“What DO clients really want?” I hear that question all the time as I work with my photographers helping them build businesses that thrive. It’s remarkable . With all of the changes that we have witnessed and transitioned through, the one thing that has not changed is the answer to that very question.
Clients want a photographer they can trust, one who they know will meet the visual needs of their project at hand, and will do so in a process that is smooth, easy and peaceful. Trust is where it begins and ends for clients. Building confidence in you involves your commitment to excellence in several areas. Sound simple enough? You may think so, but if it’s truly that easy why are many photographers still not giving clients what they need?
Trust is built through several steps that you need to take.
It all starts with your visual product. Clients today have a huge pool of assignment photographers to choose from and a stock option that contains highly competitive images. Your first step in building trust is to develop a body of work that clearly and quickly communicates what you shoot and your visual approach to your topic. You will need to build a deep inventory of images within your visual direction in order to build confidence in you as a new supplier. Make no mistake this applies to any area of photo in any market.
Secondly you will need to develop a list of service goals and action plans to enable your “potential clients” to experience your caring, genuine and heartfelt servicing before they even hire you. The opportunity to communicate your servicing ethic before you are even hired is a concept that most photographers don’t embrace.
Finally, you’ll need to prioritize your spending in way that will grow your business. I am constantly amazed that photographers have no trouble buying the latest new piece of equipment or software program, yet balk at spending money on marketing or education. Whether your business is busy or slow, budget funds for product development and for marketing tools and support. Spend time writing a list of your service goals and live them daily.
Showing up in the areas listed above will enable you to have the product and the service that clients are demanding. You will be able to get your message out and as you progress you will continue to build trust in you with your potential clients. That is what clients really want!