Connections are made with the heart, not the tongue.
The words we use are powerful! Although the studio phone is becoming obsolete as we continue rushing headlong into the world of emails and texting to communicate with our clients and prospects, we still must learn how to craft each word we use when connecting with them.
I learned that most people describe things in a "left" brain fashion. For example, a left brain would say this when describing our emotional Relationship style of photography.
"With this style, Tim does the photography, it’s a B&W and a bit more posed. We do the larger groups first and then we will break it down into smaller groupings. Wear all black clothing."
Folks, we are selling an emotional and dynamic art form, no matter what the style, so, why give such "left brain" messages? How about saying "This style reﬂects the relationship of you and your child in a deeper manner. Tim learns your story and ﬁnds a way to celebrate it in a ﬁne art B&W piece that will tug at your heart strings."
Simple messaging with an emotional feel goes much further than bringing left brain logic into the equation when talking to a potential client. Watch what you say! Share more of your heart.
Telling stories...what an unusual topic to mention when discussing how you connect with clients or prospects! WOW! If you haven’t discovered this gold mine for booking a client, you have missed it!
When a potential client makes their first connection with you, they don’t know how to ask if you are the right ﬁt for them, so they ask about your price for an 8x10 or the cost of your session. It is their way of starting to assess whether they can afford you and if you are right for them! They don’t want to be humiliated. Once you realize this, you will be much better with your answer, knowing the real question they are asking.
Therefore, I don’t start with price quoting, but instead, I start asking questions about their family and children. I need to know what type of portrait they are interested in, so I keep asking things like ages of their children or if they have seen our work before and where.
Once I know some of this information, I then start to tell stories about our children. It doesn’t matter that our kids are adults now; I am making a “mommy” to “mommy” connection. For example, if they say their baby is six months old, I can reply that I remember when our daughter was that age and then we can “mommy talk!” We can talk about teeth coming in and progress in their crawling or walking or if they are standing and holding onto things. It is really fun to share this way. In the meantime, you have related to her/him, and conﬁrmed that you are the right place to book their portrait!
THREE UNASKED QUESTIONS (you must answer)
Finally, we strive to answer 3 unasked questions we know every prospect or client who is considering booking needs to know. Here they are:
ONE: Are you the right place? With the masses that have entered this profession, we have to let them know that yes, we are the right place by excelling in every area! Be professional!
TWO: Are you the right person? To be a photographer today requires so many skills in many areas. Be that person that exudes confidence that you are the right person for them and they will be glad they came to you.
THREE: Is this a good idea? You must be a fast thinker here as many will try to talk themselves out of coming in if they aren't convinced that this potential session is a good idea (at this time). Procrastination is the enemy here and you must find ways to overcome them putting a session off.