. I feel if they are serious then they need to commit themselves at the appointment end and not have nearly a week to think about it.

Chris
Hi Chris,

I'm surprised that you feel 5 days is a long time. Most couples that I see don't really seem to have a clue what to expect from a wedding video and I like them to feel that they are not being pressured into signing something without having a chat about it first. If I am considering buying something that is costing that amount of money, I like to have a look around and make sure that I am making the right decision, particularly if it is something that I have little experience of.

I have often had couples return the signed forms several weeks later and once the date is reserved in the diary, it really makes little difference to me how long they take, as it is not holding anything up. If another enquiry comes in for the same date then they simply need to get the forms back or lose it anyway.

It works well for me, so that is all that matters really:-)

Roger
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Old April 7th, 2014, 08:53 AM   #23
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Re: How long do you hold a date open?

Hi Roger

No offence intended about the 5 days but I always leave with a signed contract and their assurance that the first payment will be in my account the same evening. As mentioned to John, the call to visit them is to sign a contract and get wedding details hence me leaving with a booking and signed contract.

You obviously chat to them convince them that you are the man for the job and let them decide on their own whether to hire you or not ...obviously with that scenario you put the ball in their court and leave it up to them when to decide to sign and return so in your case the 5 days is fine.

In cases where they have said "we will think about it" there is about 99.99999% chance I'll never hear from them again so I take that as a "no booking" but it rarely seems to happen!

You are obviously a better salesman than me ... I have to do it the other way and as mentioned my clients usually say to me "Are you available on Tuesday evening, we would like to book you"

Chris
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Old April 7th, 2014, 09:42 AM   #24
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Re: How long do you hold a date open?

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Originally Posted by Chris Harding View Post
In cases where they have said "we will think about it" there is about 99.99999% chance I'll never hear from them again so I take that as a "no booking" but it rarely seems to happen!
Chris
I used to visit people a few years ago with zero pressure to book on the day and had about an 80% closing rate and the contract would arrive within a couple of days.

As time moved on more people came in to the market with silly low prices (this year is just ridiculous!) and I quickly realised that unless you were the last appointment they had then the next guy would simply undercut you (and the next one undercut them) and you'd lose the sale.

Even if you were the last one to see them they already had a string of other quotes they used to try beat you down on prices with I just don't play those games, so I'd end up thanking them for their time, wishing them a wonderful day and walking away.
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Old April 7th, 2014, 09:54 AM   #25
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Re: How long do you hold a date open?

I only hold, pencil in, reserve, a date for no longer than 24 hours. which gives them enough time to get the deposit cash/cheque in my hands. After that 24 hrs I guarantee nothing. If they need more time, it means they are still shopping around and taking their sweet time. Way too convenient for them. I don't play that game anymore.
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